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Department of Mathematics & Statistics

Final Exam Only

What is it?

If you fail a paper but have reasonable internal assessment, you can repeat the paper at the next opportunity, and apply to carry over your internal assessment marks. The fee for taking a paper with FEO is considerably less than the normal fee because you are paying only for the chance to take the final examination — the fee does not cover attendance at lectures or tutorials, or any internal assessment like exercises and tests, since your marks for those are being carried over.

Do I qualify?

In order to qualify for FEO in a 100- or 200-level paper you must satisfy these two requirements:

  • You have failed a paper (for which you paid full fees) and are wanting to repeat it in the next teaching period that the paper is offered.
  • Your total internal assessment mark1 must be at least 50% (and preferably at least 60%).

These rules cannot be varied. If your total internal assessment mark is 49% then you do not qualify.

Note that even if your mark is over 50% you may be advised to re-take the paper without FEO — see below.

(FEO for 300-level papers is rare: please consult the Head of Department.)

Is it a good idea?

FEO is often attractive to students as they can save on fees. However you must be aware that many students with FEO fail the repeated paper. There may be several reasons for this, but the most likely reason is that, because they are not attending lectures or tutorials, and not being assessed during the course of the paper, students do not keep up with the work and again fail to reach the required standard in the final examination.

In fact there is good reason that you need to do more work, not less. You have already failed the paper, so it is clear that you have not mastered the course material, and thus you should be putting in extra effort to achieve success. If you feel that there is a real risk you will not maintain a steady study regime, then it is far safer to pay full fees and re-take the paper without FEO. There is no point in saving money and then failing the paper again: this will put you in an even worse situation, both financially and in terms of your degree structure.

  • If your total internal assessment mark is over 60% then FEO is probably worth considering, as you have proven that you have basic understanding of the course material.
  • If your mark is between 50% and 60% then our advice is that you do not apply for FEO because of the dangers mentioned above; in addition, you could be better off trying for a higher internal assessment as this will help your final grade. You must speak to the appropriate Director of Studies in the Department before your application can be considered.


Feel free to speak to any of the Directors of Study if you want further advice about applying for Final Exam Only.

See also this University web-page concerning FEO: it includes details about fees, deadlines and application form.

1The total internal assessment is calculated by adding each internal assessment component relative to its maximum value. For example:

  • For Math151: exercise mark (out of 43) + test mark (out of 57)
  • For Math160: exercise mark (out of 70) + quiz mark (out of 30)
  • For Math170: exercise mark (out of 45) + test mark (out of 55)
  • For Stat110: exercise mark (out of 33) + test mark (out of 67)
  • For Stat115: exercise mark (out of 33) + test mark (out of 67)