Exam Advice & Regulation

Exam Tips

Revising for and taking exams can be a testing time for students. We have recorded our top tips, advice, offers and essential information to help you make it through to the other side in one piece.

Exam Survival Top Tips
• Eat well + sleep well = work well
• Avoid booze & caffeine before bed
• Find your own revision style – there are lots different of ways to revise
• Look after yourself and your friends and keep the exam period in perspective
• Take a break & make time to relax
• Recognise when you are getting stressed - think positive & don’t panic!
• Personal or health problems? Tell your department
• Be organised in advance & on the day – use the Exam checklist
• There are always options If things don’t go well
• If you are worried, ask for help. Talk to Student Advice Centre, Nightline, Counselling Services and your department

Appeals/Extenuating Circumstances

You have the right to appeal, in appropriate circumstances, against a decision of a Board of Examiners or a Faculty Board or a Campus Progress and Award Board. An appeal must be based either:
on evidence of extenuating circumstances relevant to your progress which in your view was not in the possession of the Board of Examiners when it made its decision; or
on a procedural or other irregularity associated with the decision.

If you base your appeal on the submission of evidence of extenuating circumstances you will be required to provide a satisfactory explanation as to why such information was not submitted by the deadlines specified in the section Extenuating circumstances.

Once you have presented yourself for examination it is not open to you to appeal against the examiners’ decision on the grounds of complaint about the delivery or management of the module/course (see student complaints). You should raise any concerns or complaints about any aspect of course delivery or supervision as soon as they arise.The academic judgment of the examiners is not open to appeal (i.e. marks awarded cannot be appealed) but, if you consider that there was an irregularity in the examination procedures of such a nature that the examiners might have reached a different conclusion had the irregularity not occurred, you are entitled to appeal. (A procedural irregularity could, for example, be a change to published examination arrangements not notified to students in advance, or applied to some but not other students on the course/module.)

If you wish to appeal you should obtain the appropriate form (SA1 for the submission of new information, or SA2 for the submission of evidence of procedural or other irregularities) from the campus Examinations Office on your campus, Student Services Centre, Belfast campus. The completed form should be returned, by the specified deadline, to the office from which it was obtained.

The forms are also available from the student portal at portal.ulster.ac.uk – My Studies tab, Examinations and Assessment channel.

All information will be treated confidentially. However, if you have information about highly sensitive or personal circumstances, which you do not wish to present to the Appeals Panel, you may lodge it in a sealed envelope in the campus Examinations Office (Student Services Centre, Belfast) with your name, course and the words ‘For the attention of the Chairperson of the Appeals Panel’ and ‘Strictly Confidential’ written on the outside.

What happens to your form?

The completed SA1 form will be considered by an appeals panel normally comprised of the Chairperson of the Board of Examiners, accompanied by the Head of School and the Course Director. (For students enrolled on combined subject honours degrees the appeals panel will normally comprise the Chairperson of the Progress and Award Board accompanied by the Director of Combined Studies and the Subject Director(s)). You will normally be entitled to be heard in person and to be accompanied by a member of the University (for example, a student or a Students’ Union officer or a member of staff, subject to there being no conflict of interest, i.e., the person must not be related to you).

The completed SA2 form will be considered by a Senior Officer. If the Senior Officer decides that you have not provided evidence of procedural or other irregularities in your completed SA2 form the appeal will be disallowed and the original decision of the Board of Examiners will be confirmed. If the Senior Officer decides that you have provided evidence of procedural or other irregularities he/she will either agree with the faculty the amendment to be made to the original decision of the Board, or convene a panel comprising members of staff not associated with the original decision to consider the evidence.

An explanatory leaflet on appeals procedures may be obtained from the student portal at portal.ulster.ac.uk – My Studies tab, Examinations and Assessment channel

Unable to Attend

If you fail to attend for an examination, whether or not this is due to authenticated medical or compassionate circumstances, you must notify the Course/Subject Director of your absence not later than five working days following the examination.

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