Update on semester dates and academic and financial changes

Feb 16th, 2023

With classes resuming for all paused courses at Memorial University tomorrow, Wednesday, Feb. 15, a number of measures have been put in place to mitigate the academic and financial impacts of the MUNFA strike.

While the last day of exams has not changed from April 21, a number of key dates have shifted to provide time to make up missed course time. The revised schedule of key dates is as follows:

  • April 6 (no change) – Last day of classes for courses that were not paused during the strike
  • April 6 (change) – This day will follow the Tuesday schedule for ALL classes
  • April 10 (new date) – Last day of classes for courses that were paused during the strike
  • April 11-12 – two study days between end of classes and exams
  • April 13 – (new date) Examinations begin
  • April 21 – (no change) Last day of examinations, end of semester 

Academic amnesty

The provost and vice-president (academic) brought a motion supporting academic amnesty for students to Senate on Feb. 14. 

Motion for Academic Amnesty:

“That Senate support Academic Amnesty for students of all Memorial University campuses, insofar as academic units and instructors remain flexible in making alternate arrangements. Arrangements may include rescheduling or altering deadlines for evaluative devices, flexibility in resubmitting work that was due during the labour disruption but may not reflect the full academic potential of the student, and adopt any other required forms of leniency for students who were absent from classes during the labour disruption January 30, 2023 – February 13, 2023, recognizing that these students freely determined their actions in support of the labour disruption.”

Senate passed the motion. It is important to recognize that neither Senate, nor any other decision-making body, has the authority to mandate amnesty, as the decision to do so rests with individual instructors. 

A suite of other motions was approved by Senate to ensure that no student’s academic standing is irrevocably damaged as a result of these circumstances and that students are not subjected to unreasonable workloads. Some of these motions included:

Pass/Fail option

Instructors may change the method of evaluation to a pass/fail option on a per student basis. Students should be aware of the impact on admissions to programs that require numeric grades, scholarship standing, graduate admissions, etc. in taking this option. If an instructor wishes to switch course grading for all students, they should first discuss with their academic head.

Drop date/refund

All students have until April 10 to drop a course without academic prejudice. Undergraduate students who drop courses by April 10will be provided a tuition refund for any courses dropped at that time. This is the result of decisions approved by both Senate and the Board of Regents and will provide flexibility to the end of the semester for students who wish to make changes.

Graduate students are also protected from academic penalties and the School of Graduate Studies will be in contact with graduate students tomorrow to outline the specific remedies aimed at reducing the impacts of the strike for them.

As soon as decisions are finalized regarding refunds/credits to student accounts in recognition of time lost, that information will be shared directly with students.

The full text of the academic remedies approved by Senate is available here: Academic remedies - Senate.

FAQs are under development and will be posted to www.mun.ca/labour-relations when available.