Message Sent To:All Faculty, All Staff, All Students
Message From:Message from the Office of the Provost
Date Sent:Thursday, March 26, 2020 11:10 AM CDT

Updates to Grading: Pass/No Pass and Withdrawal

Students, Faculty, and Staff,

Loyola University Chicago remains unwavering in its commitment to student success even in this unprecedented time. We have heard your concerns about how to position our students for success as we shift the curriculum to online delivery.

The matters of grading and how to implement the pass/no pass option are serious issues related to student success. Therefore, the deans and I have engaged in a lengthy and rigorous conversation about how best to support our students. In particular, we discussed how our decisions would impact students’ future paths. We believe that our decisions, outlined below, maximize students choices under the constraints of those impacts.

Extended Deadline for Pass/No Pass Option
The deadline for students to request the pass/no pass option for Spring 2020 will be extended to 5 p.m. on Friday, April 24. This extension will apply to students in schools that currently offer this option. The extension will allow students to evaluate how they are doing in a class until the end of the semester. They could then decide whether to take the pass/no pass option.

Students, please talk to your academic advisor about the pass/no pass option before making a final choice. This is a serious decision that can impact your life choices. Each school and program is developing criteria on pass/no pass decisions that are sensitive to the possible future paths that students may take.

Loyola is not implementing a universal pass/no pass policy because this could have an inadvertent and adverse impact on many students. For example, such a decision could impair the chances of success for students applying to graduate and medical schools. And Arrupe students working to gain admission into a four-year college program would be at a disadvantage. A universal policy would also remove choices from many students who would like to receive grades. In addition, the deans point out legal and accreditation complications of a universal pass/no pass policy. Finally, such a policy would impact students from other universities taking Loyola courses.

Extended Deadline for Withdrawal
As an additional option, the deadline for deciding to withdraw from a class with a W has been extended to 5 p.m. on Friday, April 24. Again, this allows students to make their decision as late as the end of the semester. Students, please talk to your academic advisor about this decision and its implications.

I believe that two deadline extensions are tangible manifestations of our core vision of caring about each other fully. The extensions also show our focus on student success even during a public health crisis.

Together in Loyola,

Norberto Grzywacz, PhD
Provost and Chief Academic Officer