Fall Grade Relief Policy

Dec. 8, 2020

Dear Students and Faculty,

The university appreciates the extra efforts and flexibility that faculty and staff have exercised to help students through fall 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic. While many students were very successful this fall, others struggled with online learning, health concerns, and many other challenges. Recognizing that some of the challenges faced by students were beyond the university's reach, and in response to the unusual circumstances of the fall 2020 semester, additional grading measures were recently approved by the faculty to help students maintain progress toward their degrees.   

The policy follows, and a frequently asked questions section to assist students is also below.

Best regards,

Mark Brodl
Provost

 

Fall 2020 Additional Grading Measures Policy in Response to COVID-19 

 

1)  For fall 2020, all course grades of F (except grades of F that arose entirely, or in part, due to academic dishonesty penalties) will automatically be converted to a grade of no credit (NC). No paperwork or consultation with an advisor is needed.

 

2) With consent of the academic advisor, students may exercise the following option for courses taken during Fall 2020. 

  • For fall 2020, a student with a D (except grades of D that arose entirely, or in part, due to academic dishonesty penalties) can elect for the grade to be converted to a grade of NC.
    • A grade of NC does not apply to the GPA calculation.
    • If a student exercises this option, the course will not count toward any requirements nor count as a prerequisite.
    • This option may not be available or advisable for courses that students need for professional accreditation, pre-professional preparation, or degree completion.

 

This option may be exercised through Friday, January 22, 2021 by submitting THIS FORM.  

 

3) With consent of the academic advisor, students may exercise the following option for courses taken during Fall 2020.  

  • For Fall 2020, a student can elect to withdraw from a course (or courses) retroactively unless their course grade has been impacted by a penalty for academic dishonesty. 
    • If the student elects this option, the grade for the course will be Withdraw (W).
    • A grade of W does not apply to the GPA calculation.
    • If a student exercises this option, the course will not count toward any requirements nor count as a prerequisite. 
    • This option may not be available or advisable for courses that students need for professional accreditation, pre-professional preparation, or degree completion.
       

This option may be exercised through Friday, January 22, 2021 by submitting THIS FORM.  

 

FAQ: Additional Fall 2020 Grading Measures

Q:  How do I elect to change a grade(s) of D to No Credit (NC)?

A:  You must discuss this change with your academic advisor.  If you and your advisor agree that this option is in your best interests, you must submit THIS FORM by Friday, January 22, 2021. 

Q:  How do I elect to change a grade(s) to Withdraw (W)?

A:  You must discuss this change with your academic advisor.   If you and your advisor agree that this option is in your best interests, you must submit THIS FORM by Friday, January 22, 2021. 

Q:  Do I have to submit an individual form for each course?

A:  Yes, you need to submit a separate form for each course whose grade you wish to change to NC or W.

Q:  What is the difference between a grade of (NC) and (W)?

A:  You will not receive credit for either grade.  Neither grade is calculated into your GPA.   However, students should discuss the impact of each grade for courses that students need for professional accreditation, pre-professional preparation, or degree completion.  For example, the admissions offices of some professional schools recalculate applicants’ GPAs and treat grades of NC as F.

Q:  Will I still complete the requirement I was trying to fulfill if I elect to change a grade to No Credit (NC) or Withdraw (W)? 

A:  No, you will still have to complete the requirement and will no longer have credit for the course.  This is why it is imperative you discuss the ramifications of losing credit for the course with your advisor if you elect to change to a grade of D to NC or a grade to W.

Q:  Can I change my grade back to a D after electing to change a course to NC?

A:  No, once you have changed a course to NC status you may not move the course back to graded status.  This is why it is imperative you discuss the ramifications of losing credit for the course with your advisor if you elect to change it from a D to a NC.

Q:  Will I be able to move on to the next course in a sequence if I elect to change my grade of D  to NC or a grade to W?

A:  No, your prerequisite will no longer be met with a grade of NC or W.  However, for some courses you are able to proceed in the next course with a D (or above).  Please check the catalog for the appropriate prerequisite.

Q:  I was re-taking a course this semester; can I still use these additional measures?

A: Because the University Catalog specifies that "No course originally taken for a grade may be retaken for Credit/No Credit," students who earned a D or F while repeating a course are not eligible for the D or F to NC conversion.  A student in this situation may, however, convert the fall 2020 D or F to a W.

Q:  If I am planning to go to graduate/professional school, should I elect either of these options?

A:  It depends on the graduate/professional program, and we recommend that you review the admissions requirements of the graduate/professional programs you plan to apply to before you elect either of these options, in addition to discussing this question with your academic advisor. 

Q:  Will I still be eligible for the Dean's List if I elect any of these options?

A: Per university policy, in order to be eligible for the Dean's List you must obtain a 3.5 GPA for a minimum of three graded units, not including CR/NC grades, and can have no grades of Incomplete.  For more information, please review pp. 81-82 of the University Catalog.