Saturday 24 February 2018

Viewing your exam scripts makes sense

Candidates may be accompanied by teacher or parent to look over their scripts, writes Aoife Walsh

Stock image
Stock image

A candidate who is unhappy with a grade is encouraged to view the exam script before deciding whether or not to seek a recheck. Examiners have a large number of scripts to get through and mistakes can be made. For example, examiners may add up marks incorrectly, or miss parts of the scripts. Candidates may view as many of their scripts as they wish, for no charge.

When collecting their Leaving Cert results, students should also receive a personalised form that enables them to request to view a script and, anyone who wants to do this, should return the form to the school no later than August 22.

On this form, the candidate identifies what script(s) they would like to view. The school will then arrange for the scripts to be available during one of three viewing sessions that will take place at the school over September 1 and 2. It is not necessary to view a script in order to appeal, but it is a very good idea.

The candidate must be present in order to view the script and no one else can do it on their behalf. However, the candidate may be accompanied by another person, such as a teacher, parent or sibling. It is a good idea to invite a person who is familiar with the subject and the exam. Candidates often ask a teacher, but, if so, should give them plenty of notice and understand that they may not be available.

The marking scheme will be available at the viewing to assist in understanding how the paper was marked. Candidates may not bring pens, paper or phones into the viewing centre and it is not permissible to take pictures. A calculator is allowed. The State Examinations Commission (SEC) says that in order to protect the integrity of the process, only the organising superintendent may bring in writing material or instruments.

During the viewing, the candidate should first check that the grade on their paper is the same as the one they have received on their results. If a grade is different, it may be because of an administrative error, in which case it does not have to go through the normal appeals procedure. If so, the candidate should speak to the organising teacher or principal immediately. The SEC will advise the CAO of the mistake and offers will be rectified if necessary. In such situations, candidates should consider also making a formal appeal, just in case.

Next, the candidate should work through the paper, checking that all sections have been marked and added up correctly. Then check all answers against the marking scheme.

If it is felt that a mistake has been made, the student should consider applying for a recheck. Oral and practical work will not be available to be viewed but will be re-marked if a candidate decides to go ahead with an appeal.

Irish Independent

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