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Starting in September 2022, the grading system at Amsterdam University College will change from a letter scale (A to F) to a numerical scale (1 to 10). This change will make grading at AUC more straightforward by eliminating multiple conversion steps and offering consistency with the grading systems used at the University of Amsterdam, VU Amsterdam and other educational institutions in the Netherlands.

A to F letter grading system phased out

Before September 2022, AUC used a five-letter grade system common in the US and UK, with grades ranging from A+ (the highest mark) to F (the lowest mark). These letter grades would subsequently be converted to percentage points according to a standard table.

Based on the final letter grade in each course, a ‘grade point’ would be assigned on a scale from 1.00 to 4.00. An average of these grade points would then be used to give students their cumulative grade point average (GPA) upon which honours and designations (cum laude, summa cum laude) could be awarded. In this system, a final grade of C (grade point of 2.0) or higher would mean the student passed the course.

New numerical grading scale from 1 to 10

From September 2022 onward, all grades given at AUC (including for students who started with the letter grading system) will range from 1 to 10, with 1 representing the lowest grade and 10 the highest. In this system, ‘partial’ grades (grades for assignments and exams) are rounded to and displayed at two decimal places (i.e. 6.78). ‘Final’ grades (grades for an entire course) are rounded to and displayed at one decimal place (i.e. 6.8) unless the average of the partial grades falls between 5.01 and 5.99, in which case the final course grade will be rounded to either 5.0 or 6.0 (5.49 or below becomes a 5.0; 5.50 and above becomes a 6.0). Students who receive a final grade of 6.0 or above will have passed the course.

The GPA (Grade Point Average) calculation has been adjusted accordingly. The final GPA for a student is the weighted average of all passing final grades. This means that (final) GPAs in the numerical scale will range from 6.00 to 10.00. The (final) GPAs necessary for awarding honours and designations have also been adapted to this scale (see AS&P 2022-2023, Article 3.8).

Off-campus courses in GPA calculations

Along with the new grading system, there is also a change in the way that grades received from off-campus courses (including abroad) are counted in GPA calculations. Prior to September 2022, all grades that were obtained off-campus (including abroad) were converted to AUC letter grades and the corresponding grade points were counted in the GPA calculation.

Starting in September 2022, only off-campus courses completed with a passing grade from other Dutch higher education institutions also using a 1 to 10 grading system will be counted in the final GPA calculation. Any other off-campus grades received (including from abroad) will be displayed on a student’s diploma supplement but will not be included in the final GPA calculation.

Transition period for students who started before September 2022

For students who started at AUC before September 2022, there will be a transition period that impacts how grades are displayed on their transcripts/diplomas and how their GPA is calculated. These students will receive a final diploma supplement with a mix of letter grades from the old system and numerical grades from the new system. For these students, the final GPA will continue to be calculated using the 1 to 4 scale. For any final grades received using the 1 to 10 numerical scale, the grade will continue to be converted to the grade points of the 1 to 4 GPA system using a standard table (see AS&P 2022-2023, Appendix 1).

More information in AS&P 2022-2023

The complete explanation of the new grading system can be found in the Academic Standards and Procedures 2022-2023 in Article 3.1 (‘Grading and credits’) and Article 3.8 (‘Academic awards’). The GPA conversion table for students who started at AUC in the Academic Year 2021–2022 or earlier can be found in Appendix 1 of the AS&P 2022-2023