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Here you can find out what to expect on the day, including guidance and advice on dealing with any unexpected issues that may come up and some tips on approaching your exam.

Unforeseen circumstances on exam day


If you are sick on the day of an exam you should contact your school or college as soon as possible.

Severe weather or major travel disruption

If your school or college can open, exams will be held as normal. If you’re unable get there due to severe weather or travel disruption, schools or colleges may send you to an alternative venue or withdraw you from the exam and ask you to sit it in the next exam series.

If severe weather is forecast:

Arriving late or leaving early

If you think you may be late for an exam, contact your school or college as soon as possible. Depending on how late you arrive, you may or may not be allowed to sit the exam.

Students are not allowed to leave the exam room in the first hour. If, in an emergency, someone needs to contact a student taking an exam, they should call the school or college directly.

Missing an exam

If you miss an exam due to circumstances beyond your control, you may be able to apply for special consideration. For more information see JCQ’s guide to the special consideration process.

In the exam room

What to take

Your school or college will provide the question papers, answer sheets and additional materials. You should check with your teachers beforehand whether there are any specific instructions or additional equipment/materials needed, such as a calculator for maths exams.

Generally the following can be taken into an exam:

JCQ’s information for candidates documents have a full list of instructions for exam day.

Before the exam starts

To help ensure things go smoothly you should:

During the exam

These techniques may help during an exam: