Grading Standards

Grading Scale

IWS works with the following grading scale categories. As course instructors/supervisors/mentors of students, we grade your course projects with these four categories in mind.

(A) Superior
(A-) Excellent
(B+) Very good
(B) Average, good, or satisfactory
(B-) Passing, acceptable
(C+) Below acceptable standards for a master’s or doctoral degree
(C, C-) Deficient work in degree program
(D) Very deficient, unacceptable work
Any doctoral student who receives two or more final course grades of C+ or lower may proceed to the thesis course (DWS 801) only by repeating these courses for academic credit and must achieve a grade of B or higher in these repeated courses. Any doctoral student who, for personal or academic reasons, chooses not to complete the thesis is eligible for the Advanced Graduate Certificate in Worship Studies (A.G.C.W.S.), assuming that the four core doctoral courses have been satisfactorily completed.


Project Evaluation

In evaluating courses projects, we consider two particular areas: content and elements of style. Pay close attention to both.


Project Content

Are you doing research on the appropriate graduate level?

  • Depth of research and scholarship
  • Use and documentation of sources
  • Critical analysis applied
  • Assumptions questioned

Are you intellectually engaged with the subject matter and its complexity at hand?

  • Insights expressed
  • Questions raised
  • Familiarity with different views
  • Adequate integration of materials

Are you conveying passion, interest, and do you “own” your position or point of views?

  • Transparency of self
  • Creativity applied
  • Demonstration of ownership of the project

Elements of Style

Are you demonstrating writing skills on a masters or doctoral level?
Are you expressing your thoughts as coherently and as clearly as possible?
Is your writing engaging, focused and lucid?

  • Grammar, spelling, sentence structure, and paragraph structure
  • Flow of thought and argument
  • Clarity of expression
  • Articulation of focus, theme, and claims
  • Use of guidelines by Turabian 7th Edition