Brookes plan on moving Semester 1 exams to after Christmas

And they’re going to make the Christmas holiday shorter too


Professor Julie McLeod, Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Student Experience wants to make a few “strategic” changes to the Academic Framework of Brookes.

The big change they want to make is to move Semester 1 examinations from pre- to post- Christmas. The document states that “Brookes is unusual” for holding exams before the Christmas break and that changing “Semester 1 examinations post-Christmas would address the pedagogic issue of examinations currently falling too early relative to the end of teaching delivery and thus providing students little time to process the learning and engage in effective revision activity.”

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This would also result in them bringing forward the start of Semester 2 in the calendar year, which would apparently  “enable maintenance of momentum and continuity of the learning experience by reducing the inter-semester break.” They also said that they’d taken in some student surveys on this issue, which showed that “some students, and particularly international students, find the current lengthy inter-semester break isolating” as they have to remain in Oxford.

The third significant proposal is to hold Semester 1 and Semester 2 re-sits in the summer. The explanation is that “holding Semester 1 re-sits at the same time as Semester 2 re-sits would reduce the potential for students’ preparation for Semester 1 re-sits, (and the anxiety often associated with this) to negatively impact on their Semester 2 learning.”

These changes amongst others are currently ongoing and won’t affect this academic. However, a final decision will be reached on the 8th February 2017, which seems rather quick, and means the outcome of the changes will be implemented for next academic year.

It seems a bit strange that they provide no evidence of consulting students and don’t understand the pressure of doing resits while semester 2 exams are going on.

Who still remembers the modules they did in semester 1 by the end of semester 2?