Recommendation regarding a student request for both a Pass/Fail and an Incomplete Mark in the same course

Concerns regarding the disruptions to student learning caused by COVID-19 in the Spring of 2020 led to an increase in the grading options available, specifically expanded opportunity for the Pass/Fail option, and an extension of the deadline for course Withdrawal and requests for Incomplete grades. Given these additional options and extended deadlines, the Grades subcommittee of the Ad-Hoc Academic Continuity Committee believes students should only opt for a single option (Withdrawal, Pass/Fail or Incomplete) for a given course.


While, technically, a student can request both an Incomplete as well as a Pass/Fail, the following processes will be put in place to prevent, to the greatest extent possible, dual requests.

A communication will be provided to all instructors, chairs, and deans regarding the purpose of the Incomplete request. Incomplete requests continue to exist for students who are currently earning a passing grade but cannot complete a course due to extenuating circumstances (Incomplete Policy). These circumstances should be documented, although we have requested that instructors be reasonable and flexible (Spring 2020 guidelines). We are actively encouraging students to not request Incompletes if Pass/Fail is appropriate due to the increased workload on themselves and instructors. The following steps are recommended to prevent dual requests:

  1. When a student requests an Incomplete, the instructor should ask if the student has requested a Pass/Fail. If the answer is yes, then the instructor should decline to enter into an Incomplete mark contract;
  2. If a student requests an Incomplete, and the instructor default grade is a passing grade, and the course is eligible for Pass/Fail, the instructor should recommend that the student submit a Pass/Fail request;
  3. If the request moves forward to the Chair/Director/Dean, and they note that all the criteria in bullet 2 above are met, they should talk to the instructor to understand the nature of the request. If they believe a Pass/Fail is more appropriate, then they should cancel the workflow. The instructor should then notify the student to submit a Pass/Fail request.
  4. If, somehow, a student still enters into an Incomplete mark contract and submits a Pass/Fail request, the Pass/Fail request will override the Incomplete mark. The registrar’s office will contact the instructor or chair to indicate that the student has submitted two requests and that Pass/Fail will override Incomplete mark. The registrar’s office will ask if there are extenuating circumstances whereby the Incomplete mark should override the Pass/Fail. Based on the response the registrar’s office will deny or void one of the requests. If the Pass/Fail is the ultimate request, then the instructor will be asked to report a grade in banner.