Important Update Regarding Spring 2020 Grading

Sent: April 4, 2020

From: Vincent J. Del Casino, Jr. Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, Professor, Department of Urban and Regional Planning 

SJSU campus community,

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt the everyday lives of our community, state, and country. Anxieties are particularly high amongst college students, who are struggling to adjust to life as a “remote learner” while balancing the many realities of their own personal lives - as, for example, having an unstable housing situation, living with elderly parents or grandparents, home schooling young children, serving as first responders, or being single and living alone in isolation during this crisis. While grades and grading are an important part of higher education, they are meant to measure one’s ability to learn, not one’s ability to manage a crisis. 

In response to this unprecedented time, the Academic Senate Executive Committee, which is made up of students, faculty, and administrative representation, passed a policy recommendation providing all students with the choice to change their individual course grades from an A,B,C,D,F grading scheme to a Credit (CR)/No Credit (NC) grading scheme for Spring 2020 courses only. President Papazian signed this policy, making it official this week. 

Two options available to students

Option 1

A student can petition the Registrar by May 1, 2020 to change their grading scheme in a particular class from a letter grade to CR/NC. This means that when a letter grade is entered on the grade roster at the end of the semester it will be converted to a  Credit (CR) or No Credit (NC) grade and recorded on the transcript as such. A student who elects CR/NC by May 1 cannot revert to a letter grade at a later date.

Option 2

A student can request a Grade Change after the semester has been completed. This means a student can petition the Registrar to convert a posted letter grade to CR/NC due to the special circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic from the time their grade is posted through June 8, 2020. With this option, it is important to note that there may be a considerable delay in updating the transcript to reflect the change.

Students taking advantage of option 1

Students interested in taking advantage of the first option must first fill out a petition that will be available on April 7 at the Office of the Registrar site. The form will go directly to the SJSU Office of the Registrar. For Spring 2020, students do not need any faculty approval to change their grading scheme in an individual course. Importantly, students can choose on a course-by-course basis which courses they would like to convert to a CR/NC grading scheme. 

Students taking advantage of option 2

For the second option, which becomes available once a grade is officially posted at the end of the semester, students will fill out this form available at the Office of the Registrar site. Not all grades are posted on the same day, but the first posting date is May 23 with other grades generally posting by June 2. Please check your MySJSU site for your grades before making a Grade Change request. 

For some students, it is important to understand that a CR/NC option can impact their long-term financial aid. Please, review the FAQ before submitting the request. Of course, connecting to an advisor is critical throughout this process. If you have questions, or if you are unclear as to what impact CR/NC may have on future semesters, please reach out early to your academic staff or faculty advisor. Please be mindful that these folks will have to answer many questions during this period of time, so please be patient. Every student matters and we want to help everyone.

Vincent J. Del Casino, Jr.