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The examination process at University is different from what you have previously experienced and you need to make sure you understand how it all works. Below are some statements about the University examination process and examination technique more generally:


Preferably with another student, read the following statements and note down which you think are true. If you think some are false assumptions, correct them if you can. Some statements may not be answered with a simple true/false, in which case discuss and note down potential strategies. Do take the time to consider each statement before clicking on the feedback below; remember that independent thinking and learning is highly valued at University.

  1. The marks you get for an exam essay range from 0-100
  2. A pass mark is 40%
  3. It's important to write as stylishly as possible
  4. If you are required to answer three questions, but are only confident about one, you should concentrate on the one that you know really well and do brief answers to the remaining two
  5. Writing as much as possible and using long words or technical terms will get you higher marks
  6. Examiners are not overly concerned with untidy writing
  7. An exam essay is an opportunity for you to relate all the information you know about a particular topic
  8. If you run out of time, you should finish off your essay in bullet points
  9. You should try to replicate your supervision essays in the exam
  10. Do not waste time planning your essays. You should begin to write straight away in order to ensure you have enough time to finish
  11. The examiner will use a set of fixed criteria for marking exam essays
  12. If you write a very good essay which fails to address the question properly, the examiner will not penalise you 

*adapted from Writing Essays in Higher Education: A Guide for Students by Students

After you have discussed the above, click here to access the answers to the questions.