Choosing pass/fail grades may help college students now, but could cost them later

When the pandemic disrupted in-person classes and campus operations, questions arose regarding grades and some students at different colleges proposed the option of receiving pass/fail credit in lieu of letter grades—but that option came with its own set of challenges. While some institutions changed their grading policy and offered students the choice of a letter grade or pass/fail grade, others are sticking to much more rigid guidelines, making students considering a transfer to feel nervous about their future, especially community college students who already face obstacles in transferring credits.

This is a rapid response story about a coping strategy. Due to the urgent crisis, we are relaxing the ‘evidence of effectiveness’ criterion for solutions coverage on COVID-19 to capture early stage, improvisational, and experimental responses that cope with the pandemic.

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