Exams

This guide provides assistance in the development, design and delivery of examinations in accordance with the Teaching delivery, Coursework, Tests and Examinations policy for Semester One, 2021. Exams will be scheduled according to the exam timetable.

Examinations in Semester One, Quarter One and Quarter Two will be held online, regardless of the alert level. There will be some exceptions to this, particularly for courses requiring professional accreditation. Students in these courses will be informed as soon as possible about the mode of their examinations.

Invigilated tests will be held on campus if the University is at Alert Level 1. If we are at Level 2 or higher, tests (with some exceptions) will be held online.

Appropriate measures will be put in place for students to support equitable participation in online tests and examinations. Further details and information will be provided in due course.

Students studying remotely or offshore
  • In Semester Two 2020, all students studying offshore or remotely will complete non-invigilated, online, timed examinations, regardless of Alert level.
  • Examinations for students studying remotely may be different to those completed by on-campus students but will be of equivalent difficulty and will address the same learning outcomes.
  • Offshore students will sit timed examinations scheduled to start between 7.45am-8pm in their local time zone.

Notes:

    • Students whose examinations are scheduled outside of this window must notify the University to ensure their examination is rescheduled to another appropriate session.
    • Students studying in Europe and Africa are not able to be accommodated within this window. Approval for an out-of-time examination for students in European and African time zones may be requested through the Examinations Services Office.  
  • The majority of students in Asian time zones whose examinations are scheduled in afternoon or evening sessions will sit examinations at the same time as onshore students. Offshore students in Asian time zones whose examinations are scheduled in morning sessions will have their examination scheduled to the evening session of the previous day.
  • The revised academic misconduct process adopted in Semester One will be used for academic misconduct identified in online examinations. Further guidance will be provided to staff on how to report online examination academic misconduct incidents to the Examinations Services Office.
Higher risk students

The University defines ‘higher risk students’ under COVID-19 Alert conditions as learners who face increased risk in attending on-campus events because they:

  • Are at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19 as defined by the Ministry of Health.
  • Live with people who are at a higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19.
  • Have significant mental health issues that may be exacerbated by COVID-19 or COVID-19 Alert Level requirements.

Written evidence from a medical practitioner or mental health professional is required to establish a status of higher risk.

Identification of higher risk students

  • Under COVID-19 Alert Level conditions students who believe they may be at higher risk attending activities on campus may apply for dispensation. Students provide written evidence from a medical practitioner or mental health professional about why they should not come to campus. See University operations at different alert levels.

Note: Government guidelines state that risk of exposure and transmission in the community at Level 1 is very low. Applications to study remotely for health reasons made under Level 1 conditions will be considered in accordance with this advice.

  • The request is received by the Student Contact Centre; health/medical forms are forwarded to the Manager (Student Conduct and Care) in Campus Life. Campus Life staff work with students to obtain additional evidence or clarification of circumstances as necessary, liaising with Student Disability Services (SDS) in cases where the student is registered with SDS.
  • Campus Life verify that the evidence is provided and, as appropriate, recommend a plan be made for the student to study remotely.

Note: Medical or health information provided to Campus Life will be treated as confidential and in accordance with the University’s Personal Privacy Statements. That a student has been assessed as at ‘higher risk’ will be disclosed only to those University staff members who need this information to address the student’s needs with respect to teaching and learning situations.

Advice to faculties

  • The names, IDs and contact details of higher-risk students will be provided to the appropriate faculty Student Academic Services and Engagement Managers / Student and Academic Services Managers, who will inform the academic staff member(s) in the faculty responsible for addressing the student’s learning and teaching needs.

Tests and examinations

  • Students supported to be studying off-campus should sit a timed, online version of course tests and examinations. Where that is not possible alternative assessment arrangements should be made.
  • Students sitting an online version of a test or examination must have access to a suitable computer and reliable internet connection.

Note: Students may request devices through the Student IT Equity Initiative.

  • A student who has provided the appropriate medical evidence under Alert Level 2 or 2.5 conditions may remain off-campus and sit timed, online versions of tests and examinations for the remainder of Semester Two / Quarter Four 2020; including in the situation that the Alert Level is changed before the end of the academic year.
  • Where a student is approved to study remotely and needs to sit an online examination faculty Student Academic Services and Engagement Managers / Student and Academic Services Managers are asked to provide the relevant student and course information to the Examinations Services Office (results@auckland.ac.nz).

Note: Faculties are asked not to move higher-risk students into a different Canvas section.

  • Requests received by up to three weeks before the start of examinations (15 October) will allow preparations to be made for students to complete online examinations. Requests received after this point will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Where students are not able to sit an online examination, alternative provisions will be made and the student will be advised.
Examination design and approval

General

  • Where courses have offshore or remote students enrolled, two different versions of the examination must be prepared; one suitable for online delivery and one suitable for delivery on campus. Variation between the on-campus and the online version is permitted.
  • Where courses do not have offshore students, examinations should be designed for delivery on campus.
    Note: in the event, Alert Levels change to 2.5, 3 or 4 on-campus examinations will need to be converted to be suitable for online delivery.
  • Examinations may not now be re-designated as ‘Open Book’. Examinations may be designated or re-designated as ‘Restricted Book’.

Notes:

  • For the purposes of on-campus examinations held in Semester Two or Quarter Four that are changed from Closed Book to Restricted Book designation, ‘Restricted Book’ means that candidates are permitted to take into on-campus examinations one sheet of A4 paper which may contain information on both sides. Examiners will not be required to attend examinations to check this material as compliance with the requirement will be checked by Examination Supervisors.
  • All requests for new Restricted Book designation must be made through the Associate Dean (Academic) by Wednesday 14 October 2020. Students in affected courses must be advised through Canvas of any change to Restricted Book designation, and what this entails, as soon as possible.
  • For examinations previously (and usually) designated as ‘Restricted Book’ the usual, non-COVID requirements and regulations apply.
  • Careful consideration must be given to the scope of the examination as within any of the scenarios described above examinations will be conducted as time-limited assessments (i.e., they will not be 24-hour assessments).
  • All students sitting online tests must be advised about the importance of academic integrity, the University’s approach to academic misconduct, its determination to use all possible means to identify students who dishonestly use external or online resources during tests, and the penalties that are available where academic misconduct is confirmed.
  • The revised academic misconduct process adopted in Semester One will be used for academic misconduct identified in online examinations. Further guidance will be provided to staff on how to report academic misconduct incidents in online examinations to the Examinations Services Office.

Review and approval

  • Online and on-campus (paper) formats of examination scripts must be submitted to the Examinations Services Office for approval and checking. Read about Semester Two exam processes for teachers.
Format and set-up of online examinations
  • Online examinations may be conducted as a Canvas Quiz, or a Canvas Assignment with a fixed start and end time. Turnitin may be utilised with Canvas Assignments.
  • For online examinations, 30 minutes will be added to the notified length of the examination to account for the additional complexity of the online mode and technical aspects, i.e. 2-hour examinations will be 2.5-hours long; 3-hour examinations will be 3.5-hours long.
  • Online examinations will include a post-deadline window to allow for technical difficulties with submission. Examinations submitted during this time are late submissions and will be handled on a case-by-case basis according to faculty guidelines. Submissions made after the post-deadline window will not be accepted.
  • Where examinations are conducted online in Canvas Quiz format they must not be set up to ‘lock’ answers. Students must be able to review previous answers.
  • Online examinations that require the student to draw diagrams or write equations can have answers submitted via scanned image or photograph.
  • Students must have an opportunity to complete a practice exercise prior to the examination to ensure they are familiar with the technology requirements for uploading images.
Special conditions
  • At COVID-19 alert levels 1 and 2 students with temporary or permanent disabilities or conditions that affect their ability to sit examinations under the prescribed onsite conditions may apply for special conditions through the Examinations Services Office.
  • At levels 3 and 4 students with impairments or special requirements should be advised to contact the Examinations Services Office to discuss additional options for assistance in an online examination.
  • Advice for staff on assistance for students with approved special conditions sitting online examinations may be found on the Canvas Resources website.
Aegrotat and compassionate consideration for examinations
  • Where a student is unable to attend a scheduled examination revised procedures allow for virtual consultation with University Health and Counselling Services to obtain evidence of impairment. In-person consultations can also be arranged (alert level permitting) with appropriate social distancing and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in place.
  • The requirement that in order to make a recommendation for an aegrotat or compassionate grade a student’s coursework must be ‘well above minimum pass standard’ has been waived under the Vice-Chancellor’s Special Powers. Senate’s representatives will consider and approve as appropriate academic recommendations for student applications in Quarter Three, Quarter Four, or Semester Two where the student is certified by the Academic Head to be ‘worthy of a pass’.
  • Administration fees will be waived for COVID-19 related applications for aegrotat and compassionate consideration.
Students support and assistance for examinations

Assistance during examinations

For online examinations, in-exam support and contact arrangements will be put in place. Student instructions are as follows:

The Contact Centre will be open 8am–9.45pm Monday to Friday and 8am–5.45pm Saturday, throughout the Exam period.

If you wish to raise concerns during the Online Exam, please call Auckland: 09 373 7513, New Zealand: 0800 61 62 63, or International: +64 9 373 7513. 

If you have an issue with Canvas, live chat is available 24/7 with Canvas Support, via the Help button within your Canvas left-hand side bar. If you are in New Zealand, you can also call the Canvas Support Hotline on 0800 005 205.

It is your responsibility to ensure your assessment is successfully submitted on time. Please don’t leave it to the last minute to submit your assessment.

If any corrections to the Online Exam are made you will be notified by a Canvas Announcement. Please ensure your notifications are turned on during this period.

General examination advice and support for students

  • Communications to students have been sent to make sure they are aware of important changes to online examination information and rules at each Alert Level, and the support available.
  • For online examinations, the University will make devices and internet connectivity assistance available to students in need. 
  • If students do not have access to a suitable computer, internet connection or quiet location, they are able to use one of the computer workstations or study spaces in the Kate Edger Information Commons, Tai Tonga and Epsom campuses, or one of libraries to sit their exam. See information on available study spaces.

Academic integrity and misconduct process
  • An academic honesty declaration for use with coursework assignments, online tests and examinations is available for use and adaptation.
  • All students sitting online tests must be advised about the importance of academic integrity, the University’s approach to academic misconduct, its determination to use all possible means to identify students who dishonestly use external or online resources during tests, and the penalties that are available where academic misconduct is confirmed.

Academic misconduct process for online examinations, Semester Two

Note: The report will be shown to the student suspected of the misconduct so please keep this in mind with the language you use.

All allegations of academic misconduct in examinations (Semester Two) must be submitted in full as soon as possible but no later than 8 December 2020.

  • Invigilated, on-campus examination
    The usual process, as set out in the Student Academic Conduct Statute should be followed. If the suspected offence is noticed at the time of marking:

     

    • The member of staff who is marking the examination paper must fill out form AS-36 (Report on Suspected Misconduct in an Examination), which is attached to this email or can be found on forms hub.
    • The Examiner needs to provide a report (on the AS-36 form) on the significance of the suspected offence.
    • Update student’s grade in SSO to ‘NA’ to ensure the student does not receive their grade for the course before the matter is investigated.
    • The AS-36 form and accompanying evidence should then be scanned and emailed to results@auckland.ac.nz with the subject header ‘Suspected misconduct in an invigilated examination [COURSE 101]’
  • Non-invigilated, online examination
    A new process has been developed this semester to take account of learnings from Semester One 2020. This process is part of a temporary addition to the Student Academic Conduct Statute for Semester Two 2020 and Quarter Four 2020. Where academic misconduct is suspected at the time of marking an online, non-invigilated examination:

     

    • Obtain and/or compile all necessary evidence (e.g., information from Chegg identifying the student as posting or copying)
    • Update student’s grade in SSO to ‘NA’ to ensure the student does not receive their grade for the course before the matter is investigated.
    • The Examiner or delegated staff member will need to complete the ‘Academic Integrity – Online Examination’ online form to submit the allegation of suspected misconduct, along with all relevant evidence for the allegation to be investigated. This online form is in the final stages of production. 
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