Making entries for examinations is a critical part of the exams cycle. Poor management of this process can have significant consequences in terms of late entry fees for centres and increased workload for exams office staff.

Our support aims to make centres aware of the problems late entries can cause and also to advise on actions they can take to ensure they have a timely and efficient process for making examination entries. Refer to our general qualification entry flow diagram for a suggested sequence of actions to follow to complete your entries.

Practical advice on how to reduce late exams entries

You can:

  • set and communicate your internal deadlines well in advance of the awarding organisations’ deadlines to give you time to process the entries. Use the awarding organisation and JCQ websites to assist you with this
  • ensure you understand what each awarding organisation classes as late and very late entries, amendments and withdrawals and when they will charge for these
  • brief all relevant colleagues about your requirements, especially those colleagues who had late entries last year
  • use templates or marksheets for staff to complete – provide them with an example of the details you require and links to where they can find information. You may be able to use your management information system (MIS) to help with this
  • issue individual statements of entry well in advance of entry deadline dates in order to provide parents and candidates with an opportunity to resolve queries over entry decisions with teaching staff and to check the accuracy of information, including unique candidate identifiers (UCIs) and unique learner numbers (ULNs), where applicable
  • develop a section in your exams policy to help minimise late entries, for example passing on late fees to responsible departments. Consider including a budget for fees and targeting reductions
  • ensure that staff always sign their entry submissions to indicate that they agree with what you intend to submit. You may also wish to ask candidates to sign their individual statements of entry
  • develop a system for non-standard entries, for example, entries made for candidates being taught at another centre, or transferred candidates
  • establish and communicate a policy and procedure for dealing with retakes, late entries, amendments and withdrawals. Get colleagues to complete a form such as our late entries and amendments form when requesting these, especially if additional costs will be incurred
  • track late and very late entries, amendments and withdrawals using a template such as our exam charges tracker template and report to your senior leadership team on this expenditure at the end of each exam series