Grading and Grade Point Average (GPA)

This web page provides information about class grading and Grade Point Average (GPA) as it relates to graduate programs in the Computer Engineering department. 

Classes can be graded as Credit (CR)/No Credit (NCR) or Graded. Credit/No Credit classes provide credit (or units) but do not contribute to GPA calculations. If you receive a No Credit (NCR) grade you will not receive units for the class. 

In some rare cases (such as CMPE 294 graded prior to Fall 2015, see note at the end of this page), the grade scheme is ABC/NCR. If you pass the class, you receive a letter grade and the units for the class. If you fail the class, you do not receive units and the class grade does not contribute to your GPA.

GPA calculations are derived from graded classes (those where you receive a letter ABCDF letter grade). As a graduate student, a letter grade of 'C' or better is a passing grade. A letter grade of 'C-' or lower for any class numbered 200 or higher is a failing grade. You will receive no units or credit for a class where you receive a failing grade. This is true for core, specialization, elective, and project/thesis classes. 

The are three GPA calculations that are important for MS Software Engineering students:

  • Semester GPA is the GPA calculation for all Graded classes you have taken in a specific semester. 
  • Cumulative GPA (CGPA) is the GPA calculation for all graded classes you have taken at SJSU. For Semester and Cumulative GPA, the classes include all of those beginning with the CMPE prefix, any classes taken in other departments, any undergraduate classes, the grade for each class you repeat, and includes any class that you have taken that meets the Graduation Writing and Assessment Requirement (such as CMPE 294 or ENGR 200W). It does not include any classes that are graded as Credit (CR)/No Credit (NCR), any class where you received a No Credit (NCR) grade (such as CMPE 294 taken before Fall 2015), or the grades for classes that you have transferred from other universities.
  • Candidacy GPA is the GPA calculation for the 30 units you declare on your Petition for Advancement to Graduate Candidacy (aka Candidacy form. See This calculation includes any classes you place in sections A - C of the candidacy form that are graded. The calculation does not include your GWAR class, any class transferred from another university, and any class graded as Credit/No Credit (CR/NCR). If you repeated a graded class that is entered in Sections A - C of the candidacy form, then the grade you received for each time you took the class is included in the Candidacy GPA. 

If your Cumulative GPA or Candidacy GPA falls below 3.0, the following consequences occur:

Cumulative GPA

  • You will be placed on probation. Once you are on probation you must achieve a semester GPA of at least 3.0 until your CGPA rises above 3.0. If you have a semester GPA that is below 3.0 while you are on probation you will be disqualified and lose your status as a student.
  • You will not be able to partipate in a CPT internship.
  • Your candidacy form cannot be approved.
  • You will not be able to register in CMPE 295A to begin your masters project, CMPE 299A to begin your masters thesis, or take the comprehensive exam.
  • You will not be able to graduate.
  • You cannot change your major to MS Software Engineering.

​Candidacy GPA

  • Your candidacy form will not be approved by Graduate Admissions (GAPE).
  • You will not be able to register in CMPE 295A to begin your masters project, CMPE 299A to begin your masters thesis, or take the comprehensive exam.

Note: In Fall 2015, grading for CMPE 295A and CMPE 295B changed from Credit/No Credit to Graded. This has implications for both cumulative and candidacy GPAs. In addition, grading for CMPE 294 changed from ABC/No Credit to Graded. This has implications for cumulative GPAs.