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Pass/Fail

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.