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The Dean of Students office can provide support for a wide range of personal circumstances.

Personal & Medical Emergencies

If you have an emergent situation prior to exam period that you believe may impact your ability to take or complete exams, contact DOS at

During the exam period, you may receive immediate exam help for urgent issues by calling 617-495-0722 and pressing “1” for exam support Monday through Friday, from 7:30 am ET to 6:30 pm ET.

If you are calling outside of the covered business hours, please leave a message and you will be contacted by the appropriate office as soon as possible.

Read more about emergencies during exam period

Exam Deferrals

Deferred examination requests may be granted in limited circumstances as outlined in the HAP (section IV(B): Deferred Examination Policy).

DOS can assist with exam deferrals for the following reasons:

  1. Illness of Student: Documentation of illness must be provided for review by the Dean of Students Office or Accessibility Services. Documentation can be provided by the student’s personal doctor or by visiting Harvard University Health Services (HUHS). In cases of medical deferment, the student will be required to take the exam as soon as the student is medically able to according to the doctor’s assessment, and in accordance with HLS’s exam administration schedule.
  2. Death or serious illness of a person in the immediate family or other person with whom the student has a similarly close relationship, which requires the student’s attention away from the Law School during the exam period.
  3. Personal emergency that interferes with an exam or immediate pre-exam preparation.
  4. Delivery of child that interferes with an exam or immediate pre-exam preparation (applies to either parent).
  5. Unavoidable military commitment.
  6. Educational opportunities that are deemed extraordinary by the Administrative Board, such as participation as a speaker in a conference or paper presentation outside of the Cambridge area.

Please visit the Deferred Examination Policy section of the HAP to learn about other reasons for deferrals, as well as the timing and process for deferral requests.

The Registrar’s Examinations webpage outlines everything you need to know about the administration of exams, from schedules to instructions to software. We recommend you bookmark the page for easy access to exam information during the swirl of exam period!