Pass-Fail Option for Fall 2020

The revised pass-fail option described below pertains for the Fall 2020 semester.

Deadline to submit Pass-Fail Contract is December 15, 2020 (11:59 pm).

If you are struggling to perform as well as you would like in a course, one action you may consider is changing your grading option to pass-fail. This is not a decision to be made lightly or quickly.  We encourage you to first work with your instructors to discuss your progress towards course completion, or to consider an Incomplete Contract to allow you more time, if the instructor has determined that you have a valid reason for not meeting a particular requirement prior to the end of the semester.

However, there may be some instances this semester where you feel that the option of a pass-fail is the right choice for you. Please remember, however, that choosing pass-fail does not mean you can stop attending or engaging in the course; failure to participate academically can result in a grade of F due to stop out.  Talk to your advisor and learn more about the policy and see course exclusions that may apply to your major or minor below. 

 

  • This option is available to matriculated students (i.e. degree-seeking) for eligible courses in the Liberal Education Program (LEP), major, minor, or electives.
     
  • There is no limit on the number of courses that may be placed on pass-fail. 
     
  • The instructor is not aware of the student's use of the pass-fail option until after the grades are submitted, except where the instructor is also the advisor. 
     
  • Once a student has decided to place a course on pass/fail, this decision cannot be undone.
     
  • If an undergraduate student earns a "D-" or higher in the course ("C" or higher for graduate students), the final grade will be reported as “P”. This grade WILL NOT count toward a student’s GPA but counts as attempted credit. 
     
  • If an undergraduate student earns an “F” in the course (“C- or lower for graduate students), the final grade will be reported as “F”. This grade WILL count toward a student’s GPA and counts as attempted credit. 
     
  • Course with minimum grade requirement: If a student is approved for the Pass/Fail grade option, this will also waive any minimum grade requirement for the student for that course. 
     
  • Course that is a pre-requisite for subsequent course: If a student is approved for the Pass/Fail grade option, and the course is a prerequisite for a subsequent course, a grade of ‘P’ will meet the prerequisite and waive the prerequisite grade requirement, for the subsequent course. Students should discuss this decision with their advisor or instructor, to be sure they have mastered enough of the material to move onto the next course in a sequence of courses.

Deadline to submit Pass-Fail Contract is December 15, 2020 (11:59 pm).

A Pass-Fail Contract must be submitted to your advisor by December 15, 2020.  A separate contract is required for each course.  If you advisor is also your instructor for the course, please submit the contract to the Department Chair for your program instead.    

Pass-Fail Contract Fall 2020 (Undergraduate)

Pass-Fail Contract Fall 2020 (Graduate)

Academic Warning/Probation 

Students currently on academic warning or probation must understand the implications of putting a course(s) on pass-fail. It's important to remember that an "F" will impact a student's GPA, while a "P" will not improve it. 

For example, if a student is doing well in a course, a pass-fail WOULD NOT be a good option,  as the letter grade could improve their GPA to be removed from warning/probation.  

However, if a student is currently doing poorly (not failing) in a course and doesn't want the grade to negatively impact their GPA, a pass-fail might be a good option. 

Before making this decision, students on warning or probation should consult with an advisor in the appropriate Academic Advising Center (AAC). 

Applying to Graduate School 

Some graduate programs require letter grades in classes that are prerequisites to their programs. If a student plans on applying to graduate school, it might NOT be a good idea for them to take any prerequisite or related courses as pass-fail. 

Students thinking of putting a course(s) on pass-fail should inform their assigned advisor of any plans for applying to graduate school. When possible, they should consult with any graduate program(s) to which they plan to apply. 

Dean's List

Students are recognized for their high academic achievement by being placed on the dean's list of their respective schools.  In order for undergraduate students to qualify for the dean's list, students must complete 12.0 or more credits, excluding courses taken for pass-fail, in Fall or Spring and earn a semester GPA of 3.5 or better.  These requirements apply to all undergraduate students, regardless of their academic class (i.e., freshman, sophomore, junior, or senior). 

Financial Aid and Scholarships 

In order to receive financial aid, students must meet the satisfactory academic progress (SAP) standards, which require undergraduate students to maintain a 2.0 overall GPA and complete 67% of the credits they attempt, regardless of whether they put classes on pass-fail or not. When it comes to determining SAP for financial aid, it doesn't make a difference if a course(s) is placed on pass-fail or taken for a letter grade. Students should contact Financial Aid with any further questions related to the financial impact of placing a course on pass-fail. 

Many scholarships, whether they be University-based or private, have specific requirements. These requirements can range from maintaining a defined GPA to earning a specific letter grade in a course.  Students who have scholarships should contact SCSU Scholarships or the provider of a specific private scholarship if they have questions regarding how placing a course(s) on pass-fail might impact their scholarship. 

GPA Requirements 

Students should consider the possible impact(s) that placing a course(s) on pass-fail can have on their GPA. It's important to remember that an "F" will impact a student's GPA, while a "P" will not improve it. Students can use this GPA calculator to estimate their overall GPA.  

Consider the following when thinking about GPA requirements:  

  • Academic Programs: Some majors and minor have GPA requirements. Students must communicate with their assigned academic advisor to discuss this. They can also review “Courses Not Eligible for Pass-Fail” below.  

  • Non-Academic Programs:  See "Special Programs/Groups" below. 

Grade Replacement 

Grades taken for pass-fail are not eligible for grade replacement consideration. Students retaking a course to replace the original grade should not elect pass-fail, as passing grades are excluded from GPA calculations; therefore, they are not eligible for replacement of earlier GPA calculations. 

Major/Minor Requirements 

Some majors and minors have requirements that mandate a letter grade. For example, many nursing courses require a letter grade in order to get certified. Before making this decision, all students must communicate with their assigned academic advisor and should review “Courses Not Eligible for Pass-Fail” below. 

Mathematics Courses

1. Math major/minor classes are not eligible for P/F grading.

2. Non-math majors/minors in a Fall 2020 math class can request P/F grading for the class. However, the class will not be accepted as satisfying major/minor prerequisite requirements if the student later changes to a math major/minor. Furthermore, if the Fall 2020 class is part of a sequence where there are one or more C- or better grade requirements to progress, then:

     • If the student is likely to earn a P for D-, D, or D+ coursework simply due to their current trajectory in the Fall 2020 class, withdrawing (W) is strongly recommend over a P/F grade.
     • If the student is likely to earn a P for D-, D, or D+ coursework because of extenuating circumstances, but would probably have done better under normal circumstances, a P/F grade could be an option for the Fall 2020 class.
     • If the student is likely to earn a P for C- or better coursework for the Fall 2020 class, P/F grading could be an option, but students and advisors need to take into account additional considerations like the P/F grade impact on GPA, financial aid, athletics/other eligibility, and so on.

3. A P grade earned by non-math majors/minors in a prerequisite course during Fall 2020 will allow a student to progress to the next course in a sequence requiring C- or better. However, since math classes do build sequentially, a P grade for D-, D, or D+ Fall 2020 coursework does not mean a student is ready for the next class in a sequence. This is even more of a concern if a student is in a Fall 2020 math class because of a P grade for D-, D, or D+ coursework from Spring 2020. It is the recommendation of the math department that students in either situation withdraw from the class rather than request P/F grading.

4. Below is a summary of grade requirements for some common math classes/sequences. Note: in what follows, MAT 100/P means MAT 100 or MAT 100P. The following sequences have no grade restriction for progression:

     • MAT 100/P → MAT 103, MAT 100/P → MAT 105, MAT 100/P → MAT 107

The following sequences require a C- or better to progress:

     • MAT 100/P → MAT 108
     • MAT 100/P → MAT 112
     • MAT 105 → MAT 106
     • MAT 112 → MAT 120, MAT 122, MAT 125, or MAT 139
     • MAT 122 → MAT 150 → MAT 151 → MAT 252

Special Program/Groups 

Students who are part of non-academic programs and/or groups (listed below) should check with those programs before requesting a pass-fail. While most of these programs do not require students to have particular letter grades, they may have GPA requirements. 

If a student is part of a program/group that is not listed, they should contact the appropriate program/group. 

Transferring Credits 

Courses taken as pass-fail might not be accepted for transfer credit when attending another institution. Students considering a pass-fail should contact the institution to which they plan to transfer credits. 

Tuition Reimbursement from Employers 

Graduate students who receive tuition reimbursement from their employers typically need to earn a minimum grade in courses; thus, these students should consult with their employer before considering pass/fail.

The courses listed below are not eligible for the pass-fail option for students in the following programs/majors/minors.  Please see Important Considerations above for a special note regarding Mathematics Courses.  For graduate students, any undergraduate courses listed in your program that you are required to take to strengthen your academic background are not eligible for pass-fail.
 

College of Arts & Sciences

  • Bilingual Multicultural Education/TESOL
    TSL 315 TSL 418 TSL 502 TSL 505 TSL 510 TSL 515 TSL 518
  • Biology
    BIO 102 BIO 103 BIO 120 BIO 200 BIO 201 BIO 220
  • Communication
    COM 150 COM 210 COM 212 COM 221 COM 258W COM 302W COM 333W COM 350 COM 450 COM 493
  • Computer Science (General)
    CSC 152 CSC 207 CSC 212 CSC 229 CSC 235 CSC 265 CSC 330 MAT 100/100P MAT 112 MAT 122 MAT 150  
    MAT 151
  • Computer Science (CIS)
    CSC 152 CSC 207 CSC 212 CSC 229 CSC 235 CSC 265 CSC 330 MAT 100/100P MAT 112 MAT 120 MAT 122  
  • Computer Science (Graduate)
    CSC 535 CSC 540 CSC 563 CSC 568  
  • Data Science
    MAT 122 MAT 150 MAT 151 MAT 178 MAT 221 MAT 329 MAT 372
  • Earth Science
    ESC 200 ESC 201 ESC 210 ESC 220 ESC 311 ESC 350
  • Environmental Studies/Systems and Sustainability/Geography
    EVE 540 EVE 552 EVE 598 GEO 490
  • Journalism
    JRN 101 JRN 135 JRN 170 JRN 200 JRN 220 JRN 227 JRN 300 JRN 301 JRN 351 JRN 490
  • Mathematics
    MAT 122 MAT 150 MAT 151 MAT 178 MAT 221 MAT 245 MAT 250 MAT 252 MAT 300 MAT 322 MAT 329 MAT 370
    MAT 372 MAT 375 MAT 405 MAT 488 MAT 490 MAT 499
  • Media Studies
    MDS 222W MDS 324W MDS 482W
  • Music
    MUS 102 MUS 115 MUS 117 MUS 171 MUS 204 MUS 205 MUS 210 MUS 220 MUS 225 MUS 320 MUS 325 MUS 341
    MUS 342 MUS 441 MUS 442
  • Physics
    MAT 150 MAT 151 MAT 252 PHY 230 PHY 231
  • Psychology
    PSY 259 PSY 393

College of Education

  • Educational Leadership 
    EDL 680 EDL 681 EDL 683 EDL 684 EDL 685 EDL 687 EDL 687 EDL 688 EDL 801 EDL 802 EDL 803 EDL 804

College of Health and Human Services

  • Athletic Training
    HMS 227 HMS 302 HMS 303 HMS 380 HMS 383 HMS 384 HMS 388 HMS 411 HMS 490
  • Athletic Training (Accelerated)
    BIO 120 BIO 200 BIO 201 CHE 120 HMS 301 HMS 308 HMS 380 HMS 383 HMS 384 HMS 485 MAT 107 PSY 100
  • Exercise and Sport Science
    BIO 100 BIO 120 BIO 200  BIO 201 CHE 120 HMS 160 HMS 281 HMS 282 HMS 283 MAT 107 MAT 122 PCH 200 PHY 103 PSY 100
  • Exercise and Sport Science (Human Performance)
    BIO 100 BIO 120 BIO 200  BIO 201 CHE 120 HMS 160 HMS 281 HMS 282 HMS 283 MAT 107 MAT 122 PCH 200 PHY 103 PSY 100
  • Exercise Science K-12
    HMS 191 HMS 291 HMS 293 HMS 350 HMS 394 HMS 400 HMS 495
  • Health Science
    BIO 200 CHE 120 ENG 112 MAT 107 PSY 100
  • Nursing
    BIO 120 BIO 200 BIO 201  CHE 120 CHE 125 ENG 112 (or higher) MAT 107 MAT 108 (or higher) NUR 340 NUR 341 NUR 342 NUR 343 NUR 344  
    NUR 420 NUR 421 NUR 423 NUR 425 NUR 426 NUR 428 NUR 430 NUR 431 NUR 432 NUR 442 NUR 457 NUR 459 NUR 460 NUR 468
    NUR 469 NUR 500 NUR 516 NUR 519 NUR 521 NUR 535 NUR 800 NUR 801 PSY 100 PSY 219
  • Physical Education
    HMS 191 HMS 291 HMS 293 HMS 350 HMS 394 HMS 400 HMS 495
  • Social Work
    SWK 490 SWK 804 SWK 805 SWK 806 SWK 820

School of Business

  • Accounting
    ACC 310 ACC 311 ACC 350
  • Economics
    ECO 200 ECO 270 ECO 350
  • Finance
    FIN 300 FIN 340 FIN 341 FIN343 FIN 347 FIN 400 FIN 432 FIN 450