Provost's Office

Academic Calendar

Similar to the spring semester, the fall semester will incorporate days into the university calendar where campus remains open, but no classes or instruction will take place. The Student Government Association had been seeking an opportunity for students to have a break from their courses for overall health and well-being. In review of previous fall academic calendars, students would have about 60 straight weekdays of classes. The newly revised fall calendar for 2024 will now afford a break in courses after 37 weekdays and another break to account for the Thanksgiving holiday. 

The dates selected for this break in instruction for fall 2024 are October 24 and 25. The fall break has been reviewed and approved by all shared governance groups. Faculty Senate adopted the revised fall 2024 calendar on Dec. 16, 2023, by a vote of 20-0-2 after the Faculty Senate Calendar Committee unanimously voted to approve the changes.

To gain the two days for the break, classes will begin one day earlier than previously scheduled on Tuesday, Sept. 3, and Wednesday, Nov. 27, is now an instructional day as well. No classes will take place on October 24 and 25. No changes were made to the fall academic calendar after the Thanksgiving holiday or to final exams.

A committee, led by Faculty Senate, was comprised of three faculty members from each college and a member from each shared governance group. Various campus constituents and stakeholders provided a committee with input on what would be the best possible dates. The committee reviewed applicable Wisconsin state laws, Universities of Wisconsin policies and UW-River Falls needs and after taking all information into account, felt that the selected dates and revised calendar met the necessary guidelines for implementation.

No, the dates for the fall break are not recognized holidays approved by the Universities of Wisconsin or UW-River Falls. Campus offices and departments remain open for normal operating hours and any employee wishing to take time off on either day should use their appropriate vacation allotment.

Academic Day is a day that is unique to UW-River Falls only and is not a Universities of Wisconsin requirement. This day has typically been reserved for the Tuesday immediately following Labor Day. With this Tuesday now being converted to an instructional day, Academic Day is being reimagined by a group of stakeholders on campus and will most likely be moved to a day in the preceding week after move-in day takes place. The selection of this date has not yet occurred.

No. As previously mentioned, campus offices and departments remain open for normal operating hours and any employee wishing to take time off on either day should use their appropriate vacation allotment. Additionally, employees wishing to work remotely can make arrangements with their supervisor or adhere to procedures agreed upon in their department.

Since there is no classroom instruction during these dates, students may use the time as is most beneficial and appropriate to them, the same as any other break.

Students with on-campus employment should address any schedule changes with their supervisors well before the fall break. This would include time off requests or for those wishing to potentially pick up extra work opportunities.

Faculty and instructional staff retain full academic freedom within their courses which includes the method of content delivery. For a course to be considered “face to face,” in-person instruction must take place at least 75% of the time during the course of the semester. This means the other 25% can be another method of instruction whether that is an activity in Canvas, an asynchronous or synchronous online course, or another activity of the instructor’s choosing. While the Wednesday prior to Thanksgiving is now an instructional day, as with any other day, faculty and instructional staff may use that day in a way they feel meets the needs and goals of their course(s).

UW-River Falls has its own calendar policy that states each course must have an equivalent number of dates that it meets. There is also a portion of the policy that permits the “renaming” of days in order to meet this requirement. With that, during the week of the Thanksgiving holiday Tuesday, Nov. 19, will be considered a Thursday and Wednesday, Nov. 20, will be considered a Friday. In doing so, this accounts for the Thursday and Friday of the fall break where no classroom instruction will take place.

No. As previously stated, faculty and instructional staff retain full academic freedom to engage their students and may build their courses in any manner they feel is most effective for their course learning outcomes within the dates of the revised fall academic calendar.

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Provost's Office
116 North Hall