Students Speak: Restructuring of the Academic Calendar

Photo by Monica Jamison

Students can no longer complain about Tech’s longer academic schedule. With new changes to the academic calendar starting Spring 2016, students share their thoughts on the new changes.

Dead week will drastically change from the academic calendar restructuring. The first two days of dead week will be normal instructional days, followed by one and a half days of reading periods in which no assignments are due and classes are not held. On Friday, exams start and continue on Monday, giving students an extra weekend to study after the first day of exams.

“I am really excited that Tech has opted to have a reading period. So many students struggle with finding time to study for finals as many final projects and presentations are due during dead week,” Divya Achtani, second-year IE, said. “Adding a reading period will definitely decrease the pressure on time for studying!”

Even though students are excited about the reading periods, they are still not so happy about the classes during the first few days.

“However, I am not so thrilled about having instructional time during finals week. Many students will most likely skip class during that week in order to study for finals,” Achtani said.

“I think this new version of dead week is a good idea, but there shouldn’t be compulsory classes. Instead, they should still maybe revise the syllabus or make them ‘question asking’ periods. There should just be no teaching of new material,” Pranathi Tupakula, first-year CS, said.

The Office of the Provost made the Wednesday before Thanksgiving a holiday as it was tough on students with flights on one of flying’s busiest days. Although this will not apply to some students, they are also declaring a two-day holiday for the Fourth of July.

“I think that more holidays would be beneficial to Tech students. The extra day for Thanksgiving break would give students a greater opportunity to recharge and visit friends and family during the holiday, an important aspect of mental health,” Sabrina Wald, second-year IE, said.

The proposal also plans to increase instructional time on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from fifty to fifty-five minutes. The extra minutes cut out about a week of the school year, which the administration could be used for longer breaks or class holidays.

“I really like the idea of how exams are split between two weeks … I’m not really sure how I feel about the one week that is getting cut because of the increase in lecture time,” Aditya Datve, first-year BME, said. “I would prefer if that week was given off without splitting it up, like another spring break, instead of having single days off throughout the semester.”