PCR exam ruined by noise, please help!

sadie Registered Posts: 4 New contributor 🐸
Hi, Can anybody give me some advise on what to do. I am a home studier and sat my PCR at my local college today, this was my first attempt at the exam and I was feeling confident as I had stuided hard and new the subject well. Although the exam paper was different to past papers, I soon got stuck in and was working well until about 10.20 the most awful noise broke out, there was people running round the corridors and shouting, I sat for the next thirty minutes getting frustrated and as there was only one invidulator in the room, nothing was getting done about the noise, I was about to walk out because I could not concentrate at all and decided to ask if I could be moved. The invidulator made a phone call to somebody who came and they had a discussion about the noise. I was told that I could not leave the room, the noise levels should improve and I may be given extra time. A short time later, I was interrupted again to be told that I was not allowed extra time and I could make a complaint afterwards.
Anyway, I completed all of the questions (some of them twice due to being unable to concentrate), although I was rushed and had to sit with my hands over my ears to read the questions and I ran out of time so was unable to check through the paper. I know that I could have done really well at this exam if it weren't for the noise.
Does anybody know what I can do, will I be allowed to take a test to show my competance or will it have to be a resit? Please help as I have been so distressed since the exam and feel that all my hard work was a waste of time. :crying:


  • ^Joe
    ^Joe Registered Posts: 35 Regular contributor ⭐
    I'd make a complaint and write to the AAT, I read in the magazine that if there's trauma / illness etc, you can write in and they will take it into consideration. Maybe they will take that into consideration too!?

    Good luck
  • lork
    lork Registered Posts: 97 Regular contributor ⭐
    This sounds completely unacceptable. Have you complained to the college? You should make a complaint and write to the AAT as it's unfair to have to take an exam in those conditions.

    We had a lot of people making noise outside today and during PEV on Monday (can you people not read the QUIET PLEASE signs??!!) but had an old school matron-type invigilator who went outside to tell everyone to be quiet several times. She was a bit scary so everyone listened to her!

    Good luck with your case.
  • sadie
    sadie Registered Posts: 4 New contributor 🐸
    Thanks for the support, I'm still absolutley gutted! I did complain to the college and was told that it was a college and complete silence could not be expected. I was also told that the excess noise was due to a special needs group excursion (as though this made it okay) and that they would make a note on the report they send to the AAT, however, they were very un -supportive and were more interested in arguing about the length of time the noise was 'excessive' than how I felt. I'll definatley write to the AAT though and to the college.
  • CathG
    CathG Registered Posts: 145 Dedicated contributor 🦉
    Sounds a nightmare! There was a bit of noise (baby crying) coming from the creche downstairs when I was doing my exam at college - but I was able to put it out of my mind luckily. Our college has the examination room right next to the library, so it's in a quiet area anyway, but obviously nothing can be done about sound coming from the floors above or below.

    In your case, I'd certainly make a point of mentioning it to the AAT, but try and get in touch with others who sat the exam as well - If there's a few of you unhappy, they've surely got to take it into account when marking.

    Best of luck.
  • speegs
    speegs Registered Posts: 854 Epic contributor 🐘


    Phone up student services and ask for the email address of where to complain about this. Then put it in writing aswell giving your student number and the place you sat the exam. Tell them absolutely everything.

    I am now qualified and on two occassions, for different exams, I have complained about noise and also poor lighting conditions (those who have sat exams at Queens Park football stadium will know what I am talking about).

    By complaining you may get a special dispensation when you paper is marked (if you need it).

    Best of luck.

  • definite.studies
    definite.studies Registered Posts: 88 Regular contributor ⭐
    I had a similar experience a couple of years' ago with students in the corridor being noisy and even pushing each other against the plasterboard wall. As I was sitting next to the wall and feeling pressed for time in the exam I complained immediately to the invigilator who shushed them, but was not able to stop the noise completely. I could see other people sitting near the wall were also disturbed, but in the event I was the only person to make a written complaint to the college.

    Their main response was that the member of staff had acted appropriately and the noise can't have been that bad anyway because nobody else complained. And after all, they can't be held responsible for the behaviour of the students. When I suggested improvements to room planning, warning signs and communication between staff they were more sympathetic, but I am not convinced anything much was changed afterwards. Fortunately I passed the exam but I am aware of other students that didn't, perhaps partly due to the disturbance.

    So I agree with Speegs that you are likely to get more personal benefit by writing to the AAT than to the college, but I think you owe it to yourself and the other students to complain to the college too.
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