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Satisfactory/fail grading now an option for IU-Bloomington spring courses



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Instructors at IU-Bloomington will now be able to choose whether they grade their spring courses on a satisfactory/fail basis, Provost Lauren Robel announced in an email Thursday.

The satisfactory/fail option can be selected by professors for individual students with permission from the dean of the unit that is offering the course, according to the announcement. The grade is meant to be used when a teacher knows a student passed a course, but doesn't have enough information to provide a grade.

IU spokesperson Chuck Carney said any class that is graded as satisfactory/fail will not be counted toward the student’s GPA.

The announcement comes after the University Faculty Council passed an amendment Tuesday allowing IU campuses to approve grading courses satisfactory/fail or pass/fail mid-semester in extreme cases.

Each IU campus would have to approve these amendments for it to take effect at their campus, Carney said. The amendment allows instructors or students to select satisfactory/fail and pass/fail mid-semester in extreme cases such as a state of emergency, a campus closure or other circumstances. Previously, the options needed to be approved before the semester began.

The state of emergency declared by Gov. Eric Holcomb in response to the threat of the coronavirus qualifies as one of these extreme cases for IU-Bloomington, Carney said.

IU-Bloomington has not approved the pass/fail option for students to select mid-semester, Carney said.

The council made the change by amending the Grading System and Implementation Procedures policies. This is the first amendment to these policies since 1999, Carney said.

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