May 8, 2020
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  1. Pre-Medical
This semester, I got a C in Chemistry... specifically, I attend the university of Miami, here the chemistry department is different, in which instead of having general chemistry 1 and then general chemistry 2, they have eternal chemistry all in 1 semester. It's really tough, and there's no choice for students, you have to take it all in 1 semester. As a result, it's extremely tough, and COVID-19 situation made it no different, especially since I came to UM as a Spring admit so this was my first semester here adjusting as well.

I took 17 credits, bio 2, bio 2 lab, general chemistry lab, architecture (for my minor)... all of which I got As in.
I took calculus 1... which I got an A- in (.5% off from an A, sigh)

But Chemistry... I got a C. My professor, doesn't really care because in his opinion "if you hate your grade you could choose to take the credit/no credit option".

But as a premed student, I'm concerned on how this may look for me, being that of all the 6 courses I took, only 1 I randomly selected to make credit/no credit, which also happens to be an important perquisite for medical schools. Would raise a red flag even though yes everyone is aware that this semester was turned upside down by a pandemic.

My pre-med advisor has told me that I can just take the credit/no credit since it's below a B... but I honestly want advice from a group of doctors or other pre-meds who are in my shoes and truly understand the pros and cons. Today is the deadline to notify my school if I choose to do credit/no credit. I only just found out my chemistry letter grade.

I'm a freshman so I do have 6 semester to bring my grade up from a 3.46, I also would of felt more confident if I had all As in all my courses and just that one not so amazing chemistry grade, but I got an A- in calculus 1 which isn't bad of course, but still. I plan to do better and improve in organic chemistry of course, but I'm concerned about this C on my transcript. Is it really bad to have 1 C?

I'm sorry this is long I just wanted to give everyone a full understanding. I'm also a Microbiology and Immunology major, with a second major in Psychology.

I also do admit that I do plan on aiming for top medical schools, coming out of high school I wasn't confident with myself and didn't apply to any "amazing" colleges, I don't plan to do that for medical schools. I plan to shoot for the stars and to put my best foot forward.


2+ Year Member
Apr 5, 2018
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  1. Non-Student
One C is hardly the end of the world. However, especially during the time of COVID-19, I would would prefer to receive a pass than a C, especially since some schools are mandatory P/NP in the COVID-19 world.
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2+ Year Member
Jul 4, 2017
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  1. Medical Student
I'd say take the C. If I was reviewing your app, it would look a little weird that you got grades in science + math+ non-science courses that semester but general chem is a pass. I'd ask, what's this applicant trying to hide? Were they going to fail? If you can eloquently state if asked during an interview why you took a pass, then sure, take the pass. Otherwise keep the C.
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Jul 31, 2019
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  1. Medical Student
Use COVID to your advantage and take the pass; rock Organic and maybe an additional higher level Chem course to show you can excel in the chemical sciences


2+ Year Member
Mar 14, 2019
Status (Visible)
  1. Pre-Medical
I agree with what everyone has said so far! :) You are correct -- your situation is less than ideal, taking only one prereq P/F is frowned upon, and it is a red flag, so you're in a no-win situation.

The good news is that, when it comes time to apply, one grade is not going to make a bit of difference in the context of your entire body of work -- GPA, MCAT, ECs, LORs, etc. The bad news is that there is no escaping the grade, so just do whatever makes you happy. A C sucks, and a single P during this semester will correctly be perceived as a masked C by the schools, so pick your poison. If it were me, I'd take the P and save the 0.01 on my GPA. Good luck!!
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