Examinations at NTNU

Complaints about grades and examinations

If you have a complaint about examinations you've taken, or grades or marks you've received at NTNU, you have to follow an appeal procedure outlined in Norwegian law.

The following extract from the Act relating to Universities and University Colleges of 1 April 2005 explains some of the central issues:

Section 3-9. Examinations and marking
Section 5-2. Complaints against procedural errors in connection with examinations
Section 5-3. Complaints regarding marks awarded - right to explanation

 

Section 3-9. Examinations and marking

(1) Universities and university colleges shall ensure that students’ knowledge and skills are tested and assessed in a manner that is impartial and academically sound.

Assessment shall also safeguard the academic standards of the course of study in question. An external evaluation shall be made of the assessment or assessment arrangements.

(2) The board shall appoint examiners for examinations, tests, assessments of assignments or other assessments the results of which are entered on the diploma or included in the mark given for the course of study in question. When assessing candidates’ independent work in higher degree courses, each candidate shall be assessed by at least two examiners, of whom at least one shall be external.

(3) The oral parts of examinations and tests shall be public unless regard for the examination or test arrangements indicates otherwise. The board may make exceptions to the rule concerning public examinations in particular cases at the request of the examination candidate concerned when particularly weighty reasons so indicate.

(4) Marks shall be made known within three weeks unless for special reasons more time is required. The board may itself make exceptions in respect of specific examinations and may in temporary regulations pursuant to the seventh paragraph set a longer time limit when it is not possible to provide the number of qualified examiners required to complete the marking within three weeks. The board may itself in a regulation pursuant to the seventh paragraph set a longer time limit for dissertations and similar large written works.

(5) Re-marking pursuant to sections 5-2 and 5-3 shall be carried out by at least two new examiners, of whom at least one shall be external. Marks may be changed in the appellant’s favour and disfavour. If the final mark is set on the basis of both a written and an oral test and an appeal against a mark for the written part of the examination is upheld, a new oral test shall be held to determine the final mark.

(6) The mark awarded following an examination, test, assessment of an assignment or other assessment shall either be pass/fail or be based on a graded scale of six marks from A to F, where A to E indicate a pass and F indicates a fail.

(7) The board itself issues regulations governing the taking and arrangement of examinations and tests, including the conditions for resitting an examination or test and for permission to retake a practice period, and provisions concerning registration and the conditions for registration for examinations. In the case of courses for which national curriculum regulations have been established pursuant to section 3-2, second paragraph, the regulations must be based on any general provisions concerning examinations and assessment contained in the curriculum regulations. The board may delegate the issue of supplementary provisions concerning special circumstances relating to particular examinations to a faculty or department.

 

Section 5-2. Complaints against procedural errors in connection with examinations

(1) A candidate who has taken an examination or test may complain of procedural errors within three weeks of the date when he or she became or should have become aware of the circumstance on which the complaint is based. Such complaints are ruled on by the board itself or the institution’s appeals committee.

(2) If an error was committed which may have affected the student’s performance or its assessment, the mark shall be rescinded. If the error can be corrected by re-marking the papers submitted, they shall be re-marked. Otherwise a new examination or test shall be held with new examiners. The mark awarded in a second assessment pursuant to the present section may be appealed against pursuant to the provisions laid down in section 5-3.

(3) If a request for explanation of or an appeal against a mark has been submitted, the time limit for an appeal pursuant to this section is reckoned from the date when the student receives the explanation or when the appeal is finally ruled on.

(4) If the board or the board’s appeals committee finds that formal errors were committed and that this can reasonably be supposed to have affected the performance of one or more candidates or the assessment of that performance, the decision may be taken to carry out a new assessment or to hold a new examination or test.

 

Section 5-3. Complaints regarding marks awarded - right to explanation

(1) A student is entitled to an explanation of the marks awarded for his or her performance. At oral examinations or assessments of practical skills, a request for such an explanation must be made immediately on notification of the mark. Requests for explanations of other assessments must be submitted within one week after the candidate learns of the mark, but never more than three weeks after the announcement of the mark.

(2) Explanations shall normally be given within two weeks after the candidate requests them. They shall state the general principles on which the assessment was based and explain the assessment of the candidate’s performance. Explanations may be given orally or in writing at the examiner’s discretion.

(3) If written guidelines for assessments have been issued, they shall be available to students after the marks have been decided.

(4) A student may appeal in writing against a mark awarded for his or her performance within three weeks of the announcement of the examination results. The performance shall then be reassessed. In the event of a request for an explanation of a mark or a complaint of procedural errors in the question-setting, the examination procedure or the assessment procedure, the time limit for appeals pursuant to this section is reckoned from the date when the student receives the explanation or when the appeal is finally ruled on. In connection with the use of continuous assessment, the institution may decide whether the student shall submit an appeal following the assessment of a separate examination, assignment or other assessment or whether an appeal shall be submitted on announcement of the result of assessment of the study programme, discipline, or module.

(5) Appeals may not be lodged against marks awarded for oral performance and assessment of practical training or the like which, owing to the nature of the test cannot be reviewed. The results of preliminary examinations (forprøver) may only be appealed against when the examination is failed.

(6) Marks awarded following re-marking pursuant to this section may not be appealed against.