Pass/Not Pass Option for Veterinary Medicine Courses Impacted by the Transition to Virtual Instruction

The Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine has adopted a temporary Pass/Not Pass grading option for professional courses impacted by the transition to virtual instruction, effective immediately. This policy closely mirrors the policy adopted for undergraduate courses, March 20, 2020.

This decision was made after review of the undergraduate policy, and in consultation with the College Academic Standards Committee, Dean’s Cabinet, Office of Academic and Student Affairs, and Office of Curricular Assessment and Teaching Support.

Details on the Pass/Not Pass (P/NP) grading option:

  • The P/NP option applies to courses in the professional program intended to be in-person throughout Spring 2020, but which were changed to virtual instruction as a result of COVID-19. 
  • Courses taken for P/NP grades during Spring 2020 will count towards curricular, major, academic progress, and graduation requirements.
  • Grades of P and NP will not be factored into a student's grade point average. However, an NP grade will be treated equivalently to an F for academic standards decisions.
  • Faculty will grade students as usual during the semester, and submit the letter grade (A-F, I, R) to the Registrar's Office following the standard submission process.
  • Students will choose to receive either the letter grade recorded by the instructor, OR a P/NP designation. This can be applied to any or all courses changed to virtual instruction. This decision must be made between May 13 and May 19, 2020, by submitting a form through the Office of Academic and Student Affairs (OASA). If no form is submitted, the letter grade will be recorded for the course.
  • This policy does not apply to 500/600-level courses. Although professional students may enroll in these graduate courses, they are subject to the grading policies of the Graduate College. Concurrent students should seek guidance regarding graduate courses from their DOGE or the coordinator of their graduate program.
  • This policy does not apply to 4th year courses ending prior to 3/17/2020, when 4thyear courses began to transition to an on-line format.

Students are encouraged to consult with their academic advisors and/or carefully consider future career goals when deciding whether or not to receive a P in lieu of a grade. Graduate and residency programs might have specific expectations regarding grades in prerequisite courses. 

Also note that, per the University’s announcement regarding the P-NP Policy:

To accommodate students who may wish to make decisions based on this option, the deadline for dropping courses will be extended to Friday, April 3.

Iowa State has also decided to include a designation on students' transcripts indicating the extraordinary circumstances encountered in the 2020 spring semester.