What you can and can't bring into your exam

An outline of the approved calculators and dictionaries for exams and our policy on bringing mobile phones, electronic devices and other personal belongings into your exam.


If you want to use a calculator in your exam, you must get it approved by week ten of the relevant semester.

You can purchase approved calculator models from the Students' Union shop.

We can’t provide you with a calculator in your exam.

How to get your calculator approved

1. Please use the calculator checker below to check whether you can use your calculator in your exam.

Calculator checker

2. If your calculator is an approved model, please book an appointment with SSiD to get an approval sticker attached.

Book an appointment with SSiD

You will not be allowed to use your calculator in your exam without this sticker.

As long as you have an approval sticker, you can use that same calculator in all future exams without having to get re-approval.

3. If your calculator doesn't appear on the approved or prohibited list, please book an appointment with SSiD no later than mid-December to complete an application for it to be approved.

If you attempt to use a prohibited model of calculator in your exam, you’ll be deemed to have used / attempted to use unfair means and disciplinary action may be taken against you.


If you wish to use a dictionary in your exam, you must get it approved by SSiD.

If your first language isn't English, you can use

  • one simple translation dictionary from your native language to English; or
  • one simple translation dictionary from English to your native language

You must only take one dictionary into your exam. If your dictionary is published in two separate volumes, you can bring both into your exam - e.g. if your dictionary has one volume Chinese/English and the other English/Chinese by the same publisher.

Approved dictionaries

  • Oxford Mini
  • Collins Pocket
  • Larousse Petit
  • Collins Concise
  • Oxford Compact
  • Oxford Essential
  • Collins Essential
  • Larousse Compact
  • Pocket Oxford Chinese
  • Collins Essential - Gem editions
  • Bilingual Dictionaries Inc. - Word to Word
  • Foreign Language Teaching Press - A Modern English - Chinese Dictionary

Prohibited dictionaries

  • Little Oxford Dictionary
  • Pocket Oxford Learner Chinese
  • Advanced Learners dictionaries (such as those published by Longmans, Collins or Oxford University Press)

You cannot use library copies of dictionaries, or dictionaries that include:

  • synonyms
  • thesauruses
  • technical data
  • detailed maps
  • detailed graphs or charts
  • technical measurements

How to get your dictionary approved

1. Make sure your dictionary is one of our approved models.

2. Make sure your dictionary does not contain:

  • bookmarks
  • hand-written notes
  • additional pieces of paper

3. Book an appointment with SSiD to obtain an approval sticker for your dictionary.

Book an appointment with SSiD

4. An invigilator must also check your dictionary before the start of your exam.

If you bring an unauthorised dictionary into an exam and it's confiscated you'll be held fully responsible.

Electronic devices

You can't bring any electronic devices into your exam, including mobile phones, smart watches, tablets etc.

If you bring any electronic device with you into the exam hall, you must switch it off and put it in the envelope/container provided by the invigilator.

If you don't do this, or if your electronic device vibrates or makes a noise, we will confiscate it until we can check that it doesn't hold unauthorised material.

Other materials

You must leave other material, such as revision notes, books and data tables outside the exam hall, or give them to an invigilator before entering.

If you’re allowed to bring books, notes or other material into your exam your department will inform you and this will be stated on your exam paper.

You must leave outdoor coats, large bags, luggage etc. in the cloakroom or designated area.

You must put all other necessary personal belongings, including stationary, into a clear plastic pencil case on your desk.

See also

For a formal outline of the above information, please see the General Regulations Relating to Exams in the University Calendar.

We accept no responsibility for any loss or damage to personal belongings.