Penn State Mark

Final Exam Information

Final examinations (policy 44-20) fulfill two important academic objectives: student integration of instructional material, and end-of-semester evaluation of student achievement. However, valid means other than the final examination also accomplish these objectives (e.g., term paper, final project report, take-home examination, etc.). Course instructors determine which of these methods is best.

Course instructors are expected to:

  • Offer a full schedule of instruction.
  • Schedule no comprehensive examinations during the last week of classes. Quizzes and narrowly limited tests worth no more than 10% or less of the course grade may be given.
  • Schedule final examinations worth more than 10% of the course grade during the established final examination period.
  • Set a due date during the final examination period for alternative means of evaluation (term papers, final projects, etc.) worth more than 10% of the course grade. Alternative means of evaluation worth 10% or less of the course grade may be due prior to the last day of the course.

Students who believe this policy is being violated should review the appeals process.

Students and faculty at some campuses are provided personalized final exam schedules in LionPATH. These schedules are available approximately the fifth week of the semester. Plans to leave campus at the end of the semester should not be made until after students have reviewed their personalized final exam schedules.

Students at locations not offering personalized final exam schedules should check the campus Registrar's website for the final exam schedule. Questions concerning exam information should be directed to the campus Registrar's office.

The published final exam schedule may result in an "overload" situation where a student has three or more exams scheduled in consecutive periods or within the same calendar day. Students have three weeks after the schedule is published to file for a relief from an overload through the Overload Conflict Exam Request Form* or the campus Registrar's office.

*Please note: The Overload Conflict Exam Request Form is for use by students attending the following campuses: University Park, Harrisburg, and Behrend. Students attending all other Penn State campuses should contact your campus registrar to request relief from an exam overload conflict.

Final Exam Periods for University Park

Periods Times
First Period 8:00 - 9:50 a.m.
Second Period 10:10 - 12:00 noon
Third Period 12:20 - 2:10 p.m.
Fourth Period 2:30 - 4:20 p.m.
Fifth Period 4:40 - 6:30 p.m.
Sixth Period 6:50 - 8:40 p.m.