Ongoing Policy Updates Related to Changes Due to COVID-19


For fall 2020 and spring 2021 modifications, see major application and overall policy changes; no changes were made to the honors program.
 


For spring 2020 modifications, see major application, overall policy changes and honors program. 

Please click on the tabs below.

 
 

 

The Fall 2020 and spring 2021 P grade policy is at the top of this page. 

Scroll down for the spring 2020 P grade policy.

 

 

 

Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 P Grading Policy and Media Studies Application Temporary Changes in Response to COVID-19

After carefully considering advice from the campus Faculty Senate and the ASUC Office of Academic Affairs, the Faculty of the College of Letters and Science, through their Executive Committee, have decided to make changes to how P/NP grades can be used during the Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 semesters. The goal of this change is to reduce stress during these tough semesters of pandemic and remote instruction, while still encouraging learning and student progress.

Please note that switching a course or courses to P/NP may not be the best action in all circumstances. Consult the L&S Office of Undergraduate Advising Fall 2020 and Spring 2021: Policy Modifications and FAQ page on their website. Please note that this modified grading policy differs from the Spring 2020 P modified grading policy. Read both carefully.

Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 P grades will be accepted for all Media Studies course requirements.

For students eligible to apply to Media Studies in fall 2020 through summer 2021, the following changes will be made to the application process:

  1. Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 P grades will be accepted in addition to Spring 2020 P grades. The minimum GPA for the application will be based on the letter grades relevant to the major, which includes prerequisites and any course that satisfies a major requirement;



  2. If a student has only P grades (all from spring 2020, fall 2020 and/or spring 2021) and it is not possible to calculate an application GPA, the student should substitute their overall GPA on the application;
     

  3. The required minimum GPA will be 3.0, reduced from 3.2.


The 70-unit maximum for 4 year admits to apply will remain in place. This unit total excludes test scores, community college courses taken while in high school and excess P.E. units.

The 2 semesters at UC Berkeley maximum for transfer students to apply will remain in place as well. 

Students must take approved courses to satisfy prerequisite course requirements. Media Studies does not accept exam scores.

Standard Application

A student completes a standard application if the above requirements have been met. 

Appeal Application

A student completes an appeal application if the above requirements have not been met. Appeal applications include a cover letter explaining the reason for appeal and why the student is academically interested in the major. Students may also use the cover letter to address grade concerns or strength in the major not represented by the available letter grades. When Media Studies Faculty review appeal applications, they will keep in mind that spring 2020, fall 2020 and spring 2021 were challenging semesters for all students.

Please note: students have one opportunity to apply to the major.

The Media Studies application packets are available on the Media Studies homepage under Announcement. Note application deadlines on packets.

December 23, 2020

 

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Spring 2020 P Grading Policy and Media Studies ApplicationTemporary Changes in Response to COVID-19

Media Studies, like the College of Letters and Science, strongly recommends that students keep the spring 2020 DPN grading option to reduce their academic stress. 

Spring 2020 P grades will be accepted for all Media Studies course requirements.

For students eligible to apply to Media Studies in fall 2020, the following changes will be made to the application process:

  1. Spring 2020 P grades will be accepted. The minimum GPA for the application will be based on the letter grades relevant to the major, which includes prerequisites and any course that satisfies a major requirement;

  2. If a student has only P grades (all from spring 2020) and it is not possible to calculate an application GPA, the student should substitute their overall GPA on the application;
     
  3. The required minimum GPA will be 3.0, reduced from 3.2.

The 70-unit maximum to apply will remain in place. This unit total excludes test scores, community college courses taken while in high school and excess P.E. units.

Students must take approved courses to satisfy prerequisite course requirements. Media Studies does not accept exam scores.

There are two types of applications to the major: 

Standard Application

A student completes a standard application if the above requirements have been met. 

Appeal Application

A student completes an appeal application if the above requirements have not been met. Appeal applications include a cover letter explaining the reason for appeal and why the student is academically interested in the major. Students may also use the cover letter to address grade concerns or strength in the major not represented by the available letter grades. When Media Studies Faculty review appeal applications, they will keep in mind that spring 2020 was a challenging semester for all students.

Please note: students have one opportunity to apply to the major. 

The fall 2020 Media Studies application packet will be available on the Media Studies website by the end of May 2020.

April 12, 2020

 

Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 P Grade Policy Update

The Media Studies Honors Program requirements have not changed due to the Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 P Grade Policy Modifications. 

Students are required to take Media Studies H194 and Media Studies H195 for letter grades. These courses are required for the Honors Program. They are not required of all students for the major. Visit webpage for additional honors program requirements.

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Spring 2020 P Grade Policy Changes Due to Covid-19 for the Media Studies Honors Program 

April 15, 2020 

The UC Berkeley Academic Senate is encouraging students to take Spring 2020 courses as Pass/No Pass. These P/NP guidelines aim to alleviate some of the stress students are experiencing related to grades this semester. This update offers information on policy changes intended to support students pursuing honors in the Media Studies Program. Please note that policies may change according to new developments in campus pandemic response. 

The Media Studies Honors Program is responding to the Covid-19 disruption by adopting L&S recommendations. For the purposes of obtaining honors distinction:

  1. L&S will reduce its minimum GPAs for Distinction on General Scholarship at Graduation by 0.05 to account for the grading and instruction adjustments made this semester. Following L&S’s lead, the Media Studies Program will temporarily reduce honors GPA requirement by 0.05 to account for the grading and instruction adjustments made this semester. Accordingly, the 3.5 GPA requirement will be reduced to 3.45 for Fall 2020 Honors Thesis enrollment. 
  2. In exceptional cases, instructors may consider issuing an I (incomplete) grade to individual students. Honors courses must be completed before graduation in order for a student to receive honors on their diploma. This means that if a student is issued an I grade, they must also agree to create a written contract for project completion and postpone their graduation (i.e. change their Expected Graduation Term (EGT) to summer 2020 or Fall 2020 with their College Advisor). 

Current Media Studies Honors Students
All students in Media Studies H195 need to earn a P grade in the course in Spring 2020. Letter grades for the Spring term will neither assist or impede your chances for honors. If students earn P grades in all their Spring 2020 courses, GPAs will meet honors requirements. Students graduating in Spring 2020 who have met these requirements will graduate with honors. Students graduating in summer 2020 or later will need to maintain their overall and major GPAs above a 3.5 to earn honors in the major each term through the end of their expected graduation term. Media Studies GPAs are based on the required core and elective courses for the major. Grades for Media Studies H194 and H195 are not part of GPA calculation. 

Future Media Studies Honors Students
Students applying to enter Media Studies H194 in Fall 2020 should fill out a course application form and will be enrolled with the temporary 3.45 GPA or better criterion. If their major and overall GPAs are above a 3.45 after summer 2020 grades are published in Cal Central and their proposed thesis topic is approved, they will be given a permission code to enroll in the course by the Media Studies H194 instructor and must attend the first class meeting. Students who have not met the requirements to enroll in Media Studies H195 in Spring 2021 may be considered on a case-by-case basis. Policies that Honors students may not have any F or NP grades are still in effect.

Students who are interested in participating in the 2021-22 Media Studies Honors Program will need to follow the L&S Executive Committee approved requirements for the Media Studies Honors Program published on the Media Studies website.