Exam Procedure in FVAS

Important information on the exam procedure, including e-Exam procedure, as it relates specifically to FVAS subjects.

e-Exams in FVAS (Semester 1, 2020)

The below information provides advice about e-Exams as they relate specifically to subjects owned by the Melbourne Veterinary School and the School of Agriculture and Food (both within the Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences).

For more general advice about e-Exams in semester 1, 2020, please visit the University's Exams website here: https://students.unimelb.edu.au/your-course/manage-your-course/exams-assessments-and-results/exams

  • Understanding your exam timetable

    There are a few factors related to your exams this semester which will be different to what you may be accustomed to with in-person exams. These are outlined below.

    Reading time

    There is no reading time for any FVAS exams in semester 1, 2020. Due to technical constraints, there is no way in which we are able to replicate a traditional "reading time" for online exams. The moment a student opens their e-Exam, they are permitted to commence writing.

    Strict time limit within broader window

    It is essential that students understand the 'strict time limit within broader window' exam type for FVAS exams.

    Barring a few exceptions*, FVAS exams with this exam type are not being utilised as an opportunity for students to commence their exam at any point within the broader window. In FVAS, an exam which has a strict time limit within a broader window will have strict start and end times, however these exams will have a designated rest break between two (or more) sections of the exam.

    For example, an exam which has a 2-hour duration but a 3-hour broader window may have:

    1. Section A (Multiple Choice and Short Answer) for 1 hour.
    2. A 1-hour break.
    3. Section B (Long Answer) for 1 hour.

    Subject/unit coordinators will advise students of the exact breakdown of their particular exam via the LMS in advance of the exam date.

    * AGRI10050, AGRI30030, FOOD90039, UNIB30010 exams are being utilised as an opportunity for students to commence their exams at any point within the broader window (must be submitted by final date/time).

    Why there are designated rest breaks

    While the Faculty can appreciate some students may feel there are downsides to the designated rest break, the Faculty was required to consider the rest breaks granted to students registered with the Student Equity and Disability Services team. Unfortunately, due to the exceptional circumstances of this current semester, there was no simple way of accommodating both groups of students in the traditional way and it was therefore deemed fairest to give all students within a subject a rest break than to give no student a rest break.

    Furthermore, the recommendation by the University and various learning design experts was to try to break down our exams into several smaller assessments (where possible), rather than expecting students to sit exams the same way they would in the past - particularly as students don’t necessarily have the benefit of a quiet, dedicated space free from distractions and technical concerns. While some coordinators made the decision that their exams are best completed in a single sitting due to the way the questions and answers are arranged, others determined that breaking up the exam was feasible. Each student will have their own preference on how their exam runs, therefore the Faculty was required to make its decision based on what would be most equitable for all students.

    • Alternative Exam Arrangements (AEAs)

      Students with Alternative Exam Arrangements (AEAs) as part of their Academic Adjustment Plan will be considered for the e-Exams in semester 1, 2020, however there will be some changes to what the Faculty is able to offer as a result of the e-Exam format.

      Common AEAs

        Implementation for e-Exams - Sem 1, 2020
      Extra Reading Time N/A - FVAS exams do not have reading time, therefore extra reading time AEAs will not be considered.
      Extra Writing Time All extra writing time provisions will be honoured. Students will receive the extra time added to their maximum time limit in LMS Quizzes or, where their exam is submitted via Turnitin Assignments, will be permitted to submit their exam file in accordance with their extra writing time.
      Rest Breaks Rest break provisions will not be honoured on an individual basis. The Faculty has utilised the broader period exam type in many of our exams as a means to put in mandatory rest breaks for all students in between two (or more) sections of the exam paper.
      Special Format Students with special format AEAs that are not automatically accommodated through e-Exam format will be contacted by the Faculty to determine the best way to support the student in undertaking their e-Exam.

      AEAs in the exam timetable

      AEA timing calculations have not been noted in the exam timetable for the FVAS e-Exams with a broader period. As noted on the University's AEA website, if your exam does not appear as an AEA exam, this is because the University's Exams Office has recognised that your extra time provisions fit within the broader period. The Faculty's Academic Support Office is responsible for setting up the exams and will ensure that your extra writing time is provided as appropriate.

      Students should disregard any extra reading time or rest breaks awarded in their timetable, as these will not apply to FVAS exams.

      Examples of exam timings

      Below is an example of the timings for a 2-hour exam in a 3-hour broader period. Part A has a 1-hour duration and Part B has a 1-hour duration.

      The AEA student has an extra writing time provision of 15 mins per hour.

      Main Cohort 
      Start Part A of e-Exam 9.00am
      End Part A of e-Exam 10.00am
      BREAK 10.00am - 11.00am (1 hour)
      Start Part B of e-Exam 11.00am
      End Part B of e-Exam 12.00pm
      AEA Student 
      Start Part A of e-Exam 9.00am
      End Part A of e-Exam 10.15am
      BREAK 10.15am - 11.00am (45 mins)
      Start Part B of e-Exam 11.00am
      End Part B of e-Exam 12.15pm

      Exams with/without rest breaks

      Below is a list of exams that do and do not have designated rest breaks in Semester 1, 2020.

      Designated rest break NO designated rest break
      AGRI10045
      AGRI20026
      AGRI20043
      AGRI30037
      AGRI30040
      AGRI30042
      AGRI90066
      ANSC20001
      ANSC30001
      ANSC30003
      ANSC30006
      FOOD10001
      FOOD20003
      FOOD90010
      FOOD90022
      NUTR30002
      NUTR30005
      UNIB10009
      VETS20014
      VETS30013
      VETS30015
      VETS90082
      VETS90115/01 (Cells to Systems)
      VETS90117/01 (FAH1)
      VETS90117/02 (AHPS)
      VETS90064/01 (HLI)
      VETS90064/02 (Locomotion)
      VETS90076/01 (Dogs & Cats)
      VETS90076/02 (Horses)
      VETS90076/03 (Cattle)
      VETS90076/04 (Small Ruminants)
      VETS90076/05 (Poultry & Aviary Birds)
      VETS90097 (Epidemiology)
      VETS90099/01 (MIV)
      VETS90099/02 (Parasitology A)
      AGRI10047
      AGRI10050
      AGRI20042
      AGRI20044
      AGRI30030
      AGRI30033
      AGRI90091
      ANSC20005
      ANSC30004
      ANSC90004
      BTCH30001
      BTCH30002
      FOOD30007
      FOOD30008
      FOOD90023
      FOOD90039
      UNIB20012
      UNIB30010
      VETS30016
      VETS90064/03 (RAD A)
      VETS90115/02 (Digestive System)
      VETS90119
      • Academic Integrity

        The Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences takes academic integrity extremely seriously.
        Students should be aware of the expectations surrounding their conduct in these exams and the consequences of a failure to adhere to the University's principles of academic honesty.

        For more information, see the University's Student Academic Integrity Policy (MPF1310).

        Academic Misconduct in e-Exams

        The below lists examples of what may be considered academic misconduct in relation to the e-Exams. This list is indicative and not exhaustive.
        • Plagiarism - using other people's work or ideas and representing it as your own work or ideas. Plagiarism is not exclusively 'word-for-word' copying. Using somebody else's ideas or scaffolding your work based on someone else's work (including rearranging words or sequencing of ideas), without proper attribution, is plagiarism.
        • Collusion - when another student contributes to a piece of work that is supposed to be a single student's work (an individual assessment task). All parties involved in collusion can be found guilty of academic misconduct.
        • Cheating - seeking to gain an advantage in an assessment, regardless of whether that advantage was obtained, by unfair, unscholarly or unauthorised means.
        • Assistance from other students - assistance given to or received by another student in the performance of an individual assessment task. Assistance can be direct or indirect. Providing another student with information about their exam would constitute academic misconduct under this category.
        • Failure to follow exam rules/directions - any other action which contravenes instructions given to students in relation to the conduct of the exam. This may include failure to submit your exam on time without an appropriate reason and supporting evidence.

        Penalties for Academic Misconduct

        All reports of academic misconduct are brought to the attention of the Director of Learning & Teaching in the respective school. If the breach is deemed intentional and/or substantial, the Director of Learning & Teaching will refer the case on to the Associate Dean (Learning & Teaching) of FVAS who will organise an Academic Misconduct Committee to investigate the allegation. If the Academic Misconduct Committee upholds the allegation of academic misconduct, penalties may include:

        • A mark of zero (0%) for the relevant assessment
        • A mark of zero (0%) for the relevant subject
        • A recommendation to the Vice-Chancellor that the student be suspended from study
        • A recommendation to the Vice-Chancellor that the student be terminated from study

        A record of any allegation upheld is kept by the Academic Registrar and also forms part of your student disciplinary record and student file.


      • General information about FVAS exams

        The Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences is committed to delivering to its students the best quality education and student life experience throughout their time with us. With this core principle in mind, the Faculty's senior academic leaders and professional staff in the Academic Support Office considered the key pain points for our students with respect to the current exam procedure in FVAS, and the Faculty's Learning & Teaching committee subsequently met in March 2020 to consider the proposed amendments/discuss improvements to the local procedure in FVAS regarding exam timelines and special/supplementary exam offerings.

        Below is the approved exam procedure for FVAS with respect to these offerings ─ effective semester 1, 2020 onwards.

        • Exam Periods
            Semester 1 Semester 2
          Main Exam Period June November
          Special/Supplementary Exam Period July December
          Late Supplementary Exam Period* (if required) August January

          *The Late Supplementary exam period is only for students who are eligible for a supplementary exam but who could not be identified in time for the Special/Supplementary exam period due to holding an interim grade; or students with approved special consideration for a supplementary exam sat in the Special/Supplementary exam period.

        • Supplementary Exams

          Students admitted to Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences courses are typically offered supplementary exams following result release where the student meets a specific set of criteria, as identified by the Faculty's Academic Support Office. A student can only be identified as eligible for a supplementary exam once all their results across the whole half-year period are final (ie. students with interim grades for special exams, extensions, etc. are not able to be assessed for a supplementary exam).

          The courses which offer supplementary exams are as follows:

          • Diploma of General Studies
          • Bachelor of Agriculture
          • Master of Food Science
          • Master of Agricultural Sciences
          • Master of Food and Packaging Innovation
          • Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (known as "hurdle reassessments" - see course Handbook for details)

          Supplementary exams (known as "reassessments" under 4.82 - 4.86 of the University's Assessment and Results policy) are offered by the Faculty as a means to grant a second opportunity to pass a subject, where the failure will have a significant impact on a student's course progression.

          The mark a student attains for a supplementary exam replaces the entire subject mark (or unit mark for the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine), to a maximum of 50%.

          Students who elect to undertake a supplementary exam should note that this mark will supersede their current mark in the subject ─ even if the new mark is lower.

        • Special Exams

          Special exams are exams that are awarded by the Faculty as a result of an eligible special consideration application for subjects owned by the Melbourne Veterinary School or School of Agriculture & Food.

          Special exams replace the exam for which special consideration was granted and the mark attained in the special exam will supersede the mark attained in the exam for which special consideration was granted ─ even if the new mark is lower.

          The Faculty will only award a student an exam as an outcome of a special consideration application once (for the same subject in the same study period). Where a student submits and is deemed eligible for a second special consideration for the same subject's exam, the student will be offered a late withdrawal from the subject.

          Below are some examples of outcomes following a special consideration application:

          Example 1 ─ Special consideration on a main round exam

          Julia sits an exam in the main exam period. Julia was unwell during this exam and applies for special consideration. She is subsequently found eligible by the University's Student Equity and Disability Services team (SEDS). The Faculty will award Julia a special exam to be held in the Special/Supplementary exam period.

          Example 2 - Special consideration on a special exam

          Following on from example 1, Julia goes on to sit her special exam in the Special/Supplementary exam period. Julia was unwell during this exam and applies for special consideration. She is subsequently found eligible by the University's Student Equity and Disability team (SEDS). As this is Julia's second special consideration for an exam in this subject, the Faculty will offer Julia a late withdrawal from the subject.

          Example 3 ─ Special consideration on a supplementary exam

          Ahmed sits an exam in the main exam period. Ahmed receives his results and narrowly failed a subject. Ahmed is awarded a supplementary exam by the Faculty following result release and sits this supplementary exam in the Special/Supplementary exam period. Ahmed was unwell during this exam and applies for special consideration. He is subsequently found eligible by the University's Student Equity and Disability Services team (SEDS). The Faculty will offer Ahmed another attempt at the supplementary exam (colloquially called a "special-on-supp" exam).

          Example 4 ─  Special consideration on a "special-on-supp" exam

          Following on from example 3, Ahmed goes on to sit his "special-on-supp" exam in the Late Supplementary Exam Period. Ahmed was unwell during this exam and applies for special consideration. He is subsequently found eligible by the University's Student Equity and Disability Services team (SEDS). As this is Ahmed's second special consideration for an exam in this subject, the Faculty will offer him a late withdrawal from the subject.

          Example 5 ─ Special consideration on a supplementary exam after a special exam

          Xinyi sits an exam in the main exam period. Xinyi was unwell during this exam and applies for special consideration. She is subsequently found eligible by the University's Student Equity and Disability Services team (SEDS). The Faculty awarded Xinyi a special exam and Xinyi sits the special exam in the Special/Supplementary exam period. Xinyi receives her result following the Special/Supplementary exam period and narrowly failed the subject. She is awarded a supplementary exam to be held in the Late Supplementary exam period. Xinyi was unwell during this exam and applies for special consideration. She is subsequently found eligible by the University's Student Equity and Disability Services team (SEDS). As this is Xinyi's second special consideration for an exam in this subject, the Faculty will offer her a late withdrawal from the subject.

          A student may be identified as eligible for a supplementary exam following the offer of a late withdrawal (if they have not previously been offered a supplementary exam). In this case, the Faculty will ensure the deadline to accept the late withdrawal offer is after the supplementary exam sitting, so the student will not lose the offer of a late withdrawal while they attempt the supplementary exam.