TPE exam guidance
Follow our step-by-step guide to get ready for your TPE assessments.
All TPE-level assessments (including mocks, case study, EPA1, EPA2 and PTE) are conducted through the online assessment platform using remote invigilation.
To make sure you’re fully prepared, and help remove some of the stress, we’ve explained how it works and what you must do to get ready for assessment day.
Please read through all the guidance below to understand what happens when, and what you need to do when.
(If you’ve been here before and are looking for something specific, click a link to jump to a section).
- How to book an assessment
- What to do (at least) one week before your assessment
- What to do 72 hours before your assessment
- What happens on assessment day
- What happens after the assessment
- Useful links
How to book an assessment
What to do (at least) one week before your assessment
1. Watch our online assessment guide
2. Prepare what you’ll need to sit your assessment
- A quiet, private and enclosed room/location with a desk and comfortable chair.
- A working PC or laptop with an embedded web cam and microphone. (You can only use one screen, either the laptop or an extension monitor. If you choose to use an external monitor, you'll also need an external webcam, keyboard and mouse.)
- A power connection for your laptop.
- A stable internet connection (ideally for your sole use during the assessment).
- 2GB of free RAM for the proctoring software to run properly. (Close any applications that you don’t need.)
- Chrome set as the default web browser on the PC/laptop you’ll be using.
- This Chrome plug-in downloaded to the PC/laptop you’ll be using.
- The MS Teams app (or browser version) on the PC/laptop you’ll be using. (If using the app, download and install it before the day of your first assessment.)
- If using a work laptop, your IT department may need to whitelist the following URL: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/proctorio/fpmapakogndmenjcfoajifaaonnkpkei.
- Photo ID, such as a driving licence, passport or biometric national ID card. (The ID must be current and contain a photo and signature. Photocopies or digital copies won’t be accepted.)
3. Take the onboarding test
Log in to the online assessment platform and take the Essential Onboarding Test. It will show you how the platform works and what to expect on assessment day. You will also be able to check the remote invigilation software and ensure it's compatible with your device. You can take the test as often as you like and should do so at least once before every assessment diet.
You’ll find it in your online assessment platform dashboard approximately one week before your first assessment. Please note that it's your responsibility to get in touch with us if the Essential Onboarding Test is not in your dashboard.
4. Access your assessment Teams
For each assessment diet we’ll add you to a dedicated Teams on Microsoft Teams, with two channels:
- Announcements: this is where we’ll confirm the start time, send you important updates, reminders and links to key guidance ahead of your assessment(s).
- General: this is where you can ask us pre-assessment questions and contact us with issues. (Before posting a question, please thoroughly read all the guidance on this page and in the Announcements channel.)
When logging in to Teams, use your @student.icas.com email and its password, and remember to turn on all notifications.
We’ll add you to the Teams approximately one week before your first assessment. Please note that it’s your responsibility to ensure you’ve been added and get in touch with us if not.
5. Read our Assessment T&Cs and associated policies
You must read our Assessment Terms & Conditions and the associated policies before sitting your first assessment.
6. Review your reasonable adjustments
If you’ve been awarded assessment adjustments, the details of your application and the assessment timings will be emailed to you no later than two working days before your assessment. If you don’t receive these and believe that adjustments should be applied to your assessment profile, please contact email@example.com as a matter of urgency.
For short-notice requests within the 15 days before your assessment, please contact us as soon as possible on 0131 347 0100 and we'll do our best to help.
What to do 72 hours before your assessment
1. Re-watch our video guide
If you haven’t already, watch our video guides, or watch them again to refresh your memory. You can’t be too prepared.
2. Check your assessment Teams
Make sure you’ve been added to your assessment Team on Microsoft Teams and get in touch with us if not. That’s where we’ll confirm the start time, share key updates and where you can ask pre-assessment questions.
3. Check your assessment platform dashboard
Log in to the assessment platform, check your dashboard contains all the assessments you’ve booked and get in touch with us if not. You'll gain access to your assessments on the assessment platform at least 72 hours before your first assessments. We will keep you updated on the Microsoft Teams assessment Announcements channel.
4. Read the invigilation guide
From looking at your wrists to vaping, learn the behaviours that online invigilators look out for and you should avoid during the assessment.
5. Get help with pre-assessment stress
It’s only natural to feel stressed in the run-up to an assessment. It’s just your brain and body’s way of reminding you to prepare for the day. Watch our video to learn more about ways to cope with assessment stress. And if you’re really struggling, our Student Assistance Programme has a free 24-7 helpline with BACP-accredited counsellors.
What happens on assessment day
Watch our video guide, and read through the information below, to discover everything that happens on assessment day, from what you're allowed to bring, to how to conduct the room scan.
Get your ID ready
Remember, you’ll need to show valid photo ID, such as a driving licence, passport or biometric national ID card. If your webcam struggles to focus on your ID during the assessment platform checks, ensure the room is sufficiently lit. If that doesn't fix the problem, take the best picture possible. If necessary, we'll contact you after the assessment for further verification.
Know what you can bring
Your permitted materials, a clock or stopwatch, ear plugs or ear defenders. You can bring food and drink if the food is in a clear container or bag and it must be shown to the camera at the start of the assessment.
Your permitted materials
The assessment is open book, so you can use any materials you think may be helpful. Materials can be paper copies or downloaded digital copies. You are not allowed to access the internet (including Advantage) to view materials or information. Please download and save any material to your computer before the assessment.
Know what you can’t bring
Headphones, earbuds/pods and smart watches/devices are not allowed. Articles of clothing that cover your head are also not allowed. Religious head coverings are permitted.
Switch off your phone
Switch off your phone and put it out of reach.
Log off your VPN
You will be unable to access remote invigilation software and the assessment platform if your device is connected to your VPN.
Log in to the assessment platform 15 minutes before the start time
Your assessment times will be posted in the assessment Team on the Announcements channel the week before your first assessment.
You should log into the assessment platform and click the link to access the assessment up to 15 minutes before the start time. This extra time is to allow you to print the assessment paper (should you choose to do so) and to conduct the room scan. However, you won’t be able to start the assessment until the stated start time.
You can email the paper to yourself on another device for printing in another room. You should take no longer than 5 minutes to print the paper. Once the assessment paper has been released and you have downloaded or printed it – you must sit at your desk in assessment conditions and wait for the assessment to start. You must not read any notes.
Starting the assessment
At the stated assessment start time, click 'start assessment' to begin.
Don’t be late. Failure to log in at the start time may result in you being unable to sit the assessment.
If you’ve been awarded a time-based reasonable adjustment, we’ll email you in advance with your individual start time.
Save a Word doc for your assessment responses
Create and save an MS Word document for your assessment responses. Name your assessment response file with your candidate number, the subject name and, for the TPE Case Study only, whether the assessment is in the a.m. or p.m. (e.g. 12345_TPE_AM). Each page should be numbered.
Turn on auto-save on the Word doc. You are responsible for taking the necessary steps to prevent data loss during the assessment.
Taking bathroom breaks
If you need to take a bathroom break, raise your hand to the camera and say, “bathroom break”. Your break should take no longer than 5 minutes.
Make periodic system checks
Periodically check that auto-save is still turned on and is saving to the location selected. You should also periodically check that the assessment platform and remote invigilation software are working correctly. If you notice any issues, please resolve these immediately.
Keep check of time
You are required to keep your own timings. The assessment platform has a timer with your total assessment time, however, you must ensure you’re using this time for the correct purpose – 15 minutes for paper printing at the beginning has been added to this time and can’t be used for any other purposes.
There will be no upload window at the end of your assessment. Everything that you wish to be submitted and marked as part of your assessment must be uploaded by the end of the time.
AM and PM papers (TPE Case Study only)
The TPE Case Study has separate AM (Question 1) and PM (Question 2) papers.
- Ending the AM paper
At the end of the AM paper, when you break for lunch, stop the remote invigilation software recording by closing the tab but do not click on the ‘complete assessment’ button.
- Your lunch break (between AM and PM papers)
During the lunch break between the AM and PM papers you must close both remote invigilation software and the assessment platform by closing the window in your browser. During the break you must not perform any assessment-related activity, including working on your morning paper, adding to your notes or preparing any notes for your afternoon paper.
- Starting the PM paper
Enter the PM paper via your assessment platform dashboard and by clicking 'continue assessment'. As with the AM paper, you can access the assessment 15 minutes early to print the paper and perform the room scan.
Completing the assessment
The assessment platform will close at the end of the assessment time. You will have to upload your assessment response file(s) before the assessment time ends (or before the end of the PM paper for the TPE Case Study) by following these steps:
- Ensure that you're still being recorded and sharing your screen on remote invigilation software.
- Download a copy of your response file(s) to your desktop and switch off auto-save.
- Make sure no company logos are within the response as these are not permitted and might result in the assessment attempt being declared void.
- Make sure that you've named your file(s) with your candidate number, the subject name and, for the TPE Case Study only, whether the file relates to the AM (Question 1) or PM (Question 2) paper (e.g. 12345_TPE_AM).
- Upload your assessment response file(s) to the assessment in the assessment platform. Please note there is no upload window at the end of your assessment. Everything you wish to be submitted and marked must be uploaded by the end of the time.
- Double check that the file(s) you've uploaded is/are the correct version(s). If not, remove and upload correctly.
- When you've correctly uploaded your file(s) click 'complete assessment' to submit and finish the assessment. (For TPE Case Study, do not click on the ‘complete assessment’ button until you have uploaded the files for both your AM paper and your PM paper.)
- You can now close the assessment platform browser window.
How to deal with issues during your assessment
Please follow these steps if you experience a problem during your assessment:
- Raise the issue by writing a new post in the General channel of your assessment Teams.
- Stay calm. We’ll aim to investigate and resolve the issue as quickly as possible to get you up and running with no loss of assessment time.
- Check the Announcements channel in your assessment Teams for further information and follow any instructions carefully.
- If the issue is individual to you, complete a Special Considerations Form (see below).
- If the issue has affected everyone sitting the assessment, we’ll report the issue to the Special Considerations and Extenuating Circumstances Panel, and they’ll consider it when reviewing marks.
What happens after the assessment
Applying for a Special Consideration
A Special Consideration can be applied after an assessment and relates to an unforeseen and temporary experience that’s impacted your performance during the assessment. A link to the Special Consideration form will be posted in the General channel of your assessment Teams at the end of the assessment. You must submit the form within 24 hours of completing the assessment.
Getting your results
Results dates can be found in our yearly planner and your results will be emailed to you by 10am on the relevant date. (Please note that we don’t give out assessment results over the phone.)
Appealing your results
Our Appeals Policy has full information on the rules governing appeals and how to apply.
- Assessment platform – log into your dashboard here
- Online assessment platform – user video guide
- Coping with assessment stress - video guide
- Assessment day information - video guide
- Assessment information and regulations
- Remote invigilation – video guide
- Assessment Terms & Conditions
- Student Assistance Programme