The Office of the Registrar announced that the flexible grading policy has been terminated for the fall 2021 semester in an email sent to students on Friday, Oct. 1.
The policy from the Spring 2021 semester expired on May 14, 2021 and was not renewed for the current semester, meaning that students will no longer have the option to choose pass or fail over traditional A-F grades.
Flexible grading was first implemented during the Spring 2020 semester in wake of the initial outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. It sought to relieve stress among students impacted by the academic and societal disruption of the pandemic by allowing them to choose Pass/Fail grading if they were not content with the letter grade they received in one or multiple classes.
“The flexible grading policy was an agreement between the Office of the Provost and Faculty Council. In spring 2020, Faculty Council lobbied on behalf of their constituents and students for greater flexibility because of COVID. We agreed that this approach was in the best interest of students and faculty,” explained Pamela Scott-Johnson, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs.
Under the flexible grading policy, faculty gave standard letter grades at the end of the semester as normal. Students were then given the option to complete an electronic pass/fail grading request form if they wished to change their traditional grade to P/F, with the Pass option having no effect on GPA.
“The announcement to end the policy was shared with the Faculty Council prior to distribution and to make sure the two parties were still in agreement. My office received no feedback on the policy itself, but on sharing the policy with the University academic community, especially for those who are new. Based on this feedback, the flexible grading option for our students has ended. The partnership between the Faculty Council and the Office of the Provost has allowed us to return to our customary academic experience,” said Scott-Johnson.
With this announcement, traditional A-F grading will be the only option for students moving forward.