PSU news by
Penn State's student blog



Is Your Syllabus Breaking The Rules?

With a new semester comes a new set of syllabi, and therefore new syllabi that are breaking university policy. As much as it may not seem like it, professors are required to follow certain rules when creating syllabi and class structure, as set by the Faculty Senate.

There’s a website that outlines a number of the most commonly violated Academic Rights, but here are three of the most prevalent.

Grades: Each course’s grading criteria must be outlined for you in the first 10 calendar days of the semester. Nothing can be left nebulous.

Syllabus: A written syllabus must be provided to you in each course within the first ten calendar days of a semester or its equivalent.  A syllabus must contain information on the following subjects: course content, expectations, course examination policy, basis for grades, and academic integrity policy for the course.  Any and all changes made to the syllabus must be given to you in writing, not just thrown up on ANGEL or mentioned in passing in class.

Exams: Professors must give you written notice of exam procedures in the first 10 days of the semester. No more than 10% of a semester’s grade may be assigned to you in the week before finals (this is probably the single most violated academic policy university wide). If you have no final exam in a course, any whole semester integrative assignments must be due before the first day of final’s week.

No more than four evening exams per course may be assigned. Evening exams must be announced to you by the first week of the semester. If you have more than one exam scheduled in any one evening, you may reschedule one as a conflict exam.

If your professor is breaking any of these policies, then you can do something about it. The first step however is to talk to your professor. It’s most likely that the professor didn’t know about the policy or thought they were being helpful by scheduling a huge test the week before finals.

If that doesn’t work, contact a department staff member, and they will point you to an administrator who will help resolve the solution.

If you need any other help, feel free to contact your academic student council of your college or [email protected] to ensure the proper policies are being followed.

About the Author



Shea Moyer Lifts Penn State Women’s Soccer Past West Virginia 1-0

Sophomore midfielder Shea Moyer scored the game-winning goal in the 80th minute of a rainy season opener at Jeffrey Field.

Penn State Women’s Soccer Poised For Strong 2018 Season

Incoming Penn State Track & Field Athlete Kristian Marche Shot To Death In Philadelphia

Former Women’s Gymnastics Coach Files Lawsuit Against Penn State Over Handling Of Abuse Allegations

Men’s Soccer Trio, Reading United Win PDL Eastern Conference Title, Fall Short Of National Championship

Student Life

Start The Semester Off Right With These Welcome Week Activities

Don your brightly-colored college shirt and officially begin your Penn State career with these Welcome Week activities.

Nike Releases New Penn State Sneakers

Penn State Parking Office Runs Into Student Permit Purchase Issues

Plans Submitted For New KFC In State College

Developers have submitted preliminary land development plans to build a new KFC restaurant at 1780 S. Atherton St. in State College.

Join Onward State: Fall 2018 Application

Onward State is hiring for the fall semester and we’d love to have you join us.

Start The Semester Off Right With These Welcome Week Activities

Don your brightly-colored college shirt and officially begin your Penn State career with these Welcome Week activities.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Assessing Penn State’s Front Seven Following Tuesday’s Medical Retirements

Penn State’s defensive line rotation will be shaken up following Ryan Buchholz’s medical retirement from football, while the coaching staff is letting the linebackers duel it out during camp.

Send this to a friend