From Session 2, 2022 onwards faculties and departments will align their late submission rules in a move aimed to simplify matters for students and improve fairness across programmes.

The new rules

If a late penalty is applied to an assessment, the following will apply:

  • A penalty of 5% of the total possible mark (of the task) will be applied each day a written assessment is not submitted, until the 7th day. The 7 days includes weekends.
  • After the 7th day, a grade of ‘0’ (zero) will be awarded even if the student submits the assessment. This is to allow for the release of assessment feedback to the remaining class.
  • Submission time for written assessments is set at 11.55pm.
  • 1 hour grace period is provided to students who have technical concerns.

Where a student has a special consideration application for an extension *approved*, then the rules are applied to the new approved due date for that student.


An assessment task is submitted one day late. The task is marked out of 100. The 5% penalty equals 5 marks that will be deducted.

If the above assessment task is worth 40% of the unit then the 5% penalty equates to a 2% deduction.

If the above assessment task is worth 20% of the unit then the 5% penalty equates to a 1% deduction.


The above late penalty schedule will be applied to any individual assessment that requires a file to be submitted by a set time. This will include written reports and recordings.

The above late penalty does not apply to quizzes, oral, multi-part assessments and timed assessments. Late submissions to time sensitive tasks (such as timetabled tests/exams, scheduled performance assessments/presentations, scheduled practical assessments/labs), will be managed at the Unit Convenors discretion and as outlined in the unit guide.

Units where assessment/activities need to be completed in a particular order will also be exempt from applying the late penalty process and will be outlined in the unit guide.

These changes apply to units being offered from 1 July 2022.

Unit convenors will determine if a late penalty applies to the written assessments in their unit. The unit guide will provide clarification as to whether the late penalty applies to the unit assessments.

The Doctor of Medicine will remain out of scope due to the unique assessment processes for this degree.

What to Unit Convenors need to do

  • Update the unit guide to reflect the new rules.
  • Specify for each assessment task if a late penalty will apply or not.
  • Update links and assessment information in the unit iLearn site to reflect to the new rules.

Posted by Mathew Hillier

Mathew has been engaged by Macquarie University as an e-Assessment Academic in residence and is available to answer questions by MQ staff. Mathew specialises in Digital Assessment (e-Assessment) in Higher Education. Has held positions as an advisor and academic developer at University of New South Wales, University of Queensland, Monash University and University of Adelaide. He has also held academic teaching roles in areas such as business information systems, multimedia arts and engineering project management. Mathew recently led a half million dollar Federal government funded grant on e-Exams across ten university partners and is co-chair of the international 'Transforming Assessment' webinar series as the e-Assessment special interest group under the Australasian society for computers in learning in tertiary education. He is also an honorary academic University of Canberra.


  1. Anthony Gottardi 19 July, 2022 at 3:51 am

    This article is not complete as it does not point out the exception to this rule which is the special consideration process.


    1. Mathew Hillier 26 July, 2022 at 2:33 pm

      Hi Anthony – a great point – i have added a clarification indicating that an approved special consideration extension means the rules then apply to the newly approved due date.


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