May 23, 2019

The Ultimate Exams Guide

Caitlin MacPhail Caitlin MacPhail

Exams are stressful; study is hard, and procrastination levels are at a record high. Don’t worry – we understand.

That’s why we’ve put this guide together for you.

Everything you need to know about exams from ‘what if my calculator breaks?’, to what counts as special consideration - all in one convenient location. So have a read through and procrastinate while brushing up on your exam-time essentials… we promise it counts as being productive.

There's also heaps of exam info on the UWA website!

The Basics

Let’s start off easy; if you’ve ever sat an exam before you probably know these ones!

Before you get there:

  • Double and triple check your exam timetables on studentConnect (especially the day before and day of – sometimes venues can change)
  • Make a note of your allocated seat number for your exam

Take this stuff in with you:

  • UWA Student ID card, a transparent pencil case with pens, pencils, UWA-approved calculator, highlighters, rulers etc
  • Water in a transparent bottle

Leave this in your bag:

  • Calculator cases, non-transparent pencil cases, hats, wallets
  • Devices including phones, digital/smart watches, MP3/MP4 players, digital products with communication or storage functions.
  • Food and non-water drinks

Disciplinary action will apply if you are found to have unauthorized materials on your person. If you’re not sure about something, check with your exam supervisor – better to be safe than sorry!

Issues during the exam? Raise your hand and an exam supervisor can help you out.

“I’ve lost my Student ID!!”

You must have your ID to sit the exam. If you don’t have it, head straight to Student Central opposite the Guild Village and they will issue you with a replacement.

Student Central will be open before exams each day. If there is no time to go to Student Central before your exam, go to your exam anyway - you will just need to stay behind to be identified afterwards.

“I’m running late for my exam!!”

The most important thing here is don’t panic. If you’re less than 30 minutes late to your exam, you can head straight to the exam venue. You will be let in to sit the exam, but no extra time will be allowed.

If you’re more than 30 minutes late or have missed your exam completely, do not go to your exam venue.

Go straight to Student Central (do not pass GO, do not collect $200) located next to Oak Lawn. This is NOT the Guild Student Centre – only Student Central will be able to contact the Examinations Officer or other relevant staff to help you.

“I’ve lost/broken my calculator!!”

Never fear – the GSC always carries a few spares with UWA-approved stickers, as well as spare pens and pencils.

Special Consideration

You can apply for special consideration if your study has been affected by extenuating circumstances. Special consideration for exams can be a deferred exam date, permission to sit the exam off-campus, or withdrawal without academic penalty.

You WILL NOT get Special Consideration for under-preparing for an exam due to binge-watching Friends for the 10th time, missing an exam due to booking a holiday, getting your timetable wrong, etc.

However, anything in the vicinity of:

  • Death or serious illness of a family/household member or close friend
  • Serious injury or illness
  • Breakdown of a relationship
  • Being the victim of a crime
  • Sudden loss of income or employment
  • Serious disruption to domestic arrangements

can be considered an extenuating circumstance.

Important to note when submitting your Special Consideration Application:

The rules and policies regarding Special Consideration are written by the University. Our Student Assist team can provide advice and assistance as required, but to give yourself the best chance at your application being approved, there are a few deadlines and fine print things to be aware of:

  • Applications must be submitted no more than three University days after the exam. If there is a reason you could not submit within this time, you must provide evidence.
  • Provide appropriate documentation that demonstrates why you are applying (i.e. medical certificates or police reports)
  • Medical certificates must be from the date of the exam, or if the certificate covers several days it must include the date of the exam.
  • If your circumstances get worse, you can also apply for further consideration.

Click here for the full rundown on the UWA Special Consideration Policy.

Online exams

"What can I bring to my online exam?"

Always have your Student ID on you, just in case! You don't need an Approved sticker for your calculator to sit online exams, but see here for online exam calculator requirements.

"Can I use the bathroom during online exams?"

Yes - but just like in regular exams, you can't go in the first 30 mins or the last hour of any 2-hour exam.

Remember, you can't submit an online exam until after the end of duration (2 hours) - so no early submissions for these ones!

What if I'm late to my online exam?

You can still start the exam up to 1 hour after the start time. If you are more than 1 hour late (or have missed it completely), you won't be allowed to sit it.

Make sure you are ready before the start time and have allowed time to log in. If you lateness was out of your control, you may be eligible to apply for Special Consideration.

"Help! I'm having issues with my online exam!"

There's an exam helpline if you run into any trouble on the day! Call 08 6488 1212 - they're available from 8.30am-5pm weekdays during exams.

Alternative Arrangements

There are some cases where an alternative exam time can be arranged without applying for Special Consideration. These include:

  • Timetable clashes; these will be flagged in studentConnect, and a new time will be arranged for you.
  • Disability or medical conditions; if you are unable to complete an exam under normal conditions, you can make an appointment to discuss requirements with a disability officer at UniAccess.
  • Religious beliefs; if you are unable to attend a Saturday exam due to religious beliefs, your exam can be scheduled to the next available exam session following that Saturday. A letter from your local religious leader must be presented to the Senior Manager for Student Services at the University within 5 working days of the timetable being published.
  • Injury; If you suffer illness or injury before exams begin (like a broken arm on your writing hand), you will need to phone Student Services on 08 6488 3235 for special arrangements or a deferred exam.

As the deadlines have passed to make alternative arrangements, you’ll need to contact UniAccess to see how they can help. Student Assist can also give advice on the best approach in making these arrangements after the cut-off date.

Student Assist

The Guild employs professionally trained Social Workers in the Student Assist team to provide support to students who need it.

Exam time can be a particularly difficult for a lot of students but the Student Assist Officers are a great resource. Student Assist can take some of the pressure off by providing support and advocacy about academic, financial or welfare matters.

To book an appointment with Student Assist, email [email protected]

We hope this guide has been useful – study hard everyone and good luck for all your exams!