Pass/No Credit Grading Policy for Spring 2020
Berklee is offering students the following grading options for the spring 2020 semester. Please note that these are temporary adjustments to the grading policy.
Berklee College of Music and Boston Conservatory at Berklee faculty will assign letter grades as normal by the deadline of Thursday, May 14. After the letter grades have been submitted, you will have the option to change your letter grades to "pass" (P)/"no credit" (NC) for any or all of your spring 2020 courses by completing the Pass/No Credit Grading Option Form (login required) that will be available from May 14 until May 21.
If you receive grades A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, or D, you can choose to either keep the letter grade or request a P grade. Those receiving a grade of F can choose NC. International students’ F-1 status will not be affected by choosing the P/NC option.
If you'd like to discuss the P/NC grading option, schedule a 15-minute virtual appointment with an academic advisor (login required).
Once you submit the form, the decision to select the P/NC grading option is irreversible.
A small number of courses, outlined below, are not eligible for the P/NC grading option and must be taken for a letter grade due to certification, licensure, or program requirements.
Undergraduate Students at the College and Conservatory
You may elect the P/NC credit grading option for any course except for the following:
- COND-221 Choral Conducting for Music Education Majors
- COND-321 Choral Rehearsal Techniques for Music Education Majors
- COND-222 Instrumental Conducting for Music Education Majors
- COND-322 Instrumental Rehearsal Techniques for Music Education Majors
- ENVC-361 Music Education Concert Choir
- ISKB-221 Keyboard Class 1 for Music Education Majors
- ISKB-222 Keyboard Class 2 for Music Education Majors
- ISKB-321 Keyboard Class 3 for Music Education Majors
- ISKB-322 Keyboard Class 4 for Music Education Majors
- ISWD-222 Single Reeds for Music Education Majors: Clarinet/Saxophone
- ISBR-221 High Brass for Music Education Majors: Trumpet/French Horn
- ISBR-231 Low Brass for Music Education Majors: Trombone/Euphonium/Tuba
- ME-111 Introduction to Music Education
- ME-152 Computer Applications for Music Education
- ME-211 Elementary Class Methods
- ME-212 Music Classroom Methods and Materials
- ME-311 Secondary Class Methods
- ME-321 Choral Methods and Materials
- ME-326 Multimedia for the Educator
- ME-341 Teaching with a Multicultural Perspective
- ME-381 Survey of Instrumental Literature
- ME-383 Survey of Choral Music Literature
- ME-431 Instrumental Methods and Materials
- ME-475 Pre-practicum Apprenticeship/Seminar
- ME-495 Practice Teaching/Seminar
- PIXX-311 Private Instruction 5
- PIXX-312 Private Instruction 6
- PSME-311 Recital Class for Music Education Majors
- LSOC-212 Psychology of Music
- LSOC-421 Abnormal Psychology
- MTH-201 Introduction to Music Therapy
- MTH-211 Mind-Body Disciplines for Musicians
- MTH-220 Recreative and Compositional Methods in Music Therapy
- MTH-250 Clinical Orientation to Music Therapy 1
- MTH-281 Technology for Music Therapists
- MTH-332: Practicum 3
- MTH-410 Introduction to Music Therapy Research
- MTH-411 Music in Psychotherapy
- MTH-412 Music Therapy Practicum 4: Psychiatry
- MTH-431 Music Therapy and Medicine
- MTH-432 Music Therapy Practicum 5: Medicine
- MTH-475 Music Therapy Senior Seminar
- MTH-495 Music Therapy Internship
If you are planning to declare your major in film scoring, you should not select the P/NC credit grading option for FS-221 Intensive Introduction to Film Scoring. A grade of B or better is required for entrance into the major.
Contemporary Writing and Production
If you are planning to declare your major in contemporary writing and production, you should not select the P/NC grading option for AR-111 Arranging 1for Entering Students, HR-112 Harmony 2, or MTEC-111 Introduction to Music Technology. Letter grades are required in these courses to satisfy the major entrance requirements.
Graduate Students at the Conservatory
Courses with a P grade will not satisfy requirements for the Conservatory’s graduate programs. Only grades of B- or higher may earn credit toward program completion, and graduate students are advised not to choose the P/NC grading option for courses in which a B- or higher was achieved. Grades below B- may be translated to the P/NC option, knowing they will not satisfy requirements.
Graduate Students at the College (Boston and Valencia Campuses)
You may elect the P/NC grading option for any graduate level courses except for those listed below. A grade of P satisfies the minimum grade required of each course counting towards a degree requirement.
- ENDS-550 Contemporary Ensemble
- FS-520 Advanced Scoring 2: Genre and Form
- FS-530 Directed Study 1
- FS-531 Directed Study 2
- FS-617 Dramatic Electronic Composition
- FS-621 Advanced Dramatic Orchestration 2
- FS-632 Recording, Editing, and Mixing Techniques for Film Composers 2
- MTI-616 MTI Seminar 2
- MTI-543 Studio Video Music Production
- MTI-521 Nonlinear Structures for Real-Time Media
- PS-532 The Artist as a Startup
- PS-622 Masters Advanced Performance Forum: Production
- PS-624 Applied Advanced Production Projects
Pass/No Credit Grading FAQs
If your course grade is higher than your cumulative GPA, it is advised that you do not request a P/NC grade. Doing so would remove the grade from factoring in to your GPA and could lower your overall GPA.
If your course grade is lower than your cumulative GPA, it is advised that you do request a P/NC grade. Doing so would remove the grade from factoring in to your GPA and could increase your overall GPA.
If you are on concentrate warning or off major and need to improve your GPA in order to return to good concentrate standing, letter grades are required; changing your grades to P or NC will not improve your GPA.
No. Once you submit the Pass/No Credit Grading Option Form from May 14 through May 21, any grade change requests you make are irreversible.
No. A grade of pass or no credit will not affect your F-1 status, eligibility for CPT/OPT, or future immigration benefits. More details can be found at Pass/No Credit Information for International Students.
You will have from May 14 until May 21 to change your letter grades to P/NC for any or all of your spring 2020 courses by completing the Pass/No Credit Grading Option Form.
No. Choosing the P/NC option will not affect your eligibility for Berklee scholarships. Rules governing scholarships from external agencies may be different, and you should contact the agency for confirmation.
Students who are not currently on academic warning, probation, or reinstatement will not have their SAP standing negatively affected by electing P/NC.
Students who are currently on academic warning, or who are on a contract, should refer to their Berklee email for specific instructions or requirements regarding the election of P/NC.
More information about the SAP policy is available here.
Pass/No Credit and Your GPA
When considering whether to change a letter grade to P/NC, keep in mind the following:
- If your course grade is higher than your cumulative GPA, it is advised that you do not request a P/NC grade. Doing so would remove the grade from factoring into your GPA and could lower your overall GPA.
- If your course grade is lower than your cumulative GPA, it is advised that you do request a P/NC grade. Doing so would remove the grade from factoring into your GPA and could increase your overall GPA.
Before you can compare your course grade to your cumulative GPA, you will need to convert your course grade to grade points. The steps below will show you how.
1. Find your cumulative GPA.
For College Students
To find your cumulative GPA, log in to my.berklee.edu and select “My Degree Audit” under the Academic Profile section. Scroll down to “Program Summary,” and find “Overall GPA” in the Current Earned column.
For Conservatory Students
To find your cumulative GPA, log in to Self-Service. Click on the “Grades” tab at the top and then “Unofficial Transcript.” Your cumulative GPA will be listed here.
2. Calculate your GPA.
Use this GPA calculator to calculate your semester GPA and cumulative GPA.
3. Compare, and decide.
Now that you know your cumulative GPA and how to determine the number of grade points earned in a course, you are ready to decide which courses to select for the P/NC grading option.
If you would like any guidance on making this decision, you can schedule a 15-minute virtual appointment with an academic advisor.
Here are some examples:
- Example 1: Your course grade is A- (3.70), and your cumulative GPA is 2.70. Since 3.70 is greater than 2.70, your course grade could positively affect your GPA, so there is no need to choose a grade of P.
- Example 2: Your course grade is C- (1.70), and your cumulative GPA is 3.00. Since 1.70 is less than 3.00, your course grade could negatively affect your GPA, so choosing a grade of P is advised.
- Example 3: Your course grade is F (0.00), and your cumulative GPA is 2.00. Since 0.00 is less than 2.00, your course grade could negatively affect your GPA, so choosing an NC grade is advised.