Conduct of supervised examinations – instructions for students


Instruction statement

To provide student-focused instructions that promote integrity, consistency and fairness in the conduct of assessment.


VCE and VCAL programs

The research component of higher degrees by research programs

Instruction steps/actions

1 Timing of examinations

1.1 The official examination period following each period of study is normally published in the annual academic calendar. The timing of school-run examinations is determined by the school.

1.2 Standard examination sessions normally commence at the following times (however, examinations may be conducted outside these time-frames) and students are responsible for checking the commencement time of their examinations via the timetable, or with the school in the case of school scheduled examinations. The examination commencement time normally indicates the start of the official 15 minute reading time period (where that applies).

Morning sessions


Afternoon sessions


Evening sessions


1.3 Examinations will be scheduled to allow, wherever possible, a minimum interval of one hour and 15 minutes between session times.

1.4 Arrangements may be made for the conduct of supplementary, deferred and other examinations outside the official examination period by schools and the Academic Registrar.

2 Reading time

2.1 Where reading time applies, students will be given 15 minutes reading time at the start of the examination session.

2.2 Students are not permitted to write in the examination script books, mark in any way any of the examination materials, read any other text other than the examination paper or do any calculations during reading time.

3 Responsibilities of students at examination venues

3.1 Examination timetables

3.1.1 It is the responsibility of students to be available to attend all of their scheduled examinations and it is recommended that students arrive at least 20 minutes before the published examination commencement time.

3.1.2 Students are not entitled to sit an examination for a course in which they are not legitimately enrolled. Where this does occur a student is not entitled to be granted a grade in such examination.

3.1.3 Students are responsible for knowing their examination times and locations and for arranging their own transport to the venue. Examination times and locations are published on the University website.

3.2 Examination schedule clash:

Where a student has two or more exams scheduled at the same time it is their responsibility to:

a) check their student email account regularly before the commencement of the examination period to ascertain arrangements for clash exams, and

b) report to the Clash Examination Venue to sit the examinations as advised.

3.3 Conditions of entry into examination venues

3.3.1 All persons entering an examination venue become subject to the authority of the examination supervisors.

3.3.2 Students must comply with all directions given by the examination supervisors, set out on the examination paper, or displayed in the examination venue.

3.4 Examination venues – entry and departure

3.4.1 Students should arrive at the examination venue no less than 20 minutes before the published commencement time of the examination.

3.4.2 Where the examination is of two hours duration or more, students will be allowed to enter the examination venue up to 60 minutes after the published commencement time of the examination. No additional time will be granted, however. Students who arrive more than 60 minutes after the published start time will not be permitted to enter the examination room and will receive a zero mark for that assessment.

3.4.3 Students will not normally be permitted to leave the examination room within the first 60 minutes from the published commencement time of the examination.

3.4.4 Where a student needs to leave the examination room after the first 60 minutes from the published commencement time of the examination they must remain seated and silent and raise their hand to gain the attention of the examination supervisor.

3.4.5 Students will not be permitted to re-enter the examination venue after leaving it, unless they have been under approved supervision during the period of leave.

3.4.6 Students will not normally be permitted to leave the examination venue during the last 15 minutes of the examination.

3.4.7 Students will leave examination venues and surrounding areas immediately and quietly, and in consideration of others. Students may not linger around examination venue entrance and exit points.

3.5 Student Identification

3.5.1 Students must bring their RMIT student identity card to the examination venue and clearly display it on their examination desk.

3.5.2 Students who do not have a RMIT student identity card must display other photographic evidence of identity such as a current driver’s licence or passport.

3.5.3 Students who have no evidence of identity acceptable to the examination supervisor will be permitted to sit the exam and the examination supervisor will escort them to the student service centre at the termination of the examination in order to verify identity.

3.6 Rules to be observed while the examination is being conducted

3.6.1 Students must:

a) sit at their allocated desks;

b) comply with all instructions of the examination supervisor;

c) remain seated at the conclusion of the examination until all papers have been collected and permission to leave is given by the examination supervisor;

d) hand in all examination script book/s with their name and student number written on each one, even if the book/s have not been used. Examination script book/s must be submitted intact. No part of an examination script book may be defaced, removed or destroyed.

3.6.2 Students are not permitted to:

a) communicate with any other candidate, either verbally, in writing or via any electronic or other means;

b) write during reading time or after instructed to put pens down at the end of the allocated time;

c) enter the examination venue after the first 60 minutes from the published examination commencement time;

d) leave the examination venue within the first 60 minutes of the published examination commencement time (inclusive of reading time);

e) leave the examination in the last 15 minutes;

f) leave the examination venue temporarily unless escorted by an examination supervisor;

g) remove examination script book/s or other paper from the examination, unless the examination paper states they can be removed from the examination venue;

h) cheat, attempt to cheat, or knowingly assist another student to cheat. (Refer to section 4 Misconduct during the examination).

3.7 Taking items into an examination

3.7.1 Possession of unauthorised materials in an exam is misconduct. Any material or item on a student’s desk, chair or person will be deemed to be in that student’s possession.

3.7.2 Students are permitted, however, to bring personal items and study material into the venue provided they are placed in a closed bag under the desk. The bag must be capable of closing completely to conceal the entire contents to the satisfaction of the examination supervisor. If a student does not have a bag in which to place items, the items will be held by the examination supervisor until the student has completed the examination.

3.7.3 All electronic devices (other than calculators, where permitted) must be switched off and completely concealed in a closed bag/envelope under the desk.

3.7.4 Students must bring their own calculators, pens, pencils, rulers and erasers with them to their exam.

3.7.5 Students are to use a blue and/or black pen when writing. Pencils are not permitted unless indicated on the examination cover sheet.

3.7.6 Students should ascertain from their lecturer and the course guide in advance what material will be authorised for the exam. During an exam, students must not have in their open possession, book/s, notes, paper, calculator, pencil case, mobile phone or other material/items which are not authorised for the exam or specifically permitted and described on the examination cover sheet.

3.7.7 Any items specified as being allowed to be used in the examination as prescribed on the examination coversheet must not be enhanced or tampered with in any way that provides an additional advantage to the student or any other student.

3.7.8 English language dictionaries are not permitted in an examination unless specified on the examination cover sheet.

3.7.9 Hard copy bilingual dictionaries (direct translation only) are permitted in an examination unless specified otherwise on the examination cover sheet. The dictionary must not contain any notations or be otherwise tampered with in any way.

3.7.10 RMIT University is not liable for any loss or damage to a student’s personal item/s during the course of an examination.

3.7.11 Students are entitled to bring non-carbonated drinking water into the examination provided it is in a clear plastic drink bottle with any labels removed.

3.8 Emergency procedure during examinations

In the event of an emergency during an examination students must comply with the instructions of the examination supervisor or safety warden. Even if evacuation occurs students will still be subject to examination conditions until such time as they are formally dismissed by the chief examination supervisor.

4. Misconduct during an examination

4.1 Misconduct during an examination may constitute academic misconduct and will be managed in accordance with Regulation 6.1.1 Student Misconduct. Academic misconduct may be deemed to be established even if it cannot be demonstrated that the student gained an advantage from the misconduct.

4.2Misconduct of a student includes, but is not limited to:

  • representing themself as another student in an examination;
  • allowing themselves to be represented by any person in an examination;
  • having unauthorised material or items on desks or on their person in the examination venue;
  • using, or attempting to use, unauthorised material or items during the examination;
  • copying from the script of another student during the examination;
  • receiving help from another person during the examination;
  • giving help to another person during the examination;
  • acting dishonestly in any way, whether before, during or after the examination, so as to obtain, or assist another student to obtain, an unfair advantage in the examination
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