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Murray Edwards College
University of Cambridge

Exams procedure

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Find out further useful information on University examination procedures. Do speak to the Tutorial Office or to your Director of Studies if you have any queries.  

Getting there

Check your exam timetable. Most morning exams start at 9:00 am and most afternoon exams at 1:30 pm. Find out well in advance where your exams are being held. This link gives you directions to each exam venue. If in doubt, ask the Porters for directions.

Allow plenty of time to get there and make sure you are up in good time. If this is not your normal routine, get used to being awake and alert at 9.00 a.m. before the day itself, and consider asking a friend to check you are up on the day itself. Please note that it is your responsibility to get to your exam in a timely way. You may not be admitted to an exam room if you are more than half an hour late. If you are in danger of being late, please telephone 07500 883597, the Tutorial mobile, at once.

Things to take with you:

  • Your University photo ID card to identify yourself: you are required to place this on the desk alongside your name ticket.
  • Your candidate number which you will find on your Exam Confirmation Form: you will need to write this on the cover sheet of each of your papers in place of your name, and you will also need it to find your desk in the exam room.
  • Take your own pens and any other officially approved materials.
  • If you need a calculator, remember that it must be an approved model and get used to this model in advance.
  • You may take a small screw-top bottle of water or other liquid into the exam room with you, but you are not normally allowed any other items of food or drink. 
  • If you are taking Inspera or online, please take your fully charged laptop with you.

To leave behind:

  • Your mobile phone and smart watch, so leave these in College (unless you need your phone for two factor authentication for an online/Inspera exam). If your mobile phone goes off in an examination room, you are liable to a £50 fine.

Make sure you read the back of your yellow examination timetable (Examination Entry Confirmation Form) and check the Examinations noticeboard for any other information.

In the exam

As soon as you have found your desk you may read the top page of the question paper (to check that you have the correct one), and read the 'rubric' (instructions), but you may not turn the page to start reading the questions or to start writing until told to do so.

When invited to start, read through all the questions, and read again those you think you are going to answer. If you think there is a mistake in a question, don't be afraid to ask (mistakes do occasionally happen), but do so quickly: an examiner is there for this purpose for the first 20 minutes of each exam.

Follow scrupulously the instructions at the top of the exam paper. Divide up your time appropriately (check last year's paper to see how credit is distributed). Don't spend too long on one question at the expense of making a reasonable attempt at another. It is crucial that you answer as many questions as you are asked to - no more, and certainly no fewer. Read the questions themselves carefully and make sure that you address what is actually being asked.

You are allowed to leave an exam early if you are quite sure that you are finished, but it is rarely advisable: inspiration may strike at the last minute, and there is always scope for more checking.

If you become ill during an exam, alert the invigilator immediately and ask them to contact the Tutorial Office, and wait where you are - College will arrange for someone to meet you: you may be able to finish the examination later in College when you are better. On no account should you leave the examination room until you have received instructions from the College.

In case of difficulty

If you are ill or have any other serious problem on the day of an examination, ring 07500 883597. If you reach voicemail, leave a message and either the Tutorial Office or a Tutor will contact you as soon as possible. Nothing can be done in relation to your exams before 8am, so it's not necessary to ring until then, even on the day of an exam. Remember to talk to someone if you are experiencing any difficulties. 

Only contact the Porters’ Lodge on 01223 762100 if you have a medical emergency.

Your results

You will be able to view your results on CamSIS from 10 am on the day that they are due. Your Director of Studies will also send you the information, and will be able to interpret the marks for you as necessary.

See The Student Unions' CamExams web pages for further useful advice.