WSU adds new grade system

Students can request new grade if facing COVID-related difficulties during fall, spring



“No Record, COVID grade” does not count as a withdrawal and will not limit a student’s ability to repeat a class, said Mary Wack, vice provost for undergraduate education.

BRADLEY GAMBLE, Evergreen reporter

WSU created a new grade system for fall 2020 and spring 2021 for students whose academics were affected by COVID-19 related challenges.

“No Record, COVID grade” will lessen the impact of a failing grade on a student’s financial aid, said Mary Wack, vice provost for undergraduate education.

Courses with an NRC grade will not affect a student’s financial aid’s satisfactory academic progress calculations like withdrawals do, she said.

NRC grades do not count as a withdrawal and would not limit a student’s ability to repeat a class, Wack said.

The grade change will not affect tuition costs, said university registrar Matthew Zimmerman.

“NRC is understood to be a special COVID grade,” she said. “So, it is given leeway that a withdrawal is not given.”

The new grade system allows grades that are C- or lower to be replaced by an NRC, Zimmerman said.

Any graduate or undergraduate student can request an NRC unless they are a professional health science student, Wack said.

Students can request NRC grades starting Dec. 23, Zimmerman said. They must fill out the NRC form on the registrar website before Jan. 6.

If a student changes their mind about an NRC grade, they must submit another form before the Jan. 6 deadline, he said.

NRC grades do not negatively impact a student’s GPA because it removes the course’s credits from academic transcripts, Zimmerman said. A student who takes five classes with one NRC will have the same amount of credits as a student taking four classes.

Students must identify a COVID-related-reason for the grade change, Zimmerman said. This can include not having reliable access to the internet or stable housing.

International students are eligible for NRCs, but they should speak with International Programs to make sure the change will not negatively impact their visa, Zimmerman said.

Students who question whether they should change their grade should speak with their academic adviser before the end of the semester, he said. If a student’s adviser is not available, they should reach out to the Academic Success and Career Center.