Senate regulation 8: Regulations governing examinations

Downloadable version of Senate Regulation 8 (PDF, 439KB)


These regulations apply to all campus based examinations.


In this context ‘campus based’ is defined as examinations which take place within University buildings, premises hired for assessments or overseas venues engaged by the University for the purpose of examinations.


‘Remote examinations’ are defined as examinations which are not ‘campus based’, as detailed above, and are governed by the Policy on Remote Examinations.

Registration for examinations


Students are required to register for examinations as part of the module registration process by the published deadlines.

Examination timetable


Examinations will be held in accordance with the published timetable. Timetables will include the date, time and venue of each examination.


Examinations will be held Monday through to Saturday inclusive and there may be three examination start times each day, including a late afternoon session in exceptional cases, and subject to timetabling requirements.


Students should read the Examination Timetable carefully to ensure that they have been correctly entered for their examinations and know the time, date and location of the examinations they are required to take.


Misreading the Examination Timetable will not be accepted as a satisfactory explanation for absence from an examination.


Special arrangements cannot be made to accommodate a student’s personal preferences, unless these arise from specific religious requirements identified by the student at the beginning of the academic year, or are associated with reasonable adjustments identified by the AccessAbility Centre.


The extent to which the timetabling of examinations can be adapted to meet specific religious requirements will vary from case to case but the University will make such special arrangements as are in its power, subject to the overriding requirements that the examinations must be scheduled within the published examination periods and that special arrangements for individual students must not disadvantage the majority. Students making requests for special arrangements on religious grounds should recognise that, where it is possible, special measures designed to meet their needs may involve an unavoidable element of inconvenience, for example the requirement to remain in isolation for a period of time.

Setting examination papers


Student and Academic Services shall publish annually deadlines for the submission of examination question papers.


All examination papers must be produced on standard University question paper proformas which can be obtained from Student and Academic Services.

Security of examination papers and stationery


Examination papers and examination stationery shall be held in a secure environment until the time for their release to students.



There shall be a prescribed number of invigilators in each examination room.


Invigilators may be recruited by Student and Academic Services from approved recruitment agencies. In exceptional circumstances, Heads of School may be required to appoint invigilators from their school if the required number of external invigilators cannot be recruited.


Invigilation arrangements for examinations are set out in the guidance notes issued by Student and Academic Services.


Training for invigilators will be provided on an annual basis by Student and Academic Services.


Invigilators are required to comply with instructions issued by Student and Academic Services and to ensure that they are aware of their obligations as specified in the Notes for Invigilators.


Chief Invigilators must collect examination papers at least 45 minutes prior to the start of the examination. Other invigilators must report to the examination room at least 30 minutes before the examination is due to commence.


Chief Invigilators are required to start and finish examinations in accordance with the instructions issued by Student and Academic Services.


Chief Invigilators will be required to complete a report form on the conduct of each examination for submission to Student and Academic Services.


If the author of an examination paper is not an invigilator for the relevant examination s/he should normally be in attendance 10 minutes before and for the first fifteen minutes of an examination. Where it is not possible for the author to be present s/he should ensure that their contact details are available or another member of the school is present in order that any issues relating to the examination paper can be addressed.

Conduct during examinations


Invigilators are present at all examinations and are responsible for their proper conduct. Students are required to comply with all instructions issued by an invigilator.


Students will be admitted to the examination room by an invigilator shortly before an examination is due to start. Once admitted to the room examination conditions apply so no talking is permitted.


Students should sit at a desk allocated for the examination question paper they are sitting in accordance with the seating plans posted outside the examination room.


Students should only bring essential items to examinations as there is limited storage for personal items within examination rooms.


Students are typically not permitted to wear coats, scarves, hats or outdoor wear, except where exemption applies for religious reasons, during examinations.  Invigilators will request that students remove any clothing of this type and to place it in the area reserved for storage of personal items for the duration of the examination.


Students must bring their own pens, pencils, rulers, approved calculators and any other required equipment to each examination. These should be kept in a clear plastic pencil case. Cases and other containers are not permitted on examination desks. Additional material may only be used if issued by an invigilator or where it is specifically allowed in the examination question paper rubric.


Food and drink are not permitted in the examination room with the exception of water which, if required, should be in a clear plastic bottle with no label.


Students must bring their University ID card to all examinations and display it on their desk throughout the examination. ID cards will be checked by an invigilator once the examination has started.


Students should complete an attendance slip and place it on their desk for collection by the invigilator once the examination has started.


Students should enter their student number, not their name, on the examination answer booklet. The student number is the nine digit number on the student’s University ID card.


Examinations will start and finish on the instruction of the invigilator. Students must not open examination question papers or start writing until instructed to do so.


Valuable items such as keys, purses and mobile telephones may be placed in the clear plastic bags provided on each desk and placed under the student’s chair. Mobile telephones must be turned off and no items should be touched during the examination.


The use of mobile telephones or other electronic devices is not permitted. If a mobile telephone or other electronic device is not placed in the plastic bag provided and is found on a student during the course of an examination it will be regarded as a disciplinary offence.


Students must write legibly.


Talking or communicating in any other way with other students in the examination room before, during or after an examination is forbidden. Failure to observe this requirement will be treated as a disciplinary offence.


If a student wishes to speak to an invigilator they should raise a hand and stay seated.


The University operates a zero tolerance policy in relation to cheating in examinations. Invigilators will announce at the beginning of each examination that it is an offence for students to be in possession of any notes, documents or unauthorised material or to have any information written on their body or clothing. The invigilators will ask anyone with such material to raise their hand. The material will then be collected and the opportunity provided for information on the body or clothing to be removed. After this point, if any student is discovered with such material or with any information written on any part of their body or clothing in the examination room it will automatically be assumed that cheating has taken place and the consequence will be a mark of zero to the module.


Any student wishing to leave the examination room temporarily should raise their hand to request permission from an invigilator. Students permitted to leave the room will be escorted by an invigilator. Any student who leaves the room without an invigilator’s permission will be deemed to have withdrawn from the examination and will not be allowed to return. The Chief Invigilator will provide a report to the Registry in such cases.


Any student who causes a disturbance in an examination room will be reprimanded by an invigilator. If the conduct persists the student may be required to withdraw from the examination room and a report will be made to Student and Academic Services.


Students who arrive late may be admitted to an examination room during the first 30 minutes of an examination. No additional time will be given.


Students are not permitted to leave an examination during the first 30 minutes or the last 20 minutes.  In examination rooms where papers of mixed duration are being taken students are only permitted to leave at the Chief Invigilator’s discretion.


Students wishing to leave an examination early must inform the invigilator and must remain in their seat until their examination script has been collected. They must leave the examination room quietly with minimum disturbance both inside and immediately outside the examination room.


At the end of an examination the Chief Invigilator will instruct students to stop writing. Students must remain seated at their desks until all examination scripts have been collected by an invigilator and they are instructed that they may leave.


No examination question paper, answer book or part of an answer book, whether used or not, may be removed from the examination room.

Alternative examination arrangements


Alternative examination arrangements may be made for students with long or short term medical conditions, specific learning difficulties or disabilities, subject to the overall requirement that academic standards must be maintained.


Requests for alternative examination arrangements on the grounds of specific learning difficulties shall be notified to Student and Academic Services by the AccessAbility Centre. Only recommendations supported by the AccessAbility Centre will be considered. Requests for alternative examination arrangements on the grounds of either short or long term medical conditions must be made to Student and Academic Services with the support of a doctor.

Use of calculators and dictionaries


Except where special arrangements apply the use of programmable calculators is forbidden. Where the use of such calculators is permitted only specified models may be used and any unauthorised calculators will be confiscated. Any suspected misuse of calculators will be considered as a possible disciplinary offence.


English Language dictionaries are available in examination rooms and may be consulted through the invigilator who, upon request, will bring the dictionary to the student’s desk. No assistance with the use of the dictionary is permitted. Students are not permitted to bring their own dictionaries or electronic translators into the examination room.

Action in the event of a fire alarm


In the event of a fire alarm during an examination students will be instructed by the invigilator to stop what they are doing, leave all materials on their desk and make their way to the nearest fire exit. Students must not communicate with each other and examination conditions will be maintained.

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