Name: Clair Henrywood
Job title: Assistant Registrar (Teaching and Learning)
Department: Teaching Quality
Role in relation to examinations: Secretary to First Year Board of Examiners for the Faculty of Arts (commonly called FYBOE for short)
Can you tell us a little bit about your usual role?
My role has two aspects to it: one aspect is to deliver institution-wide quality assurance projects. The other aspect of my role is to be the Secretary to the Board of the Faculty of Arts and its sub-Committees, which means that I support academic departments in the Faculty of Arts with resolving any quality assurance issues and I also deliver projects for the Chair of the Faculty of Arts. Following the recent Institutional Teaching and Learning Review, in this aspect of my role I am currently focused on progressing the Faculty-level recommendations.
What’s your involvement in the examination period?
My role is to advise departments on the procedures of the Exam Board for first year students based in the Faculty of Arts. For the purposes of the Faculty-wide meeting of FYBOE, myself and the Assistant Secretary, Claire Glover, gather together the exam mark grids and the paperwork for mitigating circumstances from across the Faculty of Arts for the Board to consider. Following the meeting of the Exam Board, we publish the pass lists to indicate that students can proceed to their second year, we process decisions on any resit requirements and we send emails to every first year student confirming the decision of the Exam Board.
To give you an idea of the scale of the work undertaken by the Secretary and Assistant Secretary for the Faculties of Arts, Science and Social Sciences after the Exam Boards have met, 6 of us process just under 5,000 decisions within 3 working days.
What’s your favourite part of this?
I enjoy being more closely involved with students’ progression as in my main role I work more with staff in academic departments.
What’s most important for you about the examination period?
Team effort. We all approach this as a team as the Exam Board relies on the accuracy of the information given to the Board by academic departments, and the 3 Exam Board secretariat teams for Arts, Science and Social Sciences support each other so that first year students receive their decisions as soon as possible.
Are there any challenges?
The nature of an Exam Board means that we are working within tight timescales whilst needing to ensure 100 per cent accuracy for all first year students. We want to send decisions to each first year student as quickly as we can whilst ensuring that they receive the right decision.
What would you say to colleagues involved?
Huge thanks to academic departments for all the hard work that goes into the marking and preparation of exam grids, and please do get in touch with your relevant Faculty Board Secretary if you have any questions about the First Year Board of Examiners.
What tip or advice would you give students?
Contact your Department as early as you can before your Exam Board meets if you have any mitigating circumstances that the Exam Board needs to take into consideration.