Advances in pedagogy and variations in practice across fields have broadened
the range of commonly used end-of-semester evaluative exercises beyond
traditional sit-down final examinations. The rules and guidelines that follow
aim to protect students from unreasonable demands on their time while
simultaneously providing instructors the flexibility necessary to design
evaluative exercises appropriate to their courses.
The Academic Calendar sets aside after the last week of classes a four-day study
period followed by a period for final examinations. The Registrar’s Office
assigns to every course a specific day and time during final-examination period
at which time the course’s final exam, if any, will take place. The designated
final-exam days and times are scheduled carefully to minimize conflicts and
spread students’ workloads as evenly as possible over the exam period.
It is university policy to discourage more than two examinations for a student in
one twenty-four hour time period. Members of the faculty are urged to grant
student requests for a make-up examination, particularly if their course is the
largest of the three involved and thus has the strongest likelihood of offering a
makeup for other valid reasons, e.g. a student’s illness or a death in a student’s
Legislation of the University Faculty governing study period and final
examinations and other end-of-semester exercises is as follows:
1. No final examinations may be given at a time other than the time appearing on
the official examination schedule promulgated by the Registrar’s Office without
prior written permission of the dean of the faculty.
2. No permission will be given, for any reason, to schedule final examinations
during the last week of classes or the study period preceding final examinations.
3. Permission will be given by the dean of the faculty to reschedule examinations
during the examination period itself if requested in writing by the faculty
member, but only on condition that a comparable examination also be given for
students who wish to take it at the time the examination was originally
scheduled. The faculty member requesting such a change will be responsible for
making appropriate arrangements for rooms or other facilities in which to give
4. The final due date for a take-home final examination can be no earlier than the
date appearing on the official examination schedule promulgated by the
Registrar’s Office without prior written permission of the dean of the faculty.
5. A course that requires a culminating end-of-semester exercise (for example, a
paper, project report, final critique, oral presentation, or conference) in lieu of or
in addition to a traditional final examination must advertise at the beginning of
the semester the nature of the exercise.
6. A course that requires a culminating end-of-semester exercise and does not
offer a final examination must allow students at least until the date appearing on
the official examination schedule promulgated by the Registrar’s Office to
complete submission of materials associated with the culminating exercise. (For
example, a student making a presentation during the last week of classes or
during study period will have at least until the scheduled final-exam date to
submit a final write-up or equivalent.)