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FAQs on Assessment during Covid-19 in 2020/21


This applies to all areas of the University but may differ in its application because of specific course or professional body requirements.

What does ‘no detriment’ mean in 20/21?

Previously, we implemented a ‘no detriment policy’ in direct response to the sudden changes that occurred earlier this year in both teaching and assessment delivery. This approach will change slightly in 2020/21 but will still retain additional safeguards against disadvantage caused by Covid-19. Whilst it is a different form of learning for all universities now, teaching, learning and support does continue in a blended approach and the University must try to return to normal academic practices as far as possible whilst ensuring students aren’t unfairly disadvantaged.

In some cases, the requirements of certain professional bodies will override the University no detriment procedure, and in these situations the normal regulations apply, so speak to your course leader if you are unsure about your course and its professional body accreditation.
For all our undergraduate and postgraduate taught students, it is important that you attempt all assessments. To support you we have made changes to the way that we grade assessments and exams.

When considering a module group’s marks for the current year, reference will be made to the module marks and trends from previous cohorts, to ensure that the current cohort is not disadvantaged when compared with the previous year.

An additional attempt is also being offered to all year groups (even final year, and for dissertations) in the event you fail at first attempt or don’t submit. However, we would strongly encourage you to attempt your exams and assessments on the original dates if possible, as many resits will take place in August and by then you will have other priorities and hopefully the world will have returned to something more like normality. It is always best to get your exams and assessments out of the way on time and resits should be a last resort.

 

If you fail or cannot take an exam or assessment:

If you have been given a 'I' grade after the first submission, you can make a further attempt – you will be sent an email with details of the work and the submission date after the Assessment Board.

If you don’t pass all your modules this year:

Exceptionally this year an additional 20 credits of compensation will be available for Bachelors students studying at Level 5 (your modules this year will be coded xx2xxx) or level 6 (modules coded XX3xxx) or Level 7 (modules coded XX4xxx). This exceptional change to the regulations for 2020/21 has been introduced to help support students towards progression and award. Additional measures have been put in place around mitigating circumstances so that Covid related disruptions do not disadvantage students.

The additional 20 credits of compensation will be available across levels 5 and 6 and 7 (see below). This is for the remainder of the 20/21 academic year only. The assessment board can consider compensating grades – ie treating an overall module mark below the pass mark as though it was a passing mark – as detailed in section G10 of the Academic Regulations. Compensation does not change marks, but it does allow students to progress or be awarded without having to be reassessed for a module which they have not passed. However, in order for a module mark to be considered for compensation the relevant course learning outcomes would still have to have been met and the mark must be in the compensatable range (30-39 for undergraduate and 45-49 for postgraduate). It also depends on any professional body guidance for the course allowing any/that amount of compensation as the modules on some professional courses have been defined as ‘core’ which means they must be passed so could not be compensated.

Compensation is considered at the end of year Course Assessment Boards, and any compensated grades will be identifiable on my UCLan by the suffix ‘C’, eg 36C.

Students studying Level 6 awards (Bachelors Degree): an additional 20 credits at Level 5 (modules coded xx2xxx) or Level 6 (modules coded xx3xxx) depending on current year of study.

Students studying Integrated Masters awards (eg MEng, etc): an additional 20 credits at Level 6 (year 3 modules coded xx3xxx) or Level 7 (year 4 modules coded xx4xxx) depending on current year of study.

I am studying at a partner or overseas college - does this apply to me?

Yes (unless you are studying at Cyprus campus), and unless there are specific course, professional, statutory or regulatory requirements. If you are studying at a partner institution you should visit your institution’s webpages or Student Support Office for guidance about how the impact of Covid-19 is being be mitigated at your institution this year.

I want to apply for Mitigating Circumstances because of the impact of Covid-19 related issues on my studies - what do I do?

  • If you have received an interim recommendation in July (Refer/Defer) and have ongoing covid related mitigating circumstances you now need to make an application as usual using the normal Mitigating Circumstances process.
  • If you have mitigating circumstances for non-Covid related matters, you do need to apply as normal. You can find more information on how to apply here: Mitigating Circumstances

 

I have to do a number of practice hours for my course which I have not yet completed. How will this be completed?

This will vary between different courses and as a result of personal circumstances, so it is important you’re aware that while we will do our best to ensure your circumstances are taken into consideration, there may be professional body requirements which will limit the actions we can take. In some cases, particularly those relating to clinical placements hours, it may be necessary to extend your period of study which may in turn impact on your fees, so it is important that you get advice from your Course leader/Year Tutor when discussing the potential remedies to your mitigating circumstances so you can make an informed decision.

Will my degree be worth the same having been completed by blended / remote teaching and assessment?

Yes. Your degree has the equivalent value of any other, and continues to meet UK and where relevant professional, statutory and regulatory body requirements. Careful consideration has been given to ensure that online learning and assessment meets the same standards as on campus.
We have made sure that you are still able to meet the learning outcomes of your course. Your course continues to be delivered by the same people and most assessments remain the same, just delivered through a different method.

I still have a module with an I grade due to Covid in from 2019/20 and a 'Proceed Counsel on Progression Route' recommendation. What should I do?

  • You will be able to see this outstanding module and your new modules for 2020/21 and your incomplete modules from 2019/20 in MyUCLan. You will have been given a deadline to complete these outstanding assessments and when they have been completed will be able to see your overall module marks.
  • If you had a ‘Proceed Counsel on Progression Route’ recommendation with one or more 'I' grades in 2019/20, this means that we have not stopped you from progressing with outstanding module/s, but that you must complete this assessment otherwise you will not be able to continue the course or an award/accredited award may not be possible.

 

Will my final transcript or certificate indicate A or H marks from 2019/20 or Covid related statements?

  • No, final award transcripts and certificates will not show these indicators
  • For non-finalist students, the indicators will stay on the student record system so that we can take this detriment into account in future years.

 

I am a third-year student worried that my 2019/20 marks will affect my future results and classification

We recognise that for students in year two in 2019/20 these marks could affect future classifications and the ‘no detriment’ process was intended to mitigate the potential impact. We will still take this into consideration in future years, even if the Covid-19 situation is then a distant memory.

I received my year end recommendation in 2020/21 and have been progressed to the next year but I did not pass a component of a semester2/year long module and want a further attempt as permitted under no detriment this year.

When considering our students’ achievements at our Course Boards this year, we are applying compensation to the limits permitted by the 2020/21 No Detriment process to support progression to the next academic year. Some courses are accredited by professional bodies and if they have different rules (eg no compensation permitted) we must apply those instead of our own.

For Foundation year students and those on year 1 of a Bachelors degree, the Course Assessment Board considered overall achievement and the meeting of course learning outcomes to support student progression.

If you have been progressed without the need for further work but you failed or did not submit an item of assessment for a semester2/year long module and you want to make a second attempt without detriment, you may request that further attempt by completing a form for each module. Please you go to the module space on Blackboard you will find the resubmission work you need to complete for that assessment. You must then submit a further attempt by the submission deadline – if it is an exam it is essential that you advise asap so it can be scheduled.

Please complete a request form for your School for each module affected

• If you are still not satisfied, then you can find detailed information about the Academic Appeals process here.

• The appeals process will work as described, and to published timescales, just remotely using Microsoft Teams.

You are entitled to receive free, confidential and independent advice regarding the appeal from the Students’ Union’s Advice Centre, who can be contacted by emailing suadvice@uclan.ac.uk.