Trinity College is about to change its exam structure for the first time in almost 400 years 5 years ago

Trinity College is about to change its exam structure for the first time in almost 400 years

Big changes ahead.

Students at Trinity College will have Christmas exams and start their academic year earlier from 2018/19 onwards after proposed changes to the academic calendar this week.

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According to the Irish Times, the changes were approved by a majority of the university 200 fellows or senior academics, having previously gained the support of the majority of the student body.

The changes to the academic calendar form part of a wider set of reforms known as the Trinity Education Project and mark a change in a tradition at Trinity that has lasted for almost 400 years.

As a result, the academic year will start earlier than usual at Trinity and, like most universities, students will be examined at Christmas rather than having to focus their energies on a final set of exams at the end of the academic year.

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A number of courses in Trinity, including medicine, already have regular assessments.

The introduction of Christmas exams, however, will be a significant change for many disciplines and is designed, according to Trinity’s vice-provost Professor Chris Morash, to counteract the effects of the Leaving Certificate, where students have been trained “within an inch of their lives” for a single set of final exams.

“There are no end of studies which show that the feedback students get on what they do is one of the most important factors in shaping how they learn,” Morash is quoted as saying in The Irish Times.

“This (one set of final exams) isn’t giving students feedback on what they did right or wrong – it doesn’t help learning,” he added.

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