UC Berkeley faculties, departments contemplate different grading insurance policies amid pandemic

Several UC Berkeley faculties and departments are contemplating different grading coverage choices in gentle of the College of Letters and Science’s go/no go, or P/NP, coverage update Thursday.

College of Letters and Science, or L&S, Dean Bob Jacobsen introduced the school will enable college students to take main necessities P/NP for the autumn 2020 and spring 2021 semesters, in response to an e-mail despatched to L&S college students. Most different campus faculties and a number of other L&S departments have but to make a ultimate resolution relating to the P/NP grading possibility.

“Part of the reason these decisions are tricky is that grades do exist for a reason,” Jacobsen mentioned. “With other colleges and departments, I think they’re really worried about a cumulative knowledge issue where students won’t be able to learn if they P/NP major classes across multiple semesters. So they may end up with different decisions, especially since the disciplines are different.”

The College of Chemistry introduced its resolution to permit college students to take main necessities P/NP this educational 12 months, and it prolonged the late change of schedule deadline to Dec. 3, in response to an e-mail despatched to the school’s college students Friday.

However, the Haas School of Business introduced Sunday that it will not implement the P/NP grading possibility for main necessities and prerequisite programs, in response to an Instagram put up from the ASUC Office of the Academic Affairs Vice President, or AAVP. The college prolonged the late change of schedule deadline to Dec. 3.

The Rausser College of Natural Resources introduced in an e-mail to its college students Friday that it will prolong the deadline for altering grading choices to Dec. Three and is at the moment contemplating the P/NP possibility for main necessities.

While L&S has determined to permit main necessities to be taken P/NP, particular person departments have the flexibility to regulate their grading insurance policies to suit the foremost’s curriculum, in response to Jacobsen. Departments equivalent to economics, information science and political science have confirmed the P/NP grading coverage change in emails to their college students.

“One thing some departments want to emphasize is that switching a course to P/NP may not always be the best option in all circumstances,” Jacobsen mentioned. “There are other options and tools for students, such as dropping a course without penalty to reduce workload, which may be a better way to cope with everything while still making progress.”

The economics and political science departments addressed the potential penalties of the P/NP possibility, together with impacts on instructors’ capability to offer letters of advice and graduate faculties’ evaluations of scholars.

According to AAVP Nicole Anyanwu, the AAVP workplace was the primary to advocate the coverage change in August and continues to be concerned in advising the remaining three faculties to implement the P/NP grading possibility as effectively.

“What we stress with administrators and colleges is that this is about supporting students and giving them the flexibility to make their own decisions regarding their personal, academic and personal circumstances,” mentioned James Weichert, one of many AAVP chiefs of employees. “We are optimistic and excited about the possibility of bringing these types of equity-saving policy accommodations to the rest of the university.”

Contact Annika Kim Constantino at [email protected] and observe her on Twitter at @AnnikaKimC.

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