Skip to main content

Religious observance

Queen Mary is a diverse community of over 30,000 students and staff. With a variety of faiths and beliefs represented on campus, we are committed to tolerance, understanding and co-operation, as well as to ensuring as far as possible that our policies are consistent across all needs. Many religions and beliefs require their members to pray at specific times during the day, or have special festivals or spiritual observance days. We recognise therefore that students at Queen Mary often strike a balance between their educational and religious commitments. 

One of Queen Mary’s fundamental aims is to provide an education that is judged internationally to be of the highest quality. It would be both impractical and inconsistent with our aims as a university to suspend teaching for reasons of religious observance, but we will accommodate students’ religious commitments where we reasonably can do so. This may include providing learning materials (potentially including QReview recordings) online and permitting students to attend classes at different times where there is availability.

Students are expected to stay engaged and up-to-date with their studies throughout their time at Queen Mary. Schools and Institutes should make their expectations for attendance and submission of coursework clear to students at the beginning of their studies, and students should inform themselves beforehand about the potential implications of missing learning and teaching activities. Students must also inform their School or Institute beforehand if they intend to miss any teaching. We will take religious commitments into reasonable account when reviewing students attendance, but we expect students to plan their studies so that they can submit coursework on time.  

 The following procedures apply in the event that a special festival or spiritual observance day would result in absence from a scheduled assessment:

  • In the case of an in-class test, students may request permission in advance from their Head of School or Institute to be absent on that occasion. The Head of School or Institute will consider whether reasonable adjustments can be made, for example by permitting late submission or rearranging the test. It is important to submit requests well in advance, in case reasonable adjustments cannot be made. 
  • In the case of formal examinations, students may notify Queen Mary of any special festivals or spiritual observance days by submitting the online ‘Notification of Religious Holidays  form’ by the deadline specified in the Academic Calendar. We will accommodate such requests where we reasonably can do so. More information can be found here: 
Back to top