May 6, 2012
So I have my Organic Chemistry I final tomorrow and I realize that I'm most likely going to fail. If I get a 100 on tomorrow's test (which is very unlikely), the highest I can get is a D or C- with the grades I'm looking at from the rest of this semester. I wish I had a good reason for why I was doing poorly, but honestly I don't besides for depression and laziness as a result of the depression.

At this point, I have two options:

- Get a D in the class and retake the course. However, even if I get an A the second time around, I would still have both grades averaged into my science GPA to get about a C-/C+/B-.

- If I actually fail the course, I can do a F-grade replacement and although the failing grade is shown on my transcript, my new grade will replace the failing so I can still get a good grade factored in.

I understand the failing grade looks horrible, but wouldn't it be better than getting another bad grade factored in regardless from taking the average?

This sounds stupid, but should I just fail my final tomorrow in order to get this grade-replacement option? At this point, I can recover better from an F than from a D.

How will medical schools look at both situations? Either way, I have to retake Organic Chemistry I...the question is whether it's better to retake it after getting a D, or after getting an F?

Thanks guys!
Apr 23, 2013
Medical Student
A D. It doesn't matter what your school's policy on grade replacement is. For MD schools both grades will be counted.

For DO schools either the D or F will be replaced so it doesn't matter for GPA calculation, but you're still better off with the D.

Can you drop the course? A drop is probably better than either grade since a retake is inevitable.


SDN Bronze Donor
Bronze Donor
7+ Year Member
Jun 26, 2011
Medical Student
I agree that you should try for the highest you can get, which looks like a D. If you can take a W for the course, go for that. I can't speak to how badly schools will look upon a D, but it is certainly better than an F. Even with grade replacement, the grades may be brought up by schools as a source of concern. However, if this is the only bad spot on your transcript and you can give decent reason as to why you did poorly the first time around, it may not even be a problem for you.
Aug 12, 2013
Medical Student
There is no such thing as grade replacement on AMCAS (MD applications). Your F will be factored into the GPA for AMCAS purpose. Do as best as you can and if you end up with anything below a C in the class, retake it.


Elemental Alchemist
7+ Year Member
Apr 21, 2012
Medical Student
Are you sure you haven't factored in the curve? If you did, then it's highly unrealistic to expect a 100% if you've been doing so badly all semester. If that's the case, why are you on SDN?!

It IS possible to get into an MD with a D or an F. You just have to get your priorities together and show amazing grades from now on. Make sure your cGPA and sGPA doesn't get too low!