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Avoid Exam Offences

Top Ten Tips for Avoiding Exam Offences

Tests and exams can be tense even at the best of times. You may feel under pressure because you are being examined, and your instructor, TAs and other officials may be stressed because they are responsible for preserving the integrity of the test/exam. The following tips can help you avoid being reported for an offence.

  1. Listen carefully to all exam announcements. Officials make them for your benefit and to remind you of things you may have forgotten. If you don’t understand something, don’t hesitate to ask an invigilator – they are there to assist.
  2. Don’t keep your phone in your pockets or on your desk. All electronic devices are considered unauthorized aids in an exam. It is an offence to have one even if you never use it and it is off. Put it at the front of the room with the rest of your things, leave it at home, or keep it in a resealable bag on the floor under your desk.
  3. Read the exam paper for warnings of “No Aids.” If no aids are allowed, this means all study notes, calculators, phones, iPods, dictionaries, etc. must be packed away, even if it was OK to have them during tests earlier in the course.
  4. Empty your pockets. Make sure you didn’t forget about your phone, iPod, or the notes you were reading on the subway.
  5. Bring your TCard and extra photo ID, just in case. Exam officials will check your card and ask you to sign an attendance list.
  6. Take nothing to your desk except what you need to write the exam: pens, pencils, eraser, ID. Pencil cases should be left with your other belongings.
  7. Don’t sit next to your friends. This removes the temptation to sneak a peek at their answer paper or for your friend to ask you for the time or for assistance.
  8. Avoid doing anything that could be interpreted as suspicious. This includes:
    • looking at other students’ papers
    • writing answers in large letters that can be easily seen by your neighbours
    • talking to your neighbours about anything at all
    • talking to yourself!
  9. Stop writing at the end of the exam. Continuing to write after the end of the exam is announced is an offence.
  10. Get a good night’s sleep. Being well-rested will help you concentrate and reduce anxiety.
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