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Students act as Q-drop deadline approaches

Published: Friday, November 2, 2012

Updated: Friday, November 2, 2012 01:11

With the deadline to Q-drop coming Friday, students may make a decision that could affect the rest of their college career.

With only three Q-drops permitted to each student, many wonder whether they should use the drop to save their GPR or if they can buckle down on studies to avoid using it.

When a student Q-drops a course they are no longer enrolled for the class and do not receive a final grade. The course remains on their final transcript with a “Q” listed as the grade and is not factored into their GPR.

Christine Farris, undergraduate advisor for biology, said students should always visit their professor before dropping a class.

“Students should find out where exactly they stand in the class,” Farris said. “Find out if the instructor has taught the course in the past, if on the remaining exams [and] assignments do grades in general go up, down or stay the same.”

Farris said an honest opinion from a professor could be what is needed to help a student make a decision with confidence. She said students also have the option for Freshmen Grade Exclusion if they fear they may fail a course.

Freshmen Grade Exclusions only apply to students who entered school as an undergraduate for the first time at A&M, regardless of whether the student has acquired college-level credit through testing, advanced placement or summer enrollment.

The student who classifies may elect to drop a class in which he or she enrolled within the first 12 months of the first date of enrollment if a grade of D or lower was received. The grade is excluded from the student’s undergraduate degree and cumulative GPA calculation.

While excluded courses will not be factored into their A&M GPA, employers, professional schools and undergraduate schools may recalculate the GPA to include the dropped grade(s).

Farris said students who are considering using Q-drop or Freshmen Grade Exclusion should also ensure that dropping the course does not affect their status as a full-time student.

“If students drop below 12 hours they could be in jeopardy of losing financial aid, scholarships, insurance, et cetera,” Farris said. “So that needs to be checked first.”

Christine Woods, junior computer science major, said she has never used a Q-drop. She said while it is tempting to escape a difficult class, she finds it more useful to avoid if possible.

“I don’t Q-drop because I know I’m going to have to re-take the class,” Woods said. “I’m already more than halfway in the course and I don’t want to have to re-do the work. I know that if my grade isn’t where I want it to be, I need to work harder and push through.”

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