IU: No Plans to Increase Friday Classes
Indiana University plans no changes to its class schedule, after a review spurred by the disappearance of Lauren Spierer.
Spierer disappeared one year ago this month after a long Friday night of partying. But then-IU provost Karen Hansen looked at whether scheduling more classes on Fridays might dissuade students from starting to binge on Thursdays.
Vice Provost Tom Gieryn says it turns out two-thirds of students do have Friday classes, including 94-percent of freshmen. The number steadily declines through four years of school, with just 44-percent of seniors in class on Fridays. But the review found that Friday is the day many upperclassmen set aside for other academic-related work, including internships, student teaching and labs. Gieryn says IU's deans were "horrified" at the idea of cutting into that time with additional class requirements.
And Gieryn says there's no evidence that more Friday classes would mean any change in students' after-hours habits. He says he's talked personally with some groups of students who report the Thursday night drinkers many times have to search for other students to party with.
Gieryn says his office will continue to track year-by-year how much Friday work is taking place.
Purdue has two committees reviewing its academic week as well, but a university spokeswoman declined comment other than to say the goal is to help students graduate on time.