Information about assessments at Aarhus school of architecture
On this page you will find the most important information for external examiners at Bachelor and Master assessments at Aarhus School of Architecture.
On this page you will find the most important information for external examiners at Bachelor and Master assessments at Aarhus School of Architecture.
For a Bachelor assessment the Assessment Committee consists of a supervisor and an appointed external examiner. Prior to the assessment, the Assessment Committee is sent the student’s programme sheet in digital form.
For the Bachelor assessment, the student presents his or her Bachelor project to the Assessment Committee. For the student’s presentation of the project, an internal teacher and/or co-supervisor with special insight into the subject area may participate. The internal teacher shall not take part in the deliberation.
The individual Bachelor assessment lasts a total of 45 minutes. As a general rule, the examiners deliberate after 3 to 4 assessments.
If there is any disagreement that cannot be resolved regarding the grades for the Bachelor assessment, the marks are added up and divided by two. The mark is then rounded up to the nearest mark of the grading scale. If the average is halfway between two marks, the final mark must be the higher of the two nearest marks if the external examiner has given the highest mark, if not, it should be the lowest of the two marks.
Final assessments (Master’s projects)
For the assessment of Master’s projects, the Assessment Committee comprises a supervisor, an internal examiner and two external appointed examiners.
Prior to the assessment, the Assessment Committee is sent the summarizing report and boards of the student.
The external examiners attend the preliminary meeting in the room stated in the timetable.
At the final assessment, the student presents his or her Master’s project to the Assessment Committee.
The individual final assessment has a duration of 90 min. including deliberation.
For group examinations, the final assessments have a duration of 120 min. including deliberation.
If at final assessment the examiner/supervisor, the internal assessor and the external examiners disagree on the mark the student should be given, the marks should be noted on the grading sheet after the names of the individual assessors. The Assessment Committee is encouraged to attempt to agree on the mark. Individual grading should be a last resort when there is absolutely no way of reaching an agreement.
An examination is a public event. Exemptions to students who wish to be examined behind closed doors can only be granted in exceptional cases. Reasons for having a non-public examination may include agreements on confidentiality in connection with work performed in companies or medically documented exam anxiety.
General guidelines for external examiners at assessments
The external examiner is sent the project or assignment which is to be assessed electronically as well as information on the precise venue, time, date and formalities regarding the assessment.
Furthermore, any study plans, descriptions of the learning objectives for the examination, stated in the academic regulations, or a reference to these are forwarded. It is the responsibility of the external examiner to ensure that the assessment is based on the description of the learning objectives and an examination cannot be carried out without a description of the learning objectives. Similarly, the external examiner should take care to request the assignment and any formal documents in due time before the assessment if such material has not been received.
The supervisor has the role of chairman and starts by presenting the members of the Assessment Committee and the examinee.
The supervisor should call for silence during the assessment. If the student exceeds his or her time for doing a presentation, the examiner is required to stop the student in order to ensure there is time left for questions and discussions.
It is the responsibility of the external examiner to ensure that through the examination the students’ skills and meeting the objectives of the programme are documented, including to ensure that:
Apart from this, the external examiner’s responsibilities at the examination also include the following:
At the exam proper, the external examiner should arrive at the venue in due time, to meet and greet the examiner/supervisor and ensure that everything is in order. Rules have been drawn up for the duration of individual examinations. See the section on rules applicable to both Bachelor’s and Master’s assessments.
When the student enters the room, it is important that the external examiner appears friendly and accommodating. The student should be given an opportunity to perform to his best capabilities. The uncertainty and nervousness which are a natural part of the situation can be minimised by the external examiner if he or she creates a safe and positive atmosphere.
At the presentation, the student must review the main lines of the assignment solution and the completed programme and project course. Subsequently, the assessors ask detailed questions about the material to develop and inform their knowledge of the content of the assessment material and the student’s qualifications. It is important that during the examination/presentation itself, the assessors pay attention to asking questions about weaknesses in the project, of the oral presentation, or in responses, to give the student an opportunity to demonstrate his or her capabilities and thus make up for any weaknesses, errors and deficiencies. If the examinee is unable to answer a question, the assessors should move on.
It is important that the assessors pay attention to managing expectations, ensuring that the student also notices mistakes and deficiencies along the way. When an examination has begun, an assessment has to be made, unless the examination is interrupted due to dismissal or due to illness qualifying for a re-examination due to illness.
The examiner/supervisor is in charge of the deliberation process. Based on the examination itself and making clear references to the description of objectives and The Grading Scale Order it is determined which mark should be given. There are no rules regarding who should have the first say during deliberation. The external examiner has been chosen because he or she has a relevant general professional knowledge in the area, the examiner/supervisor has a deep and extensive professional knowledge in the area.
Only members of the Assessment Committee may be present at the deliberation.
Immediately after the exam, the external examiner and the examiner fill in the examination sheet. It may be expedient for the external examiner to fill in any other relevant forms at the same time, such as forms regarding fees settlements and reimbursement of transportation expenses. Relevant documents must be submitted directly to The Education Secretariat, another option is for the external examiner to subsequently forward the documents by postal mail.
Appointing external examiners
Before you can perform external examiner duties you need to be appointed to a team of examiners. This is done every four years. The next appointment will be in 2022.
If you are asked to act as an external examiner outside an application period, you can apply for an ad hoc appointment. You must prepare a reasoned nomination to the relevant chairmanship of the team of external examiners, explaining why the need for assessment cannot be met by the existing team of examiners. The requirements for this explanation may vary from team to team.
Please note: external examiners may not be current employees or have been employed by Aarhus School of Architecture within the past two years.
When taking on external examiner tasks, you need to be aware of the existence of the so-called 125-hour rule.
External examiners may not perform external examination tasks in excess of 125 hours in total per semester.
If you perform duties at more than one institution, the total number of hours must not exceed 125. This rule can be found in Cirkulære om timelønnet undervisning and Cirkulære om censorvederlag (special focus on Appendix 3, Item 6).
The chairmanships will in the future interpret the rules in the above circulars as a yearly 250-hour limit, as the summer half-year sees a greater load in terms of examinations than the winter half-year.
At Aarhus School of Architecture, we book external examiners using a system known as Censor-IT.
Based on the bookings, the chairmanship of the team of external examiners appoints external examiners to individual examinations.
The purpose of Censor-IT is to ensure an efficient rotation, preventing that examiners encounter the same external examiners every time and ensuring that all external examiners are used. This requirement is stipulated in the Examination Order.
The exam planners book external examiners in the system and have to state the subject area in question, the number of students, and how many minutes are remunerated per student (censornormen). A link to the academic regulations for the subject in question is also added.
The night following the booking, the offer is sent to, typically, five relevant external examiners.
The external examiners then have 24 hours to accept if they are interested in the offer. They accept by clicking on a link in the email.
After 24 hours the external examination appointment is assigned to the external examiner among those who have shown an interest who has had the least appointments as an external examiner.
The system ensures that all examiners within a subject area have an equal workload in the long run.
It, consequently, does not matter whether you register first as being interested, as long as you do so within the first 24 hours.
If none of those who have been asked indicates that they are interested, the offer is passed on to another five, and so on.
A notice of an allocation is sent to the designated external examiner and to the exam planner. The exam planner then contacts the external examiner informing him or her about the time and place of the oral exam and forwarding relevant written assignments, if any.
Censor IT is also used to collect external examiner’s reports. External examiners automatically receive a reminder with a direct link to the report.
The system also provides a complete overview of who has had which appointments as an external examiner and how often the individual external examiners have had appointments.
The secretariat of the external examiners is automatically notified of postal address changes by the central national register. However, if an external examiner changes his or her email address or phone number, the secretariat must be notified. External examiner can either correct the information themselves in Censor-it or send an email to the secretariat.
External examiners’ evaluation of exams
Appointed external examiners have a duty to report on assessments according to the ministerial order.
After the assessment has been completed, an external examiner’s report is sent to the external examiner by Censor IT. This report can be quickly filled in by means of box-ticking.
If any problematic issues occurred, this should be noted in the external examiner’s report. The chairmanship of the team of external examiners will consider all problematic issues and raise these issues with the individual educational institutions.
You can also access the external examiner’s report through Censor-IT.
Rules and regulations
Academic regulations for the Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programmes
The external examiner and the examiner have a duty to take notes. Notes must be taken during the entire examination and during the deliberation, to make it possible to relate to any compliant even several months later and clearly be able to represent errors and deficiencies in relation to the objectives. It is the responsibility of the assessors to store the notes safely for one year. cf. Bekendtgørelsen nr. 29, §34, afsnit 4, stk. 2. (Ministerial Order no. 29, section 34, subsection 4, subsubsection 2)
You can access the Censor-IT system here.
When the external examiner relates to the project’s solution there may arise suspicion about cheating or plagiarism. A typical sign may be that the quality of the solution varies a great deal. Suspicions can sometimes be substantiated by googling sections of texts. If such suspicion should arise, the examiner/supervisor should be contacted – preferably well in advance of the assessment.
If the suspicion arises during the assessment proper, the assessment should be carried out and the external examiner and the examiner/supervisor deliberate and decide on a mark regardless of the suspicion.
The mark is then withheld from the student until the suspicion has been investigated. Aarhus School of Architecture is responsible for checking for plagiarism and for the final judgement.
From time to time, students complain about grades or assessments. The external examiner and the examiner/supervisor must respond to the complaint together. In answering a complaint, it is crucial that there is a clear reference to the learning objectives, The Grading Scale Order (Karakterbekendgørelsen) and the specific examination.
Pay rates for external examiners’ remuneration
Final exams on the Master’s degree programme
Upon completion of an assessment the below fee form is to be filled in. Please hand in the form at The Information Desk, Nørreport 20, 8000 Aarhus or send it to the account’s office: email@example.com.
Download fee form (xls file)
If the external examiner wishes to send a bill, please include the CVR number.
Parking and facilities
Map of the School’s facilities and parking spaces
For parking permits for the School’s parking spaces, contact the School’s Information Desk, Nørreport 20, 8000 Aarhus C.
Reimbursement of travel and hotel expenses
If the external examiner has incurred travel expenses in connection with his duties as external examiner, reimbursement will be made.
Aarhus School of Architecture reimburses travel expenses equal to the cheapest standard travel with public transportation.
If the external examiner’s official journey lasts less than 24 hours or does not involve an overnight stay, reasonable additional meal expenses (merudgifter) are reimbursed against receipts (receipts must be attached).
Both daily allowances and additional expenses (actual expenses) cannot be paid for the same task. However, expenses for transportation between the external examiner’s private address and hotel/Aarhus School of Architecture will be reimbursed.
I.e.: expenses for taxi fares, bus fares, meals and beverages incurred during your stay in Aarhus cannot be refunded together with the payment of daily allowances – only one of the two is possible.
If the external examiner chooses to make private arrangements for his or her stay, a night allowance’ (nattillæg) can be granted without substantiation.
The above allowance can only be granted in connection with the filling in of a travel expense report.
If the external examiner cannot make it to the exam or his home during the same day the exam is held, expenses for an overnight stay will be reimbursed.
For booking hotel stays, please contact the Information Desk of Aarhus School of Architecture at firstname.lastname@example.org.