NEBOSH Open Book Exams

NEBOSH Open Book Exams (OBE) enable you to sit your NEBOSH assessment on your own at home wherever you are in the world. NEBOSH are introducing open book examinations for units NG1, IG1, NGC1 and IGC1. These units are part of the National and International General Certificate, the National and International Certificate in Fire Risk Management, and the National and International Certificate in Construction Health and Safety. Find out more about NEBOSH open book examinations on the NEBOSH website


What is an Open Book Examination?

An open book examination can test the same learning outcomes and assessment criteria as invigilated paper-based examinations. However, unlike a closed book assessment, you can access textbooks and digital resources when completing an open book examination. Open book examinations test your ability to extract and apply relevant knowledge and organise it to address the question asked.

What Will the Format of the Open Book Examination be?

The open book assessment will begin by giving you a scenario. This will typically describe a realistic organisation or workplace with an outline of normal operational activities and worker behaviour. The scenario may go on to outline a developing situation, such as an incident or safety intervention. You will be asked to carry out a series of tasks, which may be split into several sub-tasks. NEBOSH will specify the maximum marks available for each to help you manage your time. These tasks will partially or entirely draw on the sign posts and evidence within the scenario. Answers therefore need to be relevant to the scenario and, in some cases, specific evidence will be required to support answers. As there is an expectation of more detail and reflection, you will be given 24 hours to research and complete the examination. This is a challenge that really tests your ability to interpret the scenario before answering the questions set using the knowledge gained through your General Certificate studies.

The open book examination is not invigilated, and you are free to use any learning resources to which you have access, eg your course notes, or the HSE website, etc. Please find this link about Open Book Exam sample paper for NG1.

Important Communications to Learners

Below are the communications learners will receive from NEBOSH in the build up to your OBE:

  1. Registration confirmation email 
    About three days before the OBE date, NEBOSH will distribute the registration confirmation email to learners directly for their OBE units.
  2. NEBOSH online examination platform log in details
    About three days before the OBE date, all learners will be sent a user name and temporary password to their registered email address. As outlined in the Technical Learner Guide we would encourage everyone to log in, change their password and familiarise themselves with the platform before the examination day.
  3. Examination notification 
    On the examination day, all learners will receive an automated email approximately one hour prior to the examination start time to notify them of the examination start and remind them of key details. On the day, NEBOSH will be offering 24-hour support to learners undertaking the OBE. They can contact NEBOSH at:

The live chat function can be found on the bottom right-hand side of the page, but may be temporarily unavailable if all advisors are busy. Refresh the page regularly and it will be available again soon.

Important Information on Open Book Exams For Learners on the Day of the Assessment

⭐ Please remember, the submission deadline is 09:00 BST one day after the OBE date (refer to a world clock to check what time this is in your region.)

⭐ You must upload your answer paper using the online platform – further guidance on how to do this and the accepted document formats are in NEBOSH Technical Learner Guide here.

⭐ Do not leave it until the last minute to submit your question paper.

Good luck to all our learners undertaking the examination.

Learn more about the Open book exams Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

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