Harvard profs dropping final exams

Final exams are probably not anybody’s primary concern at the moment, but it is worth noting that the July-August edition of Harvard Magazine reports that many Harvard professors will no longer routinely require final exams, the Washington Post reports. It turns out that Harvard’s Faculty of Arts and Sciences voted on this policy a few months ago, according to the magazine article. The arts and sciences faculty–of which there are more than 1,000, including dozens of Nobel laureates and Pulitzer Prize winners–teach in Harvard College, the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, and the Division of Continuing Education. For decades, professors who chose not to give a final exam were required to submit a form to opt out. Now, professors will have to file a specific request to give a final. The magazine said that Dean of Undergraduate Education Jay M. Harris is already predicting that Harvard will shorten the academic calendar by a day or two in response to the eased testing burden, but, in fact, final exams have been “going the way of the dodo” for years…

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