You have three weeks into Fall or Winter term (one and a half weeks into Spring or Summer) to decide whether you want to take a class on a Pass/Fail basis. The Pass/Fail deadline is always the same as the early Drop/Add deadline. Once the Pass/Fail deadline has passed, you cannot change the grading basis of the course. Talk with your advisor if you want some help thinking through this decision.
Why Consider Taking a Class Pass/Fail?
This can be a nice option if you want to take a course that’s not in an area of particular strength for you. Perhaps there’s a Distribution course or an elective that’s really interesting to you, but you don’t have much background in that area. Taking such classes pass/fail allows you to explore without having to worry as much about the grade.
How Does the Pass/Fail Option Work?
Instructors do not know you’re taking their class pass/fail unless you tell them, so they post a “regular grade” (A+ through E). The Registrar’s Office converts that grade to a “P” or an “F.” Grades of C- or higher are converted to a P. Grades below C- are converted to an F and no credit is earned for the course. Either way, it does not figure into your GPA.
How to Take a Class Pass/Fail
Step 1: From your Backpack/Registration page in Wolverine Access select the EDIT tab.
Step 2: Select the course you wish to edit in the drop down menu and click "Next."
Step 3: Select "Optional Pass/Fail" in the drop down menu next to "Grading" and then click "Next."
Step 4: Click "Finish Editing" to complete the process.
Need more help? Watch the video.
Are There Any Restrictions on Pass/Fail?
- You cannot take courses in your major or minor pass/fail.
- You cannot take fourth-semester language courses being used to satisfy the LSA Language Requirement pass/fail.
- You can count a maximum of 30 credits of ungraded work toward your degree. This includes courses that you choose to take Pass/Fail, as well as courses that are mandatory Credit/No Credit and Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory.
What Other Factors Should I Consider When Deciding Whether to Take a Class Pass/Fail?
- It’s not a good idea to take a class Pass/Fail if there’s any chance it could be related to graduate school, professional school, or career plans. Pre-med students, for example, are strongly advised not take any of their science classes Pass/Fail.
- Consider your personal habits and work style. Will you be tempted to put off or ignore assignments for your Pass/Fail class? You’ll need to be sure you’ll still work hard enough to get the Pass.
- If you’re sending out a transcript and you want someone to see the grade “under” the Pass, you can pay a fee to have the Registrar prepare a special attachment which will show that grade.
The complete College policies on ungraded coursework can be found here.