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Examination periods

The University of Otago has three examination periods each year.

The 2024 examination periods dates are as follows:

  • Summer School: 17–22 February 2024 (inclusive)
  • Semester 1: 5–19 June 2024 (inclusive)
  • Semester 2: 21 October–9 November 2024 (inclusive)

The 2025 examination periods dates are as follows:

  • Summer School: 15–20 February 2025 (inclusive)
  • Semester 1: 4–18 June 2025 (inclusive)
  • Semester 2: 20 October–8 November 2025 (inclusive)

Special exams

If the special exam is going to be run centrally the dates are:

  • Semester 2 2023 special exams will be held from Monday 29 January to Friday 9 February 2024
  • Semester 1 2024 special exams will be held from Monday 15 to Wednesday 24 July 2024 (the first two weeks of semester 2)

Some departments choose to run their own special exams and they will contact you directly if this is the case. Departmentally run special exams will not appear in the special exams timetable and may be held at a different time. If you have an outcome of a special exam and cannot see it in the timetable you should contact the department concerned.


Because of the flexibility of courses of study at Otago, examination timetabling cannot begin until after the last day to delete papers for that teaching period. Therefore, the anticipated dates for the release of examination timetable dates and times (published below) are:

  • Summer School: late January
  • Semester 1: mid–late April
  • Semester 2: mid–late August

Once the examination timetable has been finalised, each student's examination information will be displayed in the Timetable section of their eVision portal.

As per the University of Otago Examination and Assessment Regulations, candidates are expected to sit their final examinations as scheduled. The main examination centre is Dunedin. In the case of Extramural or Distance Learning candidates, the examination centre is a University-nominated examination venue near their normal study location.

Changes to final or special examination dates, times, or venues

Referred to as a Variation from the University's Examination and Assessment Regulations, changes to the date, time, and/or venue of a candidate's examination(s) are granted only very rarely, only in exceptional circumstances clearly beyond the candidate's control and known about in advance. Some established criteria are:

  • Bereavement in immediate family;
  • Wedding of a member of immediate family, or where the candidate has been invited to be a member of the bridal party;
  • Serious illness / incapacity (candidate or immediate family);
  • Posting of a member of the New Zealand Armed Forces or of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs;
  • Competing or participating as a national representative
  • Competing or officiating at an international competition recognised by a fully constituted international governing body
  • Trialling, as a genuine contender, for selection as a national representative, as verified by a fully constituted national governing body
  • A candidate's religious commitment prohibiting such activity on the date scheduled.

If you are travelling out of Dunedin at the end of the semester, ensure that you make your bookings for a date after the examination period, or wait until the examination timetable has been released.

Note: Booking flights too early, or before your timetable is known, are not grounds for applying for a variation.

How to apply

If your circumstances fall into one of these categories, please complete the Request for variation of exams form by the deadlines below, outlining your situation, and attach documentation to verify the circumstances that prevent you from sitting your examination(s) as scheduled.


Applications for variations must be received by:

  • Summer School papers – 1 February
  • Semester 1 papers – 1 May
  • Semester 2 and full year papers – 1 September

Variations cannot be considered at short notice for final exams.

For special exams, applications must be received no later than 7 calendar days before the start of the exam. Please apply as soon as you become aware that a variation may be needed. Applications to sit an exam outside of Dunedin may not be able to be accommodated at short notice.

Please note that if your application for a variation is approved, you may be responsible for any venue, supervision, and postage / courier costs incurred as a result of the change in time, date, and / or venue.

If you have queries or concerns about examinations, please email

Semester 1 examination timetable 2024

The 2024 Semester 1 examination timetable will will be published mid-late April

Semester 2 examination timetable 2024

The 2024 semester 2 examination timetable will be published mid-late August.

Summer School examination timetable 2025

The 2025 Summer School examination timetable will be published late January.

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