Grade Forgiveness Policy

What it is:

Grade Forgiveness is a policy unique to OSU where a student can petition to repeat a course in which they have previously earned credit.

  • This policy may or may not be honored at other institutions if a student moves or apply to graduate studies (even at OSU).
  • All SHRS majors honor Grade Forgiveness.

Undergraduate students may petition to repeat a course using Grade Forgiveness. If the petition is approved, after completing the course the second time, the original course credit and grade will be excluded from the calculation of the student’s GPA, but will remain on the student’s official transcript.

Process for using it:

The petition form requesting permission to apply this rule is submitted to your advising office by the 10th Friday of the semester or summer term or the 1st Friday for a May Session in which the repeated course is taken.

  • The petition is located on the Registrar’s website under forms.
  • Approved petitions will be held and processed after the 11th week of the term.

In contrast to OSU’s prior “Freshman Forgiveness” policy, the new Grade Forgiveness policy does not require that the original course be completed during the student’s first year, nor that the retaken course be completed during the second year.  The original course may be taken at any time during the student’s enrollment and students may retake the course at any time prior to graduation.  SHRS students should retake prerequisite courses prior to applying to their majors.  The forgiven course must be retaken at Ohio State.  


This rule may be applied to a maximum of 3 courses (regardless of credit hours).

The 2nd grade is permanent.

  • If a student earns a lower grade for the 2nd attempt, the 2nd grade counts, not the higher grade.
    • In cases where a student chooses to withdraw from the course the 2nd time they enroll, the student will be able to apply for Grade Forgiveness if they take the course again after their withdrawal attempt.
    • If you earn an E in place of a D or D+, you will lose credit for the course.
  • If you retake the course a third time, then the third grade is averaged into your GPA just as any other grade for any other course would be
    • Please note that if you are considering taking a course for a 3rd time you should speak with your advisor to identify whether this is a good idea, if there is an alternate course you can take in its place, why you are struggling, and perhaps find tutoring resources.

Special Notes:

If you are retaking a pre-requisite course for your major, you should schedule that course to be re-taken as soon as possible to ensure that your new grade is considered in your application.

If you used your ACT score to move ahead in math:

  • You will not be able to Grade Forgive the course.
  • You will not be able to retake the math course immediately- you will be required to restart your math sequence from the course you placed into using your Math Placement Exam score.

Repeating a course that is a sequence:

  • Students repeating a course in a sequence or a course that is a prerequisite to another course should complete the repetition before advancing to the next course. This ensures students understand the foundational material prior to moving on and improves their chances of doing well in the next course.

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