Concordia University students asking for the grading system this semester to be PASS/FAIL

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Concordia University students kindly ask the university to consider an OPTIONAL temporary change in our grading system. Given the unforeseen circumstances of the COVID-19 and the sudden switch to online classes, we would like to have the option of receiving a pass/fail grade. Some universities have already established this change, while others allow students to decide which system they prefer. Some of those schools include: Northwestern University, MIT, Smith College, Georgetown University, Carnegie Mellon University, and Vanderbilt University.

We understand that this is a difficult time for everyone, and we all are adapting to sudden changes. But the emotional consequences the Coronavirus is having on many of the students will most likely jeopardize our learning and consequentially our performance. Unfortunately, isolation can be an anxiety-provoking factor, especially for students who are easily distracted at home or by online learning platforms. We believe that having the option of a pass/fail grading system will lessen the stress and allow us to better engage in our classes and ultimately be able to learn more. Additionally, if the pass/fail system is an option, it respects both the students who are comfortable maintaining a letter grade and the students who believe a pass/fail system would help them through this stressful situation. 

We thank Concordia University for taking our suggestion into consideration.

Interesting links:

https://www.cnn.com/2020/03/18/opinions/coronavirus-makes-college-and-life-pass-fail-perry/index.html

https://www.vanderbilt.edu/coronavirus/2020/03/17/mar-17-2020-pass-fail-option-extended-to-all-undergraduate-classes/