FAQ: What if I miss an exam?

The Exam Policy of the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences states that:

No make-ups are allowed for scheduled midterms or final exams without acceptable and verifiable medical (or equivalent compassionate) reason. Acceptable reasons might include hospital stays, serious illness, family emergencies (ie. accidents, illnesses, death) or similar circumstances. Normally, written documentation stating specific reasons and dates is required.  Arrangements for make-up exams, if allowed by the instructor,must be made as soon as possible.  The instructor establishes the date and format for make-up exams, which will usually differ from the original exam.

The most important thing with this policy statement is that it is up to the discretion of each individual course instructor whether or not to allow you to write a make-up exam, when it will occur, and what format it will take.

If you miss an exam, you should:

  • Notify the course instructor immediately – email, leave a phone message or see in person.
  • Provide the reason for missing the exam.  You may need to provide supporting documentation such as a physician’s note, police report, or death certificate.
  • Ask to have the opportunity to write a make-up exam.  Remember that it is up to your instructor’s discretion whether or not to grant you this opportunity.
  • If granted, your instructor may have you write a make-up exam that is scheduled by the Department.  This is to accommodate students who have missed exams and to better coordinate missed exams across various courses.  You instructor should provide you with the date, time and location of this make-up exam.  Don’t push your luck by telling your instructor that the make-up exam time isn’t good for you because you have other commitments.  Make sure you can attend.
  • Thank instructors for their time and understanding.

Note: Your instructor may require that you complete the Verification of Illness or Injury form in cases where you have missed an exam due to illness or medical emergency.