17th June 2024

University clarifies exam mitigation measures: students to receive unlimited oxygen


The Porter’s Log has obtained an exclusive copy of Graham Virgo’s latest missive, which clarifies the university’s ‘safety net’ package of mitigation measures.

The email, which comes after the university faced backlash for its statement on exam and assessment mitigation measures, sets out a new set of principles which the university will implement to help ease students’ concerns about disruption caused by the pandemic. Read on to find out what it means for you:

Dear students,

I last wrote to you on 15 February to outline the package of exam mitigation measures that will constitute the university’s ‘safety net’ policy. After detailed consultation with departments, we are now in a position to provide further details and clarifications about this mitigation package.

In light of the respiratory distress caused by COVID-19, all students will be provided with unlimited oxygen for the duration of the examination. Students requiring extra air must contact their Directors of Studies at least 2 weeks in advance.

To ensure fairness, the same number of students will sit examinations as in previous years.

No student, in any year-group, will be required to sit a Natural Sciences examination (unless they are a Natural Sciences student).

With an eye to student welfare, bearing in mind ‘pressure points’ on the calendar, all coursework across the collegiate university may be handed in on time or before. Examinations have been scheduled for the end of Easter term.

In the interest of maintaining social distancing, there will be no more than one student per question sheet.

To ensure holistic assessment, all students will be graded on a scale from 0 to 100.

Students are permitted to bring their own stationery into the (virtual) examination hall.

To reduce academic burden and syllabus size, content covered in supervisions will not be assessed.

Student well-being and a sense of community is the cornerstone of our approach to these unprecedented times. All students who successfully survive until Easter will be assigned lavender-scented bobbleheads of Vice-Chancellor Stephen Toope for emotional support during examinations.

I hope this clarification will help to ease your concerns about assessments this academic year, and provide reassurance that you will be assessed fairly, taking into account disruption brought about by the pandemic.

Best wishes,

Professor Sir Dr Captain Admiral Graham Virgo

Deputy Executive Assistant Senior Pro-Anti-Contra-Vice-Chancellor for Education