Academic Policies and Guidelines for Canceled Classes


The academic information on this page is a resource for faculty/instructors when changes in campus operating status lead to canceled classes. Please contact Executive Director Edwin Arevalo ( with questions or suggestions for information to add.

For updates on campus operating status, visit UC Davis News and UC Davis Operating Status.

For information on wildfire-related events that might impact campus, visit UC Davis Wildfire Season Weather Impacts.

Frequently Asked Questions for Instructors

The following FAQs are intended to serve as guidelines both when classes are canceled due to a change in campus operating status and after classes resume. The goal is to maximize consistency across campus in how we address these very complex issues, drawing from established policies for courses and instruction. We strongly encourage instructors to be flexible and understanding of student needs. We also recognize that there are limits to how many additional burdens on time and resources instructors should reasonably be expected to take. Thank you for your patience and collaboration.

- Senate Leadership
During the time when classes are canceled, can I expect my students to do out-of-class work?  

Yes. Instructors can provide online learning materials, such as recorded lectures or course notes, during the time when classes are canceled. As best practice, students should not be held responsible through examination or graded work for learning these new materials until at least 48 hours after classes resume. Not all students have equal access to online materials, so expectations for student learning when classes have been canceled will need to be adjusted accordingly.

Instructors can also expect students to continue working on longer-term assignments, such as research papers or problem sets, if those assignments were (1) specified in the syllabus at the start of the term and (2) do not require access to materials first provided during the time that classes were canceled. If either of these conditions is not met, then original deadlines should be extended.

Important: Examinations can only be administered once classes resume, and assignments (including longer-term assignments) can only be due once classes resume.

What is the Carnegie rule and how does it affect my decision to modify my course content?

UC Davis follows the Carnegie rule, which prescribes that students are expected to complete three total hours of work per week (including in-class and out-of-class time) for each course unit. Thus, for a 4-unit class, students are expected to complete a total of 12 hours of work per week. Instructors must continue to respect the weekly work expectations for their courses once classes resume. As a result, if you plan to add activities or material from canceled class days to the remaining weeks that classes are in session, please adjust (if necessary) the expectation of time planned for originally scheduled activities. See Policies and Procedures from the Committee on Courses of Instruction.

After classes resume, when can I hold an exam?

If you reschedule an exam, the exam can be held during a regularly scheduled class period, given during an out-of-class time agreed to by all students, or switched to a take-home exam due during a regularly scheduled class time. Try to notify students at least 48 hours prior to the updated exam date. See Davis Division Regulation 538.

After classes resume, what if having a make-up exam for my class is logistically unreasonable or impossible? Can I choose to drop that exam and put more weight on the rest of the graded material for the quarter?

Yes. This is at your discretion. For the least disruption, try to minimize major changes to how students will be evaluated. See APM-010.

After classes resume, will there be additional campus resources provided to enable me to schedule make-up exams outside of my regular course times?

The Testing Services Center will identify capacity to offer proctored make-up exams outside of scheduled course times, even for students without documented disabilities. This option for proctored make-up exams will be offered on a limited, first come first served basis.

How should I handle testing accommodations for students with accommodations documented by the Student Disability Center?

For instructors who had exams scheduled with the Testing Services Center (TSC) that were missed due to a disruption in campus operating status: Please contact the TSC ( or 530-752-9040) to coordinate new examination schedules for the students. When possible, instructors should be flexible with exam dates and times.

For instructors who do not use the TSC, please continue to make accommodations for your students, keeping in mind that flexibility will likely be needed.

During the time when classes are canceled, will anything change for accommodations for students with documented disabilities?

No. Students with documented disabilities still require the accommodations specified in their letters from the Student Disability Center (SDC). If you have any questions, please contact the SDC Specialist(s) who signed the Letter of Accommodation for your student(s) and/or reach out to or 530-752-3184.

Will centralized funding be made available for instructors to reserve rooms for additional make-up exams or learning activities?

Yes. If you need to reserve rooms for make-up classes or exams (and will be using your own proctors), central resources will be provided to fund these reservations. To do so, make your reservation through Conference and Event Services (CES) and note on your reservation that the room reservation is for an EXAM or MAKE-UP CLASS. You will still have to enter an account number, but CES will change it to the centrally-funded account. If you have questions, email

Where can instructors get advice or tips on how to create online videos for their courses?

UC Davis Information and Educational Technology (IET) has compiled a list of articles to assist instructors in recording video and sharing it with students via Canvas or other platforms. See here.

Now that all exams and assignments cannot be due until classes resume, how will this affect the workload of graduate student teaching assistants? 

If instructors need to reschedule exam dates and/or due dates for assignments, they need to be careful not to overburden their teaching assistants. For details on per day and per week maximums, see here.

Where can I direct my students who have been severely affected by the campus emergency or hazardous situation?

If your students are experiencing a hardship as a result of the emergency or hazardous situation that caused all classes to be canceled, please have them email Financial Aid and Scholarships at They can also visit the FAS Economic Crisis page for additional emergency resources.

See below for further reading on aforementioned policies:
  • Davis Division Regulation 538(D): “In each course for which a midterm examination is required, each student shall have the right to take a midterm examination (or, when the instructor has so opted, to submit a take-home examination) during one of the scheduled meetings of the class published in the Class Search Tool.”
  • Davis Division Regulation 538(E): “Holding a final or midterm examination (or setting a deadline for submission of a take-home examination) at a time not specified in (C) or (D) requires the mutual consent of the instructor and all students involved in the change. Any student who does not consent in writing to the different time must be permitted to take an examination (and/or submit a take-home examination) at the officially scheduled time. A student who consents in writing to the change of examination time waives the right cited in (C) or (D).”
  • APM-010: “The faculty has authority for all aspects of the course, including content, structure, relevance of alternative points of view, and evaluations. All decisions affecting a student’s academic standing, including assignment of grades, should be based upon academic considerations administered fairly and equitably under policies established by the Academic Senate.”
  • Additional information on non-SDC instructional accommodations, including use of an “Incomplete” grade, is available here.