Questions About Exams


Rights and obligations during examinations

Exam duration: The duration of the exam is defined in the examination regulations. Please do not rely on the times stated in the examination schedule, as buffers are usually planned here.

Information on the exam: You must state your matriculation number and, if requested, the degree program abbreviation on each piece of paper you write. Further information such as name or semester may not be requested. If these fields are present, leave them blank and report the incident to us.

Numbering: Write a page number on each sheet and the total page number on a cover sheet. This way you have proof if pages are lost.

Missing information: If you notice during an exam that information might be missing, ask about it and have this incident noted in the exam protocol with the time of disclosure.

Avoiding cheating allegations: Put out pens, if slips of paper are allowed, these should only be loose and put the drinking bottles on the table. You should also arrive early for the exam so that your materials can be checked before the exam.

Examination protocol: The supervisors must write an examination protocol for every examination. Anything that is not recorded in the protocol has not happened. So if you hand in your exam earlier, for example, make sure that this is also recorded with a time note. You can also have anything that disturbs you during the exam recorded. Be it construction noise or someone next to you getting a nosebleed.


Note: There is no revised central examination guide yet, so not every statement is legally binding.


Until when may I drop an exam?

You can drop an exam until seven days prior to the exam date through the self-service terminal without giving any reason. Once this date has passed, a sick certificate is the only way to withdraw. Should you have an oral exam, you are obliged to drop the exam via the self-service terminal and additionally inform the examiner. Sometimes it is possible to agree with the examiner on a substitutional exam date within the same exam period.

What do I do if I’m sick?

Get a sick certificate from a doctor (a general practitioner is fine, a medical certificate from a public medical officer is only needed in some rare cases) and turn it in at the student office on the same day. Certificates or sick notes issued by telemedicine or from abroad are not permitted! In case of an oral exam you should inform the examiner if possible.

What happens if I didn’t register myself for an exam?

If you didn’t register for an exam in time, it is up to the examiner to decide whether to admit and assess you or not. If you are allowed to take the exam and if a mark is reported to the examination office, your participation is considered a valid attempt. If you are not examined, respectively assessed, no official attempt to pass the exam is counted. Without a registration for the exam at the examination office you cannot claim your participation in the exam. In the end, it is always an individual decision! However, without registration at the examination office there is no claim to be allowed to write the examination! You will find further information for the registration to examinations at regular intervals in § 6, paragraphs 3 and 4 of the examination regulations applicable to your degree programme.

I am afraid that I will not be treated fairly in an oral examination. What rules apply? What can I do?

An oral examination may not be conducted by one examiner alone. It always requires either two examiners or one examiner and one expert assessor. The duration of the examination must not be less than 20 minutes and not exceed 60 minutes per candidate. A protocol must be kept of the oral examination, from which the course of the examination and the assessment can be understood. If you feel unsure, a fellow student can attend the exam as a listener upon request.

Are failed prerequisite tests counted as a regular exam attempt?

No, if you do not fulfill the prerequisites until exam day, your exam will not be assessed and therefore not counted as an attempt. If the examiner only realizes that prerequisites have not been completed after reporting the grade to the student office, the grade cannot be revoked and the prerequisites are automatically deemed to have been completed.

Am I obliged to give my name?

You are not obliged to give anything but your matriculation number in written exams.

Which information do I have to get prior to the exam?

Information about what is required to pass the exam must be made available to you. That means you must be informed about which resources you can use during the exam, how many points can be reached all in total, how many points are necessary to pass and how many points are achievable in each task.

Which topics may be tested?

Only those topics may be tested in an exam which are defined in the module handbook in the section „Qualification Objectives/Competences“. A stronger limitation of the relevant topics does not take place. The student has no right to claim that a topic was not sufficiently or not at all discussed because the teaching person was sick. Furthermore, one should not rely on random suggestions from other students on what will and what will not be covered in the exam. In case of doubt the examiner should be directly consulted on the relevance of certain topics. Statements made by the examiner/lecturer about the content of the examination cannot be referred to afterwards either (only the module handbook applies), but the examiners/lecturers will generally not make any false statements about the examination content.

How long does the correction take?

According to the study regulations the corrections should not take longer than four weeks (§ 9 of the examination regulations). However, this is not a binding rule and therefore you can only check with the examiner and inform the student faculty council (FSR) when the corrections take a very long time. Specifically results for exams with many participants may be published delayed. If you are in need of a fast correction (eg. for your Federal Student Loan (BAföG)) just ask the examiner nicely and often the correction of your exam will be given priority.

How do I get to know my mark?

All your marks are collected in the selfservice portal. Unfortunately, it sometimes takes a while until the marks are entered in the self-service portal and can be viewed by you. Usually you will find out the mark of an oral examination directly after the examination from the examiner. The publication of examination results in lists that are uploaded to OPAL or posted on notice boards contradicts data protection principles and is not permitted.

When can I view the corrections?

Up to one year after the examination, you have the right to inspect your examination documents including corrections and sample solutions within a reasonable period of time (§ 24 of your examination regulations). Many examiners initially set dates for this, which they announce in a lecture or by email. However, you can always make another appointment (e.g. by e-mail).

If you feel insecure, you can also take a trusted person of your choice with you to view the exam. You are also allowed to make copies of the exam papers for personal use.

What happens if I fail an exam?

You will receive a written statement informing you about it. Then you should make use of your right to view your exam with the corresponding corrections. Should you notice any irregularities you may file an objection at the board of examiners within one month after receiving the written statement concerning your exam result. You are entitled to a maximum of three attempts per exam. Should you fail all three attempts you will be automatically exmatriculated in this module. The second attempt must be undertaken within one year after failing the exam for the first time. The third attempt has to take place in the exam period directly succeeding the exam period of the second attempt. Should you not comply with the deadlines both repetitions will be assessed as failed.

What can I do in the case of any irregularities happening during the exam?

Sometimes irregularities take place during an exam (e.g. certain information required to solve a problem are not given or the circumstances surrounding the exam change). In this case you can file an objection at the board of examiners (informal written statement). The responsible board of examiners will review your complaint and reach a decision on it. It may, for example, order your exam to be checked by an additional examiner. It is important to note that each time the board reaches a decision on a by-case basis. That means each person concerned must file an own complaint even if the same exam is to be challenged. Should the exam be disturbed (e.g. through heavy noise) or changes to the surrounding conditions noticed, you should inform the supervisors and ask them to record it in writing in the exam protocol. You may add this protocol to your objection.

What can I do if I notice any irregularities in the corrections?

It may happen that some irregularities are discovered in the correction (e.g. points are being miscounted or the assessment of your exam is not reproducible). In this case you may file an objection at the board of examiners.

If you have received fewer points in a second correction of your exam (e.g. during the examination inspection), there is a prohibition on downgrading: Your performance may not be downgraded retrospectively, even if the examiner notices that they may have given you too many points.

Should you have any more questions please do not hesitate to contact us. We will be happy to assist you in matters concerning your exams. Simply write us an e-mail: or visit us in the office of the student council opposite to the Mensa.

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