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Undergraduate COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exceptions and Q-drops

In an email to students on November 25, 2020, Interim Provost Jaffe shared Q-drop extensions and COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exceptions in the noted policy changes.

COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exceptions

Beginning January 6, 2021, and continuing through May 28, 2021, undergraduate students may choose to have a total of three (3) classes graded on a Pass/Fail basis without penalty.

  • These exceptions are new and in addition to the standard Pass/Fail option. 
  • These exceptions apply only to the fall 2020 and spring 2021 semesters.
  • You can use all 3 COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exceptions in a single semester.
  • The COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception applies to all undergraduate students, regardless of credit hours.
  • You may view your final grades prior to making a decision to take these exceptions. 
    • Although you can submit a request for the COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception prior to viewing your final grades, it is advisable you wait until after the spring 2021 semester and before May 28, 2021, so that you can make the best decision to optimize your three conversions over both semesters. Once you have made a COVID-19 Pass/Fail exception selection for a course, it cannot be reversed.
  • Selecting to convert a course to a COVID-19 Pass/Fail is not a requirement; it is a choice and an opportunity for you to use if it is helpful.
  • Using a COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception on courses that already count toward degree requirements will allow your class to continue to count toward degree and course requirements, where a standard Pass/Fail may not.
  • Standard Pass/Fail options remain available to you.

Standard Pass/Fail vs. COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exceptions

STANDARD PASS/FAIL COVID-19 PASS/FAIL EXCEPTIONS
Deadline April 5, 2021 for Spring 2021 May 28, 2021 at 11:59 p.m. CST for Fall 2020 and Spring 2021
Who can use it? Any undergraduate who has completed 30+ hours Any undergraduate
What semesters can I use it for? All terms Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 only
What classes can I use it for? Only electives Any classes
How many can I use? Varies by major Limit of three (3) total across both Fall 2020 and Spring 2021
Can I use it for core/flags/major/minor requirements? No
Will not count toward core/flags/major/minor requirements
Yes
Counts toward any degree requirements (core/flag/major/ minor/etc.)
What is the passing grade? D- or higher D- or higher (except for School of Nursing)
C or higher for School of Nursing
What will show on my transcript? “CR” (credit) if the class is passed and “F” if the class is failed “CR” (credit) if the class is passed and “F” if the class is failed
Will my GPA be impacted? Grade of F counts in the GPA. CR does not count in the GPA. Grade of F counts in the GPA. CR does not count in the GPA.

STANDARD PASS/FAIL

  • Deadline

    April 5, 2021 for Spring 2021
  • Who can use it?

    Any undergraduate who has completed 30+ hours
  • What semesters can I use it for?

    All terms
  • What classes can I use it for?

    Only electives
  • How many can I use?

    Varies by major
  • Can I use it for core/flags/major/minor requirements?

    No
    Will not count toward core/flags/major/minor requirements
  • What is the passing grade?

    D- or higher
  • What will show on my transcript?

    “CR” (credit) if the class is passed and “F” if the class is failed
  • Will my GPA be impacted?

    Grade of F counts in the GPA. CR does not count in the GPA.

COVID-19 PASS/FAIL EXCEPTIONS

  • Deadline

    May 28, 2021 at 11:59 p.m. CST for Fall 2020 and Spring 2021
  • Who can use it?

    Any undergraduate
  • What semesters can I use it for?

    Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 only
  • What classes can I use it for?

    Any classes
  • How many can I use?

    Limit of three (3) total across both Fall 2020 and Spring 2021
  • Can I use it for core/flags/major/minor requirements?

    Yes
    Counts toward any degree requirements (core/flag/major/ minor/etc.)
  • What is the passing grade?

    D- or higher (except for School of Nursing)
    C or higher for School of Nursing
  • What will show on my transcript?

    “CR” (credit) if the class is passed and “F” if the class is failed
  • Will my GPA be impacted?

    Grade of F counts in the GPA. CR does not count in the GPA.

 

How to Request a COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception

Instructions vary by college/school:

Communication, Engineering, Fine Arts, Liberal Arts, Natural Sciences, Social Work: You may submit a COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception online. Your request will be updated on your student record immediately.

Architecture, Business, Geosciences, Nursing: You may submit a COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception online. Your request will then be routed to an advisor for review. Someone from your college or school may follow-up with you to discuss your COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception request and its impact on your degree progress. Once you submit your request you will receive a tracking number that allows you to track the status of your request.

Education, Pharmacy, Undergraduate Studies: Your college/school requires you to contact your advisor who will discuss the COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception request with you, and if necessary, submit your request on your behalf. Please work with your advisor to track the status of your request.

International Students

Students in F-1 and J-1 status may switch any number of courses to Pass/Fail without affecting their immigration status.

Students in F-1 and J-1 status must remain registered full-time to maintain their immigration status. There are exceptions for students who require fewer credits in their graduating semester and students with documented medical issues. Students should verify their plans with International Student and Scholar Services prior to dropping below full-time.

UEX Courses

You can change to COVID Pass/Fail grading status for:

  • a semester-based UEX course in fall 2020 or spring 2021;
  • a self-paced UEX course where a grade was received between September 1, 2020 and May 28, 2021; and/or
  • a self-paced UEX course that is not yet completed at the time of the request, which must be made by May 28, 2021.

Any UEX coursework changed to COVID Pass/Fail will count toward the three (3) allowed COVID Pass/Fail Exceptions.

Where COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exceptions are Not Applicable

Graduate Courses: The COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception should not be used for graduate courses, including for undergraduate students enrolled in graduate-level courses or in an integrated program.

OnRamps: The COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception does not apply to high school students taking classes via OnRamps.

Transfer Coursework: COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exceptions are not applicable to transfer coursework. If a student takes a class at another institution and transfers it in with a letter grade or with a “CR” or “Pass” grade, the student cannot choose to use one of their COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exceptions to count the class for a degree requirement. (Note that a college or school can elect to allow a transfer class with a grade of “CR” or “Pass” to fulfill a degree requirement through petition.)

Grades

You will see a grade of “CR” (credit) for a course that receives a passing grade.

If you receive a passing grade for a COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception, which is graded as a “CR”, you will be allowed to progress to the next course in the sequence, even if the earned grade is lower than the stated prerequisite grade. The only exceptions to this will be as it relates to certification or licensure requirements needed for employment.

Probation and Dismissal

Scholastic probation and dismissals will not occur until the end of the COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exceptions period of May 28, 2021. An undergraduate student whose GPA fell below 2.0 at the end of the fall 2020 semester will not be placed on scholastic probation nor will students subject to dismissal be dismissed from the university.  After spring 2021 semester grades are posted, and at the end of the COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception period of May 28, 2021, the normal process will occur and based on their grades, students will be placed on scholastic probation or be subject to dismissal. For both fall 2020 and spring 2021, if a student already on probation brings their GPA above a 2.0 they will be returned to good academic status.

Potential Impacts

Graduate and Professional School Admissions: It is important to keep in mind how classes taken Pass/Fail will be treated by graduate and professional school admissions, licensure requirements, and others. Changing a letter grade to Pass/Fail may have unintended consequences. Please do your research and if you are unsure, check with your advisor before making a COVID-19 Pass/Fail Exception request.

Veteran Benefits: If you are receiving veteran benefits, there may be an impact to your G.I. Bill®and/or Hazlewood education benefits. Please contact Veteran Certifications.

Financial aid: Be sure to speak to Texas One Stopif you are concerned about the impacts that a Pass/Fail course may have on your GPA as it relates to your satisfactory academic progress (SAP) calculations.

Extended Q-Drop Deadlines

  • The deadline for the undergraduate Q-drop for spring 2021 has been extended to Tuesday, May 11.
  • For both fall 2020 and spring 2021 semesters, all Q-drops are considered “non-academic,” which allows you to drop a class without it counting toward the six-class limit.

How to Q-Drop a Class

If you are considering a Q-drop for any of your classes for spring 2021, contact your advisor after the 12th class day. Please note, there may be some conditions when a Q-drop is not available. Additionally, Q-drops may have an impact on financial aid as well as other implications.

Potential Impacts

In addition, if you are receiving veteran benefits, there may be an impact to your G.I. Bill® and/or Hazlewood education benefits. Please contact Veteran Certifications.

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