Exam Rules and Procedures
The American Bar Association, as an accrediting agency for the Law School, requires a written final examination in all regular courses. The final examination grade is the major component of the course grade. Professors are encouraged to give mid-term examinations to first year students. As determined by the professor, these examinations may or may not count toward the final grade.
At Seton Hall, the examination requirement applies to all courses except seminars, clinical, skills, and moot court programs, journals, externships, Legal Research & Writing and Independent Research.
About the Exam Schedule
The examination schedule is published by the Registrar during the 4th or 5th week of the semester. For classes with enrollments of 35 or fewer, final exams will be conducted under a “self-scheduled” system, whereby students will choose when to take an exam, within the limits of the exam period, in a proctored room. Instructors also may opt to offer take-home exams in smaller classes. Take-home exams are announced at the time of registration, and again when the class meets, prior to the conclusion of the drop/add period.
Failure to appear for an examination or submit a take-home within the time allowed will result in withdrawal from the course. The only exceptions are detailed in "Exam Emergencies" below.
What you should know:
Anonymous Exam Numbers
Law school policy requires that examination papers be graded anonymously. For every examination period, each student is assigned a unique five digit identification number, which is to be used on all examination answer in lieu of any other personal identification. Exam numbers may be accessed by logging into LawNet and clicking on "Banner Self-Service" and then clicking on "Registration and Financial Aid", "Registration", "Registration Status" and selecting the appropriate term.
Failure by a student to use the correct assigned random number on each examination may considerably delay the posting of the examination grade(s) in question.
Failure to appear for an examination or submit a take-home within the time allowed will result in withdrawal from the course.
Only serious illness or an emergency is an adequate excuse for absence from an examination. In cases of irreconcilable other commitments, and with the approval in advance of the Dean of Students, an examination may be rescheduled for a future date. Employment duties will not be sufficient basis. Students seeking such a rescheduling must be aware of, and agree to, adverse consequences such as an incomplete appearing on their transcripts, and the absence of any grade in that course to factor into their grade point average for purposes of class standing. A written application for excuse must be submitted to the Dean of Students before the examination.
In case of serious illness, a physician must attest in writing that the student is suffering from a severe condition that would adversely affect performance. Where prior written application is impossible, prior oral application, followed within 24 hours by the required written application and supporting materials, will be sufficient. The faculty member involved should not be contacted in order to preserve anonymity.
The Dean of Students or designee will excuse the student if a valid reason is found. No student may be excused from an examination grade based on a claim of illness made after the examination has ended.
A student who appears for an examination must complete the exam and receive a grade for it. In extraordinary circumstances of sickness or inability to continue, if reported to the proctor during the examination, the Dean of Students may, upon medical corroboration as required, grant the retaking of the examination.
Pursuant to the Law School's Conflicts Policy, for examinations scheduled on three consecutive days of the examination period, the second examination shall normally be rescheduled to a later date. For examinations scheduled to begin twenty four hours apart, the second examination shall normally be rescheduled to a later date. A student seeking to reschedule an examination due to either of the above defined conflicts must file a "Request for Rescheduling of an Exam Conflict" form by the published deadline. For those students seeking accommodations because of religious observance or disability, the "Request for Special Exam Accommodations" form is to be filed by the published deadline.
If during the examination period a student has been excused from sitting for an examination(s) because of illness or other exigency, the student must file a "Reschedule Missed Examinations" form with the Dean of Students accompanied by a physicians documentation of the illness, or other relevant documentation requested by the Dean of Students. The documentation must be received by the Dean of Students within ten days of the date of the missed exam(s). If approved, the student will receive notification from the Registrar as to the date and time of the rescheduled examination(s) which generally occur the next time the class is offered, during the summer exam period, or during spring break.
The Dean of Students or designee determines the date for any make-up examination (normally, the next time the class is offered, during the summer exam period, or during spring break). For students whose graduation is imminent, special arrangements will be made if possible.
Under no circumstances should a student awaiting a decision on a make-up examination contact the professor of the course since this may jeopardize anonymity.
Except as provided in the Academic Standards and Procedures, no student may take a reexamination in any course for the purpose of raising a grade received in that course.
Conduct During Exams
- All personal property including PDA’s and palm pilots must be placed at the front of the room, except:
- writing instruments
- such materials as the professor's instructions allow
(if calculators are permitted, students may only use generic/basic accountin calculators (ones that only do
division, subtraction and multiplication). Strictly prohibited are calculators that can be used on cell phones, PDA's, graphing/engineering calculators, and any other potentially internet enabled or memory storing devices).
- personal computers with Securexam software
(a laptop IS NOT considered an open book material. The only function the laptop has in an exam room is for typing an exam using the Securexam software. Any and all other uses for a laptop are strictly prohibited).
- Cell phones must be turned off - they may not be on vibrate mode unless you have the Associate Dean's prior consent.
- You may not wear headphones.
- For those students handwriting their examination, please be sure to print your 5 digit exam number, course name, professor, and date on the cover of each bluebook, immediately upon receipt. For those students who are typing, only enter the professor’s last name in the header. Do not type “professor” before the name.
- LLM and MSJ students must indicate “LLM” or “MSJ” after their exam number.
- If a Scantron answer sheet is being used, be sure to write and darken in the ovals for your exam number using a number two pencil. No name or other personal identification may appear on your bluebooks, handwritten or typed answers, examination questions or any other answer sheet which has been provided.
- If there are page limits for answering an exam question, unless the professor specifies otherwise, the pages are to be double spaced using Times New Roman font size 12 with 1 inch margins at top, bottom and sides.
- Any conduct which will interfere with the administration of the examination is not allowed before, during or after the examination.
- Inform the proctor(s) immediately of any complaints concerning procedures, materials distributed or cheating.
- If a student experiences a laptop problem or malfunction prior to, during, or upon exiting an exam, he or she must immediately notify the proctor. The Law School will attempt to provide immediate technical support if the student alerts the proctor. If a student’s laptop fails during an examination, the student must continue answering the exam by hand-writing it. No additional time will be allowed for attempting to resolve computer problems during the exam.
After the exam has concluded, an attempt may also be made to retrieve exam answers from the student’s hard drive. The retrieved exam portion, together with the hand-written portion, will be submitted to the professor for grading.
Only if exam answers cannot be retrieved within 24 hours, may the Associate Dean, in consultation with the professor, determine any additional remedial options, if any. However, no relief will be given to a student who failed to alert the proctor at the time of the difficulty.
- While the exam is in progress, no student shall leave an exam room without an escort.
- No one shall be absent from the exam room for more than ten minutes unless there is a valid medical reason; only one person shall leave the room at a time.
- You must surrender your questions to the proctor(s) if you wish to leave the room during the examination. All personal materials taken from the room during the examination are subject to search.
- You may not speak, or, in any other way, communicate with one another, 1) during an examination, or 2) after an examination while in the examination room.
- After the proctor(s) announce(s) that there are 5 minutes remaining, no one may leave the room for any reason until the examination is over.
- Do not contact the professor in any way regarding the exam until the grades are posted.
- Violation of any of these rules by students will result in sanctions up to and including dismissal from the school. Misconduct during examinations will be reported to the Associate Dean.
- Any student who continues to type or write at the end of the exam once the announcement is made to “stop typing or writing” will be reported to the Associate Dean.
- Upon completion of your examination and prior to leaving the examination room, you will be required to sign an honor code certification.
- All personal property including PDA’s and palm pilots must be placed at the front of the room, except:
Review of Exams
After grades are posted via the web, a student may contact the professor, furnish his or her anonymous number, and request a review. The deadline for examination review is the last day of classes of the following semester. No professor may change an examination grade unless there has been a mechanical error in computing or transcribing the score. The purpose of a review is to assist the student in preparing for future examinations, not to make any grade changes. Indeed, grades may not be changed except in case of mechanical error demonstrated to the Associate Dean. The extent and nature of the review is within the sound discretion of the individual faculty member.