Academic Policies Guide

Examinations

Contents

Anonymity
Exam Period
Software and Exam Types
Exam4 Computer Readiness—Practice Exam
Permitted and Prohibited Materials and Equipment
Typographical Errors
Server Issues and Other Technological Support Needs
Consequences of Improper Conduct
Un-excused Absences and Lateness
Illness
Accommodations and Accessibility
Postponements
Exams in Absentia
Exam Review

Anonymity

Examinations at the NYU School of Law are taken on an anonymous basis unless otherwise specifically authorized by the Executive Committee. Each student will be assigned an examination number for each semester.  This number must be noted by the student on each examination. Under no circumstances should a student include his/her name or student ID number on the examination or answer. An exam answer will be rejected if it identifies a student other than by examination number. In order to maintain anonymity, students should not discuss personal exam requests with faculty. Instead, submit a ticket to the Exam Team.

Exam Period

The regular exam period for each semester is included in each year’s academic calendar, most commonly falling in December for the Fall semester, May for the Spring semester, and August for the Summer semester. Please refer to the Law Exams website for the most current information on exam dates and deadlines. Final exams for classes ending four or more weeks before the semester’s last day of classes will be scheduled within one week of the final meeting of the class.

Software and Exam Types

All Law School exams are administered on Exam4 software using one of three exam types to be specified in completion of the course description and not to be changed after the first meeting of any class (except by direction of the dean to address emergent circumstances):

1. Fixed Time and Location (In-Class) Proctored Exam

  • Students must take the exam in Law classroom at a specific time and date.
  • Human proctors monitor classroom conditions and announce start and end times.
  • The instructor may choose to enable the Exam4 remote proctor, which will require students to verify their identity and will capture images of students and their computer screens throughout the exam.
  • Access to other programs and the Internet during exam will be determined by faculty at the beginning of the semester. Options include:
    • Closed Computer (no access to Internet content or access to hard drive except for Exam4 software).
    • Open Computer + Closed Network (access to all files and programs available on computer, but no access to Internet content).
    • Open Computer + Open Network (Internet access plus access to all files and programs on computer).
  • Students will be provided with printed exam questions by proctors in the
    classroom.
  • Students type directly into Exam4 software; copy-paste function is not
    available between other software and Exam4.
  • Exam4 automatically saves exam answers approximately every 2 minutes.

Note that the software settings will not prevent students from accessing the internet or hard drive during a computer-proctored exam even if the exam rules prohibit students from doing so. The Exam4 remote proctor will, however, monitor Internet and hard drive access throughout an exam to ensure compliance with faculty instructions about permitted materials.

2. Fixed-Time Flexible Location Computer-Proctored Exam

  • Students must take the exam at a specified time but can take it at any available location with consistently reliable Internet access; there need be no human proctor assigned to the location.
  • Students are proctored by the Exam4 remote proctor, which will require students to verify their identity and will capture images of students and their computer screens throughout the exam.
  • Access to other programs and the Internet during exam will be determined by faculty at the beginning of the semester. Options include:
    • Closed Computer (no access to Internet content or access to hard drive except for Exam4 software).
    • Open Computer + Closed Network (access to all files and programs available on computer, but no access to Internet content).
    • Open Computer + Open Network (Internet access plus access to all files and programs on computer).
  • Students can view exam questions on multiple screens if they wish but cannot print the questions.
  • Students type directly into Exam4 software; copy-paste function is not available between other software and Exam4. Exam4 automatically saves exam answers approximately every 2 minutes.

Note that the software settings will not prevent students from accessing the internet or hard drive during a computer-proctored exam even if the exam rules prohibit students from doing so. The Exam4 remote proctor will, however, monitor Internet and hard drive access throughout an exam to ensure compliance with faculty instructions about permitted materials.

3. Unproctored Exam

  • Students may take the exam at any time permitted for the exam (Full Period or Fixed Schedule described below) and may take the exam at any location with consistently reliable Internet access.
  • Except that Exam4 will record times the exam is taken and completed, students are not proctored in any way for compliance with any rule.
  • Exam4 software permits access to the Internet and the hard drive (Open Computer and Open Network) during the exam).
  • Students may view, download, and print exam questions as they wish.
  • Students type directly into Exam4 software, but copy-paste function is available between Exam4 and other software.
  • Exam4 automatically saves exam answers approximately every 2 minutes.

Unproctored exams are designated as either full-period or fixed-scheduled exams:

  • Full-Period Unproctored exams will be available to students in Exam4 no later than the first day of the examination period, in which case the latest date and time for submitting answers to the examination will be11:59 p.m. on the last day of the examination period.
  • Fixed-scheduled Unproctored exams must be taken on the scheduled day for each exam. A fixed-scheduled exam will not last longer than 8 hours. There is no window for fixed-scheduled take-home exams; the exact times noted apply.

Exam4 Computer Readiness – Practice Exam

Each semester, examining students are required to complete a Practice Exam that serves as a pretest verification to ensure that their equipment is compatible with Exam4 hardware and operating system requirements. Failure to complete the Practice Exam will result in the following consequences:

  • Low priority for technical support during an exam with no time-recovery for computer malfunctions.
  • No external devices permitted during exams (with the exception of a keyboard, mouse, and single monitor on a desktop computer used during an unproctored exam).

Permitted and Prohibited Materials and Equipment

Students are permitted to have in their possession in the examination room only materials authorized by the instructor in the written exam instructions. Possession of any other materials relating to the course is not permitted. The mere possession of impermissible materials in the exam room may result in a failing grade for cheating and additional sanctions regardless of whether a student has referred to the materials during the exam. Materials may not be shared during the examination.

Unless the instructor has affirmatively indicated otherwise, students are permitted to bring foreign language dictionaries and calculators into in-class examinations.

Proctored exams taken outside of rooms assigned by the Law School for the purpose of exam administration must be taken alone with no one else in the room. For exams without a fixed location, Exam4 will remotely proctor for compliance with this rule.

External Devices and Supplemental Hardware

Students enrolled in Law classes must meet the Laptop Requirement and should be prepared to use the system satisfying that requirement for their exams.

No recording devices are allowed in the examination room. Cell phones must be turned off during exams. The use of headphones and earphones (other than basic earplugs) is prohibited. Subject to completion of a Practice Exam (that serves as an Exam4 pretest verification), certain external devices and supplemental hardware will be permitted for use during exams as follows:

  • Fixed Time and Location (In-Class) Exams: for a qualified laptop (no desktops, of course), a mouse or other pointing device may be used, as may a small external hard drive (such as a USB key) or an external keyboard, but no external monitor or any other peripheral or personal communication or productivity device unless expressly allowed. Nothing is permitted that will interfere with the exam experience of another student.
  • Fixed Time Flexible Location Computer-Proctored Exams: for a qualified laptop or desktop, a mouse or other pointing device may be used as may other peripherals such as an external keyboard or monitors, provided that no external device interferes with the security features of a proctored exam (a determination to be made in conjunction with an Exam4 pretest verification).
  • Unproctored Exams: for a qualified laptop or desktop, a mouse or other pointing device may be used as may other peripherals such as an external keyboard or external monitors.

Typographical Errors

If you discover a typographical (or other) error in your exam question, you should make an assumption as to the meaning of the question, state the assumption in your answer, and continue working.

Server Issues and Other Technology Support Needs

In the event of a server problem, the time allotted for completion of the exam will run from the time at which the exam is successfully downloaded or ten minutes after ITS confirms that the problem is resolved, whichever is earlier. Students who experience technical problems and are unable to download their exam questions should submit a ticket to the Exam Team detailing the time and specifics of the problem. Students should not distribute copies of the exam questions to classmates, even in the event of a server problem.

Students examining in a classroom experiencing such an issue during the exam should quietly alert the classroom proctor.

Consequences of Improper Conduct

Improper conduct in connection with an examination may result in a failing grade for cheating and other sanctions. Communicating with another student during an exam may result in a failing grade for cheating and other sanctions regardless of whether the communication is about the exam. When present, human proctors will at a minimum warn those suspected of improper conduct, but sanctions may apply at the first instance of improper conduct regardless of whether there has been any warning. All students must stop typing when instructed to stop by a proctor. Misconduct will be reported to the faculty member involved, to the Vice Dean, or both.

Un-excused Absences and Lateness

An unexcused absence from an examination may result in a failing grade. If you have an inquiry concerning an absence, please submit a ticket a ticket to the Exam Team.

A student who arrives up to 15 minutes late for an exam that is less than three hours or up to 30 minutes late for an exam that is three hours or more, may take the examination as scheduled but will not receive any additional time to complete the exam. A student who begins an examination later than the times identified above, or who fails to appear for it, may be permitted to take the examination at the discretion of the Vice Dean (or the Vice Dean’s designee) at such time and under such conditions or penalties as the school administration determines.

Illness

A student who is ill and feels that they will not be able to complete the examination should not begin the examination and should immediately report such illness to the proctor if one is present or to the Exam Team by submitting a ticket, which will be fielded by the Office of Student Affairs.

A student who becomes ill during the examination should immediately report such illness to the proctor if one is present or to the Exam Team by submitting a ticket and wait for further instructions. (The student may have to wait until the next time the examination for that course is offered to take the examination.)

Accommodations and Accessibility

The Law School provides an array of services for students with disabilities through the NYU Moses Center for Student Accessibility. General services provided include testing accommodations, adaptive computer equipment, sign language interpreters, and readers. Any student who needs accommodation must submit documentation to the Moses Center; more information is available on the Law Exams webpage.

In order to preserve anonymity in grading, students should not discuss accommodations with the instructor in a course.

Postponements

Students who wish to be excused from one or more scheduled examinations because of illness, religious observance, or other circumstances of unusual personal hardship should make an appropriate request before the administration of the exam. An unexcused failure to take an examination will result in an automatic “FAB” grade for the course. When a satisfactory explanation for absence has been submitted to the Vice Dean, an “EXC” may be temporarily recorded and will be replaced by the regular course grade earned in the make-up examination. In seminars, a grade is submitted for each student at the conclusion of the semester. A grade of “IP” may be recorded for students who have made prior arrangements with the instructor to complete the assigned work at a later date. Such a grade must be removed before the student’s graduation. Absent special permission by the Executive Committee, which is seldom granted and only for extraordinary and unexpected circumstances, alterations in the examination schedule for individual students may be made only in accordance with the published guidelines provided below, and only by the Office of Academic Services (FH 400); an individual faculty member does not have the authority to reschedule an exam.

1. The policy of NYU School of Law is that all students must take examinations at the scheduled time unless there exist compelling circumstances, as defined below:

  • A student who is scheduled for two exams on the same day: the exam given at the later time will be postponed to the morning of the first day on which the student does not have a scheduled examination and that does not create a need for further postponement.
  • A student who has an evening exam (starting at 6:00 pm) followed by a morning exam: the morning exam will be postponed to the afternoon of the same day as long as that does not create a need for further postponement.
  • A student with an eight-hour fixed-scheduled exam who has an examination scheduled for the following day may postpone the second exam to the morning of the first day that does not create a need for further postponement.
  • A student with a fixed-scheduled exam that is six hours to less than eight hours who has an examination scheduled for the following morning may postpone the morning exam to the afternoon of the same day as long as that does not create a need for further postponement.
  • A student who has three exams on consecutive days with course credits totaling 11 credits or greater may postpone one exam of their choice to the fourth day. A student who has four exams on consecutive days within one calendar week may postpone one exam of their choice to the next available day in the following week (Monday through Friday).

2. An examination will be rescheduled, subject to approval of the Vice Dean in the following circumstances:

  • Where illness or pregnancy of the student prevents a student from taking an exam, upon a physician’s written certification to the Vice Dean’s office. Once an exam is completed and handed in, a grade for that exam must be tabulated. A student who becomes ill during an examination and is unable to complete it must take a new examination. The student must indicate to the proctor or to the Exam Team by submitting a ticket that they are handing in an incomplete exam due to illness and will be referred to the appropriate administrative office. The student may have to wait until the next time an examination for that course is offered to take the examination.
  • Where a member of a student’s family or their “significant other” has died, and the student is attending the funeral or grieving.
  • Where a Sabbath or other religious observance precludes a student from taking an examination.
  • Where a student is attending the birth of their child.

3. An examination will be rescheduled, with the prior approval of the Executive Committee, in the following circumstances:

  • Where a student is attending the wedding or graduation ceremony of a member of a student’s immediate family.
  • In exceptional circumstances where equity demands that rescheduling occurs in the view of the Executive Committee.

4. The following are examples of circumstances where examinations will not be rescheduled:

  • Where a student is taking a bar review course.
  • Where a student has a professional opportunity that conflicts with a scheduled examination.
  • Where a student is late, oversleeps, is caught in traffic, etc.
  • Where a student wishes to leave early for the winter or summer break.
  • Where a student is located internationally and requests additional time on that basis.

5. If a student is excused from taking an examination at the scheduled time, every effort will be made to administer the examination at a time that overlaps the time of the scheduled examination, whether or not the examination is conducted at the Law School. If same-day scheduling is not practical, or if a student’s non-academic circumstances (e.g., grieving) make such scheduling severely prejudicial to the student’s exam preparation, the examination will be administered at the earliest possible time after the scheduled examination (usually early on the next day). The following rescheduling policies apply:

  • Except in extraordinary circumstances, an examination will not be
    scheduled later than the end of the examination period in which the
    examination is scheduled.
  • Except in extraordinary circumstances, an examination will not be
    offered prior to the scheduled time of an examination unless the new
    examination time substantially overlaps with the scheduled examination.
  • If an examination cannot be rescheduled within the period for
    examinations in the semester in which a course is offered, including any
    extension granted pursuant to paragraphs 3 and 4 of this section, the
    student should petition the Executive Committee for a resolution. Absent
    a compelling excuse, failure to take an examination in the semester the
    course is given will result in a grade of “FAB.”

6. Requests for postponements should submitted no later than four weeks before examinations begin according to the posted instructions.

7. Where an examination is properly postponed pursuant to paragraphs 3 and 4 for a student who is required to be away from the New York area during the time of a scheduled examination, the Law School may arrange for the examination to be taken at a venue convenient to the student, if proctoring and other arrangements can be made.

8. Absent special permission by the Executive Committee, which is seldom granted and only for extraordinary and unexpected circumstances, alterations in the examination schedule for individual students may be made only in accordance with the published guidelines provided above, and only by the Vice Dean or the Law School’s Executive Committee. An individual faculty member does not have the authority to reschedule an exam, nor should students request special arrangements for examinations from the instructor in a course. Questions about the meaning or application of these rules should be addressed to the Vice Dean or the Law School’s Executive Committee.

Exams in Absentia

By special permission of the Vice Dean, a student may take an otherwise Fixed Time and Location (In-Class) examination at an ABA approved law school other than NYU Law, or at a foreign law school. The student is required to obtain a letter from an official of the law school in which the official indicates willingness to administer and proctor the examination. The examination will be sent directly to the official. The rules governing examinations apply equally to examinations taken in absentia. A fee may be charged for each examination taken in absentia.

Exam Review

Individual faculty members will keep examination answers on file for 12 months. The extent, if any, to which an individual faculty member will permit review of these materials or discuss an examination with a student lies within the reasonable discretion of the faculty member and is subject to review by the Vice Dean.