Provost's Office Email to Faculty (October 19)

Dear Colleagues,

In accord with the president's announcement on classes and finals following the Thanksgiving break, we wanted to remind everyone of some important dates and considerations that should be shared with your students. Please be sure to communicate to your students that classes and exams will occur as scheduled unless notified otherwise via a University-level announcement.

All final grades must be submitted before 2 p.m., Monday, December 14th. Grade rosters will be made available on November 30th for full-semester classes. Furthermore, it is essential to note that per the university’s drop policy, students who dropped a class before the drop deadline (November 6th) automatically will receive a grade of “W.” Those who did not drop a class by this deadline must receive a grade from their instructor and “W” is not an appropriate option. November 6th is also when students may opt for the P/NP grade and audits for full-semester classes.

Per the published schedule for final examinations, the final examination period is to be used either to administer final examinations or for such other course-terminating activities as may be appropriate. Thus, it is the expectation that if a final examination is given, it will occur per the published schedule. This applies to both courses that began as online and transitioned to an alternative delivery system due to COVID-19.

Given some of the challenges in using special software and limited lab space on campus, faculty are encouraged to give additional time specifically for online classes to complete a final exam (up to 24 hours), when applicable, for the fall 2020 semester. It is expected that seated courses will follow the published schedule for finals week (please check with Department Head on any class location changes for final exams). While the structure of alternative terminating activities is at the faculty's discretion, Department Heads must be made aware of any changes due to the transition to an alternative delivery system. The oversight of final examinations is the faculty's responsibility, regardless of the type of format delivery.

The university provides Respondus Lockdown Browser and Monitor for online exam proctoring; however, please keep in mind that your students may not have reliable access to the Internet or use Chromebooks that are not compatible with the lockdown browser. Information and resources for using Respondus Lockdown Browser and Monitor can be found on the Teaching through Alternative Methods website. Since students may also be sharing access to computers or in different time zones, again, we encourage faculty to offer flexibility in the length of time available to students to access the final exam for online courses. If you have questions about creating exams in Blackboard, the Respondus Lockdown Browser, or wish to discuss using alternative assessments, please contact the Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning at Students who have questions about the nature of their final exams will be directed to speak with you about the plan (Final Exam Schedule).

We hope each of you have a healthy and productive second half of the fall semester. We greatly appreciate everything you do for our students and keep us posted about how we might support you.

Take care,

Chris Craig
Deputy Provost