Grade Forgiveness

Undergraduate students (regular enrollment and Open University) may repeat courses only if they earned grades lower than a C (including C-, D+ D, F, WU, IC and NC). Repeating a course with an incomplete (“I”) grade is not allowed; a grade must be assigned or the “I” must revert to an “IC” prior to repeating the course. The policies regarding repeating courses with Grade Forgiveness or Grade Averaging as described below apply only to courses taken and repeated at Cal State East Bay. Any student who is repeating a course (except if the grade for that course was “W”) is not permitted to register during the first or second pass and must register on a space available basis during or after the open enrollment period.

Undergraduate, degree-seeking students may repeat a course for grade forgiveness two times.  “Grade forgiveness” is the phrase indicating that the earlier attempt(s) is ignored in GPA calculations, but not removed from the record, subject to the following conditions.

Course Equivalencies For Purposes of Grade Forgiveness

For information about forgiveness equivalencies for quarter-based courses, students should contact the chair of the corresponding department. 

Equivalent course groups (ECGs) are certain General Education courses that are considered equivalent for the purposes of grade forgiveness. Therefore, students will receive credit for only one course in each of the following groups:

  • CHEM 161, CHEM 165.
  • GEOL 100, GEOL 101.
  • INFO 210, INFO 220.
  • STAT 100, STAT 110.


Unit Limit on Repeating Courses

Students are limited to 28 semester units.

1. Students can only receive grade forgiveness for 16 semester units of coursework.

2. Students may repeat an additional 12 semester units of coursework for grade averaging. The quality hours and quality points of the repeated courses will be averaged, while the units earned for these subsequent attempts will not be counted.

3. Students who have repeated the maximum allowable, are otherwise making appropriate progress to degree, and still need to repeat courses to fulfill specific major or minor requirements necessary for graduation may petition for an exception to the 28-unit limit. The General Education Office will administer the petition process. Any course(s) approved for repeating by this petition process will be grade averaged.

Grade Forgiveness is not possible in the following circumstances:

  1. Repeating any one course for Grade Forgiveness more than twice. (Some departments may restrict grade forgiveness to only one repeat.)
  2. Repeating a grade of “C” (2.0) or better.
  3. Any grade assigned as a result of academic dishonesty.
  4. If the original grade(s) was assigned at Cal State East Bay, Grade Forgiveness by repeating a course at another institution is normally not possible. (Exceptions may be made for disqualified students who file an approved petition prior to repeating the course elsewhere, but only to the extent necessary for their readmission.) Disqualified students repeating courses through Open University at Cal State East Bay, only to the extent necessary for their readmission, do not need to file a petition.

Cal State East Bay honors the Grade Forgiveness policies of other institutions as stated on their official transcripts.


Petition for Forgiveness of Previous Terms

The Trustees of the California State University system have established a program of Grade Forgiveness whereby students who are having difficulty meeting graduation requirements due to a GPA deficiency may petition to have up to two semesters or three quarters of previous college work discounted from degree requirements and GPA computations. Grade Forgiveness is intended only to facilitate graduation from Cal State East Bay, not to enhance the GPA of students eligible to graduate. It is not applicable for individuals who already possess a baccalaureate degree or who meet graduation requirements without the approval of a petition for Grade Forgiveness. 

To have your petition considered, you must meet all criteria below:

  • Prove that the coursework to be excluded does not represent your scholastic ability;
  • Provide evidence that this substandard performance was due to an extenuating circumstance;
  • Prove that you would be compelled to complete or enroll in additional terms to achieve your baccalaureate degree if your petition is not approved;
  • Five years must have elapsed since the most recent coursework to be excluded was completed; and
  • have completed at least 15 units at Cal State East Bay since the last term to be disregarded, with a 3.0 GPA, 30 units with a 2.5 GPA, or 45 units with a 2.0 GPA

Students that feel that they meet the criteria can submit a Petition for Forgiveness of Previous Terms according to instructions on the form.