General Information about Examinations

The method of evaluation of student performance in a course lies solely within the discretion of the instructor.  In many courses, a student’s grade is based primarily on one written examination given at the conclusion of the course.  Some instructors also give a midterm examination or assign papers.

Fall examinations are in early December of each year.

Spring examinations are in early May of each year.

Summer examinations are in late July of each year.

First-year full-time exams are from 9:00 a.m. until noon.

Upper-level day classes have exams from 1:30 p.m. until 4:30 p.m. A day class is one that meets between 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.

First-year and upper-level evening classes have exams from 6:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. An evening class is defined at one that meets between 5:50 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.

Anonymous Examination Numbers

Each student is randomly assigned an anonymous exam number each semester, and most exams are grade anonymously. Generally, upper-level seminars and skills courses are not anonymously graded.

The Assistant Dean for Student Affairs sends students their anonymous exam numbers by email each semester. STUDENTS MUST ENSURE THAT THEIR E-MAIL ADDRESS IS CORRECT ON CAMPUS CONNECTION, OR THEY WILL NOT RECEIVE AN ANONYMOUS EXAM NUMBER.

A student must identify herself or himself only by assigned anonymous examination number. A student must not identify himself or herself by name, student identification number or any other designation or symbol anywhere on the examination questions or answers. A student should not disclose the examination number to the instructor, either directly or indirectly, until the instructor has submitted the final grades for the course. Failure to comply with these provisions may be a violation of the Honor Code.

Exam Schedule and Conflicts

The final examination schedule is published with the class schedule prior to registration each semester on Campus Connection. Students should select their courses to avoid exam conflicts. 

All students must take their examinations at the scheduled time.  If two sections of a course are offered, students must take the exam at the time scheduled for the section in which they are enrolled.

Final exams will be rescheduled only in extraordinary circumstances.  Exams will not be rescheduled because of job commitments, weddings, graduations, vacation plans, travel plans or for other personal reasons.

Wild Card Examinations

Under certain limited circumstances, students may shift one examination to a different day.  This policy is known as the “Wild Card” option.

Eligibility: If a student has two in-class exams scheduled on the same day or on two consecutive days, the student may designate one of the exams as a wild card exam.  The student must take the rescheduled exam within two days of the original exam date.  Options for wild card dates are listed on the law school website.  Wild card exams are scheduled from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on days that do not have first-year exams.

Students may only request one wild card exam per semester.  Students must register for a wild card no later than the sixth week of classes. Forms are available on the College of Law website.  First-year students both, full-time and part-time, may not use wild card exams because their exam schedule is set up with several days between exams. Wild cards are not available in the summer.

Because wild card exams are held on days other than the regularly scheduled exam dates, students may not use SofTest to type their answers. SofTest is date and time specific and will not function on a day that is not the regularly scheduled exam date.

The wild card option does not apply to take-home exams unless the take-home exam is both distributed and due on the same date as an in-class exam. 

Deadline to file for wild card:

  • Fall Semester: October 1
  • Spring Semester: March 1
  • Summer Semester and First-Year Exams: Wild cards are not available.

Missing an Examination

Students are expected to take examinations when scheduled, even though ill or inconvenienced. However, in the event of serious illness or for other extraordinary or compelling cause beyond a student’s control, the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs or the dean on duty may excuse a student from taking the exam at its scheduled time. Students will not be excused from an examination for job related reasons, weddings, travel, graduations, vacations or for other personal reasons.  Students are expected to adjust their outside commitments to conform to the law school examination schedule. 

A student who must miss an exam must notify the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs on or before the scheduled exam day. If prior notice is not possible, the student must contact the Assistant Dean as soon as the inability to take the exam becomes manifest.  If a student does not notify the Assistant Dean at the first available opportunity, the student will receive a failing grade. To protect the anonymity of grading, students should never contact their professor if they need to reschedule an examination. 

A student who is more than ten minutes late for an exam will not be permitted to take it unless authorized by the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs.  A student who is less than ten minutes late may take the exam but will not be allotted additional time and may not type his or her exam. Students who miss an exam must use bluebooks and cannot type their answers

Make-up Examinations

When a student is excused from an exam, the student must take the exam on the next scheduled exam day. If the student is excused for serious health reasons or a family emergency, the Assistant Dean may attempt to make arrangements to have the student type the exam. If a student simply misses an exam date due to mistaking an exam date or time, typing is not available.

Student Conduct During Examinations

Student conduct during examinations is subject to the DePaul University College of Law Honor Code, which is set forth in §XIII of this Handbook. Cell phones, tablets, iPods, pagers and all other electronic devices are not permitted in the exam room.

Examination Typing Option Using ExamSoft’s SofTest

SofTest Laptop Exams

The College of Law offers students the opportunity to take examinations on their own laptops using ExamSoft’s SofTest program. Students may use PC’s or Mac’s. SofTest is a secure program. Students will only be able to type their exam answers, and access to all other programs will be blocked. Therefore, if a professor permits notes to be used during an exam, students should print their notes prior to exams.

Professors must opt-in for students to use SofTest. A list of courses available for SofTest is published on the law school ExamSoft website each semester. Instructions are on

Students should always do the “mock exam” when they register for SofTest to familiarize themselves with the program.

Minimum System Requirements

Information about minimum system requirements for SofTest, pre-exam videos, support tools and exam taker information are available on

Download and Register SofTest: The Assistant Dean of Student Affairs will notify students by e-mail of the deadline to download the software for each semester. The deadline is also posted on

Exam Administration

During closed book examinations, all books, notes, cell phones, tablets, I-Pods, outlines, backpacks, briefcases, and other materials must be placed in the back of the room. During open book exams, students may have whatever materials the professor approves for use during an examination. For SofTest exams, the proctor will announce the start time and write the exam password on the board. SofTest will automatically shut down after the allotted time. For bluebook and Scantron exams, the test proctor will advise the students of the time at which the exam will end and will write the ending time on the blackboard. When time has expired, the proctor will announce that the exam is over.  Students must stop writing immediately and turn in their examinations. Failure to stop writing immediately is a violation of the Honor Code.  Students are not permitted to leave their seats for any reason during the last half hour of an exam.

Examination Accommodations

Students who need to request accommodations on the basis of a disability should review Section VIII of this Handbook and see the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs at the start of each semester.

Accommodations of time and one half per exam may be offered to international LL.M. students for whom English is a second language. The student must contact the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs at least one month before each exam period to request accommodations and provide documentation of registration with the University International Student Office.