Concerned students have drawn up a petition requesting the postponement of junior generals in English, and the opening of a "dialogue between Faculty and students on possible alternative aproaches to the study of English literature."
The petition will be presented to John B. Radner '60, head tutor of the English department, by ten people who volunteered at a meeting of interested students Tuesday to circulate the petition.
Virginia S. Ridgely '70, one of the ten students, said yesterday that the immediate idea was that no one was prepared to take the exam on the scheduled date of May 6, but that the long-range idea was to consider more important problems such as:
*the validity of the Bible and language requirements;
*the fact that English majors are not allowed to take courses in their major pass-fail;
*the fact that only students in Group II are allowed to take independent studies credited by the English department;
*alternative ways of fulfilling the need for a junior exam.
These demands were not included in the petition because "we didn't fel the ten of us should speak for all the students in the English department," Elizabeth S. Mitchell 70, another of the petitioners, said yesterday.
Radner said last night that "if most juniors think the exam should be postponed, I assume that something can be worked out, but it is not clear whether to postpone it for a week or until next Fall."
Radner plans to schedule a general meeting of all juniors in English for early next week, to discuss the problem. "It would be better to postpone the exam for a week than until next year," he said.
History and Lit
John Clive, chairman of History and Literature, which is one of the other four departments that hold junior generals, proposed what he considers an "eminently fair solution" to the problem. History and Lit Junior generals will be postponed a week, from May 1 and 2 to May 8 and 9. "We hope that in view of this the great majority of our juniors, if not all of them, will be ready to take the examinations since they are not the sort of examinations that require weeks of intensive preparation," Clive said.
"Present regulations of the field," he continued, "provide that those failing or not taking the examination must pass it at the end of the senior year, before they can proceed to orals. These regulations will apply." According to this regulation, students will have the option of taking their exams next Spring, but they will not have a second chance if they then fail it.
Students in History and Lit had circulated a petition asking for a postponement of the exam until the Fall. Clive said that he had considered the petition carefully, that it confirmed his feeling that students were concerned, but that he could not accept the proposal because it would put too much pressure on the examiners to give two exams in one year.
The head tutors in Far Eastern Languages and Romance Languages and Lit, both of which departments have junior generals, said that there have been no requests from students to postpone the exams, and that they would be held as scheduled.
The Fine Arts Department, which is listed in Rules Relating as having generals in the junior year, decided two months ago that they would not give the exam, substituting instead a paper, to be assigned as to length and date due by the individual tutor, a secretary in the department said yesterday