NPPF Inspectors’ Step Two Legal Examination Frequently Asked Questions – post exam procedures

​Why does it take so long to get my results? 

We look to mark and communicate the results of the exam as quickly as we can.

There are several stages to the marking process. After all the answer sheets have been returned to the College of Policing from the examination sites they are counted to ensure that none are missing and then scanned into the system. The current system used for the exam requires each form to be scanned individually and checked. The volume of answer sheets means that this is a lengthy process.
 
Once all answer sheets are scanned into the system, we analyse the response statistics for all questions within the examination. Any questions with unusual response statistics are reviewed along with any questions queried by candidates, and sent for a further legal check before being included within the marking process. A legal advisor has to confirm that they are content for all questions to be included before the examination is marked. 
 
All invigilators who deliver the examination are required to complete a test record detailing all events that occur during the examination. We review each of these test records to ensure that the examination was delivered accurately and fairly for candidates at each site. 
 
Any issues identified will then be addressed and action taken. For example, awarding all candidates a mark for a particular question that was incorrect. Once we are happy with all of the questions and have investigated any incidents that may have occurred we mark the examination. 
 
The examination marking is then checked by a second marker. Several answer sheets are also dip sampled and marked by hand to ensure accuracy.
 
Finally, a report is produced for the NPPF Debrief Panel, which is chaired by a chief officer from outside of the College, detailing the marking procedure, delivery of the examination and any action taken. The results of the examination cannot be released until the debrief panel have approved this report and any mitigating activity.
 

Who will I receive my results from?

Forces have different preferences for the release of results to candidates. This includes either the results being sent directly to you, or to the force examinations contact for dissemination.  
 
All candidates will receive their personalised feedback report directly from the College of Policing, except those from the following forces: British Transport Police, Cheshire, Lancashire, Lincolnshire, North Wales, Northamptonshire and Port of Dover.
 
Candidates in these forces will receive their reports from their Force Examinations Team. 
 

Why have some candidates received their results and I haven’t?

Once the results have been authorised, we release the pass/fail lists to forces. Release of the results to forces is done randomly, so that no force always receives its results first or last. Feedback reports are then generated and either sent directly to candidates or forces for dissemination, depending on the preference expressed by your force. Candidate reports are released alphabetically, therefore you may find that other candidates in your force receive their results before you do,  
 
The release of candidate feedback reports is a slow process, as our current system creates and emails each report individually. The number of candidates means this process currently takes two to three days to complete. We are currently working to update our systems and we will switch to a new one in 2020. This will allow the release of results to be much quicker. 
 
We would please ask all candidates to wait until Friday 29 November to receive your feedback report, before contacting your Force Examinations Officer. Please do not contact the College of Policing directly. 
 

What action was taken in relation to the error in question 120?

In this year’s examination, question 120 contained two identical answers: option B (the correct option) had accidentally been duplicated to option D. The question was legally accurate, but rather than containing four distinct options to choose from, there were only three. We apologise for this error. For fairness, all candidates have been awarded a mark for this question regardless of which option they chose. 
 
The error was brought to our attention approximately halfway through the examination. In response, the NPPF examinations team immediately got in touch with all force contacts and senior invigilators at each examination site to inform them of this error. Afterwards we also informed all force examinations officers.
 
Some invigilators made an announcement to all candidates during the examination. Others chose not to disturb candidates, but informed those who queried the question and/or gave an announcement at the end. While we attempted to contact all senior invigilators, we are aware that some did not receive this message during the examination. We have reviewed our processes and the training received by senior invigilators so that this inconsistency does not happen in the future. 
 
A review as to how the error occurred has already taken place, and further steps added to the development of the examination going forward, including an additional check by professional copy editors. 
 
We have also conducted analysis to determine whether the error could have negatively impacted on candidates’ performance for the final 30 questions in the exam. Based on previous statistics for the difficulty of the questions, we found that the performance across the examination has been consistent with the predicted performance. The pattern of performance across the examination is also consistent with the 2018 examination, but with candidates scoring higher in this year’s examination. This is reflected by the higher overall pass rate for 2019. 
 
Considering all the statistical analysis, there is no evidence to suggest that candidates’ performance had been affected for the final 30 questions to warrant any further action.  
 
We have reviewed all issues and test administration records, and believe the action taken in response to the error is fair to all candidates. This was agreed by all members of the NPPF Debrief Panel and, therefore, all results have now been ratified as final.
 

Who has endorsed the action taken in relation to question 120?

The NPPF Debrief Panel has endorsed the action taken by the College in response to the issues raised around the exam. The debrief panel is chaired by a police service chief officer representative and includes input from the College’s Information Governance and Legal Services departments.
 

I don’t agree with the action taken in relation to question 120, can I appeal my result?

Following a review of the examination, the College and the NPPF Debrief Panel are satisfied that the mitigating action taken in relation to this exam is fair and appropriate. Candidates are not able to appeal their result or the action taken in response to issues identified in relation to the exam.
 

Can I have my paper remarked?

The marking process is very rigorous and lengthy to ensure that your score is accurate. Once the results have been approved by the debrief panel and released, these are final and the College of Policing will not remark papers under any circumstances.
 

I submitted a query about a question in the examination paper, what was the outcome of this?

This year, candidates raised queries about 12 questions contained within the examination. Alongside those, four questions were flagged by our analysis as having unusual response statistics. These questions have been reviewed by the College’s Selection and Assessment and/or Legal Services, in order to identify if they were suitable for inclusion in the marking of the examination. 
 
All questions, with the exception of question 120, were deemed legally accurate, answerable from the 2019 syllabus and suitable for inclusion in the examination. 
 

What will happen with the appeal that I submitted?

Any formal appeals of unscheduled incidents which were submitted within seven days of the examination and countersigned by a line manager, will be sent to the NPPF Reports and Disqualifications Panel for those candidates who were unsuccessful. 
 
The NPPF Reports and Disqualifications Panel cannot award additional marks or change a fail into a pass for any candidates. The panel does have the discretion to send feedback to the candidate’s force, suggesting that they might consider waiving the candidate’s current examination attempt from any locally applied criteria. Where appropriate, the panel can also decide to provide feedback to the Selection and Assessment Unit, force examinations officers or chief officers on the future administration of the examination.
 
We will respond directly to any queries or complaints raised by successful candidates to ensure these are fully addressed. 
 

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