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To: University of Maryland, College Park

Option for UMD Pass/Fail Grades

Option for UMD Pass/Fail Grades

We as students would like the option to choose between a letter grade or pass/fail for any courses this semester, just as we had the last spring semester.

Why is this important?

Last spring, UMD students abruptly moved to remote learning because of COVID-19. During this time, we were given the default option of pass/fail and were encouraged to use that option. This saved many students from even more stress than they already were experiencing due to the pandemic. Now, in the fall 2020 semester, we are still online, not back to normal, yet the grading system is back to normal (letter grades). The COVID situation in America has yet to steadily improve. Many students and families are still jobless, homeless, and under an immense amount of stress. Many students are struggling to balance their lives with school during this time. Currently, only one class per semester can be registered as pass/fail and it may only be an elective. We ask that all courses for undergrads have the pass/fail option, regardless of the major or Gen Ed requirements, just like last semester. If life is not back to normal, grading shouldn’t be either.


Reasons for signing

  • Imagine the stress of people that also have to work while balancing online school and take care of their younger siblings as well.
  • These are hard times. Some people have lost loved ones. Some have lost their jobs. Some may be separated from family. You don’t know what students are going through. How can you expect them to do well on school with all this on their mind. It would not be fair
  • Even though the chance of this happening is probably very slim, these are definitely hard times and many are struggling to learn through online classes and the workload can feel even higher than usual.


2020-11-07 08:08:43 -0500

5,000 signatures reached

2020-10-20 22:09:30 -0400

1,000 signatures reached

2020-10-20 18:34:43 -0400

500 signatures reached

2020-10-20 13:57:59 -0400

100 signatures reached

2020-10-20 13:37:34 -0400

50 signatures reached

2020-10-20 13:14:19 -0400

25 signatures reached

2020-10-20 13:10:11 -0400

10 signatures reached