The Mid-Semester date is Thursday, March 6. This is the deadline to drop a class
with a "W" or elect to take a course Pass/Fail. Before you decide to do
either, here are some things you need to know:
Dropping with a W isn't a bad thing. It will not count against you
should you decide to apply for/declare a major (as long as you have
completed all the prerequisites, predictor courses, and any other
requirements). Dropping a course at this point means a "W" will always
remain on your transcript, but you will not receive a grade for that
class, so the class will not affect your GPA. The W just indicates that
you dropped a course after the Add/Drop deadline. You should consider
withdrawing from a course with a "W" if you know that you are not doing
well in it and there is little chance you can remedy that, especially if
your intended major expects a strong cumulative GPA or specific grade
in that class. Be careful though that you are not going below 12 credits
(full-time) in doing so, as doing so could have an effect on your
financial aid, insurance, etc.
There is actual paperwork required to withdraw from a course (you can't
do it on SPIRE) and you will need your instructor's signature. So, don't
wait until the day of the deadline to make your decision!
The mid-semester date is also your last chance to change a class to
Pass/Fail grading. Rather than dropping a course from your schedule you
can elect to remain in the class, but instead of getting a letter grade,
your transcript will just indicate a P (if you pass) or an F (if you
fail). A P will not affect your GPA, but an F will. If you're
considering the P/F grading option, be careful! There are many things to
consider before making this choice, including the fact that courses
taken P/F may not count toward Gen Eds, major reqs, or predictor
courses. Just like dropping with a W, electing to take a class P/F
requires paperwork (but not an instructor's signature).
You should see your advisor soon if you're considering either taking a W
or changing a course to P/F. You can pick up the necessary paperwork in
Undergraduate Advising (if you're Undeclared) or the Registrar's Office
in 213 Whitmore.