January 2017


To:      All Faculty

From: Amy Holzapfel, Chair, Calendar and Schedule Committee

            Amy.S.Holzapfel@williams.edu, x47079

Re:      Division of the Day and Evening Exams


Division of the Day

In order to protect the wealth and diversity of activities available to students at Williams—first academics, but also athletics, the arts, cultural events, volunteer work, evening speakers, and evening exams—the College has reserved the hours of 8 AM to 4 PM Monday through Friday and 7 to 9:40 PM Monday evening for academic courses. All required class meetings and curricular activities, including tutorial meetings should be scheduled during these hours. Unless meeting in the Monday evening time slot, all classes, including labs, should conclude by the end of the academic day, 4:00 pm.  All other activities, including practices and rehearsals, should be scheduled outside of that time. As a rule, athletic practices begin at 4:15.


Exceptions to Division of the Day

The Calendar and Schedule Committee (CSC) must approve all exceptions to Division of the Day. Course instructors who plan an academic activity that falls outside of Division of the Day (evening exam, film screenings, field trips) must petition the Calendar and Scheduling Committee for approval (Amy.S.Holzapfel@williams.edu; please also cc: the Registrar, Barb Casey  (bcasey@williams.edu).


Approvals are posted at (www.williams.edu/Registrar/exams/eveningexams.html).


Evening Exams: Courses may hold evening examinations (except on Monday evening) with the approval of the CSC.  One class must be cancelled for each evening exam. In cases where conflicts occur between requested times for evening exams in different courses, or where the student enrollment for simultaneously scheduled exams overlaps significantly, the Chair of CSC will ask the relevant course instructors to try to work it out between themselves.

·       Before scheduling an evening exam time, please check the schedule of already-approved evening exams (www.williams.edu/Registrar/exams/eveningexams.html), and please use the form on that page to submit your request.   

·       Exam times must be offered one ending by 7:45 p.m. to accommodate 8 p.m. rehearsals and a later one starting no earlier than 7:15 p.m. to accommodate athletics.

·       Alternative arrangements must be made for students with legitimate conflicts.

·       Exam rooms can be reserved through the online room scheduling system roomscheduler.williams.edu. If you have difficulty, please contact the Office of Student Life (https://roomscheduler.williams.edu/virtualems/).

·       Please include evening exam dates in the course syllabus, and announce all required evening exam dates in class before the end of drop/add period, so that students are aware of this requirement.

·       Single-section courses may offer evening exams under the above conditions, but the course instructor should make a good faith effort to avoid conflicts with other scheduled evening exams.



Class field trips (one per course) do not require approval by the CSC, but faculty should make a good-faith effort to schedule trips to minimize conflicts with students’ other academic and extracurricular commitments.

·       Instructors planning a course field trip must notify the CSC before the start of classes.

·       Please list the trip and the date on the course syllabus, and advise students to check with other instructors during the first week about missing class for the trip.

·       Although you do not need approval from the CSC for one field trip per course, you do need approval for more than one; please provide the CSC Chair with the name of the course, the place of the field trip, and the date of any field trip taken, including the date and time of any field trip and the name of the course, so that we can list it.


Class meetings outside regular hours

·       All class meetings should be scheduled during the regular class hours described above.

·       Exceptions must be approved by the CSC. Course instructors should make a good faith effort to assure that enrolled students can attend without conflict.


Class events outside regular hours: Some important class activities, such as attendance at performances or evening lectures, cannot be scheduled during regular class hours.

·       Course instructors who wish to make attendance at specific events mandatory—with no flexibility in allowing students to avoid conflicts with other commitments—must seek approval from the CSC.

·       The CSC does not need to approve these events when attendance at an event is optional (i.e., missing a particular event does not affect a student’s grade), or when students may choose among several evenings or several events.

·       Please list optional or required dates for class meetings outside of regular hours on the course syllabus and announce those dates in class before the end of drop/add period so that students are aware of course requirements.


Athletic conflicts during regular hours: As noted above, all extra-curricular activities including athletic practices and suiting up should be scheduled outside of regular class hours.

·       Athletic competitions involve the coordination of schedules with other schools, and travel to competitions may conflict with Division of the Day guidelines. Such potential conflicts are monitored by the Athletics Committee, and a list can be found online (http://sites.williams.edu/athletics-committee/potential-conflicts/).

·       Course instructors should expect students to consult with them at least a week before missing classes.

·       Concerns over athletic conflicts should be addressed to the Athletics Committee.


A Final Note:

It is the sole discretion of the individual instructor to excuse or not excuse absences due to athletics (e.g., games), academics (e.g., field trips in other classes), or any other type of conflict. Faculty should include their attendance policy in writing in the course syllabus and to announce that policy in class before the end of drop/add period, so that students are aware of course requirements. Concerns over any type of conflicts should be addressed to the CSC.