The Credit/D/Fail Option

In order to encourage academic experimentation and to promote diversity in students’ programs, the Yale College Faculty has provided that students may elect a certain number of course credits on a Credit/D/Fail basis. A student has up to six opportunities to convert a course credit to the Credit/D/Fail option, with two of these opportunities expiring if unused during their first two terms of enrollment. In a given term a student may elect as many as (but no more than) two course credits on the Credit/D/Fail basis, and must elect at least two courses, representing at least two course credits, for letter grades or the mark of Pass, in any combination. 

For students enrolled in the Eli Whitney Students program, who are permitted to enroll in as few as three course credits in a calendar year and thus sometimes enroll in only one course credit in a term, different limits apply. An Eli Whitney student who is enrolled in fewer than two course credits in a term may elect no course credits that term under the Credit/D/Fail option. An Eli Whitney student who is enrolled in two or more but fewer than four course credits in a term may elect no more than one course credit that term under the Credit/D/Fail option. An Eli Whitney student who is enrolled in four or more course credits in a term is bound by the limits given in the paragraph immediately above.  

At the start of each term, students enroll in all courses without selecting any for the Credit/D/Fail option. They may subsequently select that option in any Yale College course—other than those independent study courses graded on a Pass/Fail basis—by the last day of classes, as published in the Yale College Calendar with Pertinent Deadlines. After the last day of classes, election of the Credit/D/Fail option is not permitted. 

Instructors submit letter grades to the registrar for all students in their courses. For a Yale College student who has elected the Credit/D/Fail option, the registrar converts grades of A, A–, B+, B, B–, C+, C, and C– to CR and enters that mark on the student’s record. Grades of D+, D, D–, and F are recorded as reported. Students are not required to disclose to the instructor of a course whether they have enrolled in the course for a letter grade or have chosen the Credit/D/Fail option.

A student may not apply any course credit earned on the Credit/D/Fail basis toward satisfaction of the distributional requirements for the bachelor’s degree.

All courses offered in Yale College for graduation credit are available for election under the Credit/D/Fail option. Program descriptions under Subjects of Instruction in the YCPS specify whether or not courses taken on the Credit/D/Fail basis count toward the requirements of particular majors.

For further information about the Credit/D/Fail option, consult the Grades section of the Academic Regulations in the YCPS.