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Office of Academic Administration and Student Affairs

Asst. Dean Stephen Sowle

Week of November 7, 2016
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Teaching Evaluations. Teaching evaluations will be distributed in the coming weeks to elicit students' opinions about the quality of teaching at the Law School. Evaluations are anonymous and will not be available to professors until grades are turned in. Instructors will review the responses to improve the quality of their instruction and courses. The evaluations are also considered as one important factor in tenure, promotion, and compensation decisions for full-time faculty and are used as a factor in determining the effectiveness of part-time instructors.

ASP Workshop: Preparing for and Taking Exams. The Academic Support Program's third and final Fall workshop will focus on preparing for and taking exams. The program for day students will be held on Tuesday, November 8, 12:00-12:50 pm (Auditorium).The program for evening students will be held on Tuesday, November 8, 7:35-8:25pm (Rm. 210). Although the programs aremainly aimed at first-year students, all students are welcome to attend. For more information about the Academic Support Program, visit the ASP web page. (Note: If you started this Summer in Dean Sowle's Criminal Law class, you have already had this workshop, but are welcome to attend again if you wish.)

Election Day Class Absences.
 In order to facilitate student participation in theelection process, a "liberal leave" policy will be in effect on Election Day (Tuesday, November 8), which means that faculty will not count election-related absences against students on that day.

Spring 2017 Course Schedule.
The Spring 2017 course schedule will be issued the week of November 14. Registration dates and instructions will be issued along with the schedule. Note to full-time first year students: Information about the 1L Your Way program is provided further down on page (scroll to the bottom).

Trial Team Open House. Do you want to be part of Chicago-Kent's Trial Team, ranked #3 in the country by U.S. News and World Report? Then come to the Trial Team Open House on Tuesday, November 15, 6:00-8:00 pm in the Front Lobby. Meet students on the team as well as the trial lawyers and sitting judges who coach them. Enjoy some pizza and beer and find out what it's like to be on a winning team. All 1Ls and 2Ls interested in trying out for Trial Team are invited to attend. Please RSVP to Ana Montelongo amontelo@kentlaw.iit.edu

Fall 2016 Final Exams.

•Exam Schedule and Exam Number. The final exam schedule for the current semester is available here. You will be notified of the classroom assignments for your exams prior to the start of exam period. To find your personal exam schedule, go to your Web for Students account and navigate to "Fall 2016" link under the "Schedule" heading in the lefthand menu. Your exam number is also provided there.

Exam Types and Distribution. There are three types of exams:

Fixed Exams: First-year courses and certain other courses will have fixed exams. Students will report to designated classrooms on specified days and times for these exams. The dates and times are listed on your Exam Schedule in Web for Students (see above).

Self-Scheduled Exams: Self-Scheduled exams can be taken at anytime during the examination period (December 7-16). You will choose the date and time that you wish to take the exam. You do not need to preschedule the exam time. Self-Scheduled exams may be picked up from the Exam Administration Office (Rm. 305) as follows:

    Monday-Friday: between 9:00am and 5:45pm 

    Saturday: between 9:00am and 11:00am

   No exams are given on Sunday

Please note: These times are pick-up times, not return times. For example, if you pick up a 3-hour exam at 5:45pm on a weekday, you will have the full 3 hours to complete the exam and must return it by 8:45pm.

You must present photo identification to pick up your exam. Your exam will be time-stamped and you will then proceed to one of the designated Self-Schedule exam rooms to take your exam using SoftTest. SoftTest will record a download time for the exam as well as an upload time for the exam. Once you download the exam in SoftTest, you must complete the exam.  When you have uploaded your exam answer, return the exam questions to the Exam Administration Office (Rm. 305).

Take Home Exams: Take-Home exams are given through the Registrar’s office. In some situations your professor may give you the exam during class and have you return it to the Registrar’s office.  In other situations, you will need to pick up and return the exam to the Registrar’s office.  Please speak with your professor regarding the rules around take home exams. Important notes: You must pick up and return take-home exams yourself; you may not have another person do so on your behalf. In addition, you may not submit your take-home exam answers by email; you must submit then in print form to the Registrar's office.

•Exam Conflict/Reschedule Requests.  The period is now closed for requesting an exam reschedule due to an exam conflict or other reason. If you have not received a response to your request, please contact Jenna Abhijeet (jabhijeet@kentlaw.iit.edu). 

•Exams Method Registration. The period is now closed for exam method registration.

•Notices About Exams on Computer. Students taking exams on laptop must download and install the SofTest exam-taking program. You will receive information from the Information Technology Services department about when and how to do this. Even though you do not need to submit an Exam Method Registration form to use your laptop for exams, you do need to download and install SofTest.

Unless a professor specifies otherwise, SofTest is configured to lock students out of other programs and services on their computers for the duration of the exam. This means that, unless a professor specifically authorizes access, students will not have access to notes, outlines, or other materials stored on their hard drive or the network.

The Information Technology Services department (ITS) will provide detailed information on the use of laptop computers and Lab computers during exams. For now, please make a note of the following items:
  • All students have to download the latest version of the SofTest software. Previously installed SofTest versions may not work for Fall 2016 exams.
  • The SofTest software for exams will be available for download beginning November 14, 2016.
  • Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, and Windows 10 are the only supported Windows platforms for exams. Windows XP and Windows RT are not supported.
  • Mac El Capitan, Yosemite, Mavericks, Mountain Lion, and Lion are the only supported Mac OS X platforms for exams on computer at Chicago-Kent.
  • A native Mac version of the SofTest exam-taking software is available for Mac users to download. "Virtualized" Windows operating systems via products such as Parallels Desktop or VMware Fusion will not function for exams.
  • Any individual found to be running an unlicensed or "pirated" operating system on their computer may be declined technical assistance.


To avoid any technical or computer difficulties, please make sure you bring the following items with you to the exam.

  • The contents of your ExamSoft Registration confirmation email

  • Your laptop power cord

  • Note: Use of a standard Ethernet network cable is encouraged in areas where there are ports available.

Notice About Borrowing Laptops: The Information Technology Services department has a limited supply of laptop computers reserved for use in emergency situations that arise during exam period. These laptops may be used (subject to availability) if your computer has problems immediately before or during an exam, as long as the problem is not due to your failing to properly configure or register your laptop to run the SofTest program. Because of limited supply, the ITS department's laptops are not available for general loaning purposes during exam period, including to students who do not own a laptop. However, if you have exceptional circumstances that you believe justify borrowing a laptop for an exam, please contact Jenna Abhijeet to discuss your situation.

Notice to Hand Writers: Students who are hand writing an exam will be placed in the same room used by laptop users for that exam. Hand writers will not be put in a separate room.

Availability of Professors' Old Exams. Many professors make their old exams available for students to review. Exams after 1982 are available online by clicking here. Exams dating from 1982 and before are bound in volumes available in the 10th floor reading room in the Library.

Lawyers Assistance Program: Office Hours at Chicago-Kent. The Lawyers Assistance Program (LAP) will be holding Fall office hours at Chicago-Kent on the dates listed below. LAP provides free and confidential assistance to members of the Illinois legal community, including students, and can help you with issues of addiction, stress, anxiety, depression, focusing, worries about the character and fitness process, and having a successful first-year transition. Click here for more information about LAP and the services it provides.

The remaining dates for Fall office hours are:

-Monday, November 14
-Friday, December 9

All office hours are from 10:00-2:00 in Rm. 285 (located in the southeast corner of the second floor; from the second floor atrium, go through the elevator bay and turn right). Walk-ins are welcome, or you can make an appointment by emailing Jamie Dureno at jdureno@illinoislap.org.

All discussion is confidential, and there is no record of your visit. The LAP clinician will also have literature and resources on hand to address many ethical or bar application related questions. No member of the Chicago-Kent administration is involved, ensuring absolute confidentiality.

1L Your Way. As explained below, first-year full-time students will be able to choose an elective class or the Clinic Rotation in the Spring 2017 semester, if they wish, in lieu of Legislation. Part-time day students and evening division students will begin taking electives next Fall (or this Summer if they elect to enroll for the optional Summer term).

Full-time students are required to take Civil Procedure, Property, and Legal Writing 2 in the Spring. For their final course, students may select from the following three options:

Taking Legislation (a 3-credit required course). Students who do not take Legislation in the Spring will be required to take it next Fall.

Taking an elective class. We have designated the following courses as automatically available (subject to space) for first-year students: Business Organizations (4 cr.), Patent Law (3 cr.), Employment Relationships (3 cr.), Criminal Procedure (3 cr.), and International Law (3 cr.). With permission, students may take other electives that fit their schedules (requests should be sent to Dean Sowle after the Spring schedule has been published). If you take an elective, you will be in class with upper-level students. Upper-level required courses may not be taken (this includes Constitutional Law, Professional Responsibility, Legal Writing 3, Legal Wrting 4, and seminars). Depending on demand, we may not be able to accommodate all first-year students who wish to take an elective, although we are hopeful there will be sufficient spaces available for all interested students.  

Taking the Clinic Rotation (2 credits, pass/fail only). Click here for more information about the Clinic Rotation and how to apply. Applications for the Clinic Rotation are due no later than Monday, November 14. If applications exceed the number of spaces, students will be chosen by lottery. Students will be notified as to whether they were selected prior to the start of Spring registration.

As noted above, students who choose to take an elective or the Clinic Rotation will be required to take Legislation next Fall.

To ensure that all full-time first-year students are assessed on a common set of courses, grades for Legislation or for an elective taken its place will not be considered in calculating Spring class ranks for first-year students or for purposes of probation and dismissals, Law Review selections, or merit scholarships for first-year students. The Clinic Rotation is graded pass/fail and thus won't count into students' GPA's for that reason.

Joke of the Week. I may get a job cleaning mirrors -- it's something I can see myself doing.

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