By Will Underhill
Finals begin Dec. 10. The college requires that each course impose a comprehensive final not exceeding 2 1/2 hours in length, according to the 2007-08 college bulletin.
The format and weight of the final varies from classroom to classroom.
Most instructors are responsible for writing their own finals. The departments leave the decisions of what content and the format of the exam up to the instructor.
It also is up to the instructor to determine how much the final exam counts toward a student’s final grade.
“The final exam counts more or less 30 percent of the final grade, but that is up to the instructor. There is no set department policy on the weight of the final,” said Dr. Said Fariabi, chair of mathematics and computer science department.
The exception to this is what are called departmental finals. Departmental finals are exams written by the entire department and distributed by all the instructors to their individual classes. For instance, all students taking SPAN 1300, Beginning Conversational Spanish 1, take the same final exam regardless of who the instructor is.
However, smaller foreign languages classes for which there is only one instructor and English-as-a- second-language classes do not have departmental finals, department Chair Anna Budzinski said.
Completed finals are kept on file for one year, Bill Richardson, interim dean of arts and sciences, said.
Students absent from a final exam without permission will receive a failing grade. If a student is unable to take the exam at the designated time, the student must ask the instructor for permission to postpone the exam.
This will result in an incomplete grade and the student will have 120 calendar days from the end of the semester to take the exam before the grade automatically becomes an F, according to the bulletin.