Examinations

Prepare for your exams by understanding the procedures, dates and support information relating to examinations.

Examination timetable

You can access your exam timetable by logging in to Sydney Student using your UniKey (go to ‘My studies’, then ‘Assessments').

The complete finalised Semester 1 exam timetable is also available here (1MB PDF).

Dates for the release of Semester 2, 2015 examination timetables will be available from early July 2015.

Examination period

Semester 1, 2015 Monday 15 June – Saturday 27 June (inclusive)

Semester 2, 2015 Monday 9 November – Saturday 21 November (inclusive)

Essential Information

You need to be familiar with the following before you attend your examinations.

Instructions for examination candidates (updated April 2012)

You need to follow all instructions given by examination supervisors.

You should read the instructions on the cover of each examination book as well as those that may appear on the front page of your examination paper, reporting any discrepancy to the Presiding Supervisor.

Bring your student card to all examinations

You need to display your valid University of Sydney Student Campus Card upon entering the examination room and must display your card on your desk for the duration of the examination. Students without an identity card will be required to provide other appropriate photographic identification with signature such as a driver's licence or passport. Any student failing to provide photo identification may not be permitted to sit for the examination.

What else can I bring into an examination

No writing paper, books, papers, manuscripts or notes of any kind are to be taken into or out of an examination room (unless expressly permitted in advance by the examiner). You are not permitted to remove pages from answer booklets or examination papers.

You may take in pens, pencils, drawing instruments and small items of food such as sweets. These items may be left on the desk during the examination. You may also bring in small valuables such as wallets, purses, mobile phones and laptops which must be switched off, not just silent. These items must be placed on the floor below the desk. Don’t leave money or valuables in bags. The University can accept no responsibility for the loss of students' personal property. Anything taken into an examination room must be made available for inspection by the examination supervisors or other University staff.

When can I enter or leave an examination?

You will not be admitted to an examination room after the expiration of 30 minutes from the commencement of writing. If you have entered an examination room and seen the examination paper you may not leave until 30 minutes has elapsed from the time writing commenced. You may not leave during the last ten minutes of any examination.

Any student wishing to leave the examination room early must attract the attention of the Examination Supervisor and then follow the procedures outlined above.

How much reading and writing time will I have?

10 minutes reading time is allowed for most papers. During this time you may complete your attendance forms and fill in the covers of your answer books, then place your pens on the desk. No other writing is permitted.

The Presiding Supervisor in each room warns students when 10 minutes remain and when the time allowed for the examination has elapsed will instruct candidates to cease writing and quietly remain in their seats until given permission to leave. The following conditions must be observed:

  • your examination materials will be collected before you are given permission to leave your examination desk;
  • you must remain in their seats until instructed by the Examination Supervisor to leave the room;
  • any candidate not adhering to supervisor instructions (eg to stop writing) may be subject to academic misconduct proceedings.


Can I take my examination paper at the end of my examination?

"Confidential Papers" – Papers of this type are not to be copied, nor removed from the examination room. You must not take from the examination room any examination answer book, graph paper, drawing paper or any other materials issued for use during the examination.

And some other important information

Smoking is not permitted in examination rooms.

You cannot loiter in the vicinity of examination rooms; during, or at the conclusion of an examination. Nor can you talk or make noise near such rooms, as other examinations may still be in progress.

Examination clash information

An examination clash occurs when you have two or more exams that have been timetabled for the same day and time, or if you have three exams scheduled on one day.

Examinations with a 40-minute (or more) break between them are not considered to be clashing.

What happens if I have a clash?

The Examinations Office will email you at your University email account to inform you, and the relevant examiners, of the arrangements for your examination clash.

If you have not received any email notification one week prior to your examination clash, please contact the Examinations Office.

You can assume that if you have two exams clashing on one day then you will write those exams on that day, one in the morning and the other in the afternoon with a minimum of 40 minutes in between the exams.

If you have three exams scheduled on one day, you will write two on the day and the third one most likely the next day.

Please note this only refers to daytime exams at the University of Sydney. Any evening exam clashes need to be reported to the examiner/departments concerned as departments are responsible for making arrangements for evening clashes.

Students with disabilities, medical conditions or injuries

Students with a disability, including serious medical condition, or recent injury, which puts them at a disadvantage during examinations should contact Disability Services.

If appropriate, special arrangements can be made to meet particular requirements.

Examination seat numbers and rooms

You will be assigned a seat number for most of your examinations. Seat numbers identify your seat in the exam room and the location of the examination itself. You can look up your seat numbers (when they are released) by logging in to 'Sydney Student' (go to 'My Studies', then 'Assessments').

There are pop-up maps with the seat numbers to help you if you are unfamiliar with an examination room or building. There is also a permanent lecture and exam room look-up facility.

It is best to familiarise yourself with room locations prior to your exam day.

Issues with your seat number

It is important to attend to these problems well before the day of the examination. Don't wait until the day of the examination to resolve any seating allocation problems.

The problem What to do
You have neither a seat number nor a location (room) for an exam   Go to the Student Centre and fill out a 'Request for a Seat Number' form.
You have a location (room), but no seat number    You do not need a seat number for this exam.
You have two or more exams at the same time

The Examinations Office will email you on your University email account to inform you of the arrangements for your examination clash (daytime exams only).

If you haven't received any email notification one week prior to your examination clash, please contact the Examinations Office.

For evening exams (held from 5pm onwards) you will need to contact the examiner/department concerned as they are responsible for making arrangements for evening clashes

You have a seat number/room for an exam that you are not attempting You have received a seat number because you are enrolled in that subject. If you think there has been error with your enrolment you should contact your faculty immediately to discuss.

Seat numbers are provided only for end-of-semester exams. Please contact your department for locations of exams/assessments conducted outside the end-of-semester exams session.

Seat numbers will also be displayed outside the examination room prior to the exam.

If your name is not listed you should notify the examination supervisor overseeing the room.

Student misconduct

The University takes a most serious view of any attempt to gain unfair advantage over other students in examinations. Any student who takes into an examination room any aids or materials not authorised for an examination, risks confiscation of the aids or materials, which would then be subject to a report, which may lead to misconduct proceedings under the provisions of the University By-Laws. Students should be particularly careful to check with the examiner well before an examination whether their calculator (programmable or non-programmable), portable computer or device incorporating one of these features (e.g. a memory watch, calculator watch or watch computer) is an authorised aid.

If misconduct by a student is proven, a range of penalties are included in University of Sydney By-Law 1999 (as amended) but can include failure in the unit of study or exclusion from the University.

Open book/open note examinations

If known at time of printing, open book/open note examinations are identified in this timetable. If you are in any doubt about a particular paper being open book/open note, you should check with the examiner well before the examination.

Use of linguistic dictionaries

The answers in all examinations and in all work submitted must be in English unless otherwise directed.

Students from a non-English speaking background are eligible to apply for permission to use a standard linguistic dictionary in examinations. Normally, this would be restricted to students who did not sit the New South Wales Higher School Certificate (or equivalent) and enrolled at the University through the International Office.

How do I apply for permission to use my linguistic calculator?

You will need to present your dictionary to the Examinations Office (Student Centre, Level 3 of the Jane Foss Russell Building) for approval - this must be done at least two weeks before the examination period commences. It will be checked and stamped and you will then be able to use it in examinations at any time throughout your university enrolment.

Other restrictions on use of linguistic calculators

  • Use of an electronic dictionary is not permitted, unless expressly allowed by the examiner concerned.
  • The Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery does not allow the use of dictionaries from 3rd Year in the Bachelor of Nursing (Pre-Registration). Translation dictionaries may be used in examinations by ESL (English as a second language) students who are sitting for examinations in Year 1 of the Master of Nursing (Graduate entry) including those enrolled in the Bachelor of Nursing (Post-registration). Year 2 ESL students in these degrees are not permitted to use translation dictionaries.
  • Dictionaries must be single-volume editions.
  • Your dictionary may be checked at random during examinations for unauthorised notes/materials, the presence of which may result in charges of academic misconduct.

Use of calculators

The exams office centrally approves basic non-programmable scientific calculators for use in exams where a non-programmable calculator is permitted. Calculators that meet these requirements will be given a sticker that permits their use in University of Sydney exams.

Please read the Approvable Non-Programmable Calculator List (PDF) for a range of popular calculator models that have been previously approved at Sydney.

The make and model of all calculators used in examinations is recorded, checked by invigilators and reported to examiners. The use of an unauthorised calculator may result in the instigation of academic misconduct procedures.

Calculators can be submitted for approval at the Student Centre front counter, Level 3 of the Jane Foss Russell Building during business hours. Calculator models that are not on the approvable list will need to be reviewed by the exams office and then collected from the front counter one business day later.

All calculators must be submitted for approval prior to the end of the last week of lectures in the relevant semester.

Applying for approval for use of a calculator

Features that are NOT permitted for Exams Office approval:

  • programmable (any calculator that can have a sequence of operations stored and then executed automatically is considered programmable and hence not allowed)
  • capable of storing text or alphanumeric data input by a user (this does not exclude calculators with memories that are used to store intermediate numerical results obtained during calculations and required later)
  • capable of storing, manipulating or graphing functions entered in symbolic form (this includes calculators with a graphic display capacity)
  • capable of performing ‘hard-wired’ numerical routines for operations such as differentiation and definite integration, and the solution of equations
  • capable of performing ‘hard-wired’ symbolic manipulations such as addition of algebraic expressions, binomial expansion and symbolic differentiation
  • capable of external communication or web connectivity.

You can see which types of calculators are permitted for your exams via the exam timetable, please see our important dates above for more information.

A small number of exams require students to use programmable calculators. You should consult their examiners/lecturers for approval of programmable calculators. It is your responsibility to ensure your calculator is appropriate for any exam in which they are used.

Students that do not remember their non-programmable calculator on the day of their exam can borrow an approved non-programmable calculator from the Students Representative Council Office.

Bags in examination rooms

You are permitted to take small bags into most examination rooms (some have nearby areas for the purpose). These bags must only be placed in the area designated by the Presiding Supervisor. Anything taken into the examination room must be made available for inspection by the examination supervisors or other University staff.

Small valuable items such as purses, wallets, laptops and mobile phones (which must be switched off, including alarm - not just silent) must remain with you during the examination and should be left on the floor under their desks.

Please do not leave money or valuables in bags. The University accepts no responsibility for the loss of students' personal property.

Further tests

If you qualify for and are granted a further test or assessment, they will be administered by the department offering that unit of study. Please direct enquiries to that department.

Access to completed examination scripts

You can access your exam script as long as you request to view it during the script retention period. For more details see Assessment Procedures 2014, section 9.

Lost property

If you have left something in an exam room, first return to the room and/or the local precinct officer to check if the item is still there. If it isn’t, exam supervisors may have forwarded it the Exams Office.

The Exams Office hands over lost property from exams to the Student Centre. It can take up to 24 hours for lost property to arrive at the Student Centre.

Student Centre staff will contact students about their lost items when possible. After 2 weeks lost property will be forwarded to Campus Security.

Assessment policies

Read the University's examination and assessment policies and procedures:

Past exam papers

You can view many past exam papers at the University Library website.

Assessments during semester

Timetables
For Summer/Winter School
For all other assessments, including mid-semester tests, contact your department/faculty

Clashes
If you have assessments that clash during semester, please contact departments/lecturers and resolve the clash with your department/faculty.