SAVANNAH Ga. (WSAV) – The University System of Georgia (USG) is facing pressure to allow students to choose a pass/fail option during the coronavirus pandemic.
More than 3,000 students have signed a petition asking the board of regents to approve an opt-in pass/fail grading system, while the system is practicing online learning.
All Georgia state colleges and universities have switched to online classes to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. Some students say working online can be harder, and take much longer, especially in rural areas where high-speed internet and wifi aren’t always available. Some students claim their GPAs and future opportunities are at risk.
University of Georgia student Briana Hayes helped organize the online petition.
“For some people, their GPA is riding on this. For others, it’s graduate schools that they’ve worked really hard for,” she said. “If they’re not able to opt-in to pass or fail a class how might that [impact] their GPA? For others, it’s getting that internship.”
In response to the petition, the University of Georgia released the following statement:
The University System of Georgia is aware some institutions around the nation have decided to shift to pass/fail grading after transitioning to remote education. We are confident our students will rise to the challenge, and the USG will do everything in its power to help them do so. We trust our faculty to teach and grade students effectively.
In times of adversity, we should reach higher, not lower. Maintaining high academic standards is critical to the success of USG students now and in the future. Continuing letter grading for the final few weeks of the semester will allow faculty to assess the performance of students in the same manner as they always have. The USG is confident that faculty and students will rely on the resilience they have shown thus far and continue to meet our high standards.While online instruction will be new to many, thousands of USG students and faculty have already experienced it through nearly 11,000 online course sections offered prior to USG’s temporary shift to all-online instruction. In addition, the USG has offered resources to assist faculty and students make the transition.
To see a copy of the petition, visit here.