Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
LE11 3TU
+44 (0)1509 263171
Loughborough University

Student Wellbeing and Inclusivity

Exam Support

Adjustments for exams

We recognise that examinations can be tough and stressful, and for some students this requires extra preparation and consideration. Examination support is in place to help ensure you can demonstrate your true academic potential alongside your non-disabled peers.

If you have some examination support in place already (which we call ‘examination adjustments’), this webpage will tell you more about how these will work for you. If you feel you need additional or different examination support, please contact your Disability/Mental Health Advisor who can talk this through with you.

If you are unsure about what examination support you have in place, you can check via your self-service page here.

2020 guidance on open book exams

Study Support have produced a video and resources to help you to study for, and undertake open book exams for the 2020 assessments.

You can find further information on the Supporting you with open book exams page.

What are adjustments?

We use the term ‘adjustments’ to mean different ways the exam can be made more accessible for you. Adjustments are agreed between you and your Disability/Mental Health Advisor, who then pass the information to the examinations office. Some examples of exam adjustments include:

  • Additional time
  • Rest breaks
  • Permission for personal belongings e.g. medication
  • Smaller (sometimes individual rooms) where you can sit your exam
  • Adapted print media e.g. enlarged font size.

The exam venues

The main exam venue for all students is the Dan Maskell Tennis Centre. However, it is likely you will sit in a different venue which can cater for your adjustments.

Your exam timetable will be released at least 7 weeks before exams start. Venues will then be confirmed a few weeks before your exams so don’t worry if your timetable doesn’t have a venue on it to start with, all the information will come on Learn for you to see.

Sitting in the Brockington Building

Brockington is usually for students who have extra time in place, and/or use of a computer. You will be told which room to go in Brockington when the venue/seats are published on Learn.

Sitting in the Wavy Top Building 

Wavy Top is usually for students who have other adjustments including rest breaks, readers, scribes and those who need to sit in small rooms (including individual ones). You will be told if you are sitting in Wavy Top when the venue/seats are published on Learn. We will also contact you to confirm your examination adjustments.

Click here for a video tells you more about what you can expect in the Wavy Top building.

Sitting in your School

Students sitting their exam in a room within their School will be contacted by their School Administrator. You will be asked to confirm your examination adjustments and be told which room has been set up for you.

Guidance on using a computer

  • Students will have access to Microsoft Word for typing their exam.
  • Students can change the background screen colour should they need via: Word - Design - Page Colour - select colour (We recommend students familiarise themselves with this process before the exam if they are intending to use it).
  • Multiple-choice exams can be taken on the computer.
  • Students will also be provided with a paper answer booklet for the option of writing any answers should they wish. Each script must be clearly labelled for each question.
  • Computers will have the following de-activated: internet access, calculator, thesaurus, assistive software unless by prior agreement with the Disability Support Team.

Guidance on printing a script

1.     Log-in in the usual way.

2.     Regularly save the work throughout the exam to the Desktop

3.     The invigilator will advise students how to print their script after the exam has finished. Students can ask for your script to be printed at any time to proofread.

4.     Students must not include their Student ID number or name on printed work.

5.     Logging out of the computer will delete the exam from the system.

Guidance on rest breaks

  • Rest breaks are stop-the-clock breaks when the exam paper will be turned over.
  • Students should let the invigilator know when they need a rest break, they will then accompany the student to the rest break area. When students are ready to return to the exam, the invigilator will accompany them back to the room.  
  • Students can use as much or as little out of their rest break time as they wish at one time e.g. 1 break of 30 minutes, 3 of 10 minutes, 6 of 5 minutes etc.
  • Rest breaks can be taken at any time during the exam, including within the first 30 minutes.
  • If students do not need to use any of their break time on the day, they may continue to work through.
  • To take a break, raise your hand to alert the invigilator, who will accompany you to the rest break area/toilet. You must not talk about work or the examination during your rest break, and you will not be allowed to access unauthorised items

Guidance on using a Scribe

  • An invigilator will be present in the exam venue along with the scribe
  • The scribe will have a copy of the exam paper
  • If a student has rest breaks, their time will start only once the scribe has finished writing down the student’s last answer.
  • For any English language paper assessments, students must dictate their punctuation. In all other subjects’ punctuation can be completed by the scribe.
  • For foreign language examinations, students must dictate their spelling of the foreign language vocabulary.

The scribe will:

  • Write down answers exactly as the student dictates them
  • Read back any of the answers if the student requests this
  • Change an answer if the student asks them to write something different
  • Strictly follow the student’s instructions when drawing any maps, diagrams and graphs.

The scribe will not:

  • Explain or clarify any of the paper
  • Prompt the student to move onto the next question or help the student to choose which question to answer
  • Read any of the exam paper out loud to the student, unless they are working as both reader and scribe
  • Continue writing answers once the examination has finished.

Guidance on using a Prompter

  • An invigilator will be present in the exam venue along with the prompter.

The prompter will:

  • Tap on the table or the student’s arm to encourage them to regain concentration
  • Speak to the student to remind them to focus, or to move on to the next question, or remind the student of how long is left
  • Show the student a visual cue (flashcard) to encourage them to focus or move on to the next question.

The prompter will not:

  • Advise the student on which questions to use
  • Tell the student in which order to do the questions.

Guidance on using a Reader

  • An invigilator will be present in the exam venue along with the reader.
  • The reader will have a copy of the exam paper

The reader will:

  • Do a literal reading of all or any part of the examination paper, as many times as the student requests. This includes any formulae sheet or additional materials students are permitted to take into the examination
  • Read back all or any part of the student’s answers at the student’s request.

The reader will not:

  • Explain, clarify or interpret any of the paper. The reader may only read word for word from the paper or from the student’s answers.
  • Prompt the student to move onto the next question or help the student to choose which question to answer
  • Explain abbreviations and symbols. Readers may read out symbols or abbreviations but may need to be given guidance as to whether a student should be expected to understand the symbol / abbreviation as a part of the examination question.
  • Read out whole equations, but instead will make a statement to the student telling them to refer to it themselves.

Guidance on using a Calculator Operator

  • An invigilator will be present in the exam venue along with the Calculator Operator
  • The Calculator Operator will have a copy of the exam paper.
  • If a student is also entitled to rest breaks then no calculations can take place during a rest break

The Calculator Operator will:

  • Input calculations exactly as the student dictates them
  • Read back the answers that are calculated

The Calculator Operator will not:

  • Explain or clarify any part of the examination paper
  • Explain abbreviations and symbols
  • Prompt the student to move onto the next question or help the student to choose which question to answer
  • Read any of the exam paper, unless they are working as both reader and calculator operator
  • Continue operating the calculator once the examination has finished.

Exam regulations and protocols

Remember you need to arrive in the room ideally 10 minutes before your exam starts.

You won’t be allowed entry if you are more than 30 minutes late. If you are late, your exam will still finish at the arranged time.

Exam regulations apply to exams irrespective of location. Click here to see the University guidance.


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Contact us

‌Disability Office

01509 222770

Student Wellbeing and Inclusivity

01509 228338

Assessment Centre

02476 426146



Bridgeman Building

Epinal Way

Loughborough, LE11 3TU


Building number 53 on Campus Map‌. The number of blue badge parking bays is shown in the box next to the wheelchair symbol.