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New Faculty Regulations Limit Course Reductions And Compel Non-Honor Seniors to Take Final Exams



Seniors who are not candidates for honors will be required to take final examinations in all their courses, according to a new Faculty ruling effective next year, Dean Hanford announced last night. The rule was adopted by the Faculty at their meeting Tuesday after they had rejected an alternative proposal that even honors candidates must take finals.

The new regulations leave it up to the Departments to determine whether honors men should be exempted from finals of courses in, or allied with, their fields of concentration. It is expected that those Departments which now grant exemptions for honors candidates will continue to do so.

Those men who do not have to take finals will be offered a choice "between an hour examination or other appropriate test, to be given after April recess, and the final examination."

Liberalize Course Reduction

Designed to tighten up the requirements for Plan B Seniors and to liberalize requirements for course reductions, the new regulations make it impossible for Seniors to coast through their second half year courses without showing that they have completed any work.

Under the new rules, Seniors must take at least three courses unless they receive course reduction from the Administrative Board. An exceptional student can, upon recommendation of his Department, receive a maximum reduction of two courses for "equivalent thesis or tutorial work."

Thesis Courses Discontinued

Although the old requirements permitted a reduction of only one course, many of the Departments offered so-called "thesis courses" which were conducted so informally and required so little work that they were tantamount to a half course reduction. Thesis courses will no longer be given.

In the future a Senior may theoretically get by with only one course, while present regulations require him to take at least one and a half courses plus a thesis course.

New Course Rules Announced

The Faculty vote requiring all Seniors next year who are not out for honors to take final exams follows in full:

"In the second half of the Senior year, students who are candidates for honors may be given by their Departments or Committees, in courses within the field of concentration, and with the consent of the appropriate Department, in any other course, a choice between an hour examination or other appropriate test, to be given after the April recess, and the final examination. The final examination shall be required of any candidate who takes the hour examination but fails to receive a grade of C or higher.

"Seniors not candidates for honors shall take final examinations in all courses in the second half-year.

"All Seniors shall take at least three courses or their equivalent, distributed during the year as they may see fit.

"Candidates for honors recommended by their Departments or Committees as well qualified for the privilege may be granted by the Administrative Board of Harvard College 'course reduction' in their Senior year up to a maximum of two courses (to be replaced by equivalent thesis or extra tutorial work).

"Thesis courses shall no longer be offered."

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