Pass/No Pass for graduate students for Spring 2020

University Community — April 2, 2020

Pass/No Pass for graduate students for Spring 2020

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff,

As students are experiencing disruptions caused by COVID-19 pandemic, the Graduate School is taking steps to be flexible to students’ circumstances while maintaining program integrity and ensuring mastery of the material to exceed minimum expectations for graduation education.

Given the University Senate resolution on March 25 and a Graduate Council vote on April 1, the Graduate School has revised its policy FOR THIS SEMESTER ONLY (Spring 2020) to require that graduate students may choose the PA/NP option with a C- as the minimum passing grade for all graded graduate courses in lieu of continuing to pursue a letter grade.

  • This requirement applies to all graded graduate courses.
  • This policy change is for Spring 2020 only.
  • For graduate courses, students must earn a C- or higher to receive a grade of “Pass.” Please note that in some courses, students may Pass a course but need to do more work (remediation) to master the subject and progress successfully in the program.
  • Students are highly encouraged to speak to their graduate advisors and programs about the impact of choosing Pass/No Pass on their specific academic career, licensure, accreditation, necessary mastery of the subject matter for progression toward the degree, and graduation timeline. In some cases, a Pass/No Pass choice may not be in the best interest of the student’s career aspirations. 
  • Correspondingly, course instructors, academic advisors and/or programs should notify students of concerns in taking the PA/NP option that may jeopardize the student’s accreditation, licensure, or obtaining the degree from the program.
  • The PA/NP designation does NOT count in the cGPA calculation. Therefore, a PA will not improve a student’s cGPA that is below the minimum of 3.0 for the graduate school, and an NP will not hurt the cGPA.
  • A PA will count for full course credit hours. An NP will not count for any course credit hours.
  • Students must apply for this option no later than April 17.
  • Students may also consider the option of an Incomplete (I) instead of PA/NP for a course and should discuss this option with their instructors and advisors.  Approval of the instructor is required to exercise this option, and the deadline for approved Incompletes has been extended to 10 weeks from the start of the next term.

If you have questions that are not answered by your program or adviser, please contact the Graduate School at


Alicia Bertone, DVM, PhD
Vice Provost for Graduate Studies and Dean of the Graduate School