Examination

Last changed: 25 May 2016

Examination means that an examiner assesses your performance and awards a grade for a course you have completed. The forms of assessment will be indicated in the course syllabus for each course. Grade criteria must be provided in writing no later than when the course starts. Prior to each course, all the requirements for passing the course must be made clear.

What does SLU do?

There are many kinds of examination used for SLU’s courses and study programmes, such as:

  • Examinations (written examinations in an examination hall, take-home examinations, oral examinations, practical/clinical examinations)
  • Written report/assignment (composition assignment, lab report, project report, memorandum, study trip report, essay, etc.)
  • Oral report, often including public examination of another’s report
  • Compulsory attendance (excursion, study trip, guest lecture, etc.)
  • Laboratory practical, exercise, attendance as an observer, clinic visit, etc.
  • Placement/internship (VFU)
  • Seminar (literary seminar, etc.)
  • Independent project (degree project)

What do I need to do?

You must fulfil the requirements for passing the course, as stated in the course syllabus. You could say that there are three levels of interaction between you and the examiner.

  1. There are examination elements which involve assessing your knowledge, skills and abilities in relation to the objectives and content of the course. This provides a clear qualitative assessment of your performance. These elements must be stated in the course syllabus and the grade criteria must specify the scope and basis of assessment for the course in question.
  2. There are examination elements which form part of the requirements for passing the course and which make a quantitative assessment of your performance. This usually means compulsory attendance of certain parts of the teaching provided. These elements must also be stated in the course syllabus, but do not normally need to be specified in the grade criteria. On the other hand, it is important that the scope for the course in question is made clear, for example in a timetable.
  3. There are also elements which are offered in order to make learning easier and to provide support during the course. These may include small tests, the submission of exercises and essay drafts. These elements are not a requirement for passing the course and are therefore not specified in the course syllabus under the heading “Requirements for examination”, although they are often an important part of the course.

    While working on independent projects (degree projects), you will normally submit several materials to your supervisor. Some of these may be requirements for passing the course, such as a work schedule, method memorandum, etc. These will be indicated in the course syllabus and grade criteria. Other submissions may also be important and contribute to the assessment of your performance during the work process itself, which may affect your grades – but they are not a requirement for passing the course.

What does the law say?

The Swedish Higher Education Ordinance contains rules on examinations in Chapter 6. Here it states that the course syllabus must indicate, among other things, the forms of assessing the performance of students, the grading system which will be used and the other regulations required (Section 15). It also says “Unless otherwise provided by the higher education institution, a grade shall be awarded on completion of a course. The grade shall be determined by a teacher specifically nominated by the higher education institution (the examiner)” (Section 18). Find out more about examinations and grading in the regulations for education, section 6. Assessment and grades (pdf 116 Kb).

Page editor: Johan.Toren@slu.se