Petition Type: Deferred Exams

Deferred Exams

If you are not able to write your in-person final exam at the scheduled time or if you miss a final exam for reasons outside your control, you may submit a deferred exam petition, which is a request to write your exam at a later time. 

Note: In December 2021 and April 2022, students will write online final assessments (term work) and in-person final examinations. If you are unable to complete any kind of term work including online assessments, please review the Term Work Extension page

You can submit this petition in advance of the final exam if you know you will have to miss the exam, or soon after the final exam. It is important that your request to defer your final exam is due to reasons outside of your control, as not all situations are valid reasons to miss a final exam. For example, personal travel plans are not a valid reason, and you should take care to book any travel outside of the scheduled exam period. However, if you know in advance that you will be unavailable for a particular exam due to a scheduled surgery, you can submit the petition in advance of your exam. 

When a deferred exam petition is granted, your academic record in ACORN will show a standing deferred (SDF) notation for that course until your exam marks have been uploaded. 

Deadline to Submit a Deferred Exam Petition

Arts & Science courses: The deadline to submit a deferred exam petition is usually five business days after the end of the final exam period. In the case of the December final exam period, the deadline is five business days after the University reopens in January. Check the Academic Dates & Deadlines page for other petition deadlines. 

UTM and UTSC courses: The deadline to submit a deferred exam petition for courses at UTM and UTSC is 72 hours after the missed exam.

The deadline to submit any supporting documentation is two weeks from when you initiate your petition with your College Registrar’s office.

Personal Statement for Deferred Exam Petitions

In addition to the recommendations listed in Preparing a Petition, your personal statement should explain what circumstances caused you to miss or will cause you to miss the final exam. It should describe what happened to prevent you from writing the exam or it should clearly explain what unavoidable situation you have planned.

Try to answer these questions in your deferred exam statement:

  • Did you seek help from your advisor or another staff member regarding the circumstances you experienced or are experiencing around the time of the exam? If not, why not? If so, what happened?
  • If the date of the supporting documentation does not match up with the time of absence, explain why. For example, if you are seeking to defer an exam in August but your absence declaration shows that you were absent in July, explain why you no have documentation dated in August.

Deferred Exam Fees

The fee to defer an exam is $70 per course, up to a maximum of $140 per session (for two or more courses). You should pay the fee as soon as possible, as you will not be allowed to write your deferred exam until you have paid the deferred exam fee.

If you are deferring an exam due to a disability, and you are registered with Accessibility Services, your registration in your petition statement and your deferred exam fee may be waived.