Current Students Exams & Results Deferring exams or applying for special consideration

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Deferring exams or applying for special consideration

Occasionally, unplanned events or situations can arise that are beyond your control. If these circumstances are likely to impact on your exams, you may be eligible to apply for one of the following:

  • A deferred exam – if you cannot sit your exam at the scheduled time due to exceptional circumstances.
  • Special consideration in exam marking – if unexpected circumstances prevented you from performing at your best.
  • Use the Notification of Extenuating Circumstances form for evidence where applicable

Exceptions may be granted to students who are Defence Force reservists or elite athletes.

Before you apply

Before applying, check that you have grounds and evidence to be eligible. You must provide supporting documentation with your application.

You are not eligible to apply for a deferred exam or special consideration in exam marking:

  • If Deferred exams are not available for your subject/exam – refer to your Subject Outline on LearnJCU.
  • If you misread the exam timetable, or had travel plans.
  • If you have repeatedly applied to defer exams in each exam period.
  • Because you have two or more exams scheduled consecutively within a 24-hour period.
  • If you are moving accommodation during the exam period.
  • If you have not attempted to change a minor/elective medical or other appointment that falls on the same day as your exam.

Deferred exams

Complete and submit an Application to Sit a Deferred Exam (Student login required) with the required supporting documentation before or no later than three university working days after the date of the exam.

If you are feeling sick on the day of the exam, do not sit the exam. See a medical practitioner as soon as possible, obtain a medical certificate and apply for a deferred exam. If you attend the exam and cannot finish due to illness, you will not be able to apply for a deferred exam.

Potential outcomes

You will be advised of the outcome of your Application for Deferred Examination by email within five business days of submitting your application provided your application is submitted in full. It may take longer to receive an outcome if you are requested to provide additional supporting documentation or if your application is referred to the relevant Subject Coordinator/s for endorsement.

If your application is approved, your will receive an ED result for the approved subject/s at the relevant result release date. Contact Exams ( if you have received an ED result but did not apply for a deferred examination.

If you are not granted a deferred exam, your subject result will likely appear as 'X' (Fail).

Special consideration in exam marking

Complete and submit the Special consideration – examinations application form with the required supporting documentation.

Applications must be submitted before or within 24 hours of completing the exam. A late application may be accepted at the discretion of the relevant College.

You will not be formally advised of the outcome, however if the examiner agrees that you have made a case for special consideration, the examiner will take your circumstances into account when marking your exam.

This may result in being granted a supplementary exam. In this case your subject results will appear as ‘NS’ (Supplementary Exam Granted) once subject results are officially released.

Sitting a supplementary exam will limit the potential subject grade you can receive for a subject. For more information, see Deferred and supplementary exams for SP1 and SP2.

Applying to sit your exam away from your home campus

You are expected to sit formal exams for Study Period 1 and 2, or any supplementary or deferred exams for Study Period 1, on your home campus.

Permission to sit exams at another campus or exam centre is given in exceptional circumstances only and you must provide documentary evidence to substantiate your reasons.

Speak to your lecturer as early as possible. You must also contact JCU's Examinations Office on (07) 4781 6309 or email

Need more help?

If you think you may qualify but need more information, please contact the JCU Student Centre.

You can also contact a Student Advocacy and Welfare Officer at the JCU Student Association.