ITS Online»Exams»Takeaway Exams FAQ

Takeaway Exam FAQ

Here are the most commonly asked questions about takeaway exams. If you have a question that is not answered here, please email

In This Document:

  1. How do I access my takeaway exams?
  2. How do I sign-out a takeaway exam?
  3. How do I submit a takeaway exam?
  4. My deadline has passed! What do I do now?
  5. Help! I have an error message and am unable to submit my exam!

Takeaway Recommendations:

-Be sure that your computer is up to date and charging before checking out your exam. 
-As you work on your exam, be sure to save your work frequently. 
-Give yourself 5 minutes of padding at the end of the exam in order to upload your answers and troubleshoot any issues with the upload process. 

1.) How do I access my takeaway exams?

Log into and click the link on the left sidebar labeled “Takeaway Exams”.  There you will see a list of available exams.  Click on either the Course ID or Course Name to proceed to the next step to sign out your exam.

Note: you may be prompted to enter in your PennKey to view the Takeaway Exams page

2.) How do I sign-out a takeaway exam?

First, make certain that the exam is available and that you can complete the exam in the time alloted to you. Signing-out your exam is not undoable! If the exam is available for sign-out, the “Sign-out My Exam Now” button will be visible. Clicking it will immediately sign the exam out and allow you to download/view the exam. Your deadline will be presented to you and accounts for any exam duration limit. You can leave this page and return to submit your exam responses any time before the deadline.

If your exam has a duration limit, your deadline is determined by taking the current day and time and adding the appropriate number of hours. Then, your personal deadline is the earliest of this calculated deadline and the deadline for the exam. If your exam does not have a duration limit, then your response must be received before the deadline.

For instance: Sally has an exam which is available from July 1st at 8:00 AM and ends July 8th at 6:00 PM, with an exam duration of 24 hours. If Sally signs out the exam on July 2nd at 9:00 AM, her completed exam must be received before July 3rd at 9:00 AM. Let us suppose that Sally is a major procrastinator and does not sign out the exam until July 8th at 11:00 AM. Her exam response must be returned by 6:00 PM that day - she has only 7 hours to finish!

Before sign-out

Sign Out Your Exam

After sign-out


3.) How do I submit a takeaway exam?

Once you sign out an exam, you are presented with the option to submit your completed exam. 

Using the Browse or Choose File button, select your completed exam file. Be certain this is the correct and complete file, as you cannot change your response after submitting. After selecting your file, press the Submit Completed Exam button. You should see the success message below - otherwise, see for means of resolving the issue.

IMPORTANT: After you have uploaded your exam answer, the system will give you an opportunity to open the file you submitted to ensure that it was what you intended to submit. It is your responsibility to notify the Registrar’s office (at immediately of any problems with what you uploaded.

After Exam Submission



4.) My deadline has passed! What do I do now?

The Takeaway Exam system will not allow you to submit your response if the deadline for your exam has passed.  If you miss the deadline, even by a minute — you will *not* be able to upload your exam through myCourses. Give yourself time to log back in to myCourses/Takeway Exams page and upload your file.  If you miss the deadline, you must email your exam to the Registrar at as an attachment.  Be sure to include in the body of the email why the exam is late.  Exams submitted after the deadline will be marked “LATE” and we will attach your explanation.


5.) Help! I have an error message and am unable to submit my exam!

The following list of errors and fixes should help with most issues you encounter. If your error is not on this list and you are unable to upload your exam, please contact the Registrar’s office at

  • An unknown database error has occured: This error is typically transient and self- correcting. Try your action again. If it continues, please notify the Registrar’s office at
  • An exam response file was not received: This error can occur if you accidentally pressed the Submit Completed Exam button without specifying a file, or your file had no content. Return to the Takeaway Exam page and be certain you specified the appropriate file.
  • The stale request error may occur when your browser is left open for an extended period of time and your login expires. It can also occur for other reasons including using the back button. 
    Screenshot of Stale Request Error
    You can fix by going to the PennKey logout page at and clicking the “log out” button.
    Then copy and paste in your browser (you will be prompted to log back in.) Another option is to login to the Takeaway Exams tool ( using a different browser.

Latest Tips