C. Regulations Governing Classes

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 available to departments/instructors on the portal (faculty dashboard).  At the end of the drop/add period, the instructor should review each roster for accuracy. 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. Colgate's policy regarding the observance of religious holidays during which a class or academic event may conflict is available in the Religious Life section of the Colgate website.


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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