Online Exams & Assessments:

What format are the online assessments?

Online Assessments are being delivered in a variety of forms, including for example, online examinations via Blackboard, Multiple-Choice Questions via Blackboard, take-home open-book exams and presentations delivered remotely via video.

Who should I contact if I have further queries regarding the mode of assessment?

Contact the relevant module coordinator via Blackboard, Module Leader details are also available here for your information. For College contacts click here

Who should I contact if I have a query on my assessment?

For specific queries on individual assessments, please contact your Module Leader in the first instance.

These are unprecedented times and the University recognises that being physically isolated from campus significantly adds to the normal pressures encountered by students during exam time. All lecturers and Support Service teams are continuing to work to support students through this examination session.  Please see more details here.

For College contacts click here

What Exam supports are available to me?

View all exam supports here

When will repeat exams take place? 

Repeat Exams will take place from 9th -19th August (inclusive).

30th July - Timetables will be published for Autumn online exams on the 30th July 

When do Semester 2 examinations start and end?

The Semester 2 examination session runs from Tuesday 18th May to Friday 4th June 2021 (inclusive).

Will I be able to sit my Exams on Campus? 

Study space on campus will be available to students during exams. These spaces will be for students sitting scheduled online exams only and you will be required to show proof that you have a scheduled exam at that time.

Booking will be live from Friday 14 May at the following link

Exam information: For up-to-date information on exam timetables, regulations and policies, visit: www.nuigalway.ie/exams

Are there any Study Spaces Open on Campus? 

Yes, we now have multiple study space options available on campus.

  • Main Library (including Library PC's): Will be open from now until Thursday 03 June as follows: 

  • Reading Room: The Reading Room (Hardiman Building) is now open as supervised study space for an additional 25 students, with social distancing and virus control measures in place. 
  • Hardiman Building Seminar Rooms: From Tuesday, 27 April 2021 you can book a study space in the Hardiman Building Seminar Rooms THB-G010 and THB-G011. These rooms are located across from the main entrance to the Library.
  • Bailey Allen Hall: We have now reopened study space for 50 students in the Bailey Allen Hall. Open from 9am-5pm Monday-Friday 


    All spaces must be booked in advance using the Library booking system
  • Please note that the Library Seat & Equipment Booking system has changed from period-based bookings to open bookings. This provides students with greater flexibility as exams approach

Will all modules have an ‘end-of-semester’ examination?

For a limited number of programmes, the grading of some modules will not include an ‘end-of-semester’ examination. Please contact your Module Leader if you have any queries regarding the end of semester examination of your module.

How many exams are there each day?

There will be three exam slots per day. A student may have two exams in a day, but they will not be back to back.

What time are the exams due to start?

Exam start times for online exams are 09:30, 13:00 and 16:30 (Mon. – Fri.)

Where can I find my examination timetable?

Students can access the examinations timetable online here­. Your personal exam timetable displays all modules which were previously scheduled as formal exams and shows the mode of assessment. Please note that all alternative assessments will be on Blackboard.

Where a module will be assessed by a timed assessment, the online exam is scheduled to take place at the date and time listed in your personal exam timetable. Please take note of this duration.

What should I do if I am a Shannon College of Hotel Management Student?

 

Students attending Shannon College should refer to Emails / Blackboard messages from your lecturers for module specific details.

Why is no Personal Timetable visible for me?

Students should log in to view their Online Registration  

Please check that you are ‘registered’ on your course and all modules on your curriculum selection are correct. If you are correctly registered, you will have access to all modules on Blackboard.

If correctly registeredall modules are appearing on your online registration profile and you have access to all modules on Blackboard – please contact ISS via their helpdesk.
If a student is not registered or they are missing a module: the student must contact their College Office to request permission for their missing Exam Module(s) to be added to their Student curriculum.
Please click here for College / School Office contacts.

Once the Registration Helpdesk receives confirmation of this permission from your College/School Office, Registration Helpdesk will update the module(s) and the module(s) will appear in Blackboard in 24 hours.

When you can see the correct modules in Blackboard, please confirm immediately to 
reghelp@nuigalway.ie and askregistry@nuigalway.ie to get exam module(s) date and time

I cannot access my Personal Timetable?

Have you set up your Campus Account? Visit Campus Account Self Service to set up your Campus Account or to retrieve your password. For support on student access to computing services, contact the ISS Service Desk (Tel. 091-495777, servicedesk@nuigalway.ie).

 

Will my personal exam timetable be updated if there are changes?

No, your personal exam timetable will not be updated.

The personal online exam timetable will remain static. Any changes to the date/time for online exams or mode of assessment following the release of the timetable will be communicated to students via Blackboard by the relevant module coordinator. Students are also advised to log in to their Blackboard account for the latest information and to check the Amendments webpage regularly as examination dates/times may change up to the day of your exam.

It is your responsibility to know when your exams are on.

Is there examination advice available?

Please refer to The Exams Office for useful information regarding exams.

Can I defer my exams?

Please refer to the information below if you wish to defer as the usual procedures for deferrals apply.

Deferral Information for Students
It is recognised that circumstances may arise which will lead to a student wishing to defer some of his/her assessments and/or formal examinations during the academic year. Please be assured that whatever the circumstances are there is a network of support within the University in Student Services, the Colleges and Schools, Registry and the Student’s Union which you should avail of. This guide is to assist you with the process should you need to apply for a deferral of an examination.

Exams Deferral Policy (includes application form)

Deferral of Exam Applications - Contact Details here

What should I do if I am a Shannon College of Hotel Management Student?

For students at the Shannon College of Hotel Management, Shannon College students should refer to Emails / Blackboard messages from your lecturers for module specific details.

How long are timed assessments?

Where a module will be assessed by a timed assessment, the online exam is scheduled to take place at the date and time listed in your personal exam timetable. Please take note of this duration.

Exam start times for online exams are 09:30, 13:00 and 16:30 (Mon. – Fri.)

Exam duration will remain 120 minutes with up to 30 additional minutes to facilitate uploading the assessment. Uploading documents on time is the responsibility of the student.

How do I ensure access for online assessments?

It is your responsibility to ensure that you have access to the necessary technology to complete your assessment. In most cases this includes access to a PC or laptop, and broadband connectivity. In some cases specific software will be required – your Module Leader will advise you of this. If you have difficulty accessing the required technology you should notify your Module Leader as soon as possible. There are also bookable spaces to take your online exam on campus please see here for more details.

I don’t have Internet access, what can I do?

Please contact your Module Leader immediately. The College/School Office will communicate with students about putting in place arrangements for those who have insufficient internet access. There are also bookable spaces to take your online exam on campus please see here for more details.

What if I experience difficulty taking the online assessment, or if my internet connection fails? What can I do? Will I get to do the exam again?  Will I get extra time?

Your Module Leader will provide you with contact information in case any difficulties arise during the exam and they may be able to provide you with immediate assistance. We advise that you take a screenshot of the problem. Each student’s circumstances will be taken into account on a case-by-case basis.

What if I fall ill before my exams, will I have to provide a Medial Cert?

Students should contact their College Office if they fall ill before their exams.

I emailed my Module Leader but haven’t had a reply?  What should I do?

Please login to Blackboard where details of the alternative modes of assessments for your module will be available.  Please remember that it may take some time for Module Leaders to reply due to these alternative teaching and assessment arrangements.

Will my marks be capped for the Autumn Exams?

No, marks will not be capped in 2020/2021 with the exception of penalties applied by the Exam Security Group or Plagiarism Officer/Advisor.

I am feeling overwhelmed with the new teaching and assessment arrangements. If I don’t do well in my online exams, will this be taken into account?

It has been recommended that Module Leaders run a test with your class group which would mirror the types of tasks students will be asked to perform in the exam.  If you experience any issues related to the online assessment or teaching please contact your Module Leader clearly indicating what those issues are and these will be taken into account. 

If you would like help, especially coming up to exams, please know that support is also available to you by contacting your College or School Office, student counsellors and chaplains.  Please see the link below for Getting Started with Online Learning for Students.

Getting Started with Online Learning for Students
http://www.allaboardhe.ie/Aspire/Learner/content/index.html

Experiencing exam stress please see here for more details.

Will students who are slow typers or who have poor internet access be at a disadvantage for online exams?

It might be possible for students to make an alternative submission arrangement with their lecturer/module leader and this could include scanning a handwritten version of an exam answer. Module leaders/lecturers should be contacted about such a possibility.

Will online exams be marked tougher as there is no guarantee everyone will take them under exam conditions? 

Marking will be in line with normal practice.

Will there be additional time for the new environment “More time is required during the online exams as some students are not familiar with the software for e.g. notepad”?

Each online exam is 2 hours long with an additional 30 mins thereafter for loading of the answer. Uploading documents on time is the responsibility of the student.

What steps are the University taking to ensure the integrity of assessments?

All NUI Galway students will be asked to self-certify that they are complying with the rules in online assessments by signing a disclaimer statement at the start of each online exam. NUI Galway reserves the right to follow-up with a student by interview if there was any concern in relation to the integrity of the exam process.

You are expected to adhere to the highest standards of integrity and honesty when completing assessments at NUI Galway. Module Leaders reserve the right to follow up with a student by interview if there is any concern in relation to the integrity of the assessment. Any irregularities of conduct may be reported to the Exam Security Group as provided for in ‘QA230* - Procedures for Dealing with Breaches of Examination Regulations‌ (Emergency revision).

Please be assured that our primary concern is to maintain the integrity and rigour of the examinations process, and the alternative assessments provided for each module will reflect appropriately the same level of effort required for traditional exams based in exam halls. The quality of your NUI Galway degree is paramount and will not be affected by an alternative mode of assessment.

Where can I access further details about student support services available during this time?

All support and guidance on online assessments, on technology-related queries and on general student supports is available at one central online hub: http://www.nuigalway.ie/student-life/student-support/

Exam Regulations

For up-to-date information on exam regulations and other exam policies, see the Exams Policies and Procedures webpage here.

School Contacts

If you have a question that is specific to your module e.g. deadlines, MCQ, exam timetables, credits, marking etc, you should firstly make contact with your module coordinator. All have been asked to monitor their NUI Galway email account (or nominate another staff member to cover this) for incoming student emails during the online timed exam period and to respond as promptly as possible. If you do not get an answer to your email, please contact your College contact: 

 

Exam Day Assistance:

What steps should I take to ensure access on the day of the examination?

For timed online assessments, you are required to log in to Blackboard at least 15 minutes before the commencement of each assessment.
You are strongly advised to test your access to Blackboard and any relevant software on your home computer/laptop well in advance of your scheduled examination slot. 

If your modules are being assessed via an online scheduled assessment, your Module Leader will contact your class to organise a test run prior to the actual assessment date. You are strongly advised to participate in this test run in order to ensure that you can connect to Blackboard and carry out all tasks required on your PC/Laptop in advance of the scheduled session.

What are the IT tips when preparing for and online exams?

Check Your Device:

  • You will need a computer or laptop device – don’t attempt to access or complete an online exam on a mobile phone.
  • If you are using a laptop, ensure it is plugged in or if that is not possible have it fully charged.
  • Do not wait until the last minute to check your device before you take your exams; if you experience technical problems they may take time to be resolved.
  • Make sure your computer is as up-to-date and stable as possible. This means making sure you are regularly running your software updates so that you don’t need to run or accept updates on the day of the exam
  • Ensure your browser is up-to-date and you have all software updates. Chrome or Firefox tend to be the most compatible with Blackboard.
  • Close all windows/applications on the computer (including chat programs) and then launch a new window to login to Blackboard prior to your exam.
  • Ensure you have any specific software required for your exam.
  • Disable Pop-up Blockers as these may affect tests in Blackboard.

Check Your Internet Connection

  • Make sure you are using a reliable internet connection – ideally a wired connection.
  • If using Wi-Fi ensure you are in an area of your home with the strongest signal.
  • Reduce the Wi-Fi usage in your home while taking your exam.
  • Test your internet connectivity in advance of your exam.
  • Test your access to the Blackboard and the assessment page.
  • Check out the ISS webpage on IT Advice for Students taking Online Exams for further advice (opens in a new window).
  • More information on examinations and assessment information available here.

What if I experience difficulties uploading files to Blackboard during my examination?

Your Module Leader will be in contact with you in advance of your scheduled online assessment. Should you have any difficulties in uploading files to Blackboard, please contact your Module Leader here.

How do I submit hand written answers?

Check out the hints and tips here on how to scan and submit handwritten answers. 

What do I do if my internet connection fails during the exam?

Complete hard copy exam and scan and upload to the Module leader, in the first instance following this process here should this happen, please inform your Module Leader. 

 

Disability Support Service: 

What should I do if I have Disability Support Service exam accommodation requirements?

Students registered with the Disability Support Service who have reasonable accommodations in place for end of semester assessments/exams may find these Frequently Asked Questions useful.

I have a query about my exam accommodations – who should I contact?

Where the Disability Support Service has recommended exam accommodations for you, please liaise with the appropriate staff in the relevant discipline(s) - for example, your lecturer, programme director, year head, or administrator - to request that your required exam accommodations are put in place for any timed assessments designed to replace the semester 2 exams. If you encounter any difficulty with ensuring required exam accommodations are in place, please contact your Disability Advisor by email only. You can find their contact details at the end of your Learning and Education Needs Summary (LENS) report.

I am registered with the Disability Support Service and normally avail of exam accommodations what should I do?

Students registered with the Disability Support Service who have reasonable accommodations in place for end of semester assessments/exams may find these Frequently Asked Questions useful.

Where can I find my exam accommodations listed?

If you are registered with the Disability Support Service, you will find your recommended exam accommodations listed on your Learning and Educational Needs Summary (LENS) report. Ensure that you attach a copy of your LENS report when requesting exam accommodations. Do give some thought as to which of your recommended exam accommodations you will actually need in each timed assessment before making a request.

 

Types of Examinations/Assessments: 

What is an online timed assessment?

Where a module will be assessed by a timed assessment, the online exam is scheduled to take place at the date and time listed in your personal exam timetable. Please take note of this duration.

Exam start times for online exams are 09:30, 13:00 and 16:30 (Mon. – Fri.)

Exam duration will remain 120 minutes with up to 30 additional minutes to facilitate uploading the assessment. Uploading documents on time is the responsibility of the student.

What is an open-book exam?

An Open Book exam or take home exam is where you will receive and examination paper via Blackboard and you submit your answers within a defined time.  Your Module Leader will give you instructions on completing the exam paper.

My module is scheduled as an MCQ exam, how does this work?

MCQ’s are Multiple Choice Questions computer based exams which are assessed through Blackboard.  Your Module Leader will set up the MCQ with the required amount of time to complete.  Students registered with the Disability Support Service must inform their Module Leader prior to the exam of their entitlement to extra time.

IT Assistance:

How do I access the University's IT Services remotely?

You can access the following University IT Services off-campus by using your Campus Account credentials.  

Please note that some discipline-specific software may not be available from off-campus, so you should liaise with your module and programme coordinators to understand what options or alternatives may be available.

Where can I get help with a specific IT Support query?

The ISS Service Desk can help you if you have a query or issue in relation to IT Services.  Log a ticket at https://servicedesk.nuigalway.ie or email servicedesk@nuigalway.ie

What are the IT tips when preparing for remote learning and online exams?

Check Your Device:

  • You will need a computer or laptop device – don’t attempt to access or complete an online exam on a mobile phone.
  • If you are using a laptop, ensure it is plugged in or if that is not possible have it fully charged.
  • Do not wait until the last minute to check your device before you take your exams; if you experience technical problems they may take time to be resolved.
  • Make sure your computer is as up-to-date and stable as possible. This means making sure you are regularly running your software updates so that you don’t need to run or accept updates on the day of the exam
  • Ensure your browser is up-to-date and you have all software updates. Chrome or Firefox tend to be the most compatible with Blackboard.
  • Close all windows/applications on the computer (including chat programs) and then launch a new window to login to Blackboard prior to your exam.
  • Ensure you have any specific software required for your exam.
  • Disable Pop-up Blockers as these may affect tests in Blackboard.

 

Remote Learning: 

Are there tips for remote learning?

Some helpful advice has been provided by the Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT) at the following links:

 

Useful Guides: 

Scanning and Submitting Your Written Exam with Office Lens

Summer 2021: Scanning and Submitting Your Written Exam with Office Lens
https://tips.nuigalway.ie/m/85608/l/1228770-3-1-student-faqs-scanning-and-uploading-exams

Blackboard Learn

This video provides an overview to students of tests in Blackboard Learn.

https://tips.nuigalway.ie/m/85608/l/1223576-giving-guidance-to-your-students