Kirkwood Community College has adopted a temporary grading option for Spring 2020 courses only. This grading option will allow students to change a class ordinarily only offered for a grade (A-F) to Pass/No Pass (P or Q). It recognizes that students' academic performance may be impacted by the unusual circumstances of the current semester and the impact of COVID-19 on our country. We know many of you are juggling several things during this time, such as working from home, sudden unemployment, and balancing child care along with your studies. The P/NP option is a good alternative for those students who have concerns about maintaining a certain grade point average (GPA) as it is not used in calculating GPA. Those who choose not to use this option can simply continue as planned and receive a letter grade at the end of the class.
Final grades will be posted by midnight on May 16. Students will have until May 22, 2020 to decide if they want to exercise this option. Students will have the opportunity to designate the individual courses for which they would like to receive the P/NP grade (P or Q). They do not have to select all of their courses. If students are considering the P/NP option, they should contact their advisor immediately to gather the information necessary to make an informed decision. Advisors have access to the form required to request the P/NP option and must sign the form before it can be submitted.
Pass/No Pass grades impact students differently than traditional letter grades. Here are some of the important details to consider:
No Pass Grade (Available for letter grades F, D-, D, and D+):
- Does not lower your GPA like the F or D grade do
- No credit hours are earned
- Course does not satisfy a prerequisite
- Does not count against Dean's List eligibility
Pass Grade (Available for letter grades C-, C, C+, B-, B, B+, A-, A):
- You earn the course's credit hours
- Does not raise or lower your GPA
- The course may or may not satisfy a prerequisite - contact your advisor with questions
- The course may or may not transfer to another college or university - contact your intended transfer institution for more information
- The course may or may not help improve a Satisfactory Academic Progress status - contact your financial aid counselor with questions
- Could impact admittance to certain programs at Kirkwood - (i.e. Nursing) contact your advisor with questions
- Course may or may not serve to replace an existing grade if repeating a course to improve the grade - contact the dean of the course department with questions
- Does not count toward Dean's List eligibility
It is important to consider this option carefully and investigate its impact on your transfer plans, financial aid eligibility, and program requirements prior to making a decision. Students must work with an academic advisor to complete the process. If you would like to discuss the P/NP option, please contact your advisor.
Kirkwood has also decided to include a designation on students' transcripts indicating the extraordinary circumstances encountered in the 2020 spring semester.
When might a student want to use the Pass/No Pass option?
- A student has a high GPA and they receive a lower grade than desired in a class that is an elective and not a prerequisite for their program or a future course. Electing to receive a Pass grade has no impact on the student's GPA.
- A student has a scholarship that requires s/he maintain a specific GPA. A P/NP grade does not impact the GPA and helps the student retain the scholarship.
- A student is unsure if s/he can be successful in the online learning environment and is considering dropping all of their courses. Knowing that the P/NP option is available, the student can commit to investing all their effort to succeed academically. If things do not turn out as they hope, they can take the P/NP option and not negatively impact their GPA or their financial aid eligibility, as long as they are not currently on financial aid warning, probation or academic plan status.
- A student tried to complete the term in the online format but was unsuccessful and earned an F. S/he can select the P/NP option so that the F does not negatively impact their GPA.
If you have any further questions about the Pass/No Pass option, please contact your academic advisor.