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Policy and Procedures to Exclude Credits and Grades from CGPA calculation (E-Flag)

Definition: What is E flagging?

The decision to E-Flag a course excludes the credit and the grade from the CGPA calculation. The grade remains on the transcript.


The decision to exclude specific credits and grades from a student’s CGPA calculation is an extremely serious one as it involves altering an official record. Therefore, the criteria in order to grant these requests should be stringent, approving only exceptional cases. At McGill, once a student receives a final grade for a course, this grade should stand and be part of the student’s record.


Grades in courses where the student was admonished or reprimanded for an academic offense under the Code of Student Conduct are not eligible for E-Flag.

Criteria for E-Flagging grades/credits in courses that exceed credits:

When a student takes courses that exceed their degree credits (120 credits for those entering as U0s), the grades for these courses will be automatically E-Flagged, unless the courses are necessary for program completion. Please refer to the policy on exceeding the 120-credit limit.

Criteria for evaluating E-Flag requests (compassionate grounds):

The following conditions must be met in order to approve an E-Flag request:

1. The circumstances must be exceptional, beyond the student’s control, and of sufficient severity to compromise their overall effectiveness and capacity. Hence if E-Flag is warranted, it would normally (not always) apply to the entire semester.

2. There must be clear and convincing documentation attesting to the above. Documentation may include medical notes from different specialists or notes from community leaders, among others.

3. The grades in question must be shown to be anomalous.

Timing for request:

E-Flagging requests must be made in the beginning of the student's graduating term and by the following deadlines:

  • March 1st for Winter graduation
  • May 1st for Summer graduation
  • November 1st for Fall graduation

Requests received after this date will not be considered. Earlier requests will only be approved in exceptional cases.

ONLY current Arts students are eligible to submit an E flag request. Students who have graduated or who have transferred to another university or college are not eligible to submit an E flag request.

  1. In order to file an E-Flag request, students must meet each of the three criteria. Only documentation and written statements will be considered; requests to present verbal statements or arguments in-person will not be granted.
  2. If the three criteria are met students must book a meeting with an OASIS Faculty Advisor.
  3. Once they have met with a Faculty advisor, students must complete the E-Flag request form. They must also write and submit a personal statement and provide any necessary supporting documentation to this Faculty Advisor from their McGill email account with the SUBJECT line: E-FLAG APPEAL - NAME - McGill ID NUMBER. The personal statement must explain how the student’s situation meets each of the three criteria. You can use the Tips for writing an academic appeal to complete this section of the application. Faculty Advisors may provide suggestions for clarification/further information where needed.
  4. The Faculty Advisor sends the E-flag request form, the personal statement and the supporting documentation to the Associate Dean (Student Affairs) for decision, which must be communicated within 2 weeks of the submission. In case of degree transfer students, the request will be reviewed by the Associate Deans of both faculties.
  5. The decision is communicated to the student by the Assistant to the Associate Dean (Student Affairs).
  • Requests are rendered on their own merits, taking into account the documentation provided, and weighed against the aforementioned criteria
  • If the request is granted, the Assistant to the Associate Dean (Student Affairs) will also follow up with the Records Office to ensure E-Flags are put on the student’s transcript.
  • If the request is denied, no further explanation shall be provided. The refusal could be for any number of reasons, including but not limited to:
    • Circumstances are not exceptional and/or do not compromise the overall effectiveness and capacity of the student to pursue their studies.
    • The request has missing, inadequate, or non-specific documentation, for example: note does not include an actual observation by health practitioner, note is not specific about dates or dates do not correspond to E-Flag request, note is not on letterhead, note does not state clearly an inability, incapacity to pursue studies.
    • Grades in question are not anomalous.

Appeals process:

In order to appeal the decision on the E-Flag request:

  • The appeal must be submitted by the student to the Assistant to the Associate Dean (Student Affairs) within 2 weeks of the decision.
  • Students must provide a concise (max 500 words) statement explaining why they are requesting an appeal, and what new and relevant information/documentation they are sharing to support their request.
  • Appeal requests that do not provide any new information/documentation will not be considered.

Appeals are reviewed by the Committee on Student Standing (CSS), which will review the request and decide within 1 month of appeal. CSS will review the original request and any additional information or supporting documentation provided as part of the appeal in light of the criteria established in the policy. CSS will only review documentation and written statements; requests to present verbal statements or arguments in-person will not be granted.

The decision by the Committee on Student Standing is final.

NOTE: Your Minerva record must be up-to-date. ALL grades and credits earned in preceding terms of study MUST be reported for your request to be considered.


Removal of E-Flag:

Students may request the removal of the E-Flag from their student record. They should do so in writing, and present the request to their Faculty Advisor. If the E-Flag was granted for compassionate grounds, the removal will be accepted. If the E-Flag was granted for other reasons, the request will be reviewed by the Faculty Advisor in consultation with the Associate Dean (Student Affairs). The decision to remove E-Flag will be final and irreversible.

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