Western Michigan University added a COVID-19 impact statement on all students’ transcripts for the fall semester. However, students desired to have the credit/no credit option made available to them.
Several petitions were made asking WMU to reconsider their decision of not offering a credit/credit option for the fall semester.
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Jennifer Bott said the decision to not offer the credit/no credit option was based on the current situation.
“No one began the spring term prepared to suddenly switch to distance education due to a spreading coronavirus outbreak,” Bott said. “And with the transition occurring mid-semester, instructors and students alike had little time to plan. The credit/no credit deadline extension was adopted to relieve the hardship in that specific circumstance.”
When it came to fall semester, Bott said having a plan to switch between different learning methods was one of the reasons why the option was not offered. Bott also pointed out that using the credit/no credit option would not work for everyone.
“The integrity of WMU's grading system is something we take very seriously,” Bott said. “There are limited circumstances in which credit/no credit can be used successfully, as it carries weighty implications for financial aid/scholarships, graduate school application, progress toward degree and a student's ability to take courses in their prescribed sequence (i.e., pre-requisites).”
Junior Alex Lawrence disagrees with the university’s response.
“The university once again has ignored its students and it's very disappointing. They ignored a petition that over 3500 students have signed,” Lawrence said. When is the university going to start protecting its students’ education?”