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Exam regulations and agreements

The following text is not an official document, and has no validity in law, but an informal and informative text, explaining the official regulations of the Universities and Faculties involved.

The Flemish system has two official exam periods. One split over in January and June/July and one in August/September. The exact period is indicated in the academic calendar. The two examination periods are equivalent and you can graduate from either.

Quotation system

You need to obtain 10/20 to pass for an exam. A pass for every single examination (i.e. every single "item" on the list of courses) will be given upon obtention of 10/20 or more. You can only be deliberated to global pass for that academic year, if you have an average of at least 55 %.

In the ECOMAMA programme often one course is taught by more than one lecturer. Each part accounts for a certain percentage of your quotation of that composite course. You can find the respective teaching formats in the description of every course. For instance, the course Physical and chemical oceanography is taught by Prof. Dehairs and Dr. Brion. The part Prof. Dehairs teaches counts for 75 % of the marks ; the other 25 % is the part of Dr. Brion. You can find the 'weight' given to every part of a composite course back in the course contents of the respective course.


During the deliberations all responsible lecturers are a member of the "examination commission" for the respective year.

If you have an average of 18/20 or above, you may get the grade 'highest distinction'
If you have an average of 16/20 or above, you may get the grade 'high distinction'
If you have an average of 14/20 or above, you may get the grade 'distinction'
If you have an average of 11/20, you may get the grade 'pass' Graduation from the entire course programme will be automatic when you obtain 10/20 for every course and a total average of 11/20 or more. From the academic year 2007-2008, grades are only given in the second year of the programme.

If you obtain an average of 11/20 but with individual courses less than 10/20, the examination commission will take a decision consistent with prior decisions.

If the decision is negative, i.e. the student receives no global "pass" for the particular year, the student may be exempted for repeating those examinations for which he/she obtained 10/20 or more.

If the examination commission decides you fail, you may object against that decision within 5 days. The examination commission will convene to discuss the matter.
In case the student is proclaimed 'not passed the first or second year", he/she can start the next academic year in different ways.
The student will receive automatically a transfer of marks to the next academic year for all courses he/she passed (>=10/20) e.g. no exams to take for those courses the following academic year.
In case the student failed only a few courses, you can register as a 'IAJ' or individual adjusted year student. This means the students follows the second year of ECOMAMA and carries the courses he /she fails with him/her to that academic year. The student has to take those exams in the same year. He/She will have to be proclamed for at least a "pass" in the first year, before the same person can be proclaimed as a graduate from the second year ECOMAMA.

Exam schedule
Per examination period the different courses thaught during the respectieve semester are evaluated. The schedule is prepared, send for confirmation to the different lecturers. Subsequently the student is consulted. In case of classical problems e.g. a certain period where the study load appears too heavy, the class can inform the secretarary and coordinator, who will try to accommodate those issues.

Illness during the examination period:
The secretariat should receive asap a medical attestation (e.g. doctors note) for the period the student is unable to study and/or participate in the examinations. In consultation with the respective professor, new examinations will be scheduled.
Some examination agreements

You can get an official English version of the VUB examination regulations at the ECOMAMA secretariat, version 2006-2007, or download it here. The English translation of the examination regulations for 2007-2008 are currently being translated. Please note that regulations have changed since the academic year 2006-2007.

Some regulations are not mentioned in that document, because they are assumed to be commonly accepted or customary and acquired experience throughout the years. To avoid unnecessary friction during the exam period between supervisors and students under stress, we would like to mention a few of them anyway! Please, read through them and if you think we should add a few more, let us know.

In this difficult examination period a helping hand maybe need. This can be offered by your class mates, the assistants, the professors or external tuitors.

- No more than the necessary items should be on your desk during the exam. In case of a CLOSED book exam, this means just a pen (or two), a ruler and maybe a calculator. In case of an OPEN book exam, only relevant literature should be exposed on your desk.

- You don't have to bring paper to your exam. We will provide you with all the paper you need that period.

- In case there are chairs and benches enough, for this a bench in between you and your neighbour is left. Try also to sit exactly behind each other (actually like rows and collums). This avoids friction between the supervisor and you in case you're a nervous person and like to look around a lot. The latter might appear to the supervisor as if you're trying to see what is on the other persons paper.

- Normally everybody goes to the toilet BEFORE the exam starts and avoids leaving the examination room during the time he/ she is writing the exam. Of course it may always occur that you need to go urgently. Inform the supervisor of the reason why you want to leave the room.

- Like during normal classes, you switch off your phone during the time of your exam and put it away. It may not be on your bench or desk.

- You are not allowed to keep your i-pod, walk-man, or CD-man on your ears at the time the exam starts, even if it is the best song ever that is just playing.

- The University rules for fraud, even though it fortunately occurs very rarely, are very strict and may lead to unpleasant measures. Please make sure all conditions are met for optimal performance with the least possible space of misunderstanding.
In case you get caught cheating during an exam, the least you will get is a ZERO for that course. If you are less fortunate, you may be expelled from the programme and even the university.

More information can be found on the English VUB-pages.