The purpose of this policy and the associated procedures is to achieve coordinated and consistent examination practices across Australian Catholic University (ACU).
The purpose of this policy and the associated procedures is to achieve coordinated and consistent examination practices across Australian Catholic University (ACU).
This policy applies to all central and School-based examinations at ACU, and to all staff and students.
Terms used in this policy and the associated procedures are consistent with the ACU Glossary of Terms. In addition, the following words and expressions in this policy have the meanings listed below:
In-person examination means examinations that take place in an exam venue at an ACU campus or Satellite Centre or an established examination centre.
Online examination means a timed, supervised or unsupervised, summative assessment conducted running a standardised operating system. All online examinations are held and conducted through the learning management system (Learning Environment Online (LEO)).
Central examination means any examination administered by Examinations and Results (E&R).
School-based examination means any examination administered by a School, Faculty or other academic organisational unit.
Examination adjustment means a change to examination conditions that take account of an ongoing medical or personal condition.
Special examination adjustments means a change to examination conditions that account for a temporary disability or acute medical condition.
4.1 Standard study periods
There will be a designated, maximum three-week examination period at the end of the first and second semesters for the conduct of central examinations.
4.2 Non-standard study periods
Examinations for units offered in non-standard study periods will be arranged and conducted by the relevant School.
4.3 Deferred examination periods
There will be a deferred examination period not less than two weeks after the end of the central examination periods for the first and second semesters.
4.4 Examination sessions
Examinations may be held within the period 8 am to 8 pm Monday to Friday (including public holidays) and 8 am to 5 pm Saturdays throughout the examination periods.
An examination may be a central examination, organised by the Examinations and Results Team (E&R) of Student Administration, or a School-based examination organised by the relevant School.
5.1 Central examinations
5.1.1 All central examinations will occur within the examination periods as identified in the common academic calendar. Examinations falling outside these periods will be organised by Schools. (see section 5.2).
5.1.2 For central examinations, Schools are responsible for:
5.1.3 For central examinations, E&R is responsible for:
5.2 School based examinations
5.2.1 School-based examinations may be held during the designated central examination period, or at any other time specified for an examination in the published unit outline.
5.2.2 School-based examinations held during the central examination period should be held after the final examination session for the day, commencing at 6.00 pm or on Saturdays.
5.2.3 In the event of a clash between a central examination and a School-based examination, the central examination will have priority and the School-based examination will need to be rescheduled.
5.2.4 School-based examinations will not be held during the Universities Australia common vacation week, or an official pre-examination study week as identified in the common academic calendar, without prior approval from the Academic Registrar.
5.2.5 For School-based examinations, the School is responsible for:
5.3 Examinations in courses with professional experience requirements
5.3.1 For any course, or course cohort, with a professional experience component occurring during the central examination period, effort will be made to schedule all examinations during a minimum of one calendar week out of the three-week official examination period.
5.3.2 If a clash between a professional experience placement and a scheduled examination is identified at the time of publication of the final examination timetable, a student may submit an application for a Deferred Examination with evidence of the dates of the professional experience placement. Such applications will receive automatic approval and the student will be notified in accordance with section 21 of this policy.
5.4 Supplementary examinations
5.4.1 For standard study periods, where supplementary assessments take the form of a written examination (in-person or online), they will be managed by E&R. All other forms of supplementary assessment will be managed by the relevant School.
5.4.2 Supplementary examinations will be held concurrently with any deferred examinations for the unit.
5.5 Concurrent use of the same examination paper
5.5.1 Concurrent use of the same examination paper is permissible only:
5.5.2 Requests for concurrent use of the same examination paper must provide the following:
5.5.3 Requests for use of an examination paper for multiple examinations will be accommodated where possible. If not possible, an additional examination paper will be required
6.1 Central examinations can be between one and two hours in duration including reading time.
6.2 The central examination timetable will be scheduled in one or two hour blocks.
6.3 Examinations will be scheduled taking into consideration the mix of units undertaken by students and endeavouring to minimise, or preferably eliminate, clashes of examinations for units taken by class cohorts or individual students.
6.4 Subject to space constraints, priority will be given to the scheduling of central in-person examinations for units with enrolments of 400 students or more. Where clashes cannot be avoided, special arrangements will be made to enable affected students to undertake the examinations as close as possible to the scheduled time, while maintaining the security of examinations.
6.5 A student may be required to undertake a maximum of two examinations in a single day or three examinations in any two consecutive days.
6.6 A student should have a minimum of a two hour break between end time of one examination and start time of another.
6.7 Where a unit has in excess of 900 enrolments, online examinations will be scheduled inside at least a four-hour window to ensure system capacity is not compromised.
7.1 Final central examination timetables will be published at least six weeks prior to the commencement of the main examination period and at least one week prior to the commencement of the deferred examination period.
7.2 Examination timetable information will be made available online to staff and students. It is the responsibility of each student to:
8.1.1 Venues for examinations must adhere to the University examination standards. See Schedule 1 for minimum requirements for examination venue
8.1.2 Students will sit examinations at the campus or ACU Satellite Centre at which they attend classes for the unit being examined, or an established examination centre.
8.2 Online, Multi-mode and Off-campus units
8.2.1 Students enrolled in a unit offered in multi-mode or at a location other than an ACU campus or Satellite Centre, may sit examinations at the campus, ACU Satellite Centre or established examination centre closest to their semester address. Students will be notified of the location of the examination venue via their personal examination timetable..
8.2.2 Students enrolled in a unit offered in online mode will undertake their examinations online.
8.3 Variation of examination venue
8.3.1 In exceptional circumstances a student may apply to sit an examination at a venue other than those outlined in sections 8.1.1 and 8.1.2 of this policy.
8.3.2 The application must be made in writing to the Academic Registrar at least six weeks before the commencement of the relevant examination period.
8.3.3 If a variation of exam venue is approved to enable a student to sit the examination at an alternative venue, the student may be required to pay a prescribed fee.
8.4 In situ examination
8.4.1 In exceptional circumstances a student who is remote from the University on practical experience and is required to undertake an in-person examination during that practical experience, may apply for an in situ School-based examination.
8.4.2 The application must be made in writing to the Head of School at least six weeks before the commencement of the relevant examination period.
8.4.3 The student must be notified of the outcome of the application within ten calendar days of the receipt of the application.
8.4.4 If approved, the School will be responsible for ensuring appropriate local supervision is arranged.
8.4.5 If an in situ exam is approved, to enable a student to sit the examination at an alternative venue, the student may be required to pay a prescribed fee.
9.1 Examination papers will be produced in accordance with the Procedures for Examinations–Staff.
10.1 Examination supervisors are responsible for the conduct of examinations and for ensuring compliance with this policy. A student must comply with all directions given by the examination supervisor and the supervisor’s decision is final.
10.2 In an examination, a student may be required to:
11.1 A student must comply with the Academic Regulations, the Student Academic Integrity and Misconduct Policy and Student Conduct Policy.
11.2 Students are subject to the provisions of the Dealing with Instances of Falsified, Fraudulent or Misleading Documentation Policy.
11.3 Students must carry and produce their ACU Student Card at each examination.
11.4 The ACU student card must be displayed prominently on the desk during in-person examinations. In cases where student does not have their ACU Student Card, ACU will implement other identity checking processes.
11.5 Students will have their attendance recorded at every examination.
12.1 Entry to Examination Room
12.1.1 A person other than the supervisor, or other authorised person1, may not enter or remain in an examination room during an examination, or during the period of 45 minutes immediately preceding or immediately following an examination session, without the permission of E&R.
12.1.2 A student, on entering an examination room, must proceed to the place to which that student is directed by the supervisor. A student must not leave that place without permission or direction from a supervisor.
12.1.3 A person, whether a student or not, who is permitted to enter or leave an examination room must comply with conditions as outlined by the supervisor.
12.2 Starting time
The time listed on the examination timetable is the time when the examination commences. Students must not commence writing until the supervisor has given permission.
12.3 Late arrival
12.3.1 Students who arrive within the first 30 minutes after the start of an examination will be permitted to undertake that examination but will not be allowed additional time.
12.3.2 Students who arrive later than 30 minutes after the start of an examination will not be permitted to undertake that examination.
12.4 Early departure from examination rooms
12.4.1 Except in circumstances related to illness as provided for in section 12.5 of this policy, a student must not leave the examination room;
12.4.2 Students who wish to leave the examination room prior to the scheduled finish time (and outside the times specified in Section 12.4.1 ) must adhere to instructions provided by the supervisor.
12.5 Illness during examination
12.5.1 If a student becomes ill during an examination and temporarily leaves the examination venue, but remains under supervision, no extra time will be allowed for the student to complete the examination. In this circumstance the student may submit an application for special consideration as per the Assessment Policy and Assessment Procedures.
12.5.2 If the candidate decides to continue the examination, the Examination Supervisor may make a decision to move the student to an alternative location, to reduce disruption to other students. The time required for the move will be added to the student’s allocated examination time.
12.5.3 If the student cannot continue with the examination, the supervisor will note this and report the matter to E&R.
12.5.4 If a student becomes ill during an examination and is unable to continue the examination, the student may submit an application for a Deferred Examination. If a Deferred Examination is granted the original sitting of the examination will not be marked.
12.6 Conclusion of examination
At the conclusion of the examination all students must maintain examination conditions until all papers have been collected and the supervisor has given students permission to leave the examination room.
13.1 Timing of Examinations
13.1.1 The time listed on the examination timetable is the time when the examination opens online.
13.1.2 Students will normally be allocated a window of time, as per the examination timetable, in which to commence their examination.
13.1.3 Its is the responsibility of the student to ensure they allow adequate time to complete the examination before the examination closes.
13.2 Illness during examination
13.2.1 If a student becomes ill during an examination and is unable to continue the examination, the student may submit an application for a Deferred Examination using the Application for Deferral (DEF) form . If a Deferred Examination is granted, the original sitting of the examination will not be marked.
14.1 Nominated materials permitted in examinations
14.1.1 Where specified books or other materials (restricted open book examinations) are permitted to be taken into an examination, such materials will be limited to those specifically approved by the Lecturer in Charge and such materials will be listed on the examination paper cover sheet.
14.1.2 Where an examination is designated 'open book', the relevant text book and allowable materials subject to section 14.1.3 may be used in the examination.
14.1.3 The supervisor or other authorised person will ensure such materials comply with the approved list provided by the Lecturer in Charge and do not contain any unauthorised materials.
14.1.4 The use of e-books is not permitted in any in-person examination.
14.2 Use of dictionaries in examinations
14.2.1 English language dictionaries are not permitted in an examination.
14.2.2 A student may take a standard English/foreign language dictionary2 (bilingual dictionary) in printed, not electronic format, into an examination in any unit. Specialist dictionaries, for example medical dictionaries, are not permitted.
14.2.3 The dictionary must not contain any notations or any additional material and must be presented to the supervisor for inspection.
14.2.4 Students will be refused permission to use dictionaries that contain notations or additional materials.
14.3 Use of personal electronic devices in examinations
14.3.1 Personal electronic devices may not be used in an examination except with the prior approval of the Lecturer in Charge. Such approval must clearly identify the category of electronic device allowed in the specific examination.
14.3.2 Electronic devices which can be approved are restricted to those which are hand-held, internally powered, silent and not capable of wireless communication with other electronic devices.
14.3.3 Calculators and other electronic devices approved for use in an examination must have any programmable memory cleared prior to the examination commencing. Non-programmable calculators, where allowed, must have volatile memory only and must not have alpha facilities.
14.3.4 A student using an authorised electronic device in an examination is responsible for its operation. Any failure or malfunction of the device will not constitute grounds for a deferred examination or other special arrangements.
14.4 Mobile telephones
Mobile telephones must not be used in any examination
14.4.1 In-person examinations
If a mobile telephone is brought into an examination room, it must be switched off and placed face down on the floor under the student’s desk. Non-compliance will result in the mobile telephone being confiscated by the Examination Supervisor for the duration of the examination.
14.4.2 Online examinations
A mobile phone must not be accessible to the student for the duration of the examination. Non-compliance will result in an incident being raised to investigate whether Academic Misconduct has occured.
Watches are not permitted in an examination. If a watch is brought into an examination, it must be placed face down on the floor under the student’s desk. Non-compliance will result in the watch being confiscated by the Examination Supervisor for the duration of the examination in an in-person examination. In an online examination , non-compliance will cause an incident to be raised for review in order to determine whether academic misconduct has taken place.
14.6 Materials left outside examination room
The University accepts no responsibility for the security of any materials left outside an examination room.
15.1 In-person examinations
15.1.1 The Lecturer in Charge of a unit, or alternative contact as approved by Head of School or equivalent, must be contactable during the whole of the examination to answer any questions which may arise regarding the examination paper. E&R staff or examination supervisors must not make a determination regarding the content of an examination paper.
15.2 Computer-based In person examinations
15.2.1 In addition to section 15.1.1 of this policy, the Lecturer in Charge must be present for at least 15 minutes at the beginning of an in-person computer-based examination to set and deliver the required password for/to students and to ensure the examination commences appropriately.
15.2.2 Lecturers in Charge must provide students sitting a computer-based examination, and the examination supervisor(s) with written information equivalent to that provided on the cover sheet of a paper-based examination.
15.3 Examinations conducted in a clinical or science laboratory
Where an examination is conducted in a clinical or science laboratory, the Lecturer in Charge must be present for the duration of the examination and is responsible for the supervision of all students undertaking the examination
15.4 Examinations with approved electronic devices
If an electronic device has been approved for use in an in-person examination, the Lecturer in Charge, or nominee approved by the Head of School or equivalent, must be present to inspect such devices to ensure that they comply with section 14.3 of this policy.
16.1 Where an examination is affected by an unexpected interruption (for example, a power failure, computer/software malfunction, earthquake, bomb threat, fire alarm etc.) the supervisor will implement appropriate immediate action including any action necessary under the Critical Incident Management Policy.
16.2 Minor disruptions to an examination, for a period of 15 minutes or less, will be accommodated by the provision of an equivalent period of additional time added to the end of the allocated examination time by approval of the Coordinator, E&R.
16.3 The Academic Registrar or nominee will determine the appropriate course of action in the event of a significant disruption to an examination. A significant disruption may include repeated minor disruptions in the same examination session.
16.4 In the event of an evacuation of an examination venue, the Academic Registrar in consultation with the Executive Dean or nominee will determine which of the following outcomes will apply, with consideration to minimising disadvantage to students:
17.1 Where there is an interruption to an online examination the student may apply for a deferred examination using the Application to Defer (DEF) form with supporting documentation (e.g. screenshots).
17.2 Where there is a significant interruption to an online examination as a result of a known ACU technical issue, students may apply for a deferred examination using the Application for Deferral (DEF) form and will be automatically approved.
18.1 Permanent disability and/or chronic medical condition
18.1.1. Adjustments to the examination conditions for students with a permanent disability and/or chronic medical condition will be incorporated in Education Inclusion Plans developed by Disability Support.
18.2 Unexpected temporary disability or medical condition
18.2.1 If a student has an unexpected temporary disability or medical condition, the student may apply for special adjustments to examination arrangements through submission of the relevant form to E&R.
18.2.2 If, due to the timing of the request, the University cannot implement the requested provisions, the student may be required to sit the examination during the deferred examination period.
18.3 Notification of examination adjustment and special adjustment requirements
18.3.1 Students with a disability and/or medical condition should consult a Disability Adviser to register for examination adjustments as early as possible, preferably at the time of enrolment and no later than the census date of the relevant study period.
18.3.2 Disability Services will provide E&R with a list of examination adjustment requirements throughout the semester. Requests for Examination Adjustments after lecture week twelve will not be considered for central examinations in the main round.
18.3.3 Where examination adjustments are not advised to E&R by the above date, one of the following actions will be taken:
18.3.4 The Student will receive written advice of the decision on any application for an examination adjustment by E&R, with advice of any approval also being provided to the relevant School.
19.1 Lecturers in Charge, or nominee, must collect students' examination scripts in person from the examination distribution room, within 2 working days of the examination date consistent with Section 9 of the Examination Procedures for Staff.
20.1 In the event of examination papers, writing booklets or answer sheets being lost, stolen or destroyed, the Academic Registrar, in consultation with the Executive Dean or nominee, and/or the Director of Information Technology will determine a course of action for those students who have been directly affected so as to minimise disruption or disadvantage to those students.
20.2 The final decision may be one of the following, or an alternative action, as determined by the Academic Registrar, in consultation with the Executive Dean:
21.1 Central Deferred Examinations
18.104.22.168 Where a student is unable to attend an examination due to illness or other exceptional circumstance beyond their control, the student is required to submit the Application for deferral (DEF) form for deferred examination along with supporting documentation or Professional Authority as per section 21.4 of this policy.
22.214.171.124 Applications for deferred examinations must be submitted along with the required supporting documentary evidence no more than five calendar days after the examination.
21.1.2 Determination of application for a deferred central examination
126.96.36.199 The Academic Registrar or nominee will determine the outcome of an application for a deferred central examination.
188.8.131.52 E&R will notify a student of the outcome of their deferred examination application in writing no less than 48 hours prior to the commencement of the deferred examination period.
184.108.40.206 Where the application is approved, the details of the examination date, time and location will be published on the students’ Personal Examination Timetable.
220.127.116.11 In cases where an application is submitted prior to the originally scheduled examination and the application is refused, the student will be notified of the decision, in writing, prior to the originally scheduled examination.
21.2 21.2 School-based deferred examination
18.104.22.168 Where a student is unable to attend an examination due to illness or other exceptional circumstance (beyond their control) the student is required to submit the relevant documentation for a School-based deferred examination with the Lecturer in Charge as per section 21.3 of this policy.
22.214.171.124 Applications for deferred examination must be submitted along with supporting documentary evidence as per section 21.4 of this policy no later than five calendar days after the day of the examination.
21.3 Determination of application for a deferred School-based examination
21.3.1 The relevant School authority will determine the outcome of an application for a School-based deferred examination.
21.3.2 The School will notify the student of the outcome of their deferred examination application in writing not less than one week prior to the examination date determined by the Lecturer in Charge.
21.3.3 Where the application is approved, the written notification will include the details of the examination date, time and location.
21.3.4 In cases where an application is submitted prior to the examination and the application is refused, every effort will be made to contact the student prior to the scheduled examination.
21.4 Evidence in support of application for deferred examination
21.4.1 Any application for a deferred examination must be supported by appropriate documentary evidence (e.g.Professional Authority). An electronic version of the documentary evidence may be submitted, but a student may be required to produce the original on demand. The authenticity of documentary evidence may be confirmed with the named provider.
21.5 Limit on number of deferrals
21.5.1 An examination or alternative assessment may be deferred no more than once after the original scheduled examination.
21.5.2 If the student is unable to undertake the deferred examination or assessment, further deferral of the examination will not be granted and the Lecturer in Charge will be required to provide a final result for the unit.
21.5.3 If the student provides evidence of continuing exceptional circumstances, the Course Coordinator, after consultation with the student and the Lecturer in Charge, may recommend to the Head of School or equivalent that:
22.1 Subject to section 22.3 of this policy, past examination or sample papers for every unit that has a final examination will be published in the 'Past Exam Repository' page located on the Library website as outlined in the Examination Procedures - Staff.
22.2 Where there are multiple examination papers for the same unit in the same semester, only one paper is required for publication.
22.3 The following categories of examinations will be exempt from publication:
22.4 Where all or segments of examination papers are exempt from publication, Lecturers in Charge are required to provide students with sample examination questions relevant to the examination paper for that unit of study via LEO at the commencement of the study period. No material with unresolved copyright issues may be used.
22.5 Where a paper contains both exempt and non-exempt questions, the exempt segment may be deleted prior to publication.
22.6 Examination papers will not be given to students at the conclusion of a central or deferred examination.
22.7 Past examination papers will be available for up to three years from the date of publication on the ‘Past Exam Repository’ page.
23.1 Expulsion from examination room for in-person examinations
23.1.1 An Examination supervisor may expel any student from the examination room, where the supervisor has reasonable grounds for believing that the student is in breach of this policy.
23.2 Report and investigation
23.2.1 An Examination Supervisor must report any alleged breach of this policy to the Coordinator, Examinations and Results, who will refer the matter to the relevant officer.
23.2.2 Where an incident is reported during an online examination any alleged breach will be referred to the Coordinator, Examinations and Results, who will refer the matter to the relevant officer.
23.2.3 Any alleged breach of the examination conditions in section 12 or section 13 of this policy will be referred to the Academic Registrar who may:
23.2.4 In cases of alleged cheating the matter will be referred to the Head of School responsible for the unit and must be investigated and resolved in accordance with the Student Academic Integrity and Misconduct Policy.
23.2.5 In cases of alleged falsified documentation the matter will be referred to the Academic Registrar, and must be investigated and resolved in accordance with the Dealing with Instances of Fraudulent Information Policy and Procedures.
23.2.6 In all other cases the matter will be referred to the Designated Officer and must be investigated and resolved in accordance with the Student Conduct Policy.
24.1 Student responsibilities
24.1.1 Students are required to be available to undertake examinations throughout the periods designated for central examinations, including supplementary examinations and deferred examinations.as published in the Common Academic Calendar and associated study periods.
24.1.2 Students are required to be available to undertake School based examinations at the dates and times specified in the relevant unit outlines.
24.1.3 Students with an Education Inclusion Plan are responsible for providing it to their Lecturers in Charge to discuss implementation of adjustments as per the Students with Disabilities Policy.
24.1.4 Students are required to familiarise themselves with the provisions of this policy and the related policies as listed.
24.2 Staff responsibilities
Staff responsibilities relating to examinations are detailed in the Procedures for Examinations-Staff.
Records related to Examinations will be maintained in accordance with the Records and Archive Management Policy and Records and Retention and Disposal Schedule of the University.
|Date||Major, Minor or Editorial||Description of Revision(s)|
|23 May 2018||Minor||Amendment to wording around Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCE)|
|Feb 2019||Minor||Update of student administration section names and position titles.
Inclusion of additional information in materials in examinations section
Addition of section on missing examination papers.
|Nov 2020||Update to Policy and procedures in line with current processes, to have terminology that is inclusive of both in-person and online examinations.|
Any venue that is used by Australian Catholic University for examinations must adhere to the following minimum standards:
1An authorised person in this circumstance would normally be limited to a candidate for that examination, a Lecturer in Charge or nominee, or a member of staff of Student Administration. Authorised visitors should acknowledge the supervisor’s need to maintain examination integrity and must follow the supervisor’s directions.2Lecturers in Charge should be aware that bilingual dictionaries normally include the meaning of words in the foreign language.
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