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Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I find the MATSEC syllabi?

The syllabi of all three levels (Secondary Education Certificate, Intermediate Matriculation and Advanced Matriculation) are available on the MATSEC website: www.um.edu.mt/matsec. The year indicated on the syllabus is the year when the examination is to be held. 

 

How do I apply for MATSEC examinations?

Applications to sit for MATSEC examinations are managed by the Department of Examinations of the Ministry of Education and Employment. Secondary Education Certificate (SEC), Intermediate Matriculation (IM) and Advanced Matriculation (AM) applications can be submitted online. An e-ID is required to apply online. Alternatively one can fill in the application by hand and submit it at the Examinations Department. Details about the procedure to apply can be found on the Examinations Department website: https://exams.gov.mt/. Should you have any queries, you may wish to call the Examinations Department on 25982953.

 

Where can I find the general examination timetable?

The timetable is available on the MATSEC website. The timetable is published in October, several months before the examination session, in order to facilitate the candidate’s planning. Once published, the timetable is final and does not change.

 

I have a clash between two examinations.  What should I do?

With regard to the May session, once applications are open, you should apply normally for both examinations and fill in a clash form which can be obtained from the Examinations Department. MATSEC will be informed about the matter and will make arrangements for you to sit for both examinations on the same day. As regards the September session, please inform us about the clash in writing via e-mail: matsec@um.edu.mt. Clashes with foreign or other examination boards will not be considered.

 

When does a candidate receive the Index Number and detailed timetable with venue allocations?

The Index Number and detailed timetable (which also includes information about oral/aural components) are sent to the candidate by post approximately 10 days before the start of examinations on the address provided by the candidate. Information about practical components (e.g. SEC/IM Physical Education, AM Chemistry, IM Theatre and Performance) sent to candidates by post before the examination. The timetable for the May session is set by the Examinations Department whereas that for the September session is set by MATSEC.

 

I need to submit coursework; when and how do I go about doing this?

Coursework done at, and presented by the school is to be submitted to the school by the deadline given by the school administration. Private candidates are to present coursework on the date stipulated on the timetable at the MATSEC Support Unit in an envelope that can be purchased from the MATSEC Support Unit.  Gozitan candidates can present their coursework at the Exams Department, Victoria.

 

Is coursework given back to me?

All work submitted in connection with the examination, including written work and coursework, is the property of the MATSEC Examinations Board.  Coursework may be returned to the candidates at the Board’s discretion. In such cases, candidates will be informed how and when to collect their coursework.

 

I would like to sit for an exam that has a coursework component, and which I already sat for in the past. Can I use the coursework mark shown on a past MATSEC result slip for this examination session?

Yes, you can. A coursework mark attained in a particular year is automatically carried forward to the following year. However, should you wish to carry forward an older coursework mark, you need to inform the MATSEC Support Unit in writing (matsec@um.edu.mt).  For Advanced and Intermediate level examinations only, coursework that is more than five years older than the year of examination cannot be carried forward.

 

What do you mean by Supplementary Session?

The Supplementary Session applies only for SEC and is held in September for candidates who registered for the May session and who did not obtain Grades 1 to 5 in the compulsory subjects (Mathematics, English Language, Maltese and one science subject  ̶  Biology, Chemistry or Physics).

 

Does the SEC Supplementary Session offer the same options as the May Session?

The Supplementary Session offers English Language, Maltese, Mathematics and one Science subject (Biology, Chemistry or Physics) provided that the candidate would not have already obtained Grades 1-5 in these subjects.  Candidates may sit for one science subject only if they did not obtain Grades 1-5 in any of Chemistry, Biology and Physics. All examinations in this supplementary SEC session are offered at Paper 2B level.

 

Does the SEC Supplementary Session have oral and aural examinations?

Marks obtained in the oral and aural components of an examination during the May session are retained during the following Supplementary Session. Candidates who are sick for the oral/aural session in May and who submit a medical certificate up to three working days from the start of their illness may be eligible to sit for the oral/aural component in September.

 

Can I apply to sit for Intermediate and/or Advanced level examinations in September?

Yes, you can, even if you did not register for these examinations in May. The Matriculation September session is separate from the May session. However, the September session is restricted in that candidates can only sit for one Advanced level examination, Systems of Knowledge, and one Intermediate level examination from each of the groups outlined in the regulations. 

 

In order to sit for an Intermediate or Advanced level examination that has a coursework component/ project during the September session, you need to submit the coursework/project as outlined in the September session timetable which can be accessed from the MATSEC website  ̶  Assessment > Time Tables  ̶  via the following link: http://www.um.edu.mt/matsec/assessment/timetables.

 

Are there any restrictions to the choice of subjects I can sit for at SEC level?

Candidates may not sit for the same subject at both SEC and Matriculation level during the same examination session.  Candidates may not sit for the examination in SEC Business Studies with any of SEC Accounting, SEC Commerce, and SEC Economics in the same session.

 

Are there restrictions to the choice of subjects I can sit for at Advanced and Intermediate level?

Candidates can sit for any examination on offer. However, there are restrictions that apply for the award of the Matriculation Certificate which can be found in the Matriculation Certificate Regulations section 5(3) accessed through the MATSEC website via the following link: http://www.um.edu.mt/matsec/regulations/legalnotices/mc_regulations .

 

Can I buy Past Papers from the MATSEC Support Unit?

Past Papers of the past five years can be downloaded from the MATSEC homepage with the link being on the bottom right-hand corner of the page.

 

Can I buy Model Answers of Past Paper questions from the MATSEC Support Unit?

No, MATSEC does not supply Model answers.

 

Can I answer examination questions in Maltese?

Questions must be answered in the language in which they are set. Most MATSEC examinations are set in English. Language examinations are generally assessed fully or in part in the particular language that is being assessed. Some MATSEC examinations enable candidates to answer in Maltese. In such cases, the syllabus and examination paper state clearly that candidates have this option. All the MATSEC syllabi are available on the MATSEC website.

 

I have learning difficulties which lead to issues in accessing the examination paper. Can MATSEC help me in any way?

Yes, MATSEC offers access arrangements to those deemed fit to receive them. The Access Arrangements Office at the MATSEC Support Unit deals with such matters. Candidates who require access arrangements are to apply for them when applying to sit for their examination/s. More information can be acquired from the MATSEC website – Regulations > Access Arrangements – via the following link: http://www.um.edu.mt/matsec/regulations/Access.

 

What should I do if I am sick on the day of the examination?

If the examination is an oral exam, and according to the MATSEC timetable another session for the same component at the same level is to be held on a future date, you are invited to inform the MATSEC Support Unit about the matter.  We will try to accommodate you on a future date only on presentation of a medical certificate at the MATSEC Support Unit, University of Malta or, in case of Gozitan candidates, the Exams Department, Victoria, Gozo. If the examination is a listening comprehension or a written paper, it will be missed.

 

As regards absences, the MATSEC Examinations Board may consider issuing a credit note for grave humanitarian cases. Such requests should be (i) made in writing to the Chairman of the MATSEC Examinations Board (matsec@um.edu.mt); (ii) accompanied with a medical certificate; and (iii) presented within three working days from the date of the examination.

 

I will be abroad during one of my examination/s. Can I sit for the examination abroad?

MATSEC does its best to accommodate requests to sit for examinations overseas, however, only cases of Maltese candidates residing abroad, involved in national sporting events, undergoing medical treatment and other humanitarian cases are eligible. Candidates must make such requests on the Assessment form > Forms and Logs (http://www.um.edu.mt/matsec/assessment/forms) as early as possible. The MATSEC Support Unit will try to accommodate candidates although no guarantee of a successful arrangement can be given.

 

When will I receive my results and how will I receive them?

The results are sent by post in mid-July (as regards the May session), and towards the end of September (with respect to the September session). Candidates will only receive the results via sms if they register for this option during the application stage. The use of mobile numbers is protected by the Data Protection Act and MATSEC cannot send results by sms unless specifically authorised by the candidate.

 

An official certificate is sent to the candidate’s respective school (if a school candidate) or to the Exams Department (if a private candidate) in February to be collected by the candidate.

 

What is a Revision of Paper and when can I apply for it?

When you ask for a Revision of Paper of a particular subject, MATSEC appoints a Reviser who is not part of the original marking panel to go through your examination script/s once again. The Reviser checks for clerical and/or assessment errors and writes a report. If there are any errors that lead to an upgrade, this will be stated in the report which will be sent to you by post. The report is sent even if there is no change in grade. The Revision of Paper fee is reimbursed when there is a change in grade. Current regulations do not allow for a downgrade of the original result following a Revision of Paper. 

 

You can apply for a Revision of Paper during the period allocated for registration for September examinations. These dates are communicated to you by post upon receipt of the result slip. Revision of Paper reports are sent subject by subject and the MATSEC Support Unit cannot guarantee that these will be received by the start of the following session.

 

What is a reading and noting time and how will it affect me as a candidate for one or more assessments?

As from the May 2015, candidates shall be eligible for 5 minute reading and noting time in all assessments (SEC, IM and AM) that are (i) written and (ii) of a duration exceeding 1 hour and 40 minutes whereby candidates shall be allowed an extra five minutes to read the paper and take notes before examination starts.  In SEC Mathematics Paper I, the five minute reading time shall be provided before Section B of the paper.

 

Can I see my examination script after the examination?

No, you cannot. If you feel that the grade you have been awarded is not fair, you need to apply for a Revision of Paper which will provide you with a report justifying or changing your grade. When a candidate has sufficient reason to suspect that the marks given to him/her do not belong to him/her, it is at the discretion of the Chairperson of the MATSEC Examinations Board to make arrangements for the candidate to see his/her paper for the sole purpose of identifying it.

 

I have a complaint about the invigilation during the examination. What should I do about it?

Invigilation is managed by the Department of Examinations of the Ministry of Education. Please write to us via e-mail (matsec@um.edu.mt) stating the complaint, the exam you were sitting for at the time, the date on which it took place, the venue and possibly the room number where the situation took place. The MATSEC Support Unit together with the Examinations Department will investigate the matter and take action where needed.

 

What happens if I am caught cheating?

Cheating is a very serious matter. Candidates caught cheating, attempting to cheat or in any way caught taking or attempting to take advantage over other candidates, shall be subject to disciplinary procedures as laid down in the statutes, regulations and bye-laws of the examination. Such candidates may have the results of that or all of their examinations cancelled and may also be precluded from sitting for any other examinations offered by the MATSEC Examinations Board.

 

I lost my MATSEC certificate. What can I do to get another one?

You must apply at the MATSEC Support Unit, University of Malta, to have the certificate re-issued and pay the respective fee. You will then be informed when to collect the certificate.

 

Is the MATSEC Certificate recognised abroad?

The MATSEC Examinations Board’s examinations are recognised by institutions of higher learning and employers, as well as by overseas authorities.

 

I have an error in my personal details as listed in the time table.  What should I do to have these changed?

You must send an e-mail to matsec@um.edu.mt in which you should (i) state your ID card or index number; (ii) include the details which are to be changed; and (iii) attach a scanned copy of your ID card / passport.

 

Where is the MATSEC office situated?

A map of the University of Malta including the MATSEC Support Unit (marked as 41 on the map) is available here: http://www.um.edu.mt/campusmap. The MATSEC Support Unit is located next to University’s old gate.

 

Who can give me advice on questions not answered above?

Queries related to MATSEC examinations that are not addressed in the FAQs above can be sent in writing via e-mail (matsec@um.edu.mt) and these will be addressed as quickly as possible. In such e-mails, one should state his/her index or ID card number whenever possible.

 

Queries related to the Examinations Department can be sent via e-mail using the following address: https://exams.gov.mt/, and issues related to the University of Malta entry requirements can be dealt with by referring to the course-specific bye-laws or by contacting the Admissions Office at the University of Malta.

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Last Updated: 18 October 2017

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