The MLS Student Handbook

Taking an Incomplete

The FHSU Incomplete Policy reads as follows:
“Assigned at discretion of instructor when work is of otherwise passing quality but incomplete, usually for reasons beyond the student’s control.”  Please read FHSU's catalog for FHSU's policy on assigning IncompletesExcept in the case of independent study-type courses, you have a year to finish the Incomplete.  For example, if you receive an Incomplete in Fall 2010, you have until the end of Fall 2011 to finish the course.  In the case of independent study-type courses, the one-year limit does not apply; you can take more than a year to finish an Incomplete in these types of courses. Please consult FHSU's catalog for FHSU's policy for removing an Incomplete.

If you encounter unexpected events that will prevent you from finishing a class - family, death, personal illness - contact your instructor as soon as possible.  If you feel that there is a good reason for requesting an Incomplete in a course, contact the instructor as soon as it appears likely that you will want to request an Incomplete in the course.  You should not seek an Incomplete because you have been too busy.  Rather, early in the semester you should determine whether the demands in your life allow you sufficient time to complete the work for all of the courses in which you are enrolled.  By week three of a sixteen-week course, you should determine whether to drop one or more courses.  Remember that other students have busy lives, yet they complete their assignments.  Think of a request for an Incomplete as a matter of equity.  Allowing students more time to complete a course brings other logistical responsibilities (like grading things out of sync with the other students) that are hard to quantify.

These tips may help you make a decision of whether to seek an Incomplete in a course:
• Is the incomplete requested for a verifiable medical reason?
• If not, is there any verifiable compelling reason to consider an incomplete?
• Did you have the opportunity to drop the course?
• Have you submitted previous work in a timely manner?
• Has the work that you have completed been of passing quality?
• What impact will the incomplete have you? For example, if you plan on finishing the Incomplete during a semester that you are taking other courses, you have effectively increased your workload for that semester.

When an incomplete is issued it is your responsibility to complete all the assigned work in timely manner. If the material is not completed within the appropriate amount of time, it is possible that the instructor may submit a grade that you do not desire, rather than simply let the “Incomplete” stay in the record. 

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