Academic Affairs
Presentation
Examination Liaison Officers
Catherine McCorry / Angela Douglas
Academic Affairs
16 February 2015
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Introduction
• Code of Practice on Examinations and Assessment
• Study Regulations
• Rounding of Marks
• Degree Weightings, Classifications & Mark Scales
• Predominance Rule
• Discounting a Module
• Discounting and Predominance
• Questions
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Code of Practice on Examinations and
Assessment
• The CoP on Examinations and Assessment can be found at
http://www.qub.ac.uk/directorates/AcademicAffairs/ExaminationsandA
ssessment/
• Outlines Queen’s University Belfast’s procedures for the assessment
and examination of students on undergraduate and taught
postgraduate programmes, including the taught elements of
professional doctorates.
• Complements the Study Regulations for Undergraduate Students and
the Study Regulations for Postgraduate Taught Students. In the event
of any conflict of interpretation between the Code of Practice and the
Regulations, the Regulations prevail.
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Code of Practice on Examinations and
Assessment
The Code of Practice on Examinations and Assessment also provides advice and
guidance on:
• University Assessment Policy
• Guidance on Assessment and Feedback
• The Examinations Process
• The Role of the Exams Liaison Officer
• Exceptional Circumstances and Progression
• Board of Examiners and External Examiners
• Guidelines on Marking the Work of Students with Dyslexia
• Late Submission of Assessed Work
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Study Regulations
• The use of the Conceptual Equivalents (CE) Scale is mandatory for
both UG and PGT programmes.
• From 2014-15 the CE Scale was updated to reflect Level 4
undergraduate masters provision, where applicable.
• There is a common pass mark of 50% for all taught postgraduate
awards. The pass mark for all undergraduate programmes is 40 %
unless an exemption has been granted.
• Failure in a total of two modules or their equivalent above Level 1
shall not of itself preclude the award of a classified Honours degree,
except where stricter regulations apply. These will be stated in the
relevant programme regulations.
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Study Regulations continued
• When a failed module is retaken, the overall module mark will be
capped at the pass mark (40% or 50%) for degree classification
purposes.
• Compensation of level 1 marks is no longer available for students first
enrolled on a programme from 2009-10.
• Viva voce examinations cannot be used for degree classification
purposes.
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Ordinary Degrees
• There is no direct entry to the Ordinary degree. Transfer will not be
permitted before the student has attempted six modules above Level
1.
• Students first enrolled on an Ordinary degree prior to 2009-10, a
minimum of nine modules must be above Level 1.
• Students first enrolled on an Ordinary degree from 2009-10 and
thereafter, a minimum of 9 modules must be above Level 1 and a
minimum of three at Level 3. For an Ordinary degree to awarded 300
CATS i.e. 15 modules passed, are required.
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Rounding of Marks:
Students first enrolled on programme prior to 2008/09
• Individual module marks must be rounded up or down and must be
returned by the Board of Examiners as integers. The integer is the
mark that is released to the student and that is used in calculating the
final overall mark for classification purposes.
• The overall final mark (i.e. the mark arrived at once all the weighted
individual module marks are brought together) should be presented to
one decimal place and rounded to an integer before going forward to
the Board of Examiners. It must be rounded up to the nearest whole
number where it contains a fraction of .5 or more, and rounded down
to the nearest whole number where it contains a fraction of less than
.5
• The rounded overall final integer mark will be used to determine
classification and eligibility for predominance
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Rounding of Marks:
Students first enrolled on programme prior to 2008/09
The following provide examples of rounding:
• a mark of 59.7 is rounded up to 60, giving the student a 2.1
• a mark of 56.7 will be rounded up to 57, bringing the student within the
threshold for predominance
• a mark of 59.49 will be presented to one decimal place, becoming
59.4, and will then be rounded down to 59. There will be no automatic
2.1 but the student will be eligible for predominance.
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Rounding of Marks:
Students first enrolled on programme from 2008/09
• Individual module marks must be rounded up or down and returned by
the Board of Examiners as integers.
• The overall final mark (i.e. the mark arrived at once all the weighted
individual module marks are brought together) should be presented to
a decimal place and rounded to an integer for the purpose of
determining degree classification. For example, a weighted
average mark of 59.7 is rounded up to 60, giving the student a 2.1.
• The overall final mark (i.e. the mark arrived at once all the weighted
individual module marks are brought together) should be presented to
a decimal place and the decimal place discarded for the purpose of
determining eligibility for predominance. For example, a weighted
average mark of 56.7 does not qualify for consideration under the
predominance rule as the .7 must be discarded.
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Rounding of Marks:
Unclassified Undergraduate Programmes and
Postgraduate Taught Programmes
• Individual module marks must be rounded up or down and must be
returned by the Board of Examiners as integers. The integer is the
mark that is released to the student.
• The overall final mark (ie the mark arrived at once all the weighted
individual module marks are brought together) should be presented to
a decimal place and rounded to an integer. For example, a weighted
average mark of 59.5 is rounded up to 60.
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Weightings & Classification Thresholds:
• Honours classifications are determined by the average of the
weighted marks for the individual modules which contribute to the
classification. Each Board of Examiners must apply the relevant
weighting for the programme.
• To take account of exit velocity, the weighting applied to a module
depends on the stage in which the module is taken. For example, the
relevant Stage 2 weighting would be applied to a L3 module taken in
Stage 2. Likewise, a L2 module taken in Stage 3 would be weighted
as a Stage 3 module.
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Degree Weightings:
Students first enrolled on programme prior to 2009/10
• For a three-year undergraduate honours degree, the weighting will be
either 25:75 or 40:60 for Stages 2 and 3.
• For students enrolled through the School of Education’s part-time
undergraduate degree provision prior to 2003-2004, all modules that
count towards the degree classification are weighted equally.
• For the MSci and MEng extended undergraduate honours degrees,
the weighting will be 12.5/37.5/50 for Stages 2, 3 and 4.
• For the MPharm extended undergraduate honours degree, the
weighting will be 10:45:45 for Stages 2, 3 and 4.
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Degree Weightings:
Students first enrolled on programme from 2009/10
• For a three-year undergraduate honours degree the weighting will be
10% 30% 60% for Stages 1, 2 and 3 respectively.
• For MSci and MEng degrees the weighting will be 5% 15% 30% 50%
for Stages 1, 2, 3 and 4 respectively.
• For the MPharm extended undergraduate honours degree, the
weighting will be 5% 5% 45% 45% for Stages 1, 2, 3 and 4
respectively.
• For four-year honours degrees in the School of Modern Languages
prior to 2012-13 where the third year is spent on placement abroad,
the module weightings used will be 10% 20% 10% 60% for Stages 1,
2, 3 and 4 respectively. For students enrolled in 2012-13 and
thereafter revert to the current single classification of 10%, 30% 60%.
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Degree Weightings:
Advanced Entry / Change of Programme
Students who entered a programme in Stage 2 or Stage 3 / Final Year
• Schools should classify students using weightings that reflect the
relative proportions of the years studied in the normal scheme.
• For example, 2nd and 3rd year normally count for 30% and 60% in a 3
year programme, so a student admitted into second year will have his
or her results weighted at 33 1/3% and 66 2/3% for the two years.
• Anyone admitted into final year would be classified on that year alone.
A student first enrolled on a programme prior to 2009/10 , who
subsequently transfers to another programme of study carrying some or
all of the previous credit obtained, should have degree classifications
calculated using the weightings in force prior to and after 2009/10 and
the better result should be awarded.
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Classification Thresholds:
Undergraduate Honours Degrees
The classification thresholds for honours degrees are as follows:
70+
First Class
60+
Second Class, First Division
50+
Second Class, Second Division
40+
Third Class
Below 40
Fail
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Mark Scales:
Graduate Certificates and Diplomas
For Graduate Certificate and Diploma results there shall be a common
mark scale as follows:
70+
Pass with distinction
60+
Pass with commendation
40+
Pass
Below 40
Fail
*Note: Schools are required to notify the Director of Academic and Student Affairs of the date of submission of papers to External Examiners.
Mark Scales:
Postgraduate Certificates, Diplomas and Master’s
For Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma and Master’s
Degree* results there shall be a common mark scale as follows:
70+
Pass with distinction
60+
Pass with commendation
50+
Pass
Below 50
Fail
*For Master’s Degrees, a pass with distinction will be awarded only when
the following three conditions have been satisfied: an overall average of
70+ is achieved and a mark of 70+ is achieved in the dissertation module
and an average of 65+ is achieved in the other modules.
Predominance Rule
The Study Regulations for Undergraduate Programmes, regulations
1.4.26-1.4.30 outlines the University regulations concerning Honours
Classification and the Predominance Rule.
The thresholds for eligibility to be considered for a higher class of degree
under the predominance rule are as follows:
- 67+
for consideration for First Class
- 57+
for consideration for Second Class, First Division
- 47+
for consideration for Second Class, Second Division
- 37+
for consideration for Third Class
For a higher classification to be awarded under predominance, the
following must apply:(a) the overall weighted percentage mark (see
above) must be at or above one of the thresholds set out above; and (b)
at least half the contributing weighted module marks must be in the
higher classification.
Predominance Rule
The following formula for the predominance rule must be applied except
where an exemption has been granted:
- Let n1, n2, n3, and n4 be the number of modules at Stages 1, 2,
3 and 4 respectively in which the mark is above the relevant
borderline.
- Let p1, p2, p3, and p4 be the percentage weights at Stages 1, 2,
3 and 4 respectively (for example, if Stage 3 is weighted at 30%,
then p3 = 30).
The higher classification is awarded if:
Three year Bachelor’s degrees: n1 x p1 + n2 x p2 + n3 x p3 ≥ 300
MEng/Msci degrees:
n1 x p1 + n2 x p2 + n3 x p3 + n4 x p4 ≥ 300
Predominance Rule
For four-year honours degrees in the School of Modern Languages,
where the third year is spent on placement abroad:
If the result of the placement is in the higher classification then
n3 = 6 and p3 = 10.
The higher classification is awarded if:
n1 x p1 + n2 x p2 + n3 x p3 + n4 x p4 ≥ 300
Discounting a Module
• Boards of Examiners have the discretion to discount the lowest
module mark for classification purposes.
• The decision will be based on evidence that the module mark does
not reflect the student’s normal level of performance.
• The lowest module mark may be discounted only if it is a pass mark at
first attempt.
Discounting and Predominance
The actual mark for a module that has been discounted is not
included in the predominance calculation. Instead, the average
of the remaining marks for the Stage in which the discounted
module was taken is calculated. The discounted mark is then
replaced for predominance purposes with this average mark.
For example, if the discounted mark is 51 and the average of the
five remaining modules in the Stage is 67, the predominance
calculation will use the mark of 67 in place of the actual mark of
51. Predominance will therefore still be based on 18 modules
(for a three year degree with first enrolment in 2009-10 or
thereafter). The actual mark, will however, be published in the
normal way, and will appear on the student’s transcript. The
mark will be identified as “discounted” (dtd)
Any Questions?
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Study Regulations Presentation (Feb 14)