UMKC implements credit/no credit grading option for spring 2020

Annie Bolin

UMKC students now have the option to convert their spring semester letter grades to credit or no credit, according to a decision from Interim Provost Jenny Lundgren on Friday.

Lundgren described the change as “empowering students to choose an option that best fits their academic needs this semester” under the COVID-19 pandemic.

The change comes after MU implemented a similar system last week. Contrary to other pass/fail systems being implemented at universities throughout the country, the use of credit/no credit at UMKC is at the discretion of students themselves.

The credit/no credit option will be available to students in all undergraduate and graduate courses while availability in professional degree courses is at the discretion of program leadership.

Under credit/no credit, or CR/NC, eligible students enrolled in spring 2020 courses can choose the CR/NC grade option for all courses that use an A to F grading system.

Students can also retain their letter grade as posted by instructors at the end of the semester. Students do not need to take any action if they choose to retain their letter grade or if their course was originally designed with a CR/NC grading system.

Excluded from spring 2020 CR/NC are any classes that ended prior to March 16.

Students may select the CR/NC option for classes in Pathway starting 8 a.m. Monday, May 18, 2020, through 5 p.m. Friday, June 5, 2020.

In her announcement, Lundgren outlined basic CR/NC guidelines for students:

●      CR/NC grades are not included in semester or cumulative GPA calculations

●      Any grade C- or higher converts to CR

●      Any grade D+ or lower converts to NC

●      CR receives course credit

●      NC does not receive course credit

After course instructors enter final grades at the end of the semester, students will have access to the CR/NC option in Pathway. Instructors will not be made aware if students choose the CR/NC option.

One possible consequence of using the CR/NC option is that students may have to retake certain courses since CR/NC does not factor into their GPA.

Lundgren said that before making any changes after final grades are posted, students should consult with their advisors or program faculty to determine the impact of using the CR/NC option.

“There are a variety of situations where a letter grade is required for accreditation, licensure, clinical work, to be removed from probation, to move to the next level in a course sequence,” Lundgren said.

UMKC senior Aubrie Evans has mixed feelings on the CR/NC option.

“I don’t think GPAs should suffer, especially due to a situation that we can’t control, but I’m not sure how much a system like that would be helpful,” Evans said. “I could see how it may be useful for others.”

Similarly, UMKC senior Brenna Killen calls CR/NC “a unique solution for a unique situation.”

“It is a good safety net for those that struggle with online instruction,” Killen said.

Lundgren also announced that the final grade submission deadline for faculty is extended to 5 p.m. on May 22, so students may have to wait until then to choose CR/NC.

Find a step-by-step guide on exercising the CR/NC option here. (