WU will no longer count toward GPA

Mia Gindis

Starting fall 2021, the WU grade will not be counted into CUNY students’ GPA, according to Baruch College Associate Provost Dean Slavin.

This change was announced shortly after CUNY revised the implications of the WU grade.

In the past, a WU was figured into a student’s grade point average as an F, or the functional equivalent of a zero.

While a WU grade will still indicate that a student has “officially withdrawn” from a course, it will serve a similar purpose as the W grade in that it won’t be counted into the GPA.

However, a WU will differ from a W in that the former must be assigned by faculty as opposed to the student’s own withdrawal. Professors can only assign a WU if the student did not withdraw before a final exam or paper.

Many students agreed with the change, according to a Google survey put out by The Ticker.

“It seems unfair to give students a zero for classes they drop — you never know what they could be going through or how reasonable the professor is,” sophomore Sasha Antonov said in support of the grading reform.

However, a handful also reported feeling some trepidation.

“I fear that withdrawing will become synonymous with failing,” junior Lauren Lee wrote. “As a student who has withdrawn from a course before due to extenuating circumstances, I would like for there to be a distinction between the two transcript notations.”

CUNY’s Executive Registrar released a statement to clarify the difference between the F and the WU in anticipation of concerns similar to Lee’s. One should never be used interchangeably with the other, according to the registrar.

An F grade is an earned grade which represents poor academic performance and a student’s failure to meet certain learning objectives throughout the duration of an academic session.

A WU, in contrast, is an unofficial withdrawal grade granted to a student if there is documented evidence of the student’s participation in a course or academically related activity.

If said student has ceased engaging in a course toward the end of the term, their instructor must report their grade as a WU.

The WU grade is available only to undergraduates, and not to graduate students.