Final Exams - Policies
Exams During the Last Two Weeks of Classes
During the 13th and 14th weeks of the semester tests of more than 30 minutes duration may not be given except where a course gives more than one hour test and a final. If there is no final examination in a course, the last hour test must be given earlier than the 13th week or at the hour scheduled for the final examination.
This rule means that a second or third or fourth hourly exam can be given during the last two weeks, as long as there is a final exam in addition in the scheduled exam time, but no other exams of longer than 30 minutes can be given during that period. A final exam cannot be disguised as an hourly exam and slipped into the last two weeks of classes.
Exams During the Final Exam Period
All final exams must be scheduled during the official Final Examination period as stated in the academic calendar except those approved by the Dean of Instruction of the academic unit.
Final exams are scheduled in this way they are because students have complicated course schedules which must be respected. Even if an instructor and class members seem to agree that they would all prefer to have a final exam in a time other than the scheduled one, students may be subjected to a "tyranny of the majority" in agreeing to such circumstances. For all SAS courses, the expectation is that final exam times will be the ones in the published schedule, and any requests for exceptions must come to the SAS Vice Dean for Undergraduate Education prior to the exam period. Exceptions will only be granted in extraordinary circumstances, and in all circumstances in which an exception is granted, any student who requests to take the exam in the originally published time period must be granted that request without prejudice.
For the purposes of setting due dates and determining exam conflicts, the SAS defines 'final exam' as any assignment that requires that the bulk of the work be done during the final exam period. Due dates for such final papers or take home exams must be set no earlier than the scheduled exam time for the course.
Exams for courses regularly scheduled in the evenings have priority in terms of space and time over group or conflict exams which might also be scheduled in the evening. Students enrolled in courses which are regularly scheduled in the evenings must take those exams at their scheduled times.
This rule is quite clear.
A student shall be said to have an exam conflict if that student has:
More than two (2) exams on one calendar day.
More than two (2) exams scheduled in consecutive periods. (E.g.: a student has exams scheduled for 4:00 - 7:00 PM and 8:00 - 11:00 PM on one day and 8:00 - 11:00 AM on the following day.)
Two exams scheduled for the same exam period.
Exam times can be checked online by visiting http://finalexams.rutgers.edu and logging in with your NetID and password.
Print out the list of your final exams from Final Exam Schedule web page and show it to your instructors. A dean's signature is no longer necessary to provide proof of exam conflict.
Students have the right to a non-punitive conflict exam at a different time in place of one of the original exams. In general, there have been no rules about which exam must provide the alternate time period, and it has been up to the student to talk to each instructor. There are advantages to flexibility in this matter, as for example the regular make-up exam for one of the conflicting courses may be scheduled at the time of one of the student's other exams, and the student can make the case with one of the other instructors about the need for accommodation. Also, larger courses will frequently have scheduled alternative times, while smaller courses may not.
Nevertheless, there are circumstances in which the student will have a legitimate conflict and yet none of the three instructors is willing to provide the alternatively timed conflict exam. In this case, the faculty Dean's office must step in. SAS has set up the following as standard practice for its course finals.
1. In the case of a student with a 3 exam conflict (3 final exams in one calendar day or in consecutive exam periods, as listed in the rules for final exams), if none of the instructors will initially agree to provide the student with a non-punitive exam at an acceptable alternative time, then the middle of the 3 exams will be the one for which such a conflict exam period must be found.
2. In the case of a 4 exam conflict it will be the second exam which must yield. If there were 5 consecutive exams, it would be the middle exam to yield.
This rule will apply when it is the result of conflicts because of the original scheduling of exams. If the conflict is the result of a Department or Instructor having rescheduled an exam outside of the ordinary time period given by the rules for scheduling final exams, then it is the responsibility of the rescheduling department or instructor to provide the alternate exam period.
Since SAS has no control over non-SAS courses, SAS views this rule as applying in any circumstance where the middle exam of the 3 (originally scheduled) exams in question is for an SAS course.
Further questions about final exam conflicts should be referred to the SAS Vice Dean for Undergraduate Education. Please note: if an instructor wants documentation for the student's exam conflict, the student must obtain that documentation from the College Dean's office, not from SAS.
Illness and Other Conflicts
Students having an illness requiring medical attention or conflict due to a religious observance, should contact the instructor of the course(s) involved for information regarding the arrangements for the make-up examination. The instructor may re-schedule the examination during the examination period and is responsible for rescheduling, proctoring, and grading make-up examinations to accommodate students who have conflicts.
As in the case of exam conflicts, these make-up examinations are to be non-punitive.