S/U Option Guide

The S/U (Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory) grading option is available to students in the BSc and BA&Sc degrees. If a grade of S (Satisfactory) is earned, then these courses can be counted as electives only (exceptions below). A grade of U (Unsatisfactory) doesn't count for anything (zero credits awarded).

This document is meant to give BSc and BA&Sc students broad guidelines about their decision to select, or not, the S/U Option. If you still have questions, please contact your advisor by consult the SOUSA website.

Additional S/U Option:

Exceptionally, for the Fall 2020 and Winter 2021 terms, B.Sc and BA&Sc students were permitted to select the S/U option on Fall 2020 and Winter 2021 courses to count towards programs (required or complementary) up to a maximum of 6 credits for Fall and Winter combined. This was in addition to the normal limit of one course per term with S/U on electives only. For details and deadlines about this additional S/U option, see the Enrolment Services page.

The Additional S/U Option is NOT available for Summer 2021 and the Fall 2021/Winter 2022 academic year.

First, some facts:

  1. S/U grades do not affect CGPA.
  2. To get S, an undergraduate student must earn a C or better in the course. That is a minimum mark of 55%. If that is earned, then the credits are awarded. If a grade less than C is earned, a grade of U is posted, and no credits are given.
  3. Here is how grades are calculated for undergraduate students:
    This information has been summarized from the full eCalendar policy.


Grade Points

Numerical Scale of Grades




85 – 100%




80 – 84%




75 – 79%




70 – 74%




65 – 69%




60 – 64%




55 – 59%




50 – 54%


F (Fail)


0 – 49%



When do you need to decide about using S/U?

  1. You can add the S/U option until the last day of course add/drop for the term the course is taken. You can remove the S/U option until about the 9th week of the term the course is taken. (It is the same day as the deadline to withdraw from a course without a refund.)
    Exact dates are at posted on the Important Dates website.
    For deadlines for the additional S/U option for 2020-2021, see the Enrolment Services page. Note that these additional S/U deadlines are after you receive your grades (this includes grades of NA), so do not rush your decision!
  2. For Summer courses, the deadline is the end of course add-drop for that session (May, June or July), which is usually the fourth lecture of the course.
  3. Decisions are final after the deadlines. We will not allow reversals of your decision after the deadlines. Think carefully and be sure of what you want. Talk to your advisor if you are not sure.

When should you consider using it?

  1. If your course grade is below your CGPA, then the S/U will prevent your CGPA from being lowered.
  2. If you earned a D grade on an elective, using the S/U will prevent you from getting any credit, but will also prevent your CGPA from being affected. If you need the credit more than you care about the CGPA change, do not use the S/U option. Note that this only applies to electives. You cannot count a grade of D for a program course.
  3. If the course is a prerequisite for a program or school that you are applying to, you should check with the admission people for that program or school to see how they view S/U grades. Normally we would caution against using S/U on a prerequisite for admission, but conditions have changed due to the pandemic.

When should you consider not using it?

  1. If your course grade is higher than your CGPA. Your CGPA will rise if you leave the grading as is. The S/U option will prevent your CGPA from being raised.
  2. If you earned a D grade and you feel that your CGPA is not as important as getting the credits. A D grade converts to a U and zero credits with the S/U option. You cannot count a grade of D for a program course, only for an elective. If this is a required course, you should talk to your program advisor.
  3. The course is a requirement for a school or program to which you are applying, and they insist on a regular grade. Always verify the requirements for any school or program to which you plan to apply, as these may change. Be especially careful about schools that recalculate S/U grades as a C or F.
  4. If you want to be considered for a scholarship or award (or renewal), you should check what the requirements are for graded credits. Many awards and scholarships require a minimum of 27 graded credits over Fall and Winter. S/U is not considered a grade for these purposes.

How can you select the S/U option?

You can add or remove the S/U option on Minerva. Be careful and verify what you have done afterwards.

For the additional S/U grading option for 2020-2021, see the Enrolment Services page for a link to their webform.


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