UPDATED: Statement on preliminary and final oral examinations during COVID-19 response period

March 23, 2020 - by Sarah Igram

In light of moving all classes at Iowa State University online for the remainder of the Spring 2020 semester, the Graduate College is providing updated information regarding preliminary and final oral examinations. Our service to the campus will adhere to the principle of supporting academic continuity of students toward their degrees.

  1. The Graduate College understands that decisions on conducting preliminary and final oral exams in the coming weeks may be made with less lead time than is typical. We therefore will expedite the approval of exam requests made with the Exam Request Form. Normally, the Graduate College needs this form at least two weeks before the preliminary oral exam date and three weeks before the final oral exam date, but for exams held this semester, the form may be submitted up to seven days before the exam.
  2. If an exam already scheduled this semester cannot be held, the exam may be rescheduled by emailing Lisa Elm in the Graduate College.
  3. The Graduate College strongly encourages students and Program of Study committees to participate in preliminary and final oral exams via telephone or videoconference. All exams will be assumed to be held virtually until further notice, and we will not require forms for students or faculty participating at a distance. We will contact Directors of Graduate Education and support staff when distance forms will be required again. Please be sure that someone who can assist with technology issues, such as your department’s IT contact, is available to respond during your virtual exam. Should you choose to hold an examination in-person, you must do so in a room that allows for at least six feet of social distancing, and with fewer than 10 people. 
  4. We ask that the form to report the outcome of an oral exam be provided to the Graduate College as soon as is safely possible after the exam. You may submit Report of Final Oral Exams to Lisa Elm, and Report of Preliminary Oral Exams to Melissa Stolt. The student and POS committee may decide on the most appropriate mode and timeline for submitting the form. Please contact a staff member listed below about alternate options for obtaining signatures on forms.

Graduate College staff will be available via email, and/or by telephone, throughout any COVID-19-related interruptions. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. If you would like to correspond by telephone, leave a voice message at the general phone number for the Graduate College, 515-294-4531, and your message will be forwarded to the appropriate staff member. You also may directly contact the staff members below concerning the following specific issues:



Tags: covid-19 updates