Generalized classifier neural network introduced as a kind of radial basis function neural network, uses gradient descent based optimized smoothing parameter value to provide efficient classification. However, optimization consumes quite a long time and may cause a drawback. In this work, one pass learning for generalized classifier neural network is proposed to overcome this disadvantage. Proposed method utilizes standard deviation of each class to calculate corresponding smoothing parameter. Since different datasets may have different standard deviations and data distributions, proposed method tries to handle these differences by defining two functions for smoothing parameter calculation. Thresholding is applied to determine which function will be used. One of these functions is defined for datasets having different range of values. It provides balanced smoothing parameters for these datasets through logarithmic function and changing the operation range to lower boundary. On the other hand, the other function calculates smoothing parameter value for classes having standard deviation smaller than the threshold value. Proposed method is tested on 14 datasets and performance of one pass learning generalized classifier neural network is compared with that of probabilistic neural network, radial basis function neural network, extreme learning machines, and standard and logarithmic learning generalized classifier neural network in MATLAB environment. One pass learning generalized classifier neural network provides more than a thousand times faster classification than standard and logarithmic generalized classifier neural network. Due to its classification accuracy and speed, one pass generalized classifier neural network can be considered as an efficient alternative to probabilistic neural network. Test results show that proposed method overcomes computational drawback of generalized classifier neural network and may increase the classification performance. (C) 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.