23.5 Examinations (Exams)
23.5.1 Conduct of Exams
Note: Conduct which violates the rules of conduct for exams may also violate the Code of Student Behaviour. Amendments to the Code of Student Behaviour occur throughout the year. The official version of the Code of Student Behaviour, as amended from time to time is housed on the University Governance website at www.governance.ualberta.ca.
In this section, “term exam” is used to refer to any written or oral exam, test or quiz (other than a final exam) which is scheduled as part of the term work of a course.
Student Identification: Students writing exams are required to confirm their identities by providing their student ID numbers and signatures and by presenting their student ID cards (ONEcard) or other acceptable photo identification. Students who are unable to present satisfactory identification at the time of the exam will be permitted to write the exam, but will be required to present themselves with acceptable photo identification to the instructor of the course within two working days of the exam and may be required to provide a sample of their handwriting. Failure to provide proper identification will result in a mark of zero for the exam. Instructors are advised to circulate an attendance sheet at all exams.
Permitted References and Aids: Only those items specifically authorized by the instructor may be brought into the exam facility. The use of unauthorized personal listening, communication, recording, photographic and/or computational devices is strictly prohibited.
Registration: Students may not be present in an exam or write an exam in a course section in which they are not registered.
Arriving and Leaving: Students may not enter the exam area after the first half-hour has elapsed, and they may not leave the exam area until one half-hour has elapsed.
Communications: During the exam, all communications should be addressed to a supervisor. Students should not, under any circumstances, speak to or communicate with other candidates or leave their answer papers exposed to view.
Brief Absence from an Exam: Students who need to visit the washroom during an exam must leave their papers in the custody of a supervisor and retrieve it upon return.
Cancellation of Paper During Exam: If a student becomes incapacitated because of illness or receives word of domestic affliction during the course of an exam, he or she should report at once to the Supervisor, hand in the unfinished paper, and request that it be cancelled. Thereafter, if illness is the cause, the student may go directly to the University Health Centre or other medical practitioner so that any subsequent application for a deferred exam may be supported by a medical note. If a student chooses to provide a medical note, the University of Alberta Medical Statement Form may be downloaded from the Online Services section of www.registrarsoffice.ualberta.ca. Medical notes cannot be required. Alternatively, students may provide supporting documentation by way of a form from the student’s Faculty or a statutory declaration. In cases other than illness, adequate documentation must be provided.
Should a student write an exam, hand in the paper for marking, and later report extenuating circumstances to support a request for cancellation of the paper and for another exam, such request will not be entertained. Any student who requests a cancellation of their paper and subsequently applies for or obtains an excused absence by making false statements will be liable under the Code of Student Behaviour.
End of Exam: When the signal is given to end the exam, students must promptly cease writing. If a student does not stop at the signal, the instructor has the discretion either not to grade the exam paper or to lower the grade on the examination.
23.5.2 Term Examinations
Term Examinations Optional: The holding of term examinations is optional within each department.
Instructors may schedule term examinations during any regularly scheduled class period. In certain cases an instructor may schedule a term examination outside or beyond the regularly scheduled class period. Instructors should be aware that by doing so, conflicts may result for some students that have another class at the time of the scheduled term examinations. Students have the right to attend regularly scheduled class activities. Therefore, if a student has a conflict between a regularly scheduled class and a scheduled term examination, the instructor of the class in which there was a scheduled term examination will be required to make an accommodation for the student.
23.5.3 Final Examinations
There is no requirement by General Faculties Council that the final examination must be written in order to obtain credit: Faculties are permitted to make their own regulations in this regard.
Final Examinations: A final examination is held in each course except where departure from this arrangement has been authorized by the Faculty council governing the department offering the course. Final examinations for Fall courses shall be held in December. Final examinations for Winter or two-term Fall/Winter courses shall be held in April. Final examinations for Spring courses shall be held in June. Final examinations for Summer or two-term Spring/Summer courses shall be held in August. Examinations for evening credit program and late afternoon and evening courses are to be held during the last regular class period, excluding Augustana Faculty. Final examinations in Augustana Faculty evening courses are to be held in the evening during the regular examination period.
Examination Schedule: The schedule of Fall and Winter Terms final examinations (and mid-term examinations in two-term courses) shall be related directly to the basic University timetable.
Where possible, the final examination schedule for Augustana Faculty courses shall be related directly to the basic University timetable. Some dates may vary. Students should also see §55.4.
In the Faculty of Education, for those Faculty courses which form part of a professional term and hence do not conform to the standard timetable, the scheduling of the final examinations shall become the responsibility of the Faculty.
In the MBA program final examinations in all evening courses shall be scheduled into the week immediately following the last week of classes in each term in order to allow for equal instructional hours in the full- and part-time programs.
Final examinations or mid-term examinations in two-term courses shall not exceed three hours in length.
The Examination Schedule shall be adhered to and no attempt made to adjust examination schedules to accommodate students who have failed a course and are repeating without attendance.
Normally there shall be no departure from the official Final Examination Schedule. Instructors and students may, however, petition the Faculty Council concerned for permission to depart from the Schedule if justified reasons can be established. No departures shall be considered for approval unless the instructor of the class concerned and every student registered for credit in the class have given their written consent. Such consent shall take the form of either written letters or signed and dated forms made available from the Dean’s office. These notices of consent shall be conveyed to the Dean of the Faculty offering the course on an individual basis at least one month prior to the new dates being requested. If and when unanimous consent is received from the class, this fact shall be communicated to both the instructor involved and the Faculty Council. All such notices of consent shall be received by the Dean, in confidence, and it will not be the Dean’s responsibility to insure that all members of the class have been informed of the need to submit such written consents. This will be the responsibility of the Instructor or of those members of the class who have initiated the request for a change in the examination date.
Note: Permission to depart from the Final Examination Schedule may be authorized by the Dean in Faculties where the Faculty Council has delegated this responsibility to the Dean.
The requirement that notices of consent for departures from the official Final Examination Schedule shall be conveyed to the Dean at least one month prior to the new date being requested, shall be rigidly enforced.
The rescheduling of examinations or tests in the final week of classes is not permitted.
Where a final examination has been scheduled, students registered in the course may not be barred from writing that final examination.
Marking of Examinations: Departments and instructors shall be informed that the marking of examinations be given first priority in order to expedite the submission of grades to the Registrar.
No member of a Department shall be permitted to go away taking the original examinations papers with him or her for marking without permission of the unit head. In a case where a member of a Department applies for leave before the end of term, this will only be granted on condition that the head of the Department arranges for the papers to be marked here in the usual way.
All examinations and assignments shall be marked only by the instructor(s) or by persons expressly authorized by the Department Chair (or by the Dean in non-departmentalized Faculties) to mark them.
In the case where the student has missed the final examination, the instructor shall compute and record the course grade for that student with a score of zero for the final examination. The instructor must enter the remark “1” to indicate that the student was absent from the final examination.
The following discretionary policy on student access to final examination papers was affirmed by General Faculties Council:
Departments subscribing to the belief that there is educational value in permitting students to see their final examination papers after they have been marked are not only at liberty, but are encouraged, to make the papers available on request, and to allow for discussion where possible; that the objective here is an educational end: i.e., it is not a substitute for existing reappraisal procedures for the reconciliation of grades; that where the department is prepared to grant outright release of the paper it must not do so until the deadline for applications for reappraisal has passed, since an appeal cannot be entertained after the custody of the paper has been relinquished to the student.
Grades of Incomplete: The grade of “incomplete” (IN) is normally awarded when an undergraduate student is prevented by illness, domestic affliction, or other extreme circumstance from submitting an assignment by the end of term. When a grade of IN is awarded, the student is required to submit the assignment within 10 days after the end of the final examination period of the term for the course. At the request of the Department Chair concerned, the student’s Dean may grant an extension of time to a maximum of four months after the end of the term. If the assignment is not submitted by the prescribed deadline, the Registrar will record a grade of “NC” or a grade of “F” plus a remark of “1”, as appropriate. Before finalizing the student’s grade the Office of the Registrar will give 30 days written notice to the student’s Faculty and to the Department in which the course is offered.
23.5.4 Notification of Results
Release of Grades: Only the Registrar’s Office is authorized to issue official statements of results or transcripts. An official statement of final grades in courses for each Fall/Winter and Spring/Summer period is available on Bear Tracks (https://www.beartracks.ualberta.ca). Official statements are provided at the following times:
Departments shall forward grades to the Office of the Registrar within five working days of the final exam, or (for courses with no final exam) within five working days of the due date for the final assignment. For courses with consolidated examinations, Departments shall forward grades to the Registrar's Office within ten working days of the final exam. (For the Faculty of Law grades should be reported to the Registrar no later than the third day of classes in the Winter Term for Fall Term courses, or May 31 for Winter Term or Fall/Winter courses.) Allowing for processing time in the Registrar’s Office, grades should be available to students within eight working days. For courses with consolidated examinations, grades should be available to students within twelve working days. For the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry’s DDS, Dental Hygiene and MD programs, grades will be released within 10 working days of the end of the exam period for the program.
Unofficial final course grades are available to students on Bear Tracks (https://www.beartracks.ualberta.ca). Grades for courses that are completed in the first half of the term are available mid-term.
Students should consult the Registrar’s website at www.registrarsoffice.ualberta.ca for information on how to obtain their grades on Bear Tracks.
Departments may, but are not required to, post unofficial results in alternate formats, provided the confidentiality of the students’ records is preserved in accordance with the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. This precludes incorporating names or, potentially, information such as Faculty, degree, or year in program if the identity of the student can be deduced from this information. Because it is very difficult to protect student confidentiality in small classes (less than 25 students), departments should refrain from posting grades for these courses.
Reappraisals: Since great care is taken in marking final examination papers, a student should apply for reappraisal of a paper only if he or she has good reason to believe that a mistake has been made. Reappraisals are dealt with by the Chair of the department in consultation with members of the staff. A request for reappraisal must be made in writing to the Faculty or Department Office responsible for the course by February 1 in the case of Fall courses, by June 22 for other Fall/Winter courses, and within thirty days of the publication of results for courses offered in Spring/Summer. The request must include a statement of whether the intent of the appeal is to raise or lower the grade. If a student fails to include such a statement it will be assumed that the intent is to have the grade raised. Refer to §22.2.8 for details on where to pay fees and to §22.2.12 for fees for special services. Payment of the required fee will normally be made at the time of the request but must be made no later than two weeks after submission of the request; the fee will be refunded if the appeal is successful.
The privilege of having papers reappraised applies only to final examinations. A student may apply for reappraisal of no more than two final examination papers in each term of the Fall/Winter. A student enrolled in the Spring/Summer will be limited to two reappraisals.
It should be understood that if the grade is changed, the new grade, whether higher or lower than the original, replaces it as the student’s official grade in the course.
23.5.5 Reexaminations (See Addenda (November 20, 2013))
Undergraduate students who have written and submitted a final examination may be considered for a reexamination provided the following conditions are met. Students in Medicine and Dentistry should consult §113.2 and the Faculty Office for these regulations. Students in Business should consult §63.5(8). Students in Science should consult §192.5.3. Reexaminations are not permitted for graduate students.
Reexaminations are Not Permitted:
Reexamination Mark: The mark received for the reexamination replaces the original final examination mark and is used in computing the final grade in the course.
Weight of Reexamination: The percentage of the final grade allotted to the reexamination shall be the same as the percentage of the final grade allotted to the student’s final examination in the course.
Number of Reexaminations that May be Granted: Reexamination may be granted in one course only, regardless of the units of course weight, in a Fall/Winter or Spring/Summer period. Reexaminations may be granted in courses to a total of 12 while the student is enrolled in a Faculty (Dentistry and Dental Hygiene students see Note 2).
Procedures to Apply for a Reexamination: Students who wish to apply for a reexamination should:
Refer §22.2.8 for details on where to pay fees and to §22.2.12 for fees for special services. Payment of the required fee will normally be made at the time of approval of the application but must be made no later than two weeks after approval. Once approval has been granted reexaminations are to be written at a time and place agreed upon by the instructor and the students concerned. Dentistry students write by August 15. Normally, students in the Faculty of Law write in June. Refer to the Academic Schedule (§11) for the applicable dates.
23.5.6 Deferred Final Exams
The following information is for students who have received approval for deferred final examination(s) in accordance with §23.3(2).
Fall/Winter Deferred Final Exams: Within the timelines described below, the time and place of the deferred final exam will be determined by the instructor. Instructors are encouraged to include the date, time and place of a deferred exam in the course outline should one be required.
Spring/Summer Deferred Final Exams: The time and place of the deferred final exam will be determined by the instructor who will make this information available to all students in the course.
The exam must be held within two weeks of the date of the final examination missed and not later than August 31. In the case of 13-week classes in Engineering programs, the exam must be scheduled by September 14 and held prior to October 21.
Exams Scheduled at the Same Time: If a student discovers that he or she has two (or more) deferred exams scheduled at the same time, the student shall inform both instructors as quickly as possible and at least five days before the exam date. The instructors will consult with one another and make appropriate arrangements for the student.
Fall/Winter Deferred Exams Not Written: Students who have applied for a deferred final exam in accordance with §23.3(2), but who have, for justifiable cause, not written the deferred exam on the scheduled date must reapply for a second and final opportunity to write the deferred exam. Application deadlines are noted below. Students must apply at their Faculty Undergraduate (Graduate) Office. The department will determine the date, time and place of the second deferred final exam and will notify the student. The date scheduled must be no later than the end of July. Once set, the date for a second deferral is final and applications for further deferrals will not be considered or accepted.
Absence from Deferred Exam Without Justifiable Cause: When a student is absent from a deferred final exam without acceptable reason, a final grade will be computed using a raw score of zero for the final exam.
Deadline for Application: The application and the documentation pertaining to the absence must be presented to the Faculty within two working days following the scheduled date of the deferred exam missed or as soon as the student is able, having regard to the circumstances underlying the absence.
If the student receiving the privilege of writing a deferred exam does not write the exam by the scheduled deferred exam date, the privilege will be withdrawn and a final grade in the course will be recorded by the Office of the Registrar according to the grade/remark combination achieved by the student before the deferred final exam was granted. Prior to finalizing the student’s grade, the Office of the Registrar will give 30 days written notice to the student’s Faculty.