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Students continue to petition for pass/no pass extension

The deadline for changing course grades to pass/no pass is Friday, Nov. 13, but students argue this isn’t enough time to determine grades after finals.

USC students are circulating another petition asking the university to again move the pass/no pass deadline, this time to after final grades are calculated.

More than 4,000 students have signed on. The goal is 5,000 signatures.

The current deadline to opt for pass/no pass is this Friday. It was set two weeks ago when USC President Carol Folt responded to an earlier student petition and announced November 13th will be the deadline to select pass/no pass.

Students wanting to move the option to after final exams say they want a clearer picture of what their letter grade would be before deciding whether to take the pass/ no pass option.

CARINA: It just makes sense...

Carina WIlliamson is a sophomore double majoring in Cinema and Media Studies and East Asian Languages and Cultures.

CARINA: Even if you’re in a class, where you have a pretty clear idea of how assignments are being graded, so much of your grade is dependent on the final, which obviously won’t, for most people, be graded until after the pass/no pass deadline. It just makes more sense to give people a clearer idea of what their grade is before having to make that decision.

Zeenya Meherally, a communication major, says she is feeling the stress of online learning and signed the petition.

ZEENYA: I think the policy change that they did for this semester was a good start. I can see where they might have had good intentions but their execution didn’t follow through with that because it’s just adding more stress. Teachers are not able to get the grades in time for us to even get an idea before finals start.

Last night, the University Student Government Senate called on the Provost and President to extend the Pass/No Pass deadline until after final grades are received. They posted a message of support for the petition to their Instagram account stating that the university’s prior concessions are not satisfactory to preserve the emotional and mental wellness of students at this time.

The administration has not given a clear response on whether the petition will be considered.  Although many students want the deadline to be extended, some are less hopeful that the university will change its mind so close to the deadline.

Carina Williamson explains how she would feel if the deadline is not extended.

CARINA: I’m a little bit disappointed, but … I’m not surprised. I think that because USC has already changed their mind once they’re usually pretty set on sticking with that decision. And I do think that to change that decision a couple days before they have the deadline would affect some people but not very many.

Zeenya Meherally says online learning is not the same as in-person classes and that has made things tough.

ZEENYA: This is a drag, this is a burden for me right now...It’s not the environment that you are supposed to be learning in. You know, there’s distractions left and right, and granted at school, that’s not to say there weren’t distractions, but the environment. It’s an environment of education, it’s an environment to learn and study and excel. It’s not the same thing.

For the time being, the deadline still holds that Friday, November 13 is the last day for students to change letter grades to the Pass/No Pass option.