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FAQ for Undergraduate Exams April/May

Where do I find my timetable?

You will see it on your portal record my To view your assessment timetable please select My Exams. Please ensure you check your timetable before the exam period starts. There have recently been changes to the timetables. It is your responsibility to ensure you have the correct starting and submission times.

Where do I find my exam paper?

Unless you have been told otherwise, your exams will be released to you on Blackboard, go the relevant module and you will find the paper. The paper will be available at the scheduled start time of the exam, that is 9.30am, not 9.00am.

I have a weak internet connection and I am worried about not being able to download the exam paper. What can I do?

If, within 15 mins of the release time of the paper, you have not been able to download the paper, please email or ring 087 913 1198 / 089 224 6765 or 089 460 0206. Be sure and read carefully the “Guidelines for Students” document that has been emailed to all UG students.

I have a weak internet connection and have a problem uploading my assessment, what can I do?

It is your responsibility to upload your assessment to Blackboard on time. If you have difficulty uploading, you must ring or email us (see above) within 5 minutes of the submission deadline.

I think I have uploaded the wrong assessment, what can I do?

It is your responsibility to ensure the correct and final assessment has been uploaded. Only the uploaded document will be assessed. Alternatives will not be accepted after the deadline has passed.

I heard we get an extra 30 minutes does that mean my exam is for 4.5 hours?

No. You should use the 30 minutes before your exam is released to ensure you can get onto Blackboard and your laptop/desktop etc is in working order. Our Law UG exams are normally scheduled for 4 hour duration. From the release time they will remain open for 4 hours only. Exams are generally expected to only take 2 hours to complete. We have added an extra 2 hours to allow for other practicalities – disruption, internet connection etc.

Will I get extra time if I can’t download or upload my exam within the 4 hours?

No. The 4 hour period allows for time to deal with various housekeeping issues. Please see above and the Student Guidelines documents for further details.

I am registered with Disability Services and normally I am entitled to an extra 10 mins per hour. Because my paper is 4 hours long does that mean I don’t get the extra 10 mins per hour?

Additional time as per LENS report will be allocated to you. Further instruction will follow by email to all students who have had these accommodations put in place by Disability Services.

I am a Law and Business student and have a 4 hour Law exam which clashes with a 48 hour Business exam. What can I do?

Whilst every effort was made by Academic Registry to avoid clashes, it is inevitable that there will be overlaps. Neither Law nor Business (or other disciplines) will expect the period required to complete the exam to take as long as the time allocated for it. In the case of Law it is estimated the exams requires no more than 2 hours to complete. For Business the examples given indicate the exam should not take longer than 3 hours. The clash, therefore will not contribute any impediment towards your ability to complete the exams.

I live outside Europe and there is a 5 hour time difference. Am I expected to take my exam at 4.30 am my time?

No. We emailed all students requesting those currently residing outside Europe to contact us by 9th April. We will be communicating with all students who made contact with us in due course. If you haven’t already done so, please email

What happens if I submit late?

If you do not submit within the period set for your exams, you will be recorded absent. If you have difficulties submitting, please contact us (see above) within 5 minutes of the submission deadline.

How do I submit my exam paper?

Unless you have been told otherwise, your exam must be uploaded to Blackboard. All papers will be put through Turnitin to check for plagiarism. When submitting your paper, in order to ensure anonymity you must not use your name or ID number. Please label your work with your 5 digit exam number eg “5666”. Your exam number is available to you on the portal. It is the same number used during the first semester examinations. To avoid uploading the wrong paper, you might also wish to call your answer document “5666 – Criminal Law”.

What is the word limit for open book law exams?

The word limit for your open book exams in Law is 3,000 words. This is a maximum, not a minimum. You may be able to answer the exam in less than 3,000 words and you will not be penalized for so doing. Footnotes are not required or expected in exam answers but if used they will count towards the word count.

Is citation or referencing required for these exams?

It is not expected that full citation or referencing will be used – please approach this as you would in an exam on campus. For example, you may refer to cases, articles, textbooks etc. without giving the full citation.

Do I have to evenly allocate the word count across the questions, eg. 1,000 x 3, or can they be uneven/would they be penalised for that?

Students should try and aim for even distribution of words over the questions but some unevenness is unlikely to be a problem provided questions are fully addressed.

What if I answer more questions than I need to?

The maximum word limit is 3000 words. Students will only be marked on the basis of the number of answers required by the instructions for the exam . Questions will be marked in the order they are received.

Is it acceptable to use some short-hand in the exam? Such as SC for Supreme Court or HC for High Court etc.

As long as it is clear to the examiner and the abbreviation explained the first time it is being used what is being referred to (i.e. ".... Supreme Court (SC)....").

I am worried I have not been able to access some of the materials referred to on reading list, will this affect my exam performance?

Your exam will be marked on the basis of materials that have been made available to you and cases and articles listed on the reading list that everyone should have access to, in order to avoid disadvantaging anyone who did not have access to textbooks for the weeks after reading week.

What restrictions are in place regarding access to materials during the exams e.g. can I access my notes on my laptop, will the system block access to my hard drive?

During the exam you will have access to your own resources.

What are my deferral options?

On 8 April Council adopted measures to help alleviate stress and anxiety over exams and academic performance. One such measure is the introduction of “retrospective deferral” for students taking exams in April/May. Council approved the following:

“If a student attempts some assessments and finds that they have been unable to complete them or perform as they would have expected due to their personal circumstances, they can contact their Tutor and ask for deferral to the reassessment session. This must however be done for all modules from that date on (but can be requested for all modules in the session). We propose to apply the same guidelines as for students who become ill during an exam session or the overall assessment period – the request should be made through their Tutor prior to the publication of marks. We will apply the same policy in granting such deferrals as above under 1 and these would similarly be treated as a first attempt.

Council approved the following deferral policy in respect of exams taking place in April/May this year:

“We propose that requests for deferrals to the reassessment session be accepted on grounds of difficult personal circumstances in the current crisis. These would be processed through students’ Tutors as normal and we propose that no supporting information need be provided – we will trust the students and will operate ‘an honour system’ in regard to deferrals. In short, if students do not feel they can complete their assessments under their current situation, we will allow them to defer to the reassessment session with no questions asked. Any such deferral would be treated on the student transcript as a first attempt. Accommodations to allow a second attempt, if necessary, prior to the start of the next academic year will be developed.”

What do I do if I am sick during the exam period?

The normal exam rules apply. You should contact your Tutor before the exam, see also the section on deferrals above.

I heard that even if I pass a module, I can retake it in Supplementals to improve my grade. Is this true?

Following publication of grades, Sophister-level students can apply to re-sit or resubmit any assessments or assignments in semester two or year-long modules that will contribute to their final degree grade. They will be given the higher mark of the two attempts. Our understanding is that this only applies to semester 2 assessments that were undertaken after the restrictions on teaching / access to College facilities. The College will publish a deadline by which such applications should be submitted and criteria on which such applications will be judged. Applications should be made through the Tutor to Student Cases. This will be recorded as a second attempt and will appear so on transcripts.

When will my results be published?

Results will be published on Friday 12 June at 1pm. In the event we can release the results sooner, an email will be circulated to all students.

Why will the results be released so late?

We endeavour to process the results and release them as quickly as we can. However, due to the online submission, changes in assessment dates and other processes required to ensure anonymity, quality and equity, preparing the results for approval will take longer than previous years and cannot be avoided.

When is the reassessment exam session?

The reassessment period was planned for 31 August – 5 September. However, in light of COVID-19 it is possible that this period will have to move or be extended. Students will be advised of any changes in due course, and should consult the Academic Registry’s website for information and updates and/or liaise with their tutors. The School is not responsible for setting the timetable or determining the assessment period.