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Religious Observance


Senate Policy on Religious Observance

York University is committed to respecting the religious beliefs and practices of all members of the community and making accommodations for observances of special significance

Every effort will be made to avoid scheduling in-class or formal examinations on days of special religious significance throughout the year. A schedule of dates for such days for various faiths will be compiled annually and distributed widely. Students will be informed of procedures for requesting and arranging accommodations. (Senate 032)

Senate Policy on Identifying and Distributing a Schedule of Dates

A schedule of dates for such days for various faiths will be compiled annually and distributed widely. Students will be informed of procedures for requesting and arranging accommodations. (Senate 032)

Senate Policy on In-class and Formal Examinations

In October 2008, the Senate Policy on Sessional Dates and the Scheduling of Examinations was amended. As such, formal examinations will not be held on public holidays or at other times as directed by the University Senate, administration

Religious Accommodation Guidelines: Final Examinations

Students who, because of a religious commitment cannot write a formally scheduled examination (December and April examination periods) on the date scheduled, should contact the course instructor and submit a Religious Accommodation Agreement to the department offering the course no later than three weeks prior to the start of the examination period to arrange an alternative examination date.

When arrangements between the student and instructor cannot be made, or if the student does not feel comfortable about approaching the instructor to request a religious accommodation, then the student should contact the associate dean of the Faculty in which the course is offered. Students are required to contact the associate dean not less than 14 days prior to the start of the examination and, if requested to do so, present evidence concerning the religious obligations involved.

The associate dean may consider a number of options to provide an accommodation. The choice will depend on the student’s particular circumstance. For example, the accommodations may include:

  1. Treating the request as a conflict and accommodating it within the examination period, or
  2. Providing a deferred examination as soon as possible.

Religious Accommodation Guidelines: Other than Final Examinations

Students, who because of religious commitment cannot meet academic obligations, other than formally scheduled examinations (December and April examination period), on certain holy days are responsible for giving their instructor reasonable notice (not less than 14 days), of each conflict.

Solutions may include:

  1. Rescheduling the evaluation, or
  2. Preparing an alternative evaluation for that particular student, or
  3. Recalculating the total evaluation in the course to eliminate the component that has been missed.

When the instructor and student are unable to agree on suitable accommodation, the matter will be referred to the associate dean who may request that the student present evidence concerning the religious obligations involved.

Religious Accommodation Guidelines: Course Directors

Course directors, who because of religious commitment cannot hold a formally scheduled examination (December and April examination period) on a specific day/time, must inform the Registrar's Office, through their associate dean, in a timely fashion only if another day/time is required. Otherwise, it will be assumed that arrangements were made within a department for a replacement.


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