Student Questions

Spring 2020 Grade Policy

What choices do I have in designating my spring course grades?

You may choose to receive regular letter grades for all courses, or you may choose to designate some or all of your courses Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory.

What is the deadline for choosing to take a course S/U or for revoking that choice and taking a letter grade?

May 8, the last of classes, is the final day to choose your grade designation.

How should I go about deciding whether to designate courses S/U or not?

Your faculty advisor and your class dean are great resources to talk about your options. As always, we encourage you to keep the lines of communication open with your faculty members and class dean. You can also continue to ask your faculty members to provide a clear sense of how you are doing in each class so that you have good information on which to base your decisions. You should consider your ability to perform at a level you have come to expect for yourself and your current living conditions.

Will my faculty member know the designation I have elected?

No. Faculty members are not informed about what grade choices students have made. Faculty members always submit letter grades that are converted by the registrar.

Can these S/U courses be used to fulfill requirements?

Yes, courses with a Satisfactory grade will count toward all-College area distribution requirements and major and minor requirements.

How do I designate or revoke designation of the courses I want to take S/U?

Fill in the online form on the registrar’s page: my.colby.edu/ICS/Academic/SU_Election_Page.jnz

No faculty advisor approval is required for this semester.

How does this differ from the Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory we have always applied to courses?

It doesn’t differ. Faculty will enter letter grades and the Registrar’s Office will convert any grades designated by students as S/U to the S/U format. Any grade from A to C- will be noted as “S” and any grade below C will be noted as “U.”

Will my S/U courses for this semester count toward my allowance of four total S/U courses?

No. Use of S/U this semester will not count toward your total number of accrued S/U courses.

How will this semester impact my overall GPA?

As with any other semester, letter grades will be included in your overall GPA and any courses designated S/U will not count toward your GPA.

What about law/medical/grad schools that may want to see traditional letter grades for required courses?

Graduate and professional schools know this has been an extraordinary semester for undergraduates everywhere, with most colleges moving to remote learning and many shifting to more liberal use of a version of Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory. Graduate and professional school admission officers will have to find sound ways to evaluate candidates from across the country who may or may not have letter grades, possibly by looking at grades in prior and subsequent courses, letters of recommendation, and personal statements. All Colby transcripts will include a notation about the global health emergency.

If I am currently on academic warning or probation, how will “good academic standing” be defined for the spring term?

Good academic standing will be defined as receiving grades of C or above, or S, in courses totaling 12 credits. Students currently on probation who do not meet this requirement will remain on probation for another semester. Students on probation should consult with their faculty advisors and class deans to ensure they are on track to achieve good standing.

How will Latin honors (e.g., cum laude, magna cum laude, summa cum laude), Phi Beta Kappa Society membership, and departmental honors be determined?

Latin honors and Phi Beta Kappa Society membership will be determined as usual. Departments will continue to award distinction in the major according to their typical standards.

Will there be a Dean’s List this semester?

Because the Dean’s List is based solely on each semester’s GPA, which is likely to be atypical this semester, there will be no Dean’s List designation this semester.

How will my grades from study away be handled?

As usual, grades for courses taken outside of Colby will be listed on the transcript but will not be calculated in the GPA. Students will receive degree credit for all courses they pass at approved non-Colby programs in Spring 2020. Further, students may elect S/U options for any courses offered by their approved study away programs, if that option is available.

Students Remaining on Campus

Will I receive a room and board credit?

All students who departed from campus will receive a credit, net of financial aid, based on pro rata share of the off campus housing rebate with an adjustment for miscellaneous expenses. The credit will be based on the student’s spring housing and board plan election.

Students receiving grant aid this spring will receive a credit based on the financial aid award. The minimum credit for any aided student, however, will be $1,500.

Understanding the financial and personal impact for students who maintain on campus employment, the College will provide a wage payment to students who were employed in the spring semester based on the average hours worked this semester. This payment is in addition to the room and board credit which encompasses housing, dining, and some miscellaneous expenses. For eligible students, this payment will be made via direct deposit on April 16, 2020. If you need to establish direct deposit, please email payroll@colby.edu.

Prior to these reimbursements, the College also provided funding related to supporting many students’ return home, including transportation, technology, storage, and incidental expenses.

Student Financial Services will send emails to students with a copy of their updated statement and a link to the room and board credit form. Credits will appear on the student account and will first apply to any outstanding account balance.

Will dining halls remain open?

No. Effective March 17 the meal plan will be grab-and-go from Roberts Dining Hall, with breakfast available 7-9 a.m. lunch 11 a.m.-1 p.m. and dinner 5-7 p.m. A program is also in place for meal delivery for those who are isolated or quarantined. All other dining facilities (The Spa, Museum café, Dana and Foss dining halls, Caporale Lounge) are closed.

What else is closed?

Instruction has been moved to online and remote learning, and most employees are working from home. Many College offices will have limited hours, so please email or call in advance. The bookstore and mailroom will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily. The Colby Museum of Art, Colby Libraries, and the athletic center are closed.

Can I get into buildings on campus?

All buildings now require ID card access to enter. While normally we support holding the door open for each other, using your ID will make it much easier for us to identify students, faculty, and staff who may have come into contact with an infected person and take appropriate action quickly. Use your ID card to swipe into each building.

Who can I call if I have questions or need help?

If you are unsure of who to contact, call the Dean of Studies Office at 207-859-4560. Due to remote working, please allow 60 minutes for a response. If there is an emergency, please contact Colby Security at 207-859-5530.

If I meet one of the exceptions to remain on temporarily on campus, by what date will I have to leave campus?

Exceptions will be made on an individual and case-by-case basis, depending on the nature of the exception.

If I remain on campus will I still need to engage in remote learning?

Yes. The academic program will be delivered solely through remote learning.

What is the cleaning protocol for campus buildings?

Facilities is currently using hospital grade cleaners and sanitizers. There is increased emphasis on sanitizing high-touch surfaces and ensuring hand sanitizer availability and placement in multiple campus locations. Efforts also include additional cleaning in the Health Center itself as a precaution.

Off-campus Students

Will I receive a room and board credit?

All students who departed from campus will receive a credit, net of financial aid, based on pro rata share of the off campus housing rebate with an adjustment for miscellaneous expenses. The credit will be based on the student’s spring housing and board plan election.

Students receiving grant aid this spring will receive a credit based on the financial aid award. The minimum credit for any aided student, however, will be $1,500.

Understanding the financial and personal impact for students who maintain on campus employment, the College will provide a wage payment to students who were employed in the spring semester based on the average hours worked this semester. This payment is in addition to the room and board credit which encompasses housing, dining, and some miscellaneous expenses. For eligible students, this payment will be made via direct deposit on April 16, 2020. If you need to establish direct deposit, please email payroll@colby.edu.

Prior to these reimbursements, the College also provided funding related to supporting many students’ return home, including transportation, technology, storage, and incidental expenses.

Student Financial Services will send emails to students with a copy of their updated statement and a link to the room and board credit form. Credits will appear on the student account and will first apply to any outstanding account balance.

Who can I call if I have questions or need help?

If you are unsure of who to contact, call the Dean of Studies Office at 207-859-4560. Due to remote working, please allow 60 minutes for a response.

Will I still need to engage in remote learning?

Yes. The academic program will be delivered solely through remote learning.

I live off campus, and I want to stay. Is that ok?

It is your choice to remain in the Waterville area in a private residence; however, you will still need to engage in remote learning.

Support and Online Learning

Will student support services be provided to students remaining on campus?

Health Services will continue normal operating hours Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, noon-5 p.m. All students need to call first to make an appointment at 207-859-4460 as walk-ins are not accepted at this time.

If you are sick with fever, respiratory symptoms, and/or a cough, or have been identified as having close contact with someone who is confirmed to have COVID-19, please call first and speak with a nurse by pressing 1 when prompted.

Health Services will continue to have appointments available for non-urgent medical needs by pressing 2 when prompted.

For all medical emergencies, please dial 207-859-5911 to be connected to Security. Please be aware that CER (Colby Emergency Response) is no longer in service.

How may I obtain more information about online learning?

Further information on your academic program and online completion will be communicated to you before spring break ends. During your two-week spring break, faculty members will be working to prepare for online instruction and will be in touch with you.

Will updates be provided on an ongoing basis?

Yes. This website will be updated on a daily basis at noon EDT.

Remote Mental Health Support

Can I receive mental health support if I’m off campus?

We are pleased to announce that effective immediately Colby College Counseling Services will be collaborating with Morneau Shepell to expand mental health support for all Colby students during this difficult time. We want to ensure that regardless of resources and location, our students have access to mental health support while away from campus and adjusting to all the challenges the evolving COVID-19 crisis brings.  

Morneau Shepell, through their My SSP app, provides 24/7 real-time mental health support for students via phone and chat, and ongoing mental health counseling by appointment via phone and video. Students are able to access self-directed digital content in addition to connecting with a counselor. This free and confidential support is provided by licensed mental health clinicians and will be available to students for the remainder of the spring term.

Students can download the My SSP app at the Apple App Store or Google Play. They can also access the same support services 24/7 by calling 1-866-743-7732. Please contact Counseling Services at 207-859-4490 or counseling@colby.edu with additional questions.  

Student Health Insurance

How will my health insurance work right now? Is it transferable to my home state or country?

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the disruption caused to Colby students, National Guardian Life Insurance Company (NGL/Wellfleet) has expanded coverage as follows:

  • Eligibility: Enrolled students attending Colby College who have transitioned to online learning will continue to be eligible under the plan. Coverage is available nationally and can be used at home.
  • COVID-19 Testing: NGL/Wellfleet will cover COVID-19 testing (including ER, telemedicine, urgent care, and office visits) similar to a preventive benefit for fully insured plans, waiving copays, deductibles, and coinsurance for customers when treated by in-network or out-of-network providers.
  • COVID-19 Treatment: Will be covered based on the specific plan benefits.
  • Telehealth Coverage: Telehealth visits will be covered the same as in-person visits.
  • Exclusion Lifted for International Students in Home Country: NGL/Wellfleet has lifted the exclusion prohibiting coverage for medical visits while international students are in their home country. NGL/Wellfleet will cover your visits while you’re in your home country with the same in-network cost share that you experience in the U.S. This coverage includes testing and treatment for COVID-19, as noted above.
  • Students Studying Abroad: NGL/Wellfleet has removed the non-emergency treatment exclusion for students seeking care while overseas. This means medically necessary treatment will be covered at the in-network level of benefits subject to any in-network deductible, coinsurance, and copayments.
  • Please see this document — NGL Wellfleet International Coverage Covid19 — for more information about procedures for international students.

Study Abroad

How is Colby supporting students studying abroad?

Most Colby students who were studying abroad have returned to their home location. Those who have not returned continue to remain in close contact with the Off-Campus Study Office. Please visit the Off-Campus Study website for more information.

Commencement and Summer

What are the current plans for commencement?

Colby is committed to ensuring that we are able to celebrate the Class of 2020 and our students’ many accomplishments. We are monitoring and evaluating the situation and our options for creating a wonderful moment for our students and families. We will continue to be in touch with Colby families about this and appreciate everyone’s understanding as we identify a solution that allows us all the opportunity to be together and provide our seniors with the celebration they worked so hard to earn.

Will I be able to return to campus for the summer?

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to change rapidly. At this time we are unable to make a decision about summer. The College will continue to monitor the situation and notify students as soon as the decision is made.