The external examination is one of the most distinctive features of UK higher education. Thank you to all our appointed External Examiners for agreeing to carry out this role for Aston University and we look forward to working with you. We welcome your involvement in our programmes of study and would encourage you to act as a critical friend, identifying our strengths and weaknesses and in turn helping us to improve the experience of our students.

The material below is intended as an aid to your induction and work at the University. If you have any queries please contact the subject area you have been appointed to in the first instance, but if you have any doubt about who to contact, or have a more generic query, please seek advice from:

  • For advice or guidance on the appointment and payment of External Examiners, please contact the Quality Team.
  • For any other queries on the role of the External Examiner and the regulatory framework, please contact Deborah Trayhurn, Director of Quality.

Induction and Reference Material

The links below will lead you to the following recommended reading before you commence your role as External Examiner.

The UK Quality Code for Higher Education, the section on External Expertise, is the definitive reference point for all UK Universities regarding the external examination and what Universities are expected to do to ensure they make scrupulous use of external examiners. 

Aston Specific Material

The following material is Aston-specific for taught programme External Examiners.

Induction Day Recordings and Slides

Welcome To Aston and External Examining Role

  • Video Recording

Blackboard Virtual Learning Environment

Use the links below to learn how to navigate the Blackboard Virtual Learning Environment.

  • Logging into Blackboard (2:26)
  • Finding your Modules (2:42)
  • Finding and Examining a TURNITIN Assignment (5:44)
  • Finding and Examining a BlackBoard Assignment (6:06)

Health and Safety

Presentation by Dave White on Health and Safety, Fire Evacuation, and Display Screen Equipment Usage

  • Video Recording to come

Regulations and Examination Boards

Presentation by Chris Langley on Regulations and Examination Boards

  • Video Recording to come

Aston Staff Portal

Demonstration by Denise Jackson on using the Aston Staff Portal and Making Expense Claims

Expense Claims

Expense claims should be submitted through the Aston Staff Portal, using your Aston login credentials. The guidance document below will provide you with information on how to use the portal and the process for submitting your expense claim.

The School for which you are acting as External Examiner will provide you with the project code and the name of the person to whom your claim should be submitted.


Report Form

The template for the External Examiner's annual report to the University will be provided by the subject area you have been appointed to at the time of the Examination Board and should be returned to the School within one month of the Board meeting. The report asks for comments on both good practice and areas for improvement, and External Examiners are encouraged to complete this report as fully as possible.