The University of Rhode Island has laid out rights for its students that should be honored by professors regarding final exam schedules.
The final exam rights for every student at URI is outlined in the University Manual. The rights are designed to ensure that students are treated fairly.
There are five final exam rights in total. First, there are no mandatory classes on reading days. Reading days are specific days between the final day of classes and the first day of final exams. During those days, students are allowed to study on their own, in groups, with a counselor or in optional review sessions.
Second, students can only take two final exams in one day. If you have three exams scheduled on one day, you are allowed to reschedule an exam with the professor. In the event that does not work, the third exam on that day must allow for an alternative arrangement.
The third right is only one exam will be scheduled each period. This means that if two exams are scheduled in the same hour, you can report the problem to your instructor who will report the issue to a scheduling officer. The second exam on that day will most likely be the one rescheduled.
Fourth, no exam will go beyond three hours unless it has been agreed upon by the students and the instructor within that course.
Fifth, all exams will take place during its allotted time slot. This means take-home exams must be accepted for full credit until the courses allotted final exam time slot. Also, no final exam can be administered five days or less before the allotted time slot.
John Morabito, Student Senate academic chair, has a responsibility to inform students as much as he possibly can in terms of their academic requirements and needs, including our final exam rights.
Morabito set up booths in the Memorial Union that were designed to inform students of their rights during finals week. In addition, he also set up a booth in the library, specifically on Dec. 4 and Dec. 5., educating as many students as possible on the rights they have.
“I feel, as a student, the most that I can [do] is publicize [our rights] as much as possible using my committee,” Morabito said. “That’s the first step.”
This is normally the time of year where Morabito expects the most complaints from students. He believes a good portion of students probably don’t know is that they can make a complaint against a specific teacher if they feel their final exam rights aren’t being honored.
“There’s always an upsurge around finals season of academic concerns and complaints,” Morabito said. “It’s not to the point where it’s happening every day but that also might because students don’t necessarily know that they can complain. In a way, I’m hoping for more complaints because that means that I know that the students are more aware that they have these rights.”
Overall, Morabito wants students to keep themselves as educated as possible. “Educate yourself if you can,” Morabito said. “If you have free time and you’re interested in a small aspect of the University Manual, read it over. It may show you something that you may not necessarily know.”
He also encourages students to have open conversations about their rights and if they are properly represented.
“Have an open conversation,” Morabito said. “If you hear a weird rule, double check, make sure it’s true and tell a friend. The more informed we are as a student body, the more we gain.”
All complaints can be made on the Student Senate website. In addition, you can email John Morabito at firstname.lastname@example.org or stop by at the Student Senate office to voice your concerns.