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Updated on Monday, October 6

#19911

OMG: Reading week? You mean Oktoberfest holiday.

28 comments

  1. 2 days off in the Fall isn't a Fall Reading Week. Your description might be the most accurate.

    What they aren't telling us, of course, is that currently every 5 or 6 years, to maintain the necessary minimum number of class days, they have to either have exams on Christmas Eve or class on a Saturday. So if we free up 2 days in the calendar, 1 of them will probably just go towards that.

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    1. actually this would only push it back to the 23rd as exams currently only go to the 22nd

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    2. 1a, that extra day is an emergency make-up day in case exams are cancelled due to a catastrophe (like mass snow fall). The registrar won't consider a schedule that sacrifices that day.

      And that's just this year's schedule. On years when labour day is on September 7th, exams go right to the 23rd (with the emergency day on Christmas Eve), and the only reason it's not the 24th (with no emergency day at all) is because there is one Saturday class in those years.

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  2. No guarantee that those days are attached to Thanksgiving, meaning for many students, it's not actually a chance to go home either, just an extra day or two off.

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  3. It's likely that if this goes through they'd at least try and follow the schedule that Laurier uses. That would mean starting classes on the Thursday of what is now Orientation Week, and ending classes 2 days later (on the Wednesday).

    The break is then the entire week after Thanksgiving. Of course, since UW is much bigger and has more classes and exams, this might not be feasible to make sure the term is done before Christmas.

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    1. I doubt they would push the term out in both directions. Laurier really doesn't have to worry about a third of the students doing spring term, so they can make their fall and winter terms longer.

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    2. The week before Thanksgiving is more difficult than you might think. Apparently that's actually the highest-traffic time for co-op interviews.

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  4. Why is this my favourite?

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  5. my friend told me that Laurier students are getting their first fall reading week ever next week.. so jelly. Waterloo students should have a fall reading week too!

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    1. A full week is out of the question. Unlike Laurier, we don't have the room for it.

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    2. @5a The University admin should MAKE room for it

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    3. 5a, okay, here are your options:

      1) Do away with the Spring Term/Spring Co-op so that we can start Fall classes in August. (Impossible because of the incredible damage it would do to the co-op program);

      2) Reduce the actual total number of class days in the Fall by 1 week. (Impossible because it would cause many of our programs subject to certification - like all engineering programs - to lose their accreditation);

      3) Recover some days by doing one or more of the following:

      a) Cutting down Orientation Week and starting classes on the Thursday after Labour Day would recover 1-2 days (1 some years, usually 2); this is currently the only option being considered...

      b) Having final exams on Sundays would recover 1-2 days, also;

      c) Reducing the number of study days between the end of classes and the start of exams would also recover 1-2 days.

      So the question is... what are you willing to give up? And would giving that thing up do more harm than creating an extra day or 2 off would bring good?

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    4. I would totally give up O-Week days and days between study and exam period. I would even be willing to write an exam on a Sunday.

      I just enjoy have a few catch up days in the middle of the term. It helps with burn out.

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    5. 5d, good - you know what you're willing to give up.

      Now, some info on the process currently underway:

      Feds is holding a referendum that will be asking whether or not you are okay with giving up 2 days of o-week.

      Sunday exams and less pre-exam study days are no longer on the table, since they received very little support in surveys.

      This means, in the event of a yes vote, at most you will get 2 days off at some point during the term. Some years it will just be 1 day off (since otherwise in those years we're back to profs choosing between exams on Christmas Eve or holding one class on a Saturday).

      That said, none of it's a sure thing, since the final decision on the calendar is made by the University Senate, not Feds.

      Personally, I'm *not* okay with giving up 2 days of o-week, since that will:
      1) Result in the current program being excessively compact, and not very helpful to frosh;
      2) Screw over the people on co-op who like to extend their work term into that first week of september for extra money;
      3) Not result in enough extra time off to be truly meaningful (the thanksgiving weekend - the only place these days would really matter - isn't being considered by admin as the time when these days off would be given, because that's peak season for co-op interviews).

      Also, I don't really find days off during term to be very helpful, since profs almost always assign extra work during them and schedule midterms after them. I'd prefer they be tacked on to winter break, if anything. But that's a personal preference. :)

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  6. I think it's pretty dumb for an UW student to talk about giving up O-week when they don't have it anymore. In my opinion, I feel the full week was great in the past and a fall reading week isn't exactly needed, but I would be willing to do the sunday final exam if that gave it to us.

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    1. Agreed, 6. I don't know for sure, but apparently the faculty weren't keen on the idea of coming in on Sundays during the exam period. And the faculty have the ultimate run of the campus, so....

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    2. From what I understand, the concern was more that Sundays are what we currently use in case of snow days. Remove those and bad weather could run exams straight into Christmas.

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  7. HOLY SHIT THIS GUY IS JACKING OFF AT QNC WTF [NSFW OBVIOUSLY]

    http://www.xtube.com/watch.php?v=PWaIn-G894-#.VDXWgRPF8eY

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    1. HOLY SHIT I KNOW THAT GUY

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    2. @7a, do you actually?

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  8. SO HOW DID OP FIND THIS IS THE BETTER QUESTION

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  9. people who think we don't need a reading week haven't ever had 11 midterms in one semester

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    1. Mathie here. Have had terms where I'm taking 5 classes, sometimes 6, each with 2 midterms and assignments either weekly or bi-weekly. I don't want a Fall Reading Week. Hell, I don't want the WINTER Reading Week that we currently have! It causes far more problems than it supposedly solves.

      What do I mean by that? Hmmm... one term, I had 4 midterms in the 2 weeks after Reading Week. Why? Because most of my profs said at the start of term "the nice thing about the midterm date is you'll get Reading Week to study for it!" And in the rest of my classes, the assignments they handed out before Reading Week were more than twice the length they normally were, because "you have a week off that you can use to do this next assignment!"

      And my family wanted to take a vacation that week. The result - instead of being even a LITTLE relaxed, I was three times more stressed out during Reading Week than I am normally during the term. Some variant of this happens to me every year, without fail.

      So what would I like to see in the Fall? Simple - I'd like to see exams end earlier. Maybe early enough to give everyone 2 full weeks of vacation time over the Christmas holidays? Maybe that's too much to hope for. But a day or 2 off in the middle of the Fall term ISN'T the answer!

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    2. @9a couldn't have said it better myself

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  10. Oh, a Laurier student? Let me introduce you to... Nuclear Launch Detected.

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