Guidance on Assessment

Introduction

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and in the interests of staff and student health, the university has decided to substitute end of semester two written examinations with an online format.

This page will help module co-ordinators setup and manage online examinations. 

Key Information

Assessment Formats: You have already chosen an assessment format that is best suited to assessing your module learning outcomes. This has been approved by your College and notified to the Student Records & Exams Office (SREO). Where appropriate, your Head of School has liaised with professional/accrediting bodies and External Examiners.

 

Canvas: All online examinations will be delivered through Canvas. For detailed instructions of how to setup an examination please visit the Using Canvas page.

It is envisaged that an MCQ, a time-limited online exam or an essay/project will substitute for the written examination in most instances.  In the case of time-limited exams, please inform students clearly whether the assessment is open or closed book. However, if your module requires a different format please discuss this with your Head of School before proceeding.

Schedule

Summer Exams will proceed as scheduled. Online exams will only be offered at one scheduled time. If it is necessary to change the scheduled time to accommodate significant differences in students’ time zones please contact your Heads of School in the first instance who will notify SREO of any required changes.

Duration

Exam durations will remain as normal. However, additional time allowances should be provided as follows:

  • 15 minutes will be provided to allow time for students to save their work and upload it. All Students will be notified of this additional time.
  • A further 5 minutes will be added to the submission windows.
  • For DSS students entitled to extra time, an additional 10 minutes per hour of examination should be provided.

Canvas will timestamp all assessment submissions as per normal practice. It is recommended that scripts uploaded after the allocated time has passed will not normally be accepted.

In addition to the 10 minutes per hour allocated for DSS-registered students, additional time may be allocated for rest breaks. Previously for exams that took place on Campus, the clock is stopped to enable students avail of a rest break which is not an option for online exams in Canvas. The rest break should now be facilitated by allocating additional time to the duration of the exam which will allow students to take a break where needed. More detail is available at https://www.ucc.ie/en/dss/stafffaqsapril2020/

Disability Supports

Details of DSS registered students requiring specific assessment accommodations are available from your Head of School.

The most common accommodation that needs to be provided for is extra time, typically 10 minutes per hour, but additional time may be added for rest breaks. Canvas will allow you to take account of this additional time as time stamped late submissions. Students entitled to extra time are aware of this and will have availed of it for Semester 1 exams.

A number of students will use an electronic reader to read aloud the examination paper. Electronic readers work best with examination papers that are provided in a Microsoft Word format. Students who need screen reading technology are already familiar with it. 

Students with an SPLD sticker tag on their record are entitled to a spelling and grammar waiver which will need to be taken into account when marking scripts. Please refer here for Marking Guidelines

Please be assured that the Disability Support Service are working very closely with their students to ensure everyone is ready for online exams. An additional guide to online exams will issue to these students from DSS.

For additional information on facilitating exam accommodations for DSS students, please refer to the DSS website or contact Disability Support - dssinfo@ucc.ie

Contact Information

As with invigilated exams, students may need to contact you during the online exam. Please log into Canvas for the full duration of the exam so that you are available to monitor and respond to any student queries that are submitted to you via Canvas Inbox. Please also provide contact details for a colleague who can deputise in your absence.

If for any technical reason, a student cannot access Canvas and is unable to complete the examination within the allocated time, you may provide additional time. If a student is unable to upload an exam script, you should request that the script is emailed to you. Please keep a record of these situations locally. 

Module Marks & Exam Boards

You should continue to use the Departmental Mark Entry System (DMIS) to return your module marks. For these exams, marks will not be recorded anonymously. This system can be accessed remotely via https://virtualapp.ucc.ie.

Specific guidance on Exam Boards will issue in due course.

Exam Answer Sheet

A standard UCC Online Exam Answer Sheet should be used for any exams requiring students to upload an assignment. Students should be provided with the Answer Sheet, included below on this page and asked to type in their answers to this. The sheet includes space for

  • Student Number;
  • Module Code;
  • Programme and Year of Study;
  • Date and Time of Exam;
  • A declaration is registered with the UCC Disability Support Service;
  • Students to declare if they are entitled to a spelling and grammar waiver; and
  • A declaration that all work submitted is the student's own work.

Office of the VP for Learning and Teaching

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East Wing, Main Quadrangle, UCC

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