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Absence from an exam

What do you do if you are ill on your exam day, or get sick during the examination? What is valid absence and how do you register the absence?

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What qualifies as legitimate absence?

In certain cases, absence on the exam day will not count as an exam attempt. This is called "valid absence" and must be documented in most cases by the student. Situations that typically provide valid absences are:

  • that you or your child(ren) are ill
  • death in immediate family or among your close relations
  • attending a funeral or cremation in immediate family or among your close relations
  • an order from a public authority preventing you from attending the examination
  • other reasons beyond your control that make it highly unreasonable to require you to carry out an assessment/examination

Please note! This information concerns absence for exams. As a general rule, absences are not registered for mandatory course requirements. Contact your study administrator in case of challenges meeting the mandatory course requirements. Check the course's information page for study administrator contact information in your course.

How to apply for legitimate absence  

Apply for getting absence registered as legitimate for the exam / assessment by submitting the online form on this page, within two weeks after the exam. Remember to attach documentation.

Send one application per exam. Select the exam in the form. The application is processed by the courses' faculty. If the absence cannot be registered as valid abcence, the faculty administration will inform you by mail.


The deadline for providing documentation on legitimate absence is two weeks after the date of the examination. If you fail to not withdraw by the deadline, it will count as an attempt (find more information on the three-time rule here).

Requirements for documentation

Illness must be documented with a certificate from a doctor or other expert, for example a psychologist. It must be stated on the certificate that you were unable to complete the assessment/exam in question for health reasons, and it must explicitly state that the that the student was unable to take the exam on the date in question due to illness, or which dates of the exam period.

In the event of death, funeral or cremation, you must state who has passed away and what relationship you had to the deceased, but no documentation beyond this is required.

All other conditions you seek to have registered as valid absences must be documented. Other documentation requirements can be found in Section 5-5 of UiB's Academic Regulations.

Getting ill during the exam

If you fall ill during the course of the exam and thus have to interrupt the exam, you must not submit. Submitted answers will be censored, even if the submitted exam does not have any content. Apply for registration of legitimate absence as stated above. See UiB's study regulations section 8-2 to 8-4 for more information on interrupted exams