The Examination Timetabling policy articulates and clarifies College policy about the planning, preparation, production, publication and ongoing management of changes to the Examinations Timetable at College.

More specifically, it acknowledges the wide range and diversity of examination requirements across College and the relative lack of shared processes, norms and tools to coordinate effective and efficient timetabling across Departments. To that end, this policy seeks to achieve common standards - where practicable - in order to guide the development of tools and systems to better support staff involved in the preparation and maintenance of examination timetables.

This policy provides definition and interpretation of the College Space Policy Framework and should be read in conjunction with that framework, and with the College Space Sharing policy.

If you have any comments, questions or suggestions regarding the policy, please contact the Central Timetabling Support Office (CTSO) using the button above.


Examination Timetabling Overview

An Examination in progress in the Great Hall

What This Policy Covers

This policy applies to examinations of modules as follows:

  • Modules for undergraduate taught programmes
  • Modules for postgraduate taught programmes
  • Taught modules taken by MRes and PhD students
  • Modules offered by Centre for Languages, Culture and Communications and Centre for Academic English – whether or not for credit
  • Modules that are timetabled and assessed but otherwise not part of a degree programme (including Pre-sessional English, Academic English)
  • Additional Examination Arrangements
  • Year in Europe students being examined at the College
  • Computer Based Examinations in a controlled and invigilated examination environment
  • All physical spaces on all campuses used to hold these examinations
  • Any 3rd party premises currently used to hold these examinations
  • Examination resits
  • Practical examinations including authentic assessment modes (such as PACES exams)
  • Non-traditionally invigilated examinations (online)
Students in the College Cafe

Goals Of The Policy

  • Provide clarity for students about what they should expect in their examination timetables
  • Clarify minimum standards an exam room must meet in order to be deemed suitable
  • Clarify acceptable times, frequency and duration of examinations as received by any individual student, including for those students entitled to Additional Examination Arrangements
  • Ensure no location related disparities of examination experience for each student sitting a given paper
  • Provide coordinating mechanisms to enable the scheduling and rooming of examinations that result in all students being examined in suitable rooms during each Main College Examination Period
  • Establish examination timetabling standards and norms within the College Timetabling System
  • Provide unambiguous clarity about how trade-offs between conflicting needs are resolved, in particular for largest cohort Examination Events needing the largest examination spaces
  • Minimise overall administrative load placed on academic and support staff during examination timetable construction
  • Align examination timetabling practices with expectations set out in College Learning and Teaching Strategy
  • Promote transparency, measurable outcomes and continuous improvement for all examination timetabling activity
College Technology in use

Not Included In The Policy

Agreed exclusions to this policy are:

  • In class tests – whether or not any credit is ascribed to participation or result
  • Externally arranged examinations (e.g., national run examinations)
  • Year in Europe students being examined at another university
  • Coursework
  • Viva for PhD students
  • Summer school
  • Exam paper preparation and verification
  • Exam paper logistics including storage, putting out, collection and custodianship
  • Selection and training of invigilators
  • Responsibilities of invigilators with respect to academic regulations and examination procedures