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Grades & Ranking
CURRENT GRADING POLICY
As of the Fall 2019 semester, the faculty has adopted the following grade curve*:
- For required courses and elective courses with enrollment of 20 or more law students: A+ to A- (10-30%); A+ to B- (75-90%); C+ and below (10-25%).
- For elective courses with enrollment of 19 or fewer law students: A+ to A- (10-50%); A+ to B- (75-100%); C+ and below (0-25%).
Note: Due to COVID-19, the faculty approved a policy that required all Spring 2020 semester be graded only by credit/no credit with no option for advisory letter grades.
Download the Grading Policy for Spring 2023
The University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa Office of the Registrar issues the official transcript for the School of Law. The official transcript is cumulative and lists every course taken and the final grade. Since the Fall of 2004, “+” and “–” grades are included in the tabulation of student grade point averages.
At the conclusion of each Fall and Spring semester, the Law School calculates the class median and quintile rankings for each class: first quintile (20%), second quintile (40%), third quintile (60%), fourth quintile (80%), and fifth quintile. Quintiles are based on each student’s cumulative GPA (excluding first-year Fall semester advisory grades). For the Spring semester only, the Law School provides the numerical ranking for students in the first quintile (top 20%) of each class.
Note: First-year Fall semester grades are advisory only and therefore, no class ranking is released for first-year students in the Fall. Evening Part Time students are initially ranked with Full Time first-year students the semester after the completion of 30 credits. For Fall and Summer graduates, final class ranking is calculated with the following Spring graduating class. Please refer to the Student Handbook for further details regarding class ranking.
Students graduating in the top 25% graduate cum laude; students graduating in the top 10% graduate magna cum laude; students graduating in the top 5% graduate summa cum laude.
For the Spring 2023 semester, the cumulative rankings are explained below:
|1LS Class of 2025||2LS Class of 2024||3LS Class of 2023|
|First Quintile (20%)||3.57 to 4.00||3.56 to 4.00||3.50 to 4.00|
|Second Quintile (40%)||3.21 to 3.56||3.34 to 3.55||3.29 to 3.49|
|Third Quintile (60%)||2.96 to 3.20||3.18 to 3.33||3.10 to 3.28|
|Fourth Quintile (80%)||2.70 to 2.95||2.91 to 3.17||2.81 to 3.09|
|Fifth Quintile||2.69 and below||2.90 and below||2.80 and below|
*Prior to 2004, the William S. Richardson School of Law utilized a C+/B- curve. In 2004 and 2019, the Law School has modified its grading norm to the current curve to conform to most law schools’ grading curve.