2. Nomination of Examiners and Assessors

2.1. Relevant regulations

The relevant regulations for the nomination and appointment of examiners and assessors are:

Standing orders:

Examination Regulations, Regulations for the Conduct of University Examinations, Part 4, www.admin.ox.ac.uk/examregs/2017-18/rftcoue-p4epoocvacaresiandremo/

Nomination of examiners and assessors:

Examination Regulations, Regulations for the Conduct of University Examinations, Part 3,   www.admin.ox.ac.uk/examregs/2017-18/rftcoue-p3examnomiandappo/

Nominations approvals:

Examination Regulations, Regulations for the conduct of University Examinations, Part 3,  www.admin.ox.ac.uk/examregs/2017-18/rftcoue-p3examnomiandappo/

Examination Regulations, Regulations for the conduct of University Examinations, Part 6 , www.admin.ox.ac.uk/examregs/2017-18/rftcoue-p6exteeexam/

Required number of examiners:

Examination Regulations, Regulations for the Conduct of University Examinations, Part 2, www.admin.ox.ac.uk/examregs/2017-18/rftcoue-p2respofsupebodi/

Nominations of assessors:

Examination Regulations, Regulations for the conduct of University Examinations, Part 3, www.admin.ox.ac.uk/examregs/2017-18/rftcoue-p3examnomiandappo/

Examination Regulations, Regulations for the conduct of University Examinations, Part 7, www.admin.ox.ac.uk/examregs/2017-18/rftcoue-part7asse/

Examination conventions:

Examination Regulations, Regulations for the conduct of University Examinations, Part 8, www.admin.ox.ac.uk/examregs/2017-18/rftcoue-p8aocasopapetoexam/

Examination Regulations, Regulations for the conduct of University Examinations, Part 16, www.admin.ox.ac.uk/examregs/2017-18/rftcoue-p16markandasse/

 

2.2. Composition of boards of examiners

Apart from a small number of specialist examinations, the number of examiners and assessors appointed is for the supervisory body to determine in accordance with their standing orders.  External examiners are required to sit on the boards of examiners for all public examinations except the FPE. The University requires large final honour schools to have more than one external examiner to cover the full breadth of the examination and requires that joint schools should include at least one external examiner for each of the schools.

Wherever possible, individuals who have been course or programme directors or their equivalent in the year of the examination concerned should not be appointed as the chair of the board of examiners.

2.3 Role of supervisory bodies in nominations

Supervisory bodies are asked to keep under review the mechanisms for their part in the nomination and appointment of examiners, including the chair and external examiner(s), and for ensuring the competence (this includes ensuring that nominees have relevant experience and qualifications, and ensuring that appropriate support is provided to inexperienced examiners) and avoidance of conflicts of interest in relation to all examiners, including external examiners (see especially Annex J: UK-wide criteria for appointing external examiners).

In exercising their overall responsibility for the membership, powers, procedures and accountability of examiners, supervisory bodies should take care to ensure that boards of examiners are aware of:

•    requirements relating to declarations of personal interest;

•    the minimum numbers of internal and external examiners who must be present for decisions to be valid as prescribed by the supervisory body's standing orders.

•    the keeping of appropriate records of examiners’ meetings and the reasons for any specific decisions in relation to individual cases.

2.4 Nomination of chair and secretary

For each examination, a chair of examiners must be nominated by the course supervisory body by no later than 1 October of the academic year for which the nomination is intended (i.e. 1 October 2017 for 2017/18 academic year) for approval by the Proctors.

The examiners should identify one member of the board of examiners, or an academic administrator, to act as secretary, who will record the names of those present at meetings and the decisions which were taken.  Other roles (e.g. of communication with candidates) may be delegated to the secretary by the chair.

Chairs should be aware that they are required to be in Oxford during the examinations for which they are responsible. It will assist the Proctors if chairs also ensure that an appropriate person is available to respond during investigation of examination complaints over the Long Vacation:  this may be the chair, or a deputy (notified to the Proctors) if the chair will be away from Oxford for a long period. A timetable for the board of examiners should be drawn up as early as possible so that the examiners can plan to be in Oxford for critical meetings. Student Registry should be notified of examination board meeting dates as soon as they are set, and by Friday 8th week of Michaelmas term at the latest.

2.5 Appointment of examiners

Supervisory bodies/nominating committees shall approve the appointment of internal examiners without further approval from the Proctors when appointing examiners who meet one of the following three criteria:

  • has faculty membership (or)
  • has examining duty in their employment contract (or)
  • has previously been appointed to act as an internal examiner and/or assessor at the University

The appointment of examiners who do not meet any of the three criteria above will require approval by the Proctors.  In these instances, the nomination must be accompanied by a supporting information form for internal examiners (weblearn.ox.ac.uk/portal/site/:central:aad:ea:exapp1718) detailing the role that the nominee will have in the examination, the level of prior teaching and examining experience, and the methods by which the department will provide guidance and support.

2.6 Appointment of assessors

Assessors are appointed to complement the examiners and to assist in the setting and marking of papers. Before a list of assessors is supplied, the chair is encouraged to consult the Senior Nominator for the subject. The nominators should keep a tally of how frequently individuals have acted as examiner and assessor and may recommend that someone should not act in a particular examination.

When nominating a postgraduate research (PGR) student to act as an assessor, the Nominating Committee must state how the criteria set out by Education Committee's policy on the appointment of postgraduate students as assessors in taught-course examinations in Annex H: Appointment of assessors will be met. Such nominations especially for those for whom approval is sought to mark postgraduate taught (PGT) assessments, will be considered particularly carefully by the Proctors. It should also be noted that postgraduate students should not be responsible for the setting of questions/papers.

Particular importance is attached to the timely appointment of assessors: the appointment of assessors should be completed in good time before they act in this capacity. Chairs should ensure that assessors are aware of the level of remuneration (the current fee schedule is available on the Examiner Appointment area on WebLearn, weblearn.ox.ac.uk/portal/site:central:aad:ea:exapp1718).