The Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) is an umbrella body formed by the Exam Boards (also sometimes called Awarding Bodies) to oversee the administration of exams. JCQ implement the exam rules and regulations. The school must adhere to those rules and regulations and we are inspected annually to ensure that we do.
For more detail please visit the JCQ's website.
JCQ produce information for students (candidates) about what is expected of them. There are 4 documents (which are all supplied in electronic format to students) and these can be found downloaded from the links below.
- Information for candidates – written exams
- Information for candidates – onscreen exams
- Information for candidates – non-examination assessments (NEAs)
- Information for candidates – social media
A basic summary of the most important rules and regulations is given below.
- In the Sports Hall bags and coats should be left in the changing rooms
- In the Assembly Hall bags and coats must be stowed safely under the stairs (so that they don’t cause an obstruction) unless otherwise instructed by a member of staff or an Invigilator.
- In a classroom room, the Library or the Refectory bags and coats should be left where the Invigilator instructs you (normally at the front of the room).
These enable identification of the student to the invigilator and for register taking.
The school supplies the cards for these purposes.
They must bring this card with them to all of their exams and display it, face up, in the top right hand corner of their exam desk.
A student would never be prevented from sitting an exam because they had forgotten their ID card but we do ask that they be responsible about bringing and displaying it.
If a student fails to display their card then this may mean that an invigilator has to find a member of staff to identify the student and this can delay the start of an exam. If many students forget their cards then this can cause a delay in the start of an exam, which in turn, can cause anxiety to other students who are having to wait as a consequence.
Replacements can be obtained from the School's IT Office at a cost of £1.50, however, this is not a "while you wait" service and they cannot be replaced on the morning of an exam.
The school employs external Invigilators to conduct the examinations. Students are expected to behave in a respectful manner towards all invigilators and follow their instructions at all times. Invigilators are in the exam rooms to supervise the conduct of the examination.
- They will distribute and collect the exam papers
- They will tell candidates when to start and finish the exam
- They will hand out extra writing paper if required and deal with any problems that occur during the exam; for example, if a candidate is feeling ill.
- Please note that Invigilators cannot discuss the exam paper with students or explain the questions.
- Invigilators cannot read any part of the questions to students (unless a prior application has been made to the exam board for this type of support).
Internet enabled and/or data storage devices
Examples of these devices are:
- Mobiles phones
- Internet enabled (smart) watches
- USB drives (sometimes called pen drives or flash drives)
- Any type of MP3/4 player
- Any other internet enabled or data storage device not described above
Before any exam, students are given the opportunity to hand in these items for secure storage. Devices should be switched off and not set to “silent”. Alternatively, they can be stored in the student’s bag but the school accepts no responsibility for these items.
Failure to abide by this rule will result in disqualification even if the device is switched off.
Analogue watches without internet connectivity or data storage
These have to be placed on the exam desk. They may not be worn during an exam.
NO watches are permitted at all in an on-screen exam or when a student uses a laptop. They must be handed in to invigilating staff. Alternatively, they can be stored in the student’s bag but the school accepts no responsibility for these items.
Conduct in the exam room
- Listen carefully to instructions and notices read out by the Invigilators
- Read all instructions carefully and number answers clearly.
- Stay in the exam room for the duration of the exam.
- Disruptive behaviour won't be tolerated. There will be sanctions:
- two strikes policy
- will be roomed away from other candidates for all further exams
- parents/carers will be charged for the cost of employing a separate Invigilator for that student
- current cost of an Invigilator is approximately £9 per hour.
- Check over answers/make sure all details are correct
- Cross out neatly any rough work.
- Treasury tag loose pages in order
- Papers will be collected before you leave the room.
- Question papers, answer booklets and additional paper must NOT be taken from the exam room.
- Remain seated in silence until told to leave the exam room
- No graffitti'ing on exam desks. This is vandalism.
- No obscene drawings or offensive comments on exam papers. This is malpractice – the exam paper can be disqualified.
- Leave the room in silence
- Show consideration for other candidates who may still be working.
- Move quietly around the site after an exam
Talking is NOT permitted from the moment you enter the exam room
You are under “exam conditions” from the moment you enter an exam room right up until you leave the room at the end of the exam.
If an exam is stopped for ANY reason part way through there must be NO communication between candidates.
If an emergency necessitates an evacuation you remain under “exam conditions” throughout. Talking is a reportable breach of exam regulations.
Emergency Evacuation Procedures
- If the fire alarm sounds during an exam the Invigilators will tell you what to do.
- Don’t panic.
- If you have to evacuate the room you will be asked to leave in silence and in the order in which you are sitting.
- If you are doing an onscreen test you will be instructed to SAVE your work before leaving your workstation.
- Leave everything on your desk.
- You will be escorted to a designated assembly point. This is NOT the normal assembly areas because you will not be permitted to meet up with students who are not taking the exam.
- Follow the Invigilators instructions at all times.
- You must not attempt to communicate with anyone else during the evacuation.
- When you return to the exam room do not start writing until the Invigilator instructs you.
- You will be allowed the full working time for the exam and a report will be sent to the awarding body detailing the incident.
- If candidates talk during an evacuation then they risk disqualification of their own paper and the paper of any student with whom they communicate.
Malpractice in a non-examination assessment
The school has a duty to:
- ensure that it is produced in a fair and appropriate manner.
If plagiarism, collusion or the introduction of unauthorised material is suspected then the school’s "Disciplinary Procedures for Academic Misconduct" policy covers this. The document can be downloaded here.
The school also has a duty to:
- ensure that students' work is marked and moderated appropriately.
If a student wishes to appeal a marking decision for a non-examination assessment then they have the right to do so. The “Non-examination Assessment Appeals” policy covers this. The document can be downloaded here.
Malpractice in exams
In simple terms malpractice is cheating but other behaviour (such as being disruptive or writing obscenities on an answer script) are also malpractice.
Forgetting to remove revision notes from your pocket is malpractice too.
The invigilators will give reminders before every exam about phones, watches and revision notes.
The school is required to report all malpractice incidents to JCQ and disqualification of the student from that exam is the usual penalty. The school has an annual inspection to make sure that it is abiding by the rules for exam delivery.
For further details about Malpractice please visit the JCQ website.