Credit/No Credit

What is credit/no credit?

The credit/no credit grading option is similar to pass/fail. It is designed to encourage student exploration of areas of academic interest that might otherwise be avoided for fear of poor grades.

How does a course taken for credit/no credit affect my GPA?

Students who earn at least a C− in a C/NC course will receive credit hours with a final grade of CR on the transcript. Students who earn a grade lower than a C− will not receive credit hours and will have a final grade of NCR on the transcript. In either case, the course will not affect the student’s GPA.

Can the credit/no-credit option be used for any course?

Courses taken for credit/no credit cannot be used to meet any General Education, major, or minor requirement, including courses taken to fulfull the foreign language requirement. The credit/no credit option may not be used with courses graded as satisfactory/unsatisfactory.

When can I choose the credit/no-credit grading option?

Students must choose the credit/no credit option during the first half of the course term (e.g., the first 8 weeks of the semester, the fourth week of the summer session, or by the fourth week of an 8-week course).

How do I elect to take a course for credit/no credit?

DGS students must meet an academic advisor to complete a credit/no credit form in office. 

What should I do if I later want to take the course for a grade?

If students later want to return to the traditional grade option, they must file an amended request with an academic advisor no later than the original deadline to select C/NC.

Are there any restrictions on using the credit/no-credit option?

Yes. These are as follows:

  • Full-time students may take up to two C/NC courses in a semester (one course if summer term).
  • Part-time students may take only one C/NC course in a semester.
  • Students on probation are not eligible for C/NC.
  • A maximum of 18 hours of C/NC may be counted toward a degree.

Is it okay to take a course for credit/no credit if I’m planning to attend graduate school?

Be careful about using this option if you plan to apply to professional or graduate school. These programs may consider applicants with a significant number of non-graded courses less favorably than those with none or very few. Likewise, some schools may convert the NC symbol to a failing grade in computing a pre-admission GPA.

For example, passed courses taken C/NC at Illinois will NOT be included in the calculation of your LSAC-generated GPA. However, LSAC counts courses with 'NC' grades as 'F' in your LSAC-generated GPA.