Student Information due to COVID-19

Spring 2020 Pass/No-Pass (P/N) Frequently Asked Questions

The Pass/No-Pass option available for Spring 2020 gives all students (undergraduate, graduate, pharmacy, and law) the opportunity to replace Standard grades with Pass/No-Pass grades. Standard letter grades include A through F, and these grades are included in students' grade point averages. Pass/No-Pass grades include P and N, and these grades are not included in students' grade point averages.

This FAQ will be updated as additional information is available, and corresponding details below are subject to change.

May 4, 2020 Update

The final exam period for Spring 2020 is scheduled through Wednesday, May 6, and the posting of final grades in BANNER will begin on Thursday, May 7, 2020. Grades are posted daily and are available for viewing in Self-Service Banner as added by instructors prior to posting.

Faculty members are to submit final grades as they normally would based on the student's original grade-mode option. Students will then view their original final grades in Self-Service Banner and may subsequently submit a grade change request to elect the P/N option. The P/N Grade Change Form is available for students in DORI, on the ACADEMICS page.

Between Thursday, May 7 at 10:00am and Saturday, May 16 at 6:00pm, students will have the option to change standard letter grades to pass/no-pass grades through completion of the online form in DORI. To access the Pass/No-Pass Grade Option change form, log on to DORI and navigate to the ACADEMICS tab. On the ACADEMICS tab is a Pass/No-Pass channel with instructions, and a link to the form will be available beginning May 7 at 10:00am.

New FAQs as of April 28, 2020

1. How will final grades in the Standard grade mode be converted to the P/N grade mode?

A. For undergraduate students enrolled in McAnulty College, College of Business, School of Education, and most undergraduate students in the Bayer School and the School of Music, the following conversion rules will apply for students who elect the P/N grade option:

Earned grades A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, and D will be converted to “P” (Pass).

Earned grade of F will be converted to “N” (No-Pass).

While a grade of C is considered to be the minimum passing grade at the graduate level, some graduate programs require a grade of B- or higher in coursework. All graduate students are advised to consult their academic and/or faculty advisor to determine the impact of electing a P/N grade option.

Additional information on the conversion of standard grades for the remaining schools and certain programs in Bayer and Music follows. In all instances, schools will communicate additional specific details beyond what is described below to their students.

Nursing Undergraduate Students: For students who elect the P/N option, any earned grade below “C+” in a nursing course will be converted to “N” (No-Pass). Any earned grade below “C” in all other courses will be converted to “N” (No-Pass). Grades of N are not included in a student’s grade point average, must be repeated, and are considered a course failure.

Nursing Graduate Students: For students who elect the P/N option, any earned grade below “B -” in a nursing course will be converted to “N” (No-Pass). Grades of N are not included in a student’s grade point average, must be repeated, and are considered a nursing course failure.

Pharmacy: For students who elect the P/N option, any earned grade below “C” in any professional or graduate course will be converted to “N” (No-Pass). Grades of N are not included in a student’s grade point average; course credits are not earned, and the course must be repeated.

Rangos School of Health Sciences: For pre-professional phase students who elect the P/N option, grades of D and above will convert to P. Courses completed with D and below must be repeated. For professional/accredited phase students who elect the P/N option, grades of C and above will convert to P. Grades of D and below will convert to N and must be repeated. For undergraduate Biomedical Engineering students who elect the P/N option, grades of D and above will convert to P. Math, science, and engineering courses completed with a grade D and below must be repeated. Grades of N are not included in a student’s grade point average and must be repeated.

School of Music: For students who elect the P/N option any earned grade below “B” in MUED and MUTH courses (and below “B-“ in specific upper-level MUTH courses) will be converted to “N” (No-Pass). Grades of N are not included in a student’s grade point average and must be repeated.

Bayer School: For physics majors who elect the P/N option, any physics course completed with a standard grade below C must be repeated. Certain rules apply for students in the Forensic Science and Law program. Students should consult their academic or faculty advisor for details.

All students are advised to seek guidance from their academic and/or faculty advisors regarding minimum grade requirements to advance to the next course and to meet minimum standards for degree completion.

2. Will P/N-graded courses count toward degree requirements?

A. In professional programs and in those leading to professional certification or licensure, adhering to minimum standards is a mandate often governed by external accrediting bodies. Given the necessity of adhering to these standards, students’ original standard letter grades will be used to determine the corresponding P or N grade as described in Question 1 above. Progress-to-degree will be monitored based on these standards.

Students should keep in mind that the P/N grade option is being made available in order to give them the opportunity to mitigate any negative consequences of lower-than-expected final standard-letter grades on final grade-point averages. It is not intended to enable academic progress with lower than required standards. School-specific policies will be enforced.

3. Will a final grade of P in place of a standard letter grade meet prerequisite requirements that are in place for subsequent courses?

A. To ensure adequate preparation for advanced coursework, minimum standard letter-grade requirements will be maintained for prerequisite-checking purposes. Where permitted, students may elect a P/N option, but their original standard-letter grades will be validated to ensure preparedness for subsequent coursework. In instances where the original standard-letter grade does not meet the minimum grade required as a prerequisite, students will be required to repeat any such course.

Students should keep in mind that the P/N grade option is being made available in order to give them the opportunity to mitigate any negative consequences of lower-than-expected final standard-letter grades on final grade-point averages. It is not intended to enable academic progress with lower than required standards. School-specific policies will be enforced.

4. How will these changes affect Dean’s List for Spring 2020?

A. To qualify for Dean’s List, an undergraduate student must be enrolled full-time and have earned at least 12 credits exclusive of P/N credits and exclusive of any final grade of D, F, N, or I (incomplete). Earned credit on a P/N basis does not contribute toward the distinction of Dean’s List, and an N grade will disqualify a student.

Students enrolled in programs where minimum passing grades are higher than University requirements are reminded that choosing the P/N option for grades that will convert to N will disqualify a student from Dean’s List.

5. If a grade of incomplete (“I”) or in-progress (“IP”) is assigned at the end of the Spring 2020 semester, will the student still have the option to change to P/N at a later date when the final grade is assigned?

A. Yes, students whose final grade is I or IP will have 7 days after the submission of the final standard letter grade to change to the P/N option.

6. Will a student enrolled in study abroad in the Spring 2020 semester have the option to convert from a standard letter grade to the P/N grade option?

A. Yes, students will have 7 days after the submission of the final standard letter grade to change to the P/N option. Students enrolled in Duquesne’s Italian Campus courses will have until May 16 at 6pm to convert to the P/N option. Students enrolled in other Duquesne University-sponsored study abroad programs will also have the opportunity to elect a P/N grade option, the timing of which will be dependent upon receipt of final grades.



FAQs Published on April 15, 2020

1. Is there a limit to the number of Spring 2020 classes a student can change to P/N?

A. No. There is not a limit to the number of Spring 2020 classes a student can change. However, students in professional schools and programs are advised to seek guidance from their academic or faculty advisors relating to professional accrediting organizations' applicable guidelines regarding pass/no-pass grading. Some specific courses in professional schools and programs may not be advisable for this P/N option given accreditation requirements.

Additionally, if students plan to seek further advanced degrees, some graduate and professional programs may not accept P/N grades. Students should clarify this with any applicable institution to which they intend to apply in the future.

2. Can a student change to P/N for some classes and remain in the original grade option for others?

A. Yes. Changes can be made on a course-by-course basis.

3. Can grade options be changed from standard letter grade to P/N for classes that originated as online classes?

A. Yes.

4. Will a student be able to change any classes for which P/N is the original grade option to a standard (A-F) grade option?

A. No, only changes from Standard to Pass/No-Pass are permitted.

5. If a student elects the P/N option and earns a P (Pass) grade, can that class be repeated in the future?

A. Yes, a student may repeat a course with a final earned grade of P or N taken during the Spring 2020 semester. The Spring 2020 P/N policy will not apply to the repeated course.

6. When should a student make changes to the grading options for Spring 2020 classes?

A. Students will be able to elect the P/N grade option after they have seen their final grades starting in May. The posting of final grades will begin on May 7. Grades entered by instructors will be posted daily and available for viewing in Self-Service Banner after posting. Students will have until Saturday, May 16, at 6:00pm to elect the P/N grade option. Further details for making such changes will be communicated to students before the final grading period begins.

7. How will a student submit change requests to the P/N grade option?

A. These details will be determined and communicated to students before the final grading period begins.

8. Once a student changes any course to P/N, will there be an opportunity to reverse that decision prior to the May 16 deadline or later?

A. No. Once a student decides to elect the P/N grade option, the decision is final even if the window for such a change is still open. Changes to the P/N grade option are without appeal. Only corrections resulting from administrative errors or errors in grade calculations will be made.

9. How will the P/N grade option affect credits and grade point average?

A. Final grades of P, N, I, W, H, IP, M, and NG are not included in the calculation of a student's grade point average. If the final earned grade is P (Pass), credits will be earned, but the P grade will not be included in the calculation of the grade point average. If the final earned grade is N (No-Pass), credits will not be earned nor will the grade be included in the calculation of the grade point average. Earned grades of N in required courses must be repeated.

10. How will a change to P/N impact a student's academic standing?

A. Final grades of P, N, I, W, H, IP, M, and NG are not included in the calculation of a student's grade point average. Students should contact their academic advisor and/or refer to program-specific policies to determine the impact of a P/N grade on a student's academic standing within their program of study.

11. Does this P/N opportunity have any effect on classes already designated as P/N?

A. No. These changes do not apply to classes that are already designated as P/N. Students already enrolled as P/N will remain enrolled as P/N.

12. How will a change to P/N impact any courses being repeated this semester?

A. Students who are repeating previously completed coursework in order to replace the original grade earned in the course are advised that the final grade earned in the P/N grade option will replace the original take of the course. The original course and grade will remain on the transcript but will be excluded from credits earned and grade point average.

13. Will the P/N grade option impact the final grades instructors submit?

A. No. Instructors will submit final grades according to the grade option selected by the student at the time of registration.

14. If a student elects to change from Standard grading to P/N grading, will the original standard letter grade be available on a transcript for such things as graduate school admission or professional accreditation standards?

A. No. Once a grade is converted to the P/N grade option, it becomes the student's final earned grade for the course. As the final grade, it will be the grade that appears on students' transcripts. Students who anticipate the need to have the standard letter grade on their transcripts in the future should not convert to the P/N option.

15. For students graduating in May 2020, how will the change to P/N affect Latin Honors (i.e., Summa Cum Laude, Magna Cum Laude, Cum Laude)?

A. Latin Honors (for undergraduate students) are determined based on a student's final cumulative grade point average according to the University policy. Any course changed to the P/N grade option during the Spring 2020 semester will not be factored into the cumulative grade point average.

16. If a student is graduating in May 2020, how will the time added to accommodate P/N grade option submissions impact the timing of degree conferral?

A. May 8, 2020 will be recorded as the official graduation date on diplomas and transcripts for all undergraduate and graduate students in all schools with the exception of Pharmacy and Law. May 23, 2020 will be recorded as the official graduation date for all students graduating from the School of Pharmacy.

17. Will the extended time added to final grade processing as a result of P/N grading delay the availability of a student's final transcript and diploma?

A. Yes. The final degree-clearance process cannot take place until the deadline for electing the P/N grade option has passed. Graduating students will be notified in the future regarding the availability of these documents.

18. Given the anticipated delay in the actual posting of degrees, what is the best option for a student graduating in May 2020 to obtain proof of degree conferral as quickly as possible?

A. Students in need of proof of graduation/degree awarded are urged to order their Duquesne University transcript online as soon as possible (now). Students should select AFTER DEGREE IS AWARDED as the PROCESSING OPTION. The transcript request will be processed at 5:00pm on the day the degree is posted. Please note that only electronic PDF transcripts are available at this time. Please visit duq.edu/transcripts for details.

19. Can grade options be changed for courses completed in the first eight-week term (SP1)?>

A. No. All final grades assigned for SP1 stand.

20. Must a standard letter grade (A-F) be assigned in order to remain eligible for Federal Student Aid, Duquesne University academic scholarships, or Duquesne University tuition remission?

A. No. Earned grades can be recorded as standard letter grades or Pass/No-Pass (P/N). (Students receiving Federal financial aid must still maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress.)

21. If an undergraduate student is enrolled in the Honors College, will a change to the P/N option disqualify a student from participation?

A. No. Changing to a P/N grade option will not negatively impact a student's eligibility to continue participation in the Honors College.

22. What resources will be available to help a student decide whether to convert their assigned grade to a P/N basis?

A. Students should consult their academic advisor, faculty advisor or any other campus resource with whom they regularly work on decisions related to registration, repeating coursework, minimum passing grades or academic standing. Students are responsible for completing their own due diligence to be fully aware of the implications of their decision to convert a standard letter grade to Pass/No-Pass. Taking this step will be especially significant as students consider the impact of converting a course (or courses) to Pass/No-Pass relative to licensure, graduate/professional school admission, and/or other professional goals.

23. How will a change to the P/N grade option impact external sponsorship or funding a student may be receiving?

A. Students are responsible for contacting any external sponsoring or funding agencies or organizations to determine if the P/N grading is acceptable.