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  • C. Regulations Governing Classes
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1. First Class Meeting and Statement of Course Requirements On the first day of the term instructors should distribute course syllabi and reading lists to their classes and make any necessary corrections to their class lists (corrections which are necessary because of dropping and/or adding of the course by students).

Syllabi should state clearly requirements for the course, including:

  • Policy on class attendance (if any).1
  • A description, including scheduled times when possible, of any additional out of class activities, e.g., films, lectures, class trips, that will be required.
  • A description of requirements including such matters as reading assignments and the number and nature of all written and oral examinations, term papers, quizzes, projects, and any other work that will be required of the student.2 Instructors are encouraged to include in the syllabus the due dates for assignments and examinations, especially exams given outside of the regular class meeting time.
  • A description of the basis for grading in the course including the weights given to course requirements and class participation.

The course syllabus is a plan rather than a fixed contract and faculty may adjust syllabi as needed during the course of a semester. However, because students do rely on syllabi in planning their own work schedules, faculty should take care in making sure that any adjustments to course requirements or changes in the schedule of required work do not add unreasonably to students’ expected workloads. Faculty should also give appropriate advance notice of changes and make reasonable accommodations for students who have legitimate time conflicts because of any changes in the schedule of activities beyond the normal dates and times of the class.


2. Official Class Lists Class lists are prepared by the registrar and distributed to department chairs at the beginning of the registration and drop/add process. Departments and instructors usually record drops and adds on the class list for each course. At the end of the drop/add period, the instructor should review for accuracy the class list available in the portal (faculty dashboard). The registrar’s office should be notified immediately of any discrepancies. Students who are the subject of any necessary corrections should be asked by the instructor to check with the registrar to insure that they are accurately recorded in the official records for the course. Corrected lists will be used by the registrar to send official final class lists for the recording of final grades at the end of the term.


3. Auditing a Course Auditing a course is an informal matter between the student and the instructor. No record of an audit should be made on the official class lists, and no record of an audit will be made by the Registrar on student transcripts. Permission to audit a course is at the discretion of the individual instructor.


4. Absence of the Instructor From Class Faculty members are expected to meet their classes promptly at the scheduled times. In case of illness or other emergency which requires that a class be canceled, the department chair should be informed and the department administrative assistant asked to post a notice of the cancellation in the classroom. In the event of a necessary absence from the campus on professional business, or because of an emergency or prolonged illness which requires that a faculty member be absent from campus for an extended period, the department chair should be notified as soon as possible and arrangements made for the classes to be conducted by a colleague or for make-up classes to be arranged by the instructor.


5. Observance of Religious Holidays Colgate is committed to providing a welcoming and supportive environment for students from all cultural and religious backgrounds. All members of the community should ensure that students not suffer adverse consequences for practicing their religions.  

In order that no student at Colgate incur academic penalty because of his or her conscientious observance of a major religious holiday, it is important that faculty members follow a uniform policy regarding such observance. Exams should not be scheduled, and papers should not become due, on any major religious holiday or on the subsequent day. In addition, every effort will be made not to schedule major college events on these days.  

For scheduling purposes involving the student body, Colgate recognizes as major religious holidays the following: Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, the first two days of Passover, Good Friday, Easter, and the first days of Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha. This is not intended to be an exhaustive list, but rather it is demographically representative of the current student body. However, Colgate embraces our increasingly diverse and multicultural campus community, and recognizes that some religious holidays observed by students are not included in the list above. With respect to such holidays, students are entitled to full and equal accommodation. Students whose conscientious religious observance requires that they observe holidays other than those specified should inform their instructors well in advance. In such cases, each instructor and student shall arrange an accommodation consistent with the policy described above (including rescheduling exams or assignments, class absences, and so on).  

Please note that Hindu, Muslim, and Jewish holidays begin on the preceding evening. Jewish holidays require the cessation of work for the duration of the festival, and not simply during the time when services are held. Students observing Ramadan may need accommodation for their fasting arrangements. Please consult the Office of the Chaplains for a detailed calendar of religious holidays.




1 There is no University-wide policy concerning class attendance. Faculty members, however, are requested to report to the administrative adviser any student whose continued absence from class, usually three consecutive absences, might give cause for concern for the student’s welfare. (See the Catalogue section on Class Attendance regarding resolution of scheduling conflicts and health-related absences.)

2 Policies governing final examinations are described in Section IV.D.4.


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