Approved test materials

The University Testing Center aims to strike a balance between the need for a uniformly secure testing environment and the individual preferences of professors. In addition to scratch paper, we have developed a list of approved materials/aids that professors can permit students to use on their exams.

The Testing Center staff is trained to follow professors’ instructions explicitly and without exception. Please pay close attention to your selection(s) to ensure that you have chosen the intended materials/aids.

Permitted testing materials

  • Scratch paper

    Professors must indicate whether scratch paper is allowed for the exam; it is not provided automatically. If scratch paper is allowed, students will be provided two sheets of watermarked paper and two pencils. Pens are available on request. Students are required to use the paper and writing utensils provided by the Testing Center. Student-provided scratch paper, pencils, and pens are not allowed.

  • Blue book of notes

    Allowing a blue book is a more secure alternative to open note exams. Students can purchase blue books in the Wolf Shop. Blue books must be handwritten only, and cannot have any other papers glued, taped, or otherwise adhered to the pages.

  • Note sheet/note card
    • Size options: 8.5” x 11”, 6” x 9” , 3” x 5”
    • Print options: Handwritten or typed, handwritten only

    Note sheets and note cards can be filled out on both sides.

    Where a particular size is indicated, students are permitted to use a lesser substitute if they choose. For example, if an 8.5” x 11” handwritten sheet is indicated, students will be allowed to use a 3” x 5” handwritten (but not typed) note card. Regardless of size or content, all note sheets and note cards must be single sheets of paper. Students will not be permitted to use note sheets or note cards that have been glued or taped together, or otherwise constructed from multiple sheets of paper.

  • Calculator

    Options: Any calculator, Testing Center calculator (TI-30X IIS) only

    Professors are strongly encouraged to require students to use Testing Center-provided calculators. We have a supply of TI-30X IIS scientific calculators, which perform a wide range of functions, but do not have memory storage. Professors who allow students to use any calculator must acknowledge the risk that calculators with memory storage can be used to bring unauthorized information into, or to take exam content out of the testing room.

    The use of “any” calculator does not include any of the following:

    • Calculators with a dedicated alphabetic or QWERTY-style keyboard
    • Calculators which connect to the internet (e.g., TI-Nspire)
    • Calculator apps on smartphones, tablets, computers, etc.
  • Professor-provided handout

    Before the first day of your exam, please deliver or mail your handout to the Testing Center (mail stop 0081). Please including your name and class at the top, and make sufficient copies for every student you expect to take the exam. We will store handouts in a locked file and have it ready to distribute on test day.

  • Headphones

    The Testing Center has a supply of USB headsets for exams with a listening component. Students are permitted to use their own headphones or earbuds, provided they are wired and either auxiliary or USB-A compatible. Wireless Bluetooth headphones and earbuds are not permitted.

    Headphones are allowed on exams with a listening component only (e.g., foreign language, music appreciation). Students are not permitted to listen to music or any other audio media that is unrelated to the content of their exam.

Inspection and handling of materials

All exam materials will be inspected by a proctor prior to the student being admitted to the exam. The Testing Center reserves the right to reject a student’s materials if they do not comply with the professor’s instructions or the Testing Center’s policies. Students whose materials are rejected will have the option to test without the rejected materials or to reschedule (continent upon availability).

All written materials used during the exam, including handouts, scratch paper, and note sheets/cards, will be collected at the end of the student’s exam. The Testing Center retains these materials for 30 days, after which they are shredded. We recommend advising students that these items will not be returned to them, and that they should make a copy of them prior to the exam if they wish to keep them for future reference.