Exam times are always stressful and nobody needed the added stresses that the COVID-19 pandemic caused by disrupting the mid-year exams. Various measures have been put in place to mitigate this impact. One of these – writing exams in September – is adding to the usual workload already in place with second semester courses. (There are 50 courses with exams between 27 and 29 September.) Against this backdrop, the decision has been taken to allow students, as a once-off concession, to apply for deferred exams (DE) in order to allow for easier spacing of exam schedules. These will be termed ‘concessionary deferred exams’.
When considering this option, please bear in mind that deferred exams are scheduled over a short period in January. Opting for multiple deferred exams in January could result in an unmanageable exam timetable. If the exam deferred was an invigilated on-campus exam, you will be required to travel to Cape Town to take the exam on campus in January. It is also very important to note that when deciding whether to apply for a concessionary deferred exam you note General Rule 27.1, which determines that a deferred exam cannot again be deferred. If you miss a deferred exam, for any reason, your result for that course will be absent (AB). No supplementary exams are offered on a deferred exam.
All applications for concessionary deferred exams for the September exam session must be submitted in the usual way, through a completed ACA44 form on PeopleSoft.
For concessionary deferred exams, a brief motivation should be appended to the ACA44. Applications for reasons of physical or mental health and applications on compassionate grounds, for example, the death of a close family member, should be accompanied by the usual supporting documentation. Please refer to the Deferred Exams Guidelines on the Examinations website.
To make the administration of examinations easier, wherever possible please submit applications for concessionary deferrals at least 48 hours before the examination concerned.
Should you have applied for a concessionary DE prior to an exam and then elect to take the exam, the DE automatically falls away and the result of the exam will stand, irrespective of the result.
Other prescripts around deferred exams also remain unchanged. A deferred exam cannot be granted for a course for which a student has not fulfilled the duly performed (DP) requirements. Applications for courses that do not have DP requirements must still be accompanied by a completed ACA44b form. A deferred exam cannot be granted after the fact for an exam already written. All applications must be submitted within seven calendar days of the examination concerned.
Hopefully this once-off concession will allow you to manage your workload and mental health as well as possible in these difficult times.
With warm regards
Associate Professor Lis Lange
Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Teaching and Learning
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