Guidelines for conducting exam during Corona (spring 2020)

INSTRUCTIONS AND GUIDELINES

Guidelines for examiners about oral exams on Campus

These guidelines are based on the Danish authorities' and Aarhus University's guidelines, which you can find here: medarbejdere.au.dk/en/corona

When carrying out oral exams with physical attendance, students may only stay in the building for a limited period of time while waiting prior to the exam. It is therefore extremely important that the examiner makes a schedule for the exam and informs the students about their individual exam times.  

  • The examiner/co-examiner may only appear at AU if they feel completely healthy. If they feel ill and/or have mild symptoms of being infected with COVID-19, they must stay at home.

  • If the examiner feels ill with mild symptoms and can/will carry out the exam – the exam must be held online for all students. As soon as possible, the students must be informed about this – the studies administration can help you – for example by posting it in Digital Exam and sending mail etc. to the enrolled students.  
  • If a student wishes to attend the exam online, it must be sheduled with the examiner before the first exam. The examiner plans the online exam activities the best way possible in accordance with the programme. If this results in changes to the exam programme prepared by the studies administration, it is the responsibility of the examiner to inform the students about the alternative exam programme.

  • The co-examiner can choose to participate in the exam online, which is why it is important that the examiner ensures that it is technically possible for the co-examiner to participate in the exam activities. This can be done by, for example, that the examiner's computer camera points towards the student and blackboards/whiteboard etc.
  • If a student is in a special risk group and wishes to complete the exam in the form of physical attendance on campus, he or she must contact the local studies administration who will help to find a solution.
  • On arrival at the building where the exam is held, everybody must wash hands and/or wash hands in spirits/sanitizer. Hand spirits/sanitizer and guiding posters can be obtained from the guard by the door in the building.
  • The cafeteria at Navitas and the mathematical cafeteria (Matematisk Kantine) have limited open so it is possible to buy a meal in the morning and at lunch.
  • The authorities' guidelines for at least one metre distance between people in public must be followed.

  • In situations where there may be an increased risk of drop contamination, or where a precautionary principle requires special consideration, the distance between people must be at least two metres. This applies to, among other situations, oral exams where there must be a distance of at least two metres between the examiner, the co-examiner and the examinee. When regulating the distance between sitting people, measurements must be taken from/to the centre of the chair seats.
  • When carrying out oral exams with physical attendance, students may only stay in the building for a limited period of time while waiting prior to the exam.
  • After the exam, the student must leave the building immediately.
  • At Master's thesis exam and Bachelor's degree exam, family and friends are not allowed to attend the exam, unfortunately.

Guidelines for examiners with oral exams on Campus during the summer exams

Following the phase 2 of the reopening of Denmark, the opportunity to take oral exams back to Campus became available. We would like to inform you of the guidelines that apply to this.

On 12 May all students have received information that the oral exams may be transferred back to campus as well as the conditions for this transferal. The information can be found here.

Information about oral exams on campus is available in the list of rescheduled exams on the study portals.

For practical reasons, we have had to ask for requests to move exams to campus in several stages, corresponding to the individual exam weeks. The lists of exams on the study portals will be updated on an ongoing basis. The students have been informed that they must keep up-to-date on the study portals.

With regard to the practical aspects of relocation to on-campus exam, we would like to ask you to be aware of the following points:

  1. The possibility of moving exams to campus only applies to oral exams.
  2. The exam terms announced to the students in connection with the conversion to online exams must be maintained. This is due to consideration of the way in which the students have prepared for the exam. For example, if you have increased exam time, preparation, aids, assessment form, etc., this will be maintained. If, during the course, you have informed the students that the exam will take place in a specific way, you must hold on to this. For example, if you have been saying that instead of a review on the blackboard, the exam should be based on a PowerPoint presentation, they will still have to do this, even though the exam will be on campus.
  3. The concept of all aids means that the students are allowed to bring e.g. notes, textbooks, PC etc. They may also use the Internet, but of course they may not have contact with others, e.g. via chat or anything else.
  4. You must ask your students to notify you in good time – before the first examination day, if they are unable to participate in the oral examination on campus. This may be due to consideration for their own health or the health of their closest relatives, or to the fact that they are exchange students and have returned home as a result of the Covid19 situation. These students must be able to participate via Zoom. There may also be students who feel that the online teaching has focused on the fact that the exam will be online, and who therefore prefers this type of examination. This will probably be very few students, but given the situation, such requests ought to be met.
  5. You must therefore secure the creation of a Zoom room for online exams. You need to do this even if the exam is moved back to Campus for the sake of some students who wish to participate in the exam online via Zoom. Please Send the link to the Zoom Room to your programme coordinator in order for it to be presented in the Digital Exams system.
  6. You may change the order of exams, for example to bring together the students who want an online exam. However, you are responsible for informing the students that it is the changed order that applies, and not the order on the study portal or in the Digital Exam system.
  7. The co-examiner may choose to participate via Zoom. You must agree on this with the co-examiner.
  8. Information regarding building and room will be available no later than one week before the exam starts.
  9. The buildings will be secured with cleaning and access control. Please look up information regarding the hygiene guidelines for exams under "Rules for teaching and exam activities" further below on this page.
  10. Relatives and friends do not have access to the buildings on campus for security reasons. Therefore, they are not allowed to participate in e.g. Master's thesis exams.
  11. Please observe Rules and instructions on distance, hygiene etc.
  12. Unfortunately, there is no access to the cafeterias; they remain closed during the exam period as well. Please make sure that you and co-examine are cared for. Please remember that it may be necessary to bring some bottles of water and glasses. Your department will reimburse your expenses.

Instructions for conducting online exam

Recommendations for equipment 

  • You need to have a PC and an internet connection. It will be an advantage if you place yourself in a room where you can be alone.

  • If you have an oral exam, you will need to have a mobile phone and a webcam for/on your PC. There need to be a working microphone/sound on your PC. It will be an advantage to use a headset to avoid echo or other background noises.
  • You PC and mobile phone must be fully charged before the exam – preferably connected to power at all time.
  • It is recommended, if possible, that your PC is connected to the internet with a cable.
  • Limit the number of unites connected to the wireless internet that you use for the exam.
  • Be sure to place yourself in front of the webcam in an appropriate and neutral place so the background do not take focus away from the exam.

Oral exams

Before the exam 

  • Conduct a mock exam with your students to make sure that technical problems are not in the way of a good exam – neither for you nor your students.
  • No later than one week before the exam, you as the examiner must create a Zoom room per exam day. Name the Zoom room with the course name and date (if necessary track), so that the students and the programme coordinator can see which exam is which.
  • If there are several parallel exams, create a room per track per day. Guidelines for practical information and the most important settings.
  • URL and password for the Zoom room must be sent to the programme manager, who will post it on Digital Exam. This way, all enrolled students will have access to the Zoom room.
  • Digital Exam is used because some students might not be signed up for the course Blackboard site.

Durng the exam

  • The student finds the link for the Zoom room in Digital Exam.

  • When the student is called in from the “Waiting room”, he/she must show his/her student ID card.
  • The examiner asks the student to write his/her mobile phone number in the chat, and the examiner writes it down (due to potential disconnections in Zoom or network).
  • The “Waiting room” is not as a normal waiting room where students are able to talk to each other. It is a place where students are waiting until the examiner lets them in and out.
  • If there is preparation for the exam, the examiner lets the student into the exam room where the student picks a question, and then sends the student back into the waiting room.
  • After the preparation, the examiner lets the student into the exam room where the exam is conducted.
  • When the exam is over, the student is sent back into the waiting room while the examiner and external examiner deliberate.
  • Finally, the examiner lets the student back into the exam room and gives grade and feedback.
  • If there is no preparation for the exam, the student simply enters the exam room from the waiting room.

The students are not able to see each other in the waiting room. This means, that if several students are waiting at the same time, it will be a good idea to write a message to the waiting room when a student is about to enter the exam room. This way, the other students can see if there are any delays, breaks etc. Note that previous messages are not shown when a new student enters the waiting room - so post messages regularly.

Home assignments 

Before the exam

  • The normal procedure for preparing an exam set must be followed. When the exam set is done, it must be sent to the programme coordinator who posts it on Digital Exam.

  • When preparing exam sets for home assignments with many students, it is possible (and recommended) to make multiple exam sets to prevent student from helping each other. Remember to name each set, so it is possible to identify each one (in case of exam fraud). The exam sets are distributed coincidentally between the enrolled students by Digital Exam. If the form of the assignments are essay-like, it is recommended to use plagiarism control (Urkund) to screen for exam fraud. Urkund screens what is publicly available, but also internally between the handed in assignments.
  • If you as an examiner wishes to use Urkund, you have to inform the programme coordinator about it when you set up the exam. 

During the exam

  • The student collects the exam set from Digital Exam, solves it, and hands it back in via Digital Exam.

  • If the student believes that there is an error in the assignment, the student must contact the programme coordinator (same procedure as at a normal exam, just without the guard)
  • The programme coordinator contacts the teacher who is responsible for the exam to determine if there is indeed a mistake.
  • If there is a mistake, the programme coordinator will reach out to the student/students, which the mistake concerns, via their AU-e-mail (via Digital Exam).
  • If there are multiple exam sets at the exam, only the students involved in the mistake are notified.

Contact information for the programme coordinator and AU IT will be posted in Digital Exam and on the study portals.     

Multiple Choice Question (MCQ)

  • This form of exam is conducted via Blackboard or via the method you normally use.
  • If there are mistakes in the assignment or technical problems, follow the procedure described above under "During the exam".

Guidelines for handling converted exams

Aarhus University generally trusts that students comply with the rules and behave ethically correct in exam situations. This approach is communicated directly to the students, and clear information is provided so the students don't get into any trouble regarding the rules, for example regarding exam cheating.

There will be no demand for a declaration from the students, since all students are believed to be familiar with the rules and have the intention to go through the exam within the rules and guidelines.

Written take-home assignments and written on-site assignments, which are converted to written take-home assignments

Guidelines for written take-home assignments:

  • AU’s internal rules regarding on-site exams are not in use during a converted written exam.
  • Adjusted guidelines regarding exam cheating are in use
  • AU’s disciplinary rules
  • Guidelines announced in the conversion plan of May 1, 2020, for the individual course

By suspicion of exam cheating:

  • If there in relation to the assessment is suspicion of exam cheating, the examiner must report this to Educational Law and withhold the grade. The normal procedure for reporting suspected exam cheating must be followed. Find more information here (in Danish only). 

Oral exams which are converted to online exams

Guidelines for online oral exams:

  • Adjusted guidelines regarding exam cheating are in use
  • AU’s disciplinary rules
  • Guidelines announced in the conversion plan of May 1, 2020, for the individual course

The exam can only be completed if there is access to a video connection via webcam and if the student can be identified with his/her student ID card before the exam begins.

If the student has guests present during the exam, the guests must be visible in the background during the entire exam.

You and the external examiner can – but do not have to – begin the exam with a 360 degree pan with the student's webcam to make sure:

  • That there are no helping tools such as notes, reference work, collections of formulas etc., if the exam do not allow it.
  • Any tablets, mobile phones, or other devices, which can be used for communication with a third party, are placed with the screen downwards on the table.

According to the Examination Order § 4, part. 5, sound and picture recordings during the exam are not allowed, expect if the recordings are part of the exam. If the teacher or examiner discover that the student is recording sound or picture of the exam, the student must be asked to stop. If the student do not comply with the request, the exam is stopped without assessment, and the student has used one exam attempt. 

Suspicion of exam cheating:

  • If the examiner or the external examiner discover that the student has used helping tools or in other ways violated the guidelines regarding exam cheating, the student must, after completed exam, be informed that a report about potential exam cheating will be made and send. The assessment will take place as usual, but the grade will be withhold. The normal procedures for reporting suspected exam cheating are followed. A further description can be found here (in Danish only).

Handling system breakdowns:

  • An exam attempt is not used if the student fails to enter the exam room or experiences a technical breakdown during the exam. Whether or not the reason for the breakdown is caused by circumstances at the student or at the examiner/external examinaer, it is viewed as an error at the exam.
  • How to handle system breakdowns:
    • If a system breakdown occurs either during or before the exam, the student is responsible for contacting the examiner by phone.
    • After succesful contact by phone, reconnection to Zoom must be attempted. If Zoom is still not working, try Skype for Business.
    • If it is not possible to reconnect to the student within 5 minutes, the exam must be stopped. A new time for the exam will be arranged per e-mail or phone.
    • If the exam was initiated, the student must draw a new exam question at the next exam.
    • The student has not used an exam attempt if contact can not be established.
    • The student will be asked to document the system breakdown no matter if the breakdown occurs before or during the exam.

Guidelines for handling exam cheating

Even though the exams are online, AU’s normal rules for exam cheating still apply. Aarhus University generally trusts that students wish to obtain their results on a honest basis, comply with the rules, and behave ethically correct in exam situations. It is expected that that the students are familiar with the rules and comply with them during the new online exam formats.

Below, you will find the rules and guidelines that you as an examiner have to be specially aware of regarding the convertion to online exams:

Rules for oral exams and written take-home assignments

AU’s internal rules regarding supervision can not be used during written take-home assignments and online oral exams. Therefore, all written exams are converted to allow helping tools. The rules for online oral exams and written exams are based on the following:

  • The usually guidelines for exam cheating. AU has made a modified Corona-version of the booklet “Avoid pitfalls at exams", which clarifies the rules regarding teamwork during an exam that demands individual answers.
  • AU’s disciplinary rules.
  • Guidelines announced in the conversion plan of May 1, 2020, for the individual course  

The following specific rules apply when you conduct an online oral exam:

  • The exam can only be completed if there is access to a video connection via webcam and if the student can be identified with his/her student ID card before the exam begins. This is the students responsibility.
  • You and the censor can – but you do not have to – chose to start the exam with a 360 degree pan with the students webcam to make sure:
    • There are no other people n the room. The student is allowed to have guests at the exam, but the guests must be visible in the background.
    • Any tablets, mobile phones, or other devices, which can be used for communication with a third party, are placed with the screen downwards on the table.
  • Note that sound and picture recordings during the exam are not allowed, expect if the recordings are part of the exam, according to the Examination Order § 4, part. 5. If you discover that the student is recording sound or picture of the exam, ask the student to stop. If the student do not comply with the request, the exam is stopped without assessment, and the student has used one exam attempt. 

If you suspect exam cheating at the oral exam:

If you or the external examiner discover that the student has violated the guidelines regarding exam cheating, the student must, after completed exam, be informed that a report about potential exam cheating will be filed. The assessment takes place as usual, but the grade is withhold. The normal procedures for reporting suspected exam cheating are followed. Further description can be found here.

If you suspect exam cheating at a written exam:

If you suspect exam cheating in connection with the assessment, you will have to report it to Educational Law. and the grade is withhold. The normal procedures for reporting suspected exam cheating are followed. Further description can be found here.

Guidelines for handling technical problems

Oral exams

If any technical problems occur, the guidelines below apply. They also apply if the student can not log on to the chosen platform for the exam (Zoom) by the beginning of the exam, or if any technical problems occur during the exam, which prevent the exam from being completed.

  • When the exam begins, the student writes his/her mobile phone number in the chat, and the examiner writes it down. Guidelines for the examiner and the external examiner about how the oral exams take place on Zoom, including how to use the board.
  • When you have reached contact over the phone, try to reconnect to Zoom.
  • If Zoom is still not working, try Skype for Business.
  • If it is not possible to reconnect to the student within 5 minutes, the exam must be stopped.
  • Subsequently, you must contact the student by e-mail or phone and arrange a new date and time for the exam. If it is not possible, inform the student to participate in the exam the next time possible.
  • No matter what, the student has not used an exam attempt if the exam is terminated due to technical problems.

The student will be asked to document the technical problems. Therefore, please encourage the student to thoroughly prepare for the conduction of the online exam.

Rules for teaching and exam activities

General guidelines

  • Employees and students who feel ill and/or have mild symptoms of coronavirus infection must stay home from work. Employees and students who have coronavirus symptoms should remain at home until they have been without symptoms for 48 hours.
  • Employees in a high-risk group should discuss what to do with their management, who will make a concrete assessment.
  • Students in a high-risk group can apply to be assigned an academic assistant. 
  • On arrival at the university, employees and students must wash or disinfect their hands.

Guidelines for teaching and exams:

Aarhus University will do everything possible to enable students – to the greatest extent possible – to participate in classes and/or associated activities in person on campus, out of consideration for the quality of the academic environment. There will be special focus on first-year students and courses for which learning outcomes depend on physical attendance. As a consequence of the official physical distancing guidelines for autumn 2020, the university will not be able to use classrooms at full capacity. This means that some teaching will take place online.

On-site teaching activities will take place in compliance with current guidelines from the Ministry of Higher Education and Science, which were updated on 5 October (only in Danish).

This means that:

  • The authorities’ instructions to maintain a social distance of at least one metre in public must be adhered to - in lecture halls as well as in classrooms.
  • An exception may be made in certain very specific teaching situations that require physical attendance, for example lab work, physical exercises and clinical training. In these situations, face masks are mandatory. AU is responsible for supplying PPE (personal protective equipment)
  • In situations in which there is increased risk of infection through respiratory droplets, or where additional precautionary measures are is advisable out of an abundance of caution, a minimum distance of at least two metres must be maintained. This applies to the following situations:

    • In the classroom, there must be at least two metres between the teacher and the front row of students.
    • At oral exams, there must be at least two metres between the examiner/co-examiner and the examinee.
    • Physical activities such as singing or other activities that involve an increased risk of infection through respiratory droplets.
  • When measuring the distance between seated persons, measurements must be taken from the middle of each chair seat, and when measuring the distance between standing/walking persons, distances must be marked on walls, floors or the like, for example at entrances and other places where queues tend to form. 

Info mails sent to teachers


On the study portals' 'Corona' site, you can find an overview of all infomails sent to the students at Nat and Tech. 
See for example the study portal for Physics and Astronomy: studerende.au.dk/en/studies/subject-portals/physics/corona/

INFORMATION FOR THE STUDENTS

Information for the students

Students at Nat and Tech can find all important information regarding the conversion of exam (summer 20) and re-exam (winter 19-20) on their study portal under 'COVID-19 exam and re-exam'

Here, the students can find the exam schedule, overviews of the converted exams, and important information such as requirements and guidelines. Furthermore, they can find information regarding conversion of exam and re-exam in regard to the latest guidelines from the Danish government about reopening society under Corona/COVID-19.

See for example the study portal for Physics and Astronomy: studerende.au.dk/en/studies/subject-portals/physics/examination/examination-schedules/covid-19-exam-and-re-exam/