Pass/Fail Advice (Checked other threads first)

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Hi everyone, I know that this question has been asked a lot but I haven't found a thread with a situation similar to mine, so I figured I'd start a new one. If it doesn't belong here please feel free to delete it!

Basically, I ended up getting a C+ in Organic Chemistry II this summer. I am a rising sophomore and before I took Orgo II my GPA was around a 3.9 with 65 credits already in. For background I received an A in Orgo I. With the C+ factored into my overall transcript, my GPA will become a 3.74. My school has given me the option of applying Pass/Fail to classes because of the COVID-19 situation, which would bring my GPA back to a 3.9, but I'm unsure if I should take the P or not.

I ended up doing poorly in Orgo II because the stress of online learning finally caught up to me midway through the class. Unfortunately, the second half of the class was weighted more than the first half, so my grade suffered tremendously as a result. I have focus issues and being in my room looking at a screen for a majority of the summer semester took a major toll on my mental health. I feel stupid looking back and thinking that I could just power through an accelerated course with no breaks online given my issues, but what's done is done and I've learned my limits the hard way.

What should I do? I know that taking a Pass grade for a pre-req is still frowned on despite COVID-19, but I also feel like the C+ grade will be a major outlier on my transcript and look bad as well. My advisors were not much help (basically said that it was entirely up to me) so if anyone has advice I would sincerely appreciate it.
 

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Hi everyone, I know that this question has been asked a lot but I haven't found a thread with a situation similar to mine, so I figured I'd start a new one. If it doesn't belong here please feel free to delete it!

Basically, I ended up getting a C+ in Organic Chemistry II this summer. I am a rising sophomore and before I took Orgo II my GPA was around a 3.9 with 65 credits already in. For background I received an A in Orgo I. With the C+ factored into my overall transcript, my GPA will become a 3.74. My school has given me the option of applying Pass/Fail to classes because of the COVID-19 situation, which would bring my GPA back to a 3.9, but I'm unsure if I should take the P or not.

I ended up doing poorly in Orgo II because the stress of online learning finally caught up to me midway through the class. Unfortunately, the second half of the class was weighted more than the first half, so my grade suffered tremendously as a result. I have focus issues and being in my room looking at a screen for a majority of the summer semester took a major toll on my mental health. I feel stupid looking back and thinking that I could just power through an accelerated course with no breaks online given my issues, but what's done is done and I've learned my limits the hard way.

What should I do? I know that taking a Pass grade for a pre-req is still frowned on despite COVID-19, but I also feel like the C+ grade will be a major outlier on my transcript and look bad as well. My advisors were not much help (basically said that it was entirely up to me) so if anyone has advice I would sincerely appreciate it.
It is entirely up to you, and, believe it or not, your situation is just like everyone else's. The P will save your reported GPA, but you won't be fooling anyone.

Adcoms know that applicants don't voluntarily elect to report As as Ps, so they will know you are masking a C. On the other hand, as many people here will tell you, one or two Cs will not doom your application, as upsetting as you find your 3.9 becoming a 3.74. If you don't receive any more Cs, your GPA will recover. And, if you continue to receive Cs, your GPA will go down regardless.

So, the bottom line is, your advisors are correct and it is entirely up to you. The damage is done because you received the C+. It is not fatal, but there is no escaping it, regardless of how you report the grade.
 
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It is entirely up to you, and, believe it or not, your situation is just like everyone else's. The P will save your reported GPA, but you won't be fooling anyone.

Adcoms know that applicants don't voluntarily elect to report As as Ps, so they will know you are masking a C. On the other hand, as many people here will tell you, one or two Cs will not doom your application, as upsetting as you find your 3.9 becoming a 3.74. If you don't receive any more Cs, your GPA will recover. And, if you continue to receive Cs, your GPA will go down regardless.

So, the bottom line is, your advisors are correct and it is entirely up to you. The damage is done because you received the C+. It is not fatal, but there is no escaping it, regardless of how you report the grade.
Thank you for responding so quickly! I feel like I should clarify- I'm not trying to fool anyone, I know that adcoms will read a P grade as a C and they would be entirely correct about that. Since I actually did earn a C grade, and I believe that the online situation due to COVID-19 played a major role in that, should I take the P knowing that it will be viewed like a C, or will a C+ look better than a P even given the circumstances?

As much as I would love to avoid GPA damage, if the best move is to own the C+ I'm willing to do that. I'm just not sure if I should take the P given the COVID-19 situation and its impacts on me.
 
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Thank you for responding so quickly! I feel like I should clarify- I'm not trying to fool anyone, I know that adcoms will read a P grade as a C and they would be entirely correct about that. Since I actually did earn a C grade, and I believe that the online situation due to COVID-19 played a major role in that, should I take the P knowing that it will be viewed like a C, or will a C+ look better than a P even given the circumstances?

As much as I would love to avoid GPA damage, if the best move is to own the C+ I'm willing to do that. I'm just not sure if I should take the P given the COVID-19 situation and its impacts on me.
I didn't mean to imply that you were trying to fool anyone -- I was just trying to say that it literally doesn't matter, because they will know either way, so it really is totally up to you. If you want to preserve the optics of the 3.9, then do so.

Some schools will ask you to explain why any prereqs were taken P/F if you had a choice. If that happens, just explain it as you've done here. There really is no right or wrong answer, and it really is the difference between six and a half dozen.

Schools absolutely do understand that COVID is impacting different people in various ways. That's why the P/F options exists, and why med schools are waiving their normal prohibitions against using them for prereqs. The only problem is that everyone isn't being adversely affected, and you are competing against them.

Ultimately though, it is what it is, and you can't change what happened. How you present it is totally up to you, and one way is not inherently advantageous over the other.
 
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I didn't mean to imply that you were trying to fool anyone -- I was just trying to say that it literally doesn't matter, because they will know either way, so it really is totally up to you. If you want to preserve the optics of the 3.9, then do so. Some schools do ask you to explain why any prereqs were taken P/F if you had a choice. If that happens, just explain it as you've done here. There really is no right or wrong answer, and it really is the difference between six and a half dozen.
Okay, thank you so much for the advice! I think I'll take the P given the circumstances, and explain why I decided to if I'm asked. I appreciate the help!
 
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Okay, thank you so much for the advice! I think I'll take the P given the circumstances, and explain why I decided to if I'm asked. I appreciate the help!
For what it's worth, if I were in your boat I'd do exactly the same thing. To paraphrase an old saying, it's better to take the P and allow some doubt about the C to remain as opposed to taking the letter grade and eliminating it entirely.
 

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For what it's worth, if I were in your boat I'd do exactly the same thing. To paraphrase an old saying, it's better to take the P and allow some doubt about the C to remain as opposed to taking the letter grade and eliminating it entirely.
No P/F for you :)

 
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Did you take any other classes in same summer session?
My school does multiple summer semesters, so I did take another class in the first semester. I took Orgo II alone in the second summer semester, which was when the burnout hit and I got the C+.
Should I be worried about this? The classes didn't overlap at all but I'm realizing now that they might both appear to be under a single semester on my transcript.
 

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My school does multiple summer semesters, so I did take another class in the first semester. I took Orgo II alone in the second summer semester, which was when the burnout hit and I got the C+.
Should I be worried about this? The classes didn't overlap at all but I'm realizing now that they might both appear to be under a single semester on my transcript.
It's irrelevant. I'm not even sure why he's asking.
 

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I’d take the C+. It’s sort of gutsy but that’s what you earned. It’s not killing your GPA. You are obviously an excellent student and you will recover! And I’ve never thought that taking a prereq in a summer session was smart anyway. Just my two cents!
 
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I’d take the C+. It’s sort of gutsy but that’s what you earned. It’s not killing your GPA. You are obviously an excellent student and you will recover! And I’ve never thought that taking a prereq in a summer session was smart anyway. Just my two cents!
Excellent points (especially about Orgo 2 in the summer!!!), but if the P makes OP happy, what's the harm?
 
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My school does multiple summer semesters, so I did take another class in the first semester. I took Orgo II alone in the second summer semester, which was when the burnout hit and I got the C+.
Should I be worried about this? The classes didn't overlap at all but I'm realizing now that they might both appear to be under a single semester on my transcript.
If you took only that class in that session then go for P/F. @KnightDoc - I am trying to figure out if OP is cherry picking P/Fs.
 
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Hi everyone, I know that this question has been asked a lot but I haven't found a thread with a situation similar to mine, so I figured I'd start a new one. If it doesn't belong here please feel free to delete it!

Basically, I ended up getting a C+ in Organic Chemistry II this summer. I am a rising sophomore and before I took Orgo II my GPA was around a 3.9 with 65 credits already in. For background I received an A in Orgo I. With the C+ factored into my overall transcript, my GPA will become a 3.74. My school has given me the option of applying Pass/Fail to classes because of the COVID-19 situation, which would bring my GPA back to a 3.9, but I'm unsure if I should take the P or not.

I ended up doing poorly in Orgo II because the stress of online learning finally caught up to me midway through the class. Unfortunately, the second half of the class was weighted more than the first half, so my grade suffered tremendously as a result. I have focus issues and being in my room looking at a screen for a majority of the summer semester took a major toll on my mental health. I feel stupid looking back and thinking that I could just power through an accelerated course with no breaks online given my issues, but what's done is done and I've learned my limits the hard way.

What should I do? I know that taking a Pass grade for a pre-req is still frowned on despite COVID-19, but I also feel like the C+ grade will be a major outlier on my transcript and look bad as well. My advisors were not much help (basically said that it was entirely up to me) so if anyone has advice I would sincerely appreciate it.
Just take the C+ and do better in your other classes. Even failing the course won't keep you out of med school.


Suggest contacting your school's counseling center or Student Services office, or your doctor for help. This is NOT giving medical advice!
 
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If you took only that class in that session then go for P/F. @KnightDoc - I am trying to figure out if OP is cherry picking P/Fs.
That doesn't really work anymore. Back in March and April, nobody really knew what was going to happen. Now that this is six months old and not ending anytime soon, all the schools will know which UGs went mandatory P/F and which ones made it optional.

It really isn't an option at this point to choose it and fool a med school into thinking it was mandatory by making the election for all classes in a given semester. Even if it's only one class in a session, it's cherry picking if it isn't mandatory. At least one school has this question in their secondary: "If you were offered an option to continue courses with a standard grading system or switch to Pass/Fail, and you chose Pass/Fail, please describe the reason(s) for your decision here. (500 Char)."
 
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Just take the C+ and do better in your other classes. Even failing the course won't keep you out of med school.


Suggest contacting your school's counseling center or Student Services office, or your doctor for help. This is NOT giving medical advice!
Of course you are right about the C+, but don't you think it's a little harsh (or maybe even flat out inappropriate) to suggest that a typically uptight 3.9 premed dealing with C+ in an online, difficult prereq during a pandemic, who is given an opportunity to mask the grade and is seeking advice regarding the pros and cons of doing so, is in possible need of psychiatric counseling for being concerned and asking the question in an anonymous forum?
 
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I’d take the C+. It’s sort of gutsy but that’s what you earned. It’s not killing your GPA. You are obviously an excellent student and you will recover! And I’ve never thought that taking a prereq in a summer session was smart anyway. Just my two cents!
Yeah, I've heard that summer pre-reqs aren't the smartest but I'm trying to graduate early because I came in with a lot of AP credit and I'm kind of broke, and that was the only way to do it and save on tuition! Thank you for the vote of confidence, I think I'm going to sleep on this decision because a lot of good points are being raised on both sides!
 
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Just take the C+ and do better in your other classes. Even failing the course won't keep you out of med school.


Suggest contacting your school's counseling center or Student Services office, or your doctor for help. This is NOT giving medical advice!
I hope I'm not coming across as if I'm only thinking about the C+ in the context of being kept out of med school- I know that one bad grade won't sink me and that this was due to less than ideal circumstances that I now know how to handle better. I'm just more concerned whether taking the P would be considered worse than the C+ or vice versa.

I'm not sure what you mean with the second part? My focus issues/ ADHD are already being managed by professionals. They were just exacerbated by the whole online class situation and being cooped up at home. I appreciate the concern however, and want to assure you that I am not in a bad place!
 

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Yeah, I've heard that summer pre-reqs aren't the smartest but I'm trying to graduate early because I came in with a lot of AP credit and I'm kind of broke, and that was the only way to do it and save on tuition! Thank you for the vote of confidence, I think I'm going to sleep on this decision because a lot of good points are being raised on both sides!
Honestly, please don't lose any sleep at all over this. It really is six of one and a half dozen of the other to the med schools. Just do whatever makes you happier, and don't give it a second thought. A C+ won't kill you and neither will a P. It's one class in the context of an entire academic career, and the schools really do look at a lot more than just your grades.
 
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Honestly, please don't lose any sleep at all over this. It really is six of one and a half dozen of the other to the med schools. Just do whatever makes you happier, and don't give it a second thought. A C+ won't kill you and neither will a P. It's one class in the context of an entire academic career, and the schools really do look at a lot more than just your grades.
Thank you- I think I'll feel more clearheaded in the morning (it's been a long day) which is why I plan on waiting, but I really appreciate all of your advice!
 
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I hope I'm not coming across as if I'm only thinking about the C+ in the context of being kept out of med school- I know that one bad grade won't sink me and that this was due to less than ideal circumstances that I now know how to handle better. I'm just more concerned whether taking the P would be considered worse than the C+ or vice versa.

I'm not sure what you mean with the second part? My focus issues/ ADHD are already being managed by professionals. They were just exacerbated by the whole online class situation and being cooped up at home. I appreciate the concern however, and want to assure you that I am not in a bad place!
If you had a sea of P grades scattered all over your transcript, that would be a hint that you were engaging in GPA salvation.

But a single P grade? Calm down.
 
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Also another important point, how is it going to be recorded on transcript? As you have a choice, transcript may say it was student choice and rest of summer classes letter grade will suggest the adcoms that you got C (not even C+) . If this was a forced choice, then you have an upper hand to explain the situation at application time. As @Goro recommended go with C+, catch up the grade train as you have plenty of time. FWIW, my S was forced to P/F for spring quarter for all subjects and that broke his A continuity for orgo.
 
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Absolutely take the P. It gives you an out. You can say that you weren’t comfortable with the standard grading scheme because of the stress and inconvenience of taking the class online, so you opted for P/F. Medical schools will very likely accept P/F pre-req courses because of the COVID-19 situation. Don’t make a decision that creates a blemish on your transcript and lowers your overall GPA. Adcoms often use overall GPA as a filter when wading through their piles of applications.
 
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Did you had a sea of P grades scattered all over your transcript, that would be a hint that you were engaging in GPA salvation.

But a single P grade? Calm down.
I'm sorry, where exactly did I lose my calm? I am sincerely asking for advice because I know that SDN has many members who have seen it all before and are willing to help.

I'm not sure why you seem to think that I'm panicking or in need of psychiatric help, but I promise that I am doing just fine. I'm only looking for people's perspectives on whether or not I should take the P because my advisors at school did not offer me any guidance on the decision.
 
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Also another important point, how is it going to be recorded on transcript? As you have a choice, transcript may say it was student choice and rest of summer classes letter grade will suggest the adcoms that you got C (not even C+) . If this was a forced choice, then you have an upper hand to explain the situation at application time. As @Goro recommended go with C+, catch up the grade train as you have plenty of time. FWIW, my S was forced to P/F for spring quarter for all subjects and that broke his A continuity for orgo.
It will be denoted as a "P" and a note will be attached to the transcript indicating the circumstances of the COVID-19 situation!

Yes, I'm aware that adcoms will know I'm not using the P for a good grade- I want to make sure that it's clear I'm not trying to pretend that I can hide the C+! I'm just wondering whether or not I should take the P because I was negatively impacted by the COVID circumstances. You raise good points and I'll think them over!
 

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At the CC where I took Orgo I, I received a "C", and on our transcripts it explicitly states that students had the option to receive a letter grade. It continues on and says that "P+" means the student scored a "C" or better in the course, a "P" means that the student had a "D" in the class, and lastly "F" if they failed.

I took the P+, because I already have a pretty low cumulative and sGPA. I didnt want the C to tarnish my upward trend in my DIY post bac. With that being said, I considered that my one "lifeline", during the summer I took Biochem, and I knew it was imparative that I did well in that course since its difficulty is comprable to Orgo, and I ended up getting an A.
 
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Absolutely take the P. It gives you an out. You can say that you weren’t comfortable with the standard grading scheme because of the stress and inconvenience of taking the class online, so you opted for P/F. Medical schools will very likely accept P/F pre-req courses because of the COVID-19 situation. Don’t make a decision that creates a blemish on your transcript and lowers your overall GPA. Adcoms often use overall GPA as a filter when wading through their piles of applications.
Thank you for the perspective. I guess I'm just stuck on the idea that my difficulties due to COVID aren't justification enough to take a P grade, which is why I'm uncertain as to whether or not I should do it. I really appreciate the advice and will take it into consideration when I decide!
 
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At the CC where I took Orgo I, I received a "C", and on our transcripts it explicitly states that students had the option to receive a letter grade. It continues on and says that "P+" means the student scored a "C" or better in the course, a "P" means that the student had a "D" in the class, and lastly "F" if they failed.

I took the P+, because I already have a pretty low cumulative and sGPA. I didnt want the C to tarnish my upward trend in my DIY post bac. With that being said, I considered that my one "lifeline", during the summer I took Biochem, and I knew it was imparative that I did well in that course since its difficulty is comprable to Orgo, and I ended up getting an A.
Thanks for sharing your story! Like you, I plan on re-balancing for the next semester and knocking biochem out of the park. I'm glad to see that you were so successful in a similar situation to mine, it makes me feel a lot better!
 

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It will be denoted as a "P" and a note will be attached to the transcript indicating the circumstances of the COVID-19 situation!

Yes, I'm aware that adcoms will know I'm not using the P for a good grade- I want to make sure that it's clear I'm not trying to pretend that I can hide the C+! I'm just wondering whether or not I should take the P because I was negatively impacted by the COVID circumstances. You raise good points and I'll think them over!
Agree that you were negatively impacted by the COVID, and so many more. Did it affect rest summer classes as well or just orgo? How good/bad did you do for rest summer classes? If you aced remaining summer classes, do you expect the adcoms to buy the argument that covid impacted negatively only orgo? If you didn't ace rest summer classes, can you afford to take 'P' on all of them?
 
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@rosey88 One point that hasn’t been mentioned on this thread is that many medical schools do not require Orgo II. You should check some of the medical schools (like your in-state ones) that you would apply to to see if they require it or not. Therefore I don’t think that a letter grade for that course would matter to many med schools who don’t require Orgo II. So take the P, because it will have less impact on your gpa and one P on your transcript during this pandemic will not have a negative impact in my opinion.
 
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Agree that you were negatively impacted by the COVID, and so many more. Did it affect rest summer classes as well or just orgo? How good/bad did you do for rest summer classes? If you aced remaining summer classes, do you expect the adcoms to buy the argument that covid impacted negatively only orgo? If you didn't ace rest summer classes, can you afford to take 'P' on all of them?
I only took one other summer class in the first summer semester, and I received an A.

Looking back, what happened is that I just pushed myself too hard and too fast, and the negative results of that decision are what caught up to me midway through Orgo II (for the first half of Orgo II I had around a 90% average).

For timeline: I had about 1/3 of my spring semester online and finished it at home, then had around a week and a half of break before I started the first online summer semester, then 3 days of break before I started the next online summer semester. I simply didn't have enough time between classes (and certainly none during them because they were accelerated) to recharge, and being stuck in my room pretty much all the time- alternately staring at a screen or an online textbook- wreaked enough havoc on my mental health and focus issues that I was eventually unable to push through. Hopefully this clears up my situation a little more!
 
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@rosey88 One point that hasn’t been mentioned on this thread is that many medical schools do not require Orgo II. You should check some of the medical schools (like your in-state ones) that you would apply to to see if they require it or not. Therefore I don’t think that a letter grade for that course would matter to many med schools who don’t require Orgo II. So take the P, because it will have less impact on your gpa and one P on your transcript during this pandemic will not have a negative impact in my opinion.
From what I remember, (I checked MSAR a few days ago) the majority of my in-state ones do want two semesters of Orgo, but all of them also said that they accept P/F grades for pre-reqs. Some even said they accept them "without prejudice," which I don't really buy because there's no way they'd prefer them over a good letter grade, but they are taking them!
 
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I only took one other summer class in the first summer semester, and I received an A.

Looking back, what happened is that I just pushed myself too hard and too fast, and the negative results of that decision are what caught up to me midway through Orgo II (for the first half of Orgo II I had around a 90% average).

For timeline: I had about 1/3 of my spring semester online and finished it at home, then had around a week and a half of break before I started the first online summer semester, then 3 days of break before I started the next online summer semester. I simply didn't have enough time between classes (and certainly none during them because they were accelerated) to recharge, and being stuck in my room pretty much all the time- alternately staring at a screen or an online textbook- wreaked enough havoc on my mental health and focus issues that I was eventually unable to push through. Hopefully this clears up my situation a little more!
I assumed you meant to say 2 online classes, 3 days apart, not 2 summer semesters. You did received A in another class and for whatsoever reason mental health issue wasn't a factor. When one takes a journey for medical school, there is a 10+ year commitment and it is hardly impossible not to face any issues in that time and derail the progress. Tbh, when you committed for summer classes, Covid was a known issue, unlike spring time. You knew acceleration nature and circumstances at home, still you decided to move forward, certain that there was an opportunity to drop summer class, yet you stayed on course and took gamble. Your only alternatives are take 'P' or letter grade in both summer classes, don't cherry pick only orgo for 'P'. Ultimately it is your decision.
 
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Thank you for the perspective. I guess I'm just stuck on the idea that my difficulties due to COVID aren't justification enough to take a P grade, which is why I'm uncertain as to whether or not I should do it. I really appreciate the advice and will take it into consideration when I decide!
Honestly, you don't need a justification! You are overthinking this.

To the adcoms, the P=C, so it just doesn't matter. The one C (or P) is NOT going to kill you, given your superlative GPA.

If the optics of the C and the hit to your GPA bother you, take the P. Under the circumstances (COVID), this is why the option is being offered to you. Otherwise, just take the C+.

If it were me, I'd take the P, knowing that it is viewed as a C (which wouldn't bother me because, after all, that's what I got!), in order to make my GPA look a little better and on the off chance maybe someone wouldn't look at it too closely. One grade out of 30 or more just doesn't move the needle on a med school decision. Why be a hero when the school is giving you the opportunity to mask it? Just understand that masking isn't the same as erasing it.

Again, there is not a "better" reason than this to take the P, and, at the end of the day, it doesn't matter because the adcoms know that a C+ =/ A or B, and neither does a P. It really is just whatever you prefer. Nothing more or less. Neither choice will help or hurt your eventual application.
 
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I assumed you meant to say 2 online classes, 3 days apart, not 2 summer semesters. You did received A in another class and for whatsoever reason mental health issue wasn't a factor. When one takes a journey for medical school, there is a 10+ year commitment and it is hardly impossible not to face any issues in that time and derail the progress. Tbh, when you committed for summer classes, Covid was a known issue, unlike spring time. You knew acceleration nature and circumstances at home, still you decided to move forward, certain that there was an opportunity to drop summer class, yet you stayed on course and took gamble. Your only alternatives are take 'P' or letter grade in both summer classes, don't cherry pick only orgo for 'P'. Ultimately it is your decision.
Oh sorry if that was confusing for you- they were two different online classes that are usually a semester long, so I just referred to them as separate summer semesters.

I feel like I should underline that my mental health issues never weren't a factor in my academics- they just worsened significantly to the point where I could no longer manage them this summer. By the time I realized things were bad, I was already halfway through the class and there was no point in dropping. I understand what you're trying to say but I don't think it's entirely fair to act as if I can completely control when my mental health gets in the way. I knew the summer was going to be challenging for me and I admit that I misjudged, but that's not the issue I'm trying to get advice on- what's done is done!

Thank you for the advice!
 
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Honestly, you don't need a justification! You are overthinking this.

To the adcoms, the P=C, so it just doesn't matter. The one C (or P) is NOT going to kill you, given your superlative GPA.

If the optics of the C and the hit to your GPA bother you, take the P. Under the circumstances (COVID), this is why the option is being offered to you. Otherwise, just take the C+.

If it were me, I'd take the P, knowing that it is viewed as a C (which wouldn't bother me because, after all, that's what I got!), in order to make my GPA look a little better and on the off chance maybe someone wouldn't look at it too closely. One grade out of 30 or more just doesn't move the needle on a med school decision. Why be a hero when the school is giving you the opportunity to mask it? Just understand that masking isn't the same as erasing it.

Again, there is not a "better" reason than this to take the P, and, at the end of the day, it doesn't matter because the adcoms know that a C+ =/ A or B, and neither does a P. It really is just whatever you prefer. Nothing more or less. Neither choice will help or hurt your eventual application.
Thanks for being so clear about my options! I didn't intend for this thread to get so long and I've been honestly overwhelmed by all the different responses. I'm definitely leaning towards taking the P, but I'll fully decide that later. Thank you again for all of your help!
 
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I'm sorry, where exactly did I lose my calm? I am sincerely asking for advice because I know that SDN has many members who have seen it all before and are willing to help.

I'm not sure why you seem to think that I'm panicking or in need of psychiatric help, but I promise that I am doing just fine. I'm only looking for people's perspectives on whether or not I should take the P because my advisors at school did not offer me any guidance on the decision.

Your words, not mine. I believe that you can be helped by gaining some coping skills.

Med school is a furnace, and I've seen it break even healthy students. Nowhere did I suggest seeking psychiatric care.

If you disagree, ignore what I wrote.

Nearly every med school on the country is 100% online, or close to it, FYI.


"ended up doing poorly in Orgo II because the stress of online learning finally caught up to me midway through the class. Unfortunately, the second half of the class was weighted more than the first half, so my grade suffered tremendously as a result. I have focus issues and being in my room looking at a screen for a majority of the summer semester took a major toll on my mental health. I feel stupid looking back and thinking that I could just power through an accelerated course with no breaks online given my issues, but what's done is done and I've learned my limits the hard way."

"I feel like I should underline that my mental health issues never weren't a factor in my academics- they just worsened significantly to the point where I could no longer manage them this summer. By the time I realized things were bad, I was already halfway through the class and there was no point in dropping. I understand what you're trying to say but I don't think it's entirely fair to act as if I can completely control when my mental health gets in the way."
 
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Your words, not mine. I believe that you can be helped by gaining some coping skills.

Med school is a furnace, and I've seen it break even healthy students. Nowhere did I suggest seeking psychiatric care.

If you disagree, ignore what I wrote.

Nearly every med school on the country is 100% online, or close to it, FYI.


"ended up doing poorly in Orgo II because the stress of online learning finally caught up to me midway through the class. Unfortunately, the second half of the class was weighted more than the first half, so my grade suffered tremendously as a result. I have focus issues and being in my room looking at a screen for a majority of the summer semester took a major toll on my mental health. I feel stupid looking back and thinking that I could just power through an accelerated course with no breaks online given my issues, but what's done is done and I've learned my limits the hard way."

"I feel like I should underline that my mental health issues never weren't a factor in my academics- they just worsened significantly to the point where I could no longer manage them this summer. By the time I realized things were bad, I was already halfway through the class and there was no point in dropping. I understand what you're trying to say but I don't think it's entirely fair to act as if I can completely control when my mental health gets in the way."
It's a little strange to me that you seem so bent on trying to make me look like I'm incapable of getting to (and through) med school solely because I'm not neurotypical. These quotes weren't even the focus of my post; they were something I only elaborated on because some posters were curious about my backstory and they should be taken into context accordingly. Also, you specifically advised that I reach out to school counselors or a doctor for help, am I supposed to not take that as you telling me to seek psychiatric assistance?

I don't know if you think you're being helpful, but I promise- I don't need unsolicited advice on my mental health from a stranger on the internet!
 
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It's a little strange to me that you seem so bent on trying to make me look like I'm incapable of getting to (and through) med school solely because I'm not neurotypical. These quotes weren't even the focus of my post; they were something I only elaborated on because some posters were curious about my backstory and they should be taken into context accordingly. Also, you specifically advised that I reach out to school counselors or a doctor for help, am I supposed to not take that as you telling me to seek psychiatric assistance?

I don't know if you think you're being helpful, but I promise- I don't need unsolicited advice on my mental health from a stranger on the internet!
AOK
 

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Oh sorry if that was confusing for you- they were two different online classes that are usually a semester long, so I just referred to them as separate summer semesters.

I feel like I should underline that my mental health issues never weren't a factor in my academics- they just worsened significantly to the point where I could no longer manage them this summer. By the time I realized things were bad, I was already halfway through the class and there was no point in dropping. I understand what you're trying to say but I don't think it's entirely fair to act as if I can completely control when my mental health gets in the way. I knew the summer was going to be challenging for me and I admit that I misjudged, but that's not the issue I'm trying to get advice on- what's done is done!

Thank you for the advice!
Wait! You have mental health issues? Have they been diagnosed? Are you being treated for them? Be very careful how you mention this area in your applications!
 

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It's a little strange to me that you seem so bent on trying to make me look like I'm incapable of getting to (and through) med school solely because I'm not neurotypical. These quotes weren't even the focus of my post; they were something I only elaborated on because some posters were curious about my backstory and they should be taken into context accordingly. Also, you specifically advised that I reach out to school counselors or a doctor for help, am I supposed to not take that as you telling me to seek psychiatric assistance?

I don't know if you think you're being helpful, but I promise- I don't need unsolicited advice on my mental health from a stranger on the internet!
Calm down. We are all trying to help you! Nobody, especially @Goro is trying to hurt you! Every aspect of med school is tough. @Goro is on the faculty of a med school and is an ADCOM member at the same school. He has seen it all including rousing success stories and tragic failures. Like everything else online you have choices. Either use the advice or ignore it. But in the future when you run into a wall(and we all do) remember where you can get help!
 
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Wait! You have mental health issues? Have they been diagnosed? Are you being treated for them? Be very careful how you mention this area in your applications!
Yes, I have ADHD (inattentive type) and occasional anxiety issues due to it but nothing terrible. I'm pretty high-functioning which is why I didn't emphasize it in my original post, but it is still there. It's being managed properly but with the crazy circumstances of online learning, as well as my decision to take two accelerated summer courses in a row, I did have some major burnout and a lot of difficult symptoms that I ultimately couldn't manage well. I know what I did wrong now so it shouldn't be an issue in the future- and if it ever is, I have the tools to do better!

Is having ADHD/ not being neurotypical a major red flag? I didn't realize this would be such a sticking point, haha

Calm down. We are all trying to help you! Nobody, especially @Goro is trying to hurt you! Every aspect of med school is tough. @Goro is on the faculty of a med school and is an ADCOM member at the same school. He has seen it all including rousing success stories and tragic failures. Like everything else online you have choices. Either use the advice or ignore it. But in the future when you run into a wall(and we all do) remember where you can get help!
I was pretty tired last night so if I came off as unnecessarily snippy I apologize. I just thought it was a little strange to see someone direct such a negative focus at my mental health, and since it wasn't the original point of my post it didn't feel very appropriate. I understand that Goro meant well but I hope you can see how it came across as abrasive. I appreciate your kind words and help!
 
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Is having ADHD/ not being neurotypical a major red flag? I didn't realize this would be such a sticking point, haha
"Sticking point" is in the eye of the beholder. As the adcoms repeatedly remind us, their roles are to fulfill the schools' missions by finding the best candidates to turn into doctors. While individual adcoms are very generous with their time and advice here on SDN, as a group their obligations are to their schools, not the applicants. As such, it is always dangerous to point out anything that might be a cause for concern.

Med school can be a pressure cooker, so while adcoms might have sympathy for those dealing with mental health issues, and might be impressed by efforts to manage and overcome them, the risk is always there that disclosure of such issues can hurt an application. In your case, I don't see how going there on an application will help you, since you are high functioning and it is being properly managed.
 
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Echoing what's already been said, I would take the P. If you're ever asked about it in a secondary or an interview (very unlikely), you can just say something like you were afraid of how online learning would affect your ability to learn properly in the course and didn't think a grade would be representative of you as a student, or something along those lines. Considering the rest of your GPA will come out to a 3.9, they won't think about it that much.

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Yes, I have ADHD (inattentive type) and occasional anxiety issues due to it but nothing terrible. I'm pretty high-functioning which is why I didn't emphasize it in my original post, but it is still there. It's being managed properly but with the crazy circumstances of online learning, as well as my decision to take two accelerated summer courses in a row, I did have some major burnout and a lot of difficult symptoms that I ultimately couldn't manage well. I know what I did wrong now so it shouldn't be an issue in the future- and if it ever is, I have the tools to do better!

Is having ADHD/ not being neurotypical a major red flag? I didn't realize this would be such a sticking point, haha


I was pretty tired last night so if I came off as unnecessarily snippy I apologize. I just thought it was a little strange to see someone direct such a negative focus at my mental health, and since it wasn't the original point of my post it didn't feel very appropriate. I understand that Goro meant well but I hope you can see how it came across as abrasive. I appreciate your kind words and help!
Here's the deal, as I mentioned before:

Medical school is a furnace, and I've seen it break even healthy students. The #1 reason my school loses students to withdrawal, dismissal or LOA is to unresolved mental health issues.

Having seen the human wreckage that ensues from excellent students whose metal health issues go into relapse, or are triggered by med school, all I can say is that one has to have their issues under 100% control.
 
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Yes, I have ADHD (inattentive type) and occasional anxiety issues due to it but nothing terrible. I'm pretty high-functioning which is why I didn't emphasize it in my original post, but it is still there. It's being managed properly but with the crazy circumstances of online learning, as well as my decision to take two accelerated summer courses in a row, I did have some major burnout and a lot of difficult symptoms that I ultimately couldn't manage well. I know what I did wrong now so it shouldn't be an issue in the future- and if it ever is, I have the tools to do better!

Is having ADHD/ not being neurotypical a major red flag? I didn't realize this would be such a sticking point, haha


I was pretty tired last night so if I came off as unnecessarily snippy I apologize. I just thought it was a little strange to see someone direct such a negative focus at my mental health, and since it wasn't the original point of my post it didn't feel very appropriate. I understand that Goro meant well but I hope you can see how it came across as abrasive. I appreciate your kind words and help!
If you think that was abrasive you need to take a step back! I understand it wasn’t the original point of your post, but as I said at some point we really can’t help you if we don’t know anything about you. And as the conversation developed this Unmentioned issue seems to be something that you deal with a lot. Every single person here is trying to help you but by you ignoring a significant point or becoming triggered when questioned about It doesn’t help you in the long run. If you think you are tired now you don’t really know tired. I also understand you are having a hard time with COVID and everything going on with that. We all are, or I think we all are. I know I certainly am. I think you need to take the P and relax for awhile. Hopefully you aren’t applying this cycle and can maybe take fewer classes until you can get your self together. You seem to be a good student. Calm down and relax!
 
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Here's the deal, as I mentioned before:

Medical school is a furnace, and I've seen it break even healthy students. The #1 reason my school loses students to withdrawal, dismissal or LOA is to unresolved mental health issues.

Having seen the human wreckage that ensues from excellent students whose metal health issues go into relapse, or are triggered by med school, all I can say is that one has to have their issues under 100% control.
I completely agree with you about the importance of having this under control- and that's why I have professionals (doctors, therapist) who are helping me succeed in spite of my ADHD. They've taught me a lot of healthy skills, but unfortunately it just wasn't quite enough for me to power through the wacky circumstances this summer. I've taken the C+ mess as a learning experience and I don't plan on having it happen again!

If you think that was abrasive you need to take a step back! I understand it wasn’t the original point of your post, but as I said at some point we really can’t help you if we don’t know anything about you. And as the conversation developed this Unmentioned issue seems to be something that you deal with a lot. Every single person here is trying to help you but by you ignoring a significant point or becoming triggered when questioned about It doesn’t help you in the long run. If you think you are tired now you don’t really know tired. I also understand you are having a hard time with COVID and everything going on with that. We all are, or I think we all are. I know I certainly am. I think you need to take the P and relax for awhile. Hopefully you aren’t applying this cycle and can maybe take fewer classes until you can get your self together. You seem to be a good student. Calm down and relax!
It's not that I have to "deal with it" a lot- it's just that due to the nature of ADHD it's something I have that never goes away. I'm at peace with it and I've learned how to manage symptoms effectively when they start to interfere, things just didn't work out this summer due to a combination of factors, some of which were out of my control. I know that people are trying to help, and I'm very grateful for all of the assistance on this thread (which has ballooned quite a bit!), but my mental health is being handled by doctors who know me and my background well, and I don't need any other advice beyond theirs.

I'm not applying anytime soon (I'm a rising sophomore) so I'm not very stressed at all! I'm hiking, doing yoga, talking with friends, and overall making the most of quarantine. I hope no one on this thread is too concerned that I'm freaking out about the C+ because I'm really not, I just wanted advice on whether or not I should take the P!

And for those who might still be lurking on the thread- I applied for the P today. Thank you all for your perspectives and help!
 
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I completely agree with you about the importance of having this under control- and that's why I have professionals (doctors, therapist) who are helping me succeed in spite of my ADHD. They've taught me a lot of healthy skills, but unfortunately it just wasn't quite enough for me to power through the wacky circumstances this summer. I've taken the C+ mess as a learning experience and I don't plan on having it happen again!


It's not that I have to "deal with it" a lot- it's just that due to the nature of ADHD it's something I have that never goes away. I'm at peace with it and I've learned how to manage symptoms effectively when they start to interfere, things just didn't work out this summer due to a combination of factors, some of which were out of my control. I know that people are trying to help, and I'm very grateful for all of the assistance on this thread (which has ballooned quite a bit!), but my mental health is being handled by doctors who know me and my background well, and I don't need any other advice beyond theirs.

I'm not applying anytime soon (I'm a rising sophomore) so I'm not very stressed at all! I'm hiking, doing yoga, talking with friends, and overall making the most of quarantine. I hope no one on this thread is too concerned that I'm freaking out about the C+ because I'm really not, I just wanted advice on whether or not I should take the P!

And for those who might still be lurking on the thread- I applied for the P today. Thank you all for your perspectives and help!
Good luck, and do keep us abreast of your progress!
 
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It seems like you've already decided, but just to throw this in for discussion/future readers:

Last I checked, not all schools were uniformly accepting P/F grades for pre-requisite classes. Some schools have announced that they are accepting them for Spring/Summer work without prejudice, some have said they are accepting them only if they were institutionally mandated, some have said they strongly encourage students to take pre-requisites graded if they have an option, and some have not stated any changed policies.

I would strongly suggest checking the policies at some of the medical schools you would want to apply to before deciding to make sure this choice isn't going to have unexpected long-term effects.

Both a P and a C+ are going to appear similar, so if there's any possibility that the P grade might cause issues in your application down the road, that's something to think about.
 
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