Missed Coursework Policy
When a DeGroote student misses a midterm test for legitimate reasons (as determined by the Student Experience – Academic Office) there are two possible options for making up the work:
- If enough notice is given (10 business days) and the instructor is willing, the Student Experience – Academic Office can schedule a re-write of the test.
- The weight of the test (how much of the final mark the test was worth) can be redistributed across other evaluations in the course by the instructor.
The Student Experience – Academic Office and instructor decide which option to use. To review types of documentation required as supporting documentation, please scroll to the bottom of the page. Please note: you are not required to disclose to the instructor the reason of your absence as per the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA).
If the work is in a non-Commerce course, submit a Notification of Absence (see below) and then speak with your instructor to determine how the marks will be made up.
Please note: Unfortunately, if you write a test, midterm, or final exam while sick or under the influence of a crisis or compassionate situation, the results cannot be changed.
How to Report an Absence
- First missed coursework this term and
- Coursework worth 24% or less, of the final mark for the course:
Use the self-submitted McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF). Then follow up with your instructor right away to discuss how you can make up the marks.
You can only use the MSAF once per term.
If you try to use the MSAF for work worth 25% of your final mark or more you will be investigated for academic dishonesty. Use the instructions for ‘Case 2’ instead.
Important: The MSAF cannot be used for academic work that has already been completed or attempted. Attempting online work includes opening a test/quiz on Avenue to Learn or other platforms.
- Coursework worth more than 25% of the final mark for the course or
- Absence was longer than 5 days or
- You have already used your self-submitted MSAF once this term:
Complete the Notification of Absence (Application for Relief of Missed Coursework) form. Submit it, with any required supporting documentation (outlined below), to the Student Experience – Academic Office (DSB-A102) within five business days of the missed coursework. For absences related to illness or medical reasons, students should meet with a medical professional at the earliest possible date of the missed work, normally on or before the date of the missed final examination, but no more than two days after and must submit a Student Health Certificate with their Notification of Absence form.
Students will receive a confirmation email from the Student Experience – Academic Office once their request has been processed. The “extended MSAF” will be processed by the Student Experience – Academic Office and both the student and instructor will automatically receive a confirmation email from the Mosaic MSAF system. It is the student’s responsibility to follow-up with the instructor to determine how the missed marks will be re-allocated typically within two days of the approval.
Students who have been approved for the “extended MSAF” as described above, and subsequently require the use of the “regular self-submitted MSAF” will have to submit a Notification of Absence or email the Student Experience – Academic Office in order to have their self-submitted MSAF entered. In this case, the Notification of Absence does not require any additional documentation be submitted. Only that the missed coursework is worth 24% or less and this is the only “regular self-submitted MSAF” submission for the term.
Important: The Notification of Absence cannot be used for academic work that has already been completed or attempted. Attempting online work includes opening a test/quiz on Avenue to Learn or other platforms.
- You are expected to miss a final examination for medical or personal reasons or
- You miss a final examination due to medical reasons:
Complete the Petition for Special Consideration: Request for Deferred Examination Form (Form B). Submit it, with any required supporting documentation (outlined below), to the Student Experience – Academic Office (DSB-A102) within five business days of the missed exam. Students should meet with a medical professional at the earliest possible date, normally on or before the date of the missed final examination, but no more than two days after and must submit a Student Health Certificate with their Deferred Final Examination Form. Please note: missed final examinations are typically rescheduled to be written during the following term’s Reading Week (see the Sessional Dates Calendar).
The Office of the Registrar will reschedule final examinations within the examination period for the reasons below:
- Conflict with a religious obligation (RISO)
- More than one examination scheduled at the same time
- Three examinations in one calendar day (midnight to midnight)
- Three consecutive examinations over two days (e.g., December 14 at 4:00pm and 7:30pm and December 15th at 9:00am)
Application to reschedule examinations within the same examination period must be made at least 10 business days before the scheduled examination period.
Important: The Request for Deferred Examination Form cannot be used for academic work that has already been completed or attempted. Attempting online work includes opening a test/quiz on Avenue to Learn or other platforms.
Supporting Documentation for Different Kinds of Absences
Below are some examples of supporting documentation that can be submitted with a Notification of Absence. If your reason is not listed below, please contact us to discuss what may be needed in your situation to be considered for approval. In all cases, make sure the documentation specifies the date or dates involved and/or confirms your involvement.
|Medical Reasons||A physician must fill out and sign the McMaster University Student Health Certificate on your behalf. The university’s policy requires that you “be seen by a physician at the earliest possible date, normally on or before the date of the missed work.” The physician must identify the degree of incapacitation as either “Severe” or “Serious” in order to be considered.|
|Academic or Varsity Events||This applies if you’re representing the University or Canada at an event. Please follow the Athletic and Recreation department’s procedure. Confirmation of the conflicting Athletic event will then be confirmed by Claire Arsenault.|
|Case Competitions||Provide a letter from the instructor supervising your team.|
|Citizenship Court or Jury Duty||Provide the official judicial notice.|
|Death or Illness of a Family Member or Friend||Provide a letter from the funeral home confirming that you attended the funeral, a death certificate, or an obituary. For illness, please provide a letter from the Attending Physician.|
|High School Graduation Ceremony||This applies to your graduation ceremony. Provide a copy of the invitation from your high school.|
|Job Interviews||Provide a letter from your potential employer on company letterhead (part time and graduating students only). For CIP interviews, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to have your interview rescheduled.|
|Military Service||Provide a letter confirming your required attendance.|
|MSU and DCS Events||This applies to events sanctioned by either the McMaster Students Union or the DeGroote Commerce Society where you will be representing the McMaster or DeGroote. Provide a letter on official MSU or DCS letterhead (from an MSU or DCS executive) confirming that your attendance at the event is required.|
|Overlapping or Conflicting Test Schedules||This applies if two of your tests or midterms are scheduled for the same time or there is less than one hour between two scheduled midterms.|
|Professional Development Events||Provide a letter from your employer on company letterhead. (Part time students only.)|
|Religious Obligation||Submit a RISO form in addition to the Notification of Absence form. If this is in relation to a Final Examination, please notify the Office of the Registrar directly. For further clarification of the RISO policy, please review the RISO Fact Sheet.|
|Travel||Personal travel will not be approved as a reason for missing an academic obligation. However, if in accordance with any other absence in this list, provide a copy of your travel documents.|
|Wedding||This applies if one of the people getting married is part of your immediate family or you are in the wedding party. Provide a copy of the wedding invitation or a letter from either spouse confirming your participation.|
|Work||This only applies for part-time and graduating students. Provide a letter from your employer confirming your work schedule on company letterhead.|
|Work-related Training||Provide a letter from your employer on company letterhead (part-time and graduating students only).|
If you know in advance that you will be absent due to one of these reasons, contact the Student Experience – Academic Office at least ten (10) working days beforehand with the appropriate documentation.