Conduct of Examinations (Policy and Guidelines)

Conduct of Examinations (Policy and Guidelines)

Legislative History:

Approved by CCAS; Approved by Senate: 2007/05/24; Date Effective:2007/

Approval Authority: Senate

Signature: Harriet Lewis

Senate Policy and Guidelines on the Conduct of Examinations

1. Senate Policy on the Conduct of Examinations

1.1 The Senate of York University affirms the University’s commitment to maintain the highest standards of academic integrity in the examination process, in accordance with the standards and principles established in the Senate Policy on Academic Honesty, the Senate Policy on Academic Accommodation for Students with Disabilities, the Senate Policy on Sessional Dates and the Scheduling of Examinations and York’s Mission Statement.

1.2 The guidelines attached to this policy are designed to safeguard the academic integrity of examinations and shall inform the procedures used for the conduct of examinations.

1.3 The Senate Policy and Guidelines for the Conduct of Examinations is applicable to all examinations scheduled in the official examination period and, to the extent possible, shall govern and inform the development of procedures used for examinations and tests held outside the official examination period.

1.4 Pursuant to the guidelines provided under this policy, the Senate Committee on Curriculum and Academic Standards, in collaboration with the Registrar’s Office, shall develop and promulgate procedures establishing the role played by Faculties, invigilators and students for conduct of examinations held during the official examination period.

1.5 The Registrar’s Office shall develop and implement procedures for the preparation and administrative support of examinations held during the official examination period and for the handling of emergency situations and other unforeseen events arising during an examination.

1.6 Academic units and the Registrar’s Office shall implement this policy and the guidelines and procedures created hereunder.

2. Senate Guidelines for the Conduct of Examinations


The following guidelines are designed to maintain the academic integrity of examinations in accordance with the Senate Policy on the Conduct of Examinations.

Exam Schedule

2.1 The Registrar’s Office shall provide a schedule of examinations, assigning the date, time and room(s) for examinations to be held in the official examination period.

Examination Rooms

2.2 The room(s) assigned for a final examination shall be of sufficient capacity to allow for appropriate seating and monitoring of students sitting the examination in order to discourage cheating.

Invigilation of Examinations

2.3 All final examinations shall be conducted by a chief invigilator designated by the academic division, department, unit or Faculty offering the examination.

2.4 Whenever possible, more than one invigilator shall be present for a examination; if this is not possible, it is recommended that arrangements be made for periodic checks on the exam room by an invigilation assistant.

2.5 The number of invigilators assigned for a final examination shall be determined by the academic unit offering the examination, in accordance with the recommended minimum of one (1) invigilator for each fifty (50) students.

Accommodations for Special Circumstances

2.6 Students with disabilities requiring accommodation or students requiring accommodation for significant religious observances shall be responsible for requesting the necessary accommodation in advance of the examination period and in accordance with the recommended timelines in the relevant policies and procedures.

2.7 The chief invigilator shall oversee provision of any special accommodation in the scheduled examination sitting that has been approved for a student in accordance with the relevant policies and procedures.

Admission to Examinations

2.8 The chief invigilator shall direct the admission, seating and identification of students and the signing of the attendance roster.

2.9 A valid York University photo identification card or other acceptable form of photo identification approved by the chief invigilator shall be required for admission of a student.

During Examinations

2.10 The chief invigilator shall make any necessary announcements during or at the end of the examination and direct the distribution and collection of examination question sheets and answer booklets.

2.11 The chief invigilator shall announce any materials or aids that students are allowed to have on their desk or have access to during that examination sitting.

2.12 The official start and end time of examination shall be determined and announced by the chief invigilator.

2.13 All invigilators shall exercise constant vigilance for and direct the handling of any  instance of suspected cheating[1], which includes a student giving or receiving assistance from another student, use of an unauthorized material or device during an examination or during any temporary disruption of an examination.

2.14 When the chief invigilator announces the conclusion of the examination, students shall be instructed to stop writing and remain seated while examination booklets (and question papers in some cases) are collected. Once exam booklets have been collected, the chief invigilator will announce that students are to collect their belongings and leave the exam room.

2.15 Following the examination, the chief invigilator shall ensure that all used and unused exam booklets are accounted for, with all used exam booklets delivered to the designated markers or office and all unused exam booklets returned to the designated office.

Student Admission and Conduct in Examinations

2.16 Students shall be required to present a valid York University photo identification card or other acceptable form of photo identification and to sign the attendance roster for the examination.

2.17 During an examination, students shall be permitted to have access to only those materials or aids specifically approved for use in that examination sitting.

2.18 Students may not speak or communicate by any means, manner or device on the subject of an examination with anyone other than an invigilator for the duration of the examination, including during any temporary disruption of the examination.

2.19 Students may leave an exam room only if granted permission to do so by an invigilator[2].

Emergency Interruptions of an Examination

2.20 The chief invigilator shall follow the instruction sheets provided by the Registrar’s Office and/or Security Services regarding announcements to be made and procedures to be followed in an emergency.

2.21 The chief invigilator shall determine whether or not an examination is to be cancelled and will work with the University’s security officers and/or Registrar’s Office representatives to assure the safety of all concerned and the academic integrity of the examination.

2.22 Students shall follow the instructions provided by the chief invigilator and/or Registrar’s Office and Security Services.

Instruction/Procedures for the Conduct of Examinations

Current information and procedures for the conduct of examinations can be found on the Registrar’s Office webpages noted below:

URL for the Examination Instruction/Procedures: (PassportYork Access)

URL for Alternate Examination Instruction/Procedures:

[1] Cheating is defined in Section 2.1.1 of the Senate Policy on Academic Honesty as “the attempt to gain an improper advantage in an academic evaluation”.

[2]  For example, use of the washroom facilities.