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Academic calendar changes start spring 2012

Academic calendar changes start spring 2012For the spring 2012 semester, the first day of classes following winter break will begin on Monday, Jan. 9. Beginning spring semester classes earlier than the traditional start on Wednesday will provide students and faculty the opportunity to commemorate the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, while maintaining the integrity of course schedules and program accreditation standards.

The academic calendar committee comprising administrators, faculty, and students, has also approved Monday, Jan. 7, as the start date for spring semester 2013. The committee, though it has only approved the academic calendar through the 2012-2013 school year, anticipates a Monday spring-semester start for the foreseeable future.

 The change to a Monday start also means that the last day of classes for the spring semester will end on a Monday instead of a Tuesday.

 This academic year marked the first time that the University canceled classes to commemorate MLK Day, which is celebrated the third Monday in January. The cancellation had a critical impact on classes that met once a week on Mondays, on classes with Monday lab hours, and on the add/drop period for classes.

Some courses must meet a certain number of days to comply with accreditation standards. And, students in some schools have the first week of classes to add/drop classes without the penalty of a withdrawal being reflected on their academic record. Canceling classes this year on the holiday, extended the required week of classes into the penalty phase of the add/drop period, which eliminated the opportunity for students in Monday-only classes to have attended one class before deciding whether to drop the class.

Starting spring-semester classes on Monday will give students a full week of classes before the MLK holiday. The add/drop period for spring 2012 will begin on Monday, Jan. 9.  In 2013, the add/drop period will begin Monday, Jan. 7.

Although administrative offices are open for business on MLK Day, classes do not meet so that the University community may participate in a day of commemoration, reflection, and service to the larger community.

 To view the full academic calendar, visit http://registrar.vanderbilt.edu/calendar/.



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