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COVID-19 Impact on Admissions

Does the University plan to hold on-campus classes next semester?

University of Richmond President Dr. Ronald Crutcher released a statement regarding Fall 2020 on April 29. “The University’s planning efforts at this point are both purposely expansive and squarely aimed at ensuring that our students will be able to earn a full year of academic credit. We are also committed to sustaining as many of the personal and residential hallmarks of a UR education as possible. Specifically:

  • We intend to complete a full academic year of on-campus instruction beginning in fall 2020. This may require adjustments to our operations and academic calendar.
  • To ensure safety and continuity, we are developing a multi-pronged approach to enhance our community’s capacity and resilience to manage COVID-19 challenges.
  • In order to align with government and public health guidance and/or mandates, we are working through scenarios that allow for flexibility and adjustments to teaching and campus life as needed.
  • Only if necessary will we consider remote learning. If we must pivot to this scenario, we will provide high-quality remote learning and the developmental, social, and career supports that help our students to grow and thrive at UR and beyond.”

You can read President Crutcher’s full statement, and get updates on the University’s COVID-19 plan, by visiting this page.

Will I be penalized for having pass/fail grades in the Spring 2020 term?

No. During these unprecedented times, we know that this semester will be different from others. We understand that these grades are not the same as pass/fail grades under normal circumstances, and will absolutely not penalize you for having them.

Will pass/fail grades affect my scholarship eligibility?

No. Your cumulative GPA will be considered on the same scale, reported in the same way, and used in the same manner for scholarship consideration. Cumulative GPAs also typically account for 100+ hours of academic credit and one semester should not have a major impact unless you have multiple failing grades. Pass grades are generally excluded from conversion.

I was counting on this semester to bring my GPA up, and now I can't.

We know this situation is particularly frustrating, whether that’s because you have no grades thanks to pass/fail classes or lower grades than you were hoping for because of the circumstances. If you fall into the latter group, we would recommend writing a short addendum explaining any special circumstances you may have experienced. Either way, grades are just one factor we use to evaluate applications, and this semester is an even smaller portion of that overall picture.

If I have pass/fail credits, Will I be compared with other prospective students who have traditional grades from this past semester?

We never view different applicants as a head-to-head competition. Instead, we evaluate each applicant as an individual, and look at all parts of what you’ve submitted. We won’t give other people a benefit because they have grades, nor will we penalize you for having pass/fail credits. You’ll be considered based on the applicant you are, not the one anyone else is.

I won't be applying for several more years. Will you remember what happened in 2020?

Absolutely! It’s hard to imagine us forgetting this Spring, and we will certainly be on the lookout for unusual grades (or pass/fail) from this semester. On top of that, the Law School Admissions Council will be including a note with any Law School Report that has a transcript from this term, reminding reviewers of the circumstances. Finally, most colleges will indicate this directly on your transcript.

My circumstances this semester were truly awful, and I want to be able to provide context for why I made pass/fail elections or for why my letter grades were not reflective of my abilities. How can I do that?

If you want to share your circumstances, the best way to do that is to submit an addendum along with your application. This doesn’t have to be a multi-page paper; it should be long enough to explain the situation and how it impacted you. Make it long enough to give us a clear picture of what occurred.

I had a great job or internship lined up for after graduation, and now I've been laid off.

Sadly, these are the sort of things that are out of everyone’s control in this situation. We know it will be harder for everyone to find a job or internship under these circumstances. If you’re in that situation, we will certainly not penalize you for it. The key, though, is making sure we are aware of the situation and what you’re doing with your time. This should either be reflected in your resume or separately in an addendum. There isn’t a “wrong” thing to do with this time, and no job or activity is looked down upon. Just make sure to avoid unexplained gaps or holes.

Will you treat LSAT-Flex scores differently than the "normal" LSAT?

No. They will be scored on the same scale, reported in the same way, and used in the same way by us, for both admissions and scholarship considerations. Those scores will be treated exactly the same.

Will you accept the June 2020 LSAT this year?

We will!