Current Students

Memo 52: Grading for DNP and Graduate Certificate Students

The DNP Coordinating Committee set a policy that DNP core courses are not eligible for S/NS grading.


The University of Washington, School of Nursing uses traditional grading options for its DNP courses:

  • Numerical grading. All grades from 2.7 to 4.0 are considered passing and can be counted toward your graduate degree. Grades below a 2.7 cannot be counted toward your graduate degree and are considered failure to pass a course.
  • Credit/no credit. Instructors will submit “credit” (CR) or passing for any student meeting course objectives or “no credit” (NC) or not passing.

Students may want to take a numerically-graded course for Satisfactory/Not-Satisfactory (S/NS) grading. However, some courses in the DNP program are not eligible for the S/NS option. Certification requirements often stipulate a numeric grade for some clinical courses. Students are encouraged to review certification requirements and to discuss S/NS grading with their faculty academic adviser when reviewing their program of study.

Getting permission for S/NS grading

Students must have the written permission of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Dr. Jennifer Sonney (, to take a course for S/NS grading unless the student has officially formed their Supervisory Committee. If the student has an approved Supervisory Committee, then the Chair of that committee should be contacted with a request for approval of S/NS grading in eligible courses. Students are advised to copy themselves and the Graduate Program Adviser on all such emailed requests. (No hard copies will be reviewed.)

If approval is granted, the student must elect the S/NS option either when registering or no later than the end of the seventh week of the quarter. See the UW Academic Calendar for up-to-date information on the deadline for registering for S/NS grading.

Please note that instructors have no way of knowing if a student has selected S/NS grading. Therefore, the instructor submits a numeric grade at the end of the course to the UW Registrar, who then converts grades of 2.7 and above to S and grades lower than 2.7 to NS.

Approved by DNPCC June 2017
Revised January 2018