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A Freshman’s Guide to Covered Grades

Editor’s note: A throwback to a better time. RIP covered grades.

Covered grades are a unique experience where your first semester at Hopkins (along with several other schools) is pass-fail. Dean’s List is still applicable, but other than that, the only person who gets to see your uncovered grades is you (and, if you want, your parents). Based on my experience (and the collective experience of many of my peers), here’s your guide to covered grades.

1. Study harder than you’ve ever studied before, because otherwise you will fail.

2. Seriously. You think you’re ready for Hopkins, and you might be, but if you don’t study this semester, next semester is going to SLAM you.

3. However, when asked how long you spent on x paper/homework/test, casually infer that you have more important things to do than study under covered grades.

4. Despite covered grades, spend an abnormal amount of time in Brody “studying”

5. Use the phrase “covered grades” interchangeably with “yolo”

6. When you get a bad grade (which you will), console yourself with the fact that it’s covered grades.

7. When you get a good grade, remember that under unfortunately it doesn’t matter at all.

8. When your relatives scoff at “covered grades” (and they will), explain to them that college is harder than it used to be and use the phrase “adjustment period” liberally.

9. Be sure to tell incoming freshmen and prospective students that this is the last year of covered grades (although this is probably not true and ultimately just a way of making your class feel special).

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