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Student Examination Guidance

Student Examination Guidance

Updated September 2023

Exams will be delivered either on campus or online via Blackboard. All on campus exams will be paper based, with limited exceptions. Once the exam timetable is released, your personal timetable will display your exam schedule. Your module leader will inform you about the type of exam you will be taking, and other details about your exam. 


These dates refer to the 2023/24 academic year and are currently provisional. You must ensure that you are available for examinations at any time during these periods, Monday to Saturday, 9am to 9pm. MyTimetable will show you when the exam will start and how long you will have from the start to complete the examination.

If you have a Learning Contract, it must be published by the Disabled Student Support team at least 10 working days before the publication of the examination schedule for your adjustments to be guaranteed.


Semester 1
Exam period: 8th – 19th January 2024
Timetable to be published: 17th November 2023

Semester 2
Exam period: 13th – 25th May 2024
Timetable to be published: 22nd March 2024

Reassessment (semester 1 and 2)
Exam period: 5th – 16th July 2024
Timetable to be published: 14th June 2024


Trimester 1
Exam period: 8th – 19th January 2024
Timetable to be published: 17th November 2023

Trimester 2; trimester 1 reassessment
Exam period: 13th – 25th May 2024
Timetable to be published: 22nd March 2024

Trimester 3; trimester 2 reassessment
Exam period: 27th August – 6th September 2024
Timetable to be published: 2nd August 2024

These exam dates are provisional and may change. 

There may be some courses which have exams at times different from the standard academic calendar; if this is you, you will have heard from your course team.

Examinations will typically be scheduled either in the morning with a standard start time of 9:30am, or the afternoon with a standard start time of 2:00pm. You must be ready to start the exam at this time. Please arrive 30 minutes early for on campus exams.

Academic staff will be available for the first 15 minutes (reading time) of your exams to answer questions. If your exam is online via Blackboard, please check the exam instructions provided by your module leader for more details of how they will make themself available online. The duration of examinations includes 15 minutes to cover this reading time.  

As Sheffield Hallam University is committed to building an inclusive teaching and learning community, all examinations will now have 15 minutes per hour extra time included for all students with or without a learning contract in case they require extra time. Students who require additional reasonable adjustments (e.g. rest breaks, or a different start time) must have a Learning Contract in place. You should contact Disabled Student Support if you need a Learning Contract assessment. 

If your exam is computer-based, there is an additional 15 minutes after the end of the exam working time to submit your exam. This is not working time and has been introduced to allow for slow submissions or IT issues. An exam submitted after the 15-minute submission time will not be marked, and you will receive zero marks. 

Get exam-ready

Leading up to your exam you have the opportunity to refresh and refine some of the key skills and knowledge that will help you succeed.

MyHallam has resources and support to help you get prepared for your exams while taking care of your wellbeing. 

Your Library provides a range of online support covering exam revision, question formats, and critical writing. One to one support with academic skills advisors and subject librarians can be booked online, and a range of self-help guides and webinars are also available.

  • Your making the most of your library off campus guide is a good place to start.
  • Dedicated library subject guides will help you access information resources for your revision and the exams and revision guide will help you understand what skills you need.
  • One to one online support with Academic Skills Advisors covering exam revision and writing can be booked online at the Skills Centre.
  • Feedback on your academic writing, for example any test answers you may choose to write as part of your preparation, can be obtained from Studiosity.
  • For one-to-one online support from your librarian on finding and consulting subject literature please use UniHub and search under “Events” and “Finding information”.

During your exam you will not be able to access one to one support from the Academic Skills Advisors, your Subject Librarian, or from Studiosity. Whilst you may decide to cite authors and sources in your exam answers you are not required to provide a reference list or bibliography.

Academic conduct and integrity

Make sure that you are familiar with the Examination Conduct Policy (PDF, 93.5KB).

For exams on-campus, listen carefully to and comply with any instructions given by invigilators when entering and exiting the venue, and throughout the duration of the exam. Make sure that you bring your SHUcard to all exams to confirm your identity

Do not collaborate with anyone else while the exam is in progress and don't talk to anybody about the exam until it has finished. To do either would violate the Academic Conduct Regulation (PDF, 220.7KB) with potentially very serious consequences. 

If your exam is online via Blackboard, you may additionally be asked to upload the work to Turnitin or your module leader may do this on your behalf. Your module leader will provide you with any instructions. 

On-campus exams - Video and Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

This guidance video covers what to expect during an on campus exam.

These FAQs help you prepare for your exam, tell you how to find out information about your exams, and what to expect during the exam. 

How do I find out which venue my exam is at?

  • Exam venues for each of your exams will be shown on your exam timetable. 
  • Please note that exams may be scheduled on a different campus than where your teaching normally takes place. 
  • Plan your route and ensure you allow enough time for travel. 

I arrived after the start time for my exam. Will I be allowed into the venue to complete it? 

I can’t attend my exam (e.g. due to illness, representing the University elsewhere, on a University exchange, transport strike), what should I do? 

I can’t find my SHUcard. Can I bring another form of ID to my exam?  

  • You are required to present your SHUcard at all examinations to confirm your identity. Your SHUcard was issued to you at enrolment. You will be required to complete and sign an attendance slip to signify that you have presented your SHUcard at your examination(s).
  • In exceptional circumstances, if you are unable to present your SHUcard, you will be asked to provide an alternative form of photo ID such as your passport or driving licence.
  • Thirty minutes after the commencement of examinations, whilst collecting the attendance slips, the invigilators will check your identity against your proof of identification and will check that the information matches those details completed on the slip. The invigilators will carry out this exercise in such a way as to cause a minimum of disturbance.
  • Find out how to request a replacement SHUcard if it has been lost, damaged or stolen. Make sure you order a replacement SHUcard in plenty of time before your exams. 

What equipment (stationery, refreshments, personal items) are permitted in the exam venue?  

Online exams via Blackboard - Video and Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

This guidance video covers what to expect during an on campus exam.

These FAQs help you prepare for your exam, tell you how to find out information about your exams, and what to do in the event of technical problems during the exam or when submitting your exam.

What should I do before my online exam (where not scheduled on campus) to make sure I am prepared?

  • Set up a space where you can work without being disturbed while taking the exam.
  • You should check your computer/laptop to ensure that it is working and all software is up to date, your battery is fully charged, and you have appropriate power supply.
  • You should avoid taking an exam using a mobile device and you must not use the Blackboard app. Login to Blackboard using a web browser. We recommend Google Chrome.
  • Make sure you sit your exam in a space with good broadband and WiFi or use a wired connection (bear in mind that your upload speed may be much lower than your download speed).
  • You need to check your broadband and electricity provider is not due to work in your area on the day of the exam.
  • When taking the exam, sit as close to the WiFi point as possible. This will ensure maximum bandwidth and signal strength is available for your device.
  • Make use of any practice exams, where available, so you can become familiar with downloading, completing, preparing, and submitting an exam.
  • Warn other people in the household that you are taking an exam and that they should avoid activities that use lots of bandwidth until you finish, such as streaming video, playing online games, or using Facetime, Google Meet, or similar tools. Wherever possible, disconnect all other Wi-Fi devices in the household that are not used for working on the exam. This will ensure that the maximum bandwidth is available to you.
  • If you are not confident that your computer/laptop, Wi-Fi or broadband provider is sufficient and/or you can’t find a space at home where you won’t be disturbed to sit the exam, we recommend that you book a room on campus to do your exam.
  • You can book a room and computer on campus using resource booker.

How do I know what time to start, finish and submit my exam?

  • All exams are due to start at 9:30am or 2:00pm.
  • Your exam start, end of working time and submission deadlines are noted on your exam timetable.
  • It is important for you to check all these times before your exam.
  • We recommend that you set an alarm so that you know when your exam working time has ended as you must begin to submit your work then if you haven’t already.
  • After your exam working time, you have a 15-minute submission period to submit your exam.

What if I am still unsure on my exam start, finish and submission timings?

  • Contact your module leader.

What should I do if I did not start my exam at the agreed start time, i.e. 9.30am?

  • All exams start at 9.30am or 2:00pm – this start time is not flexible, unless this has been pre-agreed in your learning contract if you have one.
  • If you do not start on time you will not have the full working time available for your exam,
  • If you start late your exam working time will end the same time as noted on your exam timetable.

I have been allocated extra time above 15 minutes per hour for my exam as part of my learning contract reasonable adjustments– how do I know when to start and finish my exam?

  • All exam start, working time and submission times are noted on your exam timetable
  • If you have additional time allocated (above 15 minutes per hour) in your learning contract this will have already been built into your start and finish times as noted on your exam timetable.

I am experiencing technical difficulties during my exam, what do I do?

  • You should get help with IT support immediately by phoning 0114 225 3333 and pressing option 2 or using their live chat support page).
  • When contacting IT Support, have the following information at hand to help address your issue:
  • Your SHU Username.
  • Module details – module name and code related to the exam you are taking.
  • Details of the problem that you are experiencing.
  • Details of any software you are using for the exam.
  • If using a SHU laptop, the badge number of the laptop or if using a SHU PC, the PC number.
  • If the issue is resolved in a timely manner we recommend that you continue the exam at this point.

If you feel the technical issues have affected your performance in the exam, you may want to consider submitting a RRAA (Request to Repeat an Assessment Attempt). Please see the final section of this guidance for further details.

How do I know when and how to submit my exam?

  • You have 15 minutes submission time to submit your exam after the working time has ended. Your work must be successfully submitted within the submission time.
  • Exam papers are submitted by uploading them to the indicated exam submission point on the module’s Blackboard site.
  • Multiple-choice type exams are submitted by completing the indicated Blackboard Test on the module’s Blackboard site.

I completed my exam early. Can I submit my exam before the end of the working time?

  • Yes. You can submit your exam any time up to the submission deadline – this time is noted on your exam timetable and is 15 minutes after the exam working time has ended.

Can I use my 15 minutes submission time to continue working on my exam script?

  • No. You must stop working on your exam by the end of your agreed working time and use the 15 minutes submission time to submit your work. Your work must be successfully submitted by the submission deadline as noted on your exam timetable.

I’m having difficulty uploading my completed exam during the 15 minutes submission time, what do I do?

  • Try to submit again. Refresh / re-log into your Blackboard just in case there is a timeout issue
  • If you are still unable to submit you should email your exam paper to your module leader within the 15 minutes submission time. Your exam paper must be received by your module leader within this time.
  • If you are unable to submit a Blackboard Test, email your module leader within the 15 minutes submission time. Your exam will be in progress and your module leader should be able to submit the answers saved on your behalf.

After the 15 minutes, if you have not submitted your work, you may want to consider submitting a RRAA. Please see the final section of this guidance for further details.

What if I do not submit my exam or submit it after the submission period has ended?

  • If you do not submit your exam, or submit beyond the submission deadline, the work will not be marked.
  • You will therefore need to take the exam again in the reassessment period. This will be classed as a referral and marks will be capped at the minimum pass mark for the level of study. If you submit a RRAA which is accepted then you will be allowed to repeat your initial attempt which means marks will not be capped. Please see the final section of this guidance for further details.

What can I do if I feel my exam mark will be impacted by extenuating circumstances / technical issues I experienced during my exam?

You can submit a RRAA if you feel extenuating circumstances, including technical issues, have prevented you from completing or submitting the exam, or have affected your performance in an exam you have submitted.

RRAAs should be submitted within 5 working days of the exam date and must include a self-certification form to report any technical issues.

Please note the following if you do submit a RRAA:

  • If you have submitted the exam by the submission deadline then it will be marked. If you pass the module overall then you will not normally be given another attempt, even if the RRAA is accepted. There are exceptions to this however for students at Levels 6 and 7. Please see section 32 of the Extenuating Circumstances Policy and Procedure (PDF, 173.6KB) for further details of this.
  • If you do not submit the exam by the deadline, then it will not be marked. You will need to re-sit the exam in the reassessment period for a capped mark. This is known as a referral. If a RRAA is accepted, then the referral will become a deferral, meaning you will receive an uncapped mark for the re-sit.

If you are unsure about whether to submit a RRAA we recommend that you book into speak to your Student Support Advisor for advice.