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Exceptional Circumstances - Supporting Evidence

Evidence to submit a claim for Exceptional Circumstances

This document lists the different significant situations which could be categorised under exceptional circumstances. You can click on the links in the columns below to see more information and examples of each category, together with the details of the evidence that will be required. Please be aware that all evidence submitted must be in English, any translations must be made by an official translator. If you are unsure what to do, you can contact Exceptional Circumstances and look at our FAQs for futher information.

Please note that this guidance is not relevant if a student has already submitted their assessment as different evidence is required for any exemption from Fit to Sit request. (See UPR AS14 Section C.3.8.4 and C3.8.5). 

Requests can only be considered if all evidence is provided, including medical certificates, clearly covering the assessment date(s) for which the exceptional circumstances request is being made.

Please note that Section B of this document describes situations that are not acceptable reasons to submit a claim for exceptional circumstances, and you are advised to study this section carefully.  Please do not submit a request that does not fit any of the categories in Section A as it will not be accepted.

Students should be aware that making a fraudulent claim of exceptional circumstances will result in a referral being made under the UH Student Academic Misconduct policy and/or Fitness to Practice policy.

Section A: EXCEPTIONAL CIRCUMSTANCES reason codes and link to detailed information

Link to Self-Certification Form, this may be required as part of your evidence. 

Reason Code




Serious/Urgent physical or mental health condition at the time of assessment   

If you are unwell during an exam or in-class test, requests must be submitted via your Student Portal by midnight on the calendar day after the assessment.


Link to details and examples






Disability including mental health disabilities. 


You were unable to take the assessment for reasons directly related to your disability / mental health. 


An agreed adjustment as described in a Study Needs Agreement (SNA) was not implemented. 


Link to details and examples






Death and Bereavement 


Death of a significant relative or of a close friend. 


Attendance at a funeral at the time of the assessment. 


Link to details and examples


Serious personal/domestic problem

(not medical)  

Link to details and examples

Exceptional Transport problem

Link to details and examples

Serious illness in the family 

Link to details and examples

Commitment outside of the student’s control  


Link to details and examples

Work commitments

Link to details and examples

Religious reasons


Link to details and examples



Link to details and examples


Re-instatement following barring of access to StudyNet

Link to details and examples






Computer problems

For online or SDL students: Failure of own computer or software – leading to loss of time to complete coursework, loss of files/data/work

For on-campus students, failure of own computer can only be considered where students did not have access to on-campus facilities

Link to details and examples


Failure of UH/partner supplied equipment, infrastructure or software. 

Link to details and examples


For students unable to access and/or submit an assignment (not related to debt): Failure or restricted operation of equipment, infrastructure (could be ISP or power failure, or failure of 3rd party online assessment system/invigilation) or other software affecting ability to upload coursework.

Link to details and examples


For students who have started an online test (including practice quiz) but not able to complete:

Technical or other difficulties that prevent completion once a quiz, online test or exam has been started.

Students must complete the exceptional circumstances request, on Student Portal, and submit it by midnight (GMT applies) on the day following the quiz/test/exam.

Link to details and examples

Section B UNACCEPTABLE SITUATIONS TO SUPPORT Exceptional Circumstances 

The following are NOT acceptable situations to support a claim of exceptional circumstances, and students should seek the advice of academic or AskHerts staff.  

  1. Minor or ongoing medical conditions such as a cold or asthma unless the symptoms are so bad on the days of a test/examination that the student is too unwell to attend. In this case section, 1 would apply and appropriate evidence would be required.
  2. Death of a relative or friend outside the semester or attendance at a funeral at a different time from the assessment.
  3. Misunderstanding of the examination timetable.
  4. Oversleeping and missing exam or assessment submission.
  5. Financial reasons.
  6. Routine or minor transport problem: predictable or partly predictable transport problems such as traffic jams, late train or bus etc, planned transport strikes.
  7. Complaints about University of Hertfordshire staff which impact upon assessments (e.g. supervision).
  8. Technical difficulties were reported outside the time period indicated above in 12(d).
  9. Holidays, house moves or other events that were planned or could reasonably have been expected.
  10. Computer or printer failure where the student should have backed up their work.
  11. Uploading work onto the wrong site or uploading incorrect work onto the correct site.
  12. Normal exam or assessment stress. 

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Exceptional Circumstances Team

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