17-point Marking Scale - University of Warwick

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Department of English and Comparative Literary Studies
BRIEFING NOTE FOR STUDENTS ON THE 17 POINT MARK SCALE
Your work will be marked using the University’s 17 point marking scale.
This scale has 17 mark (or grade) points on it; each of which falls into one of the five classes
of performance which correspond to the overall degree classification. The University uses
these classes of performance for all of its undergraduate modules.
70-100 First Class
60-69
Second Class, Upper Division (also referred to as "Upper Second" or "2.1")
50-59
Second Class, Lower Division (also referred to as "Lower Second" or "2.2")
40-49
Third Class
0-39
Fail
The University has generic descriptors for work which is given a mark that falls within the
range(s) of marks in each to the class. So, there is a description for work in the Upper Second
class range, another for work in the Lower Second class range etc.
The mark which each piece of your work will be given is dependent upon the extent to which
the work satisfies the elements in the generic descriptors.
For the purposes of the 17 point mark scale, each of the five classes is further subdivided into
the positions shown in the table below (high 2.1, mid 2.1 etc).
One of the 17 mark points is assigned to each of the subdivisions.
The person marking your work will consider your work alongside the generic criteria to decide
which class of performance the work falls into. The marker will then determine the extent to
which your work meets the criteria in order to arrive at a judgment about the position (high,
mid, low) within the class. The work will be awarded the mark assigned to the relevant
position in the class.
If a module has more than one ‘unit’ (or piece) of assessment, (e.g. the assessment
comprises two assessed essays), the mark for each unit is determined using the 17 point
mark scale and then the marks are averaged, taking account of the units’ respective
weightings, in order to produce the module result. This is expressed as a percentage (and
therefore may be any number up to 100 and so is not limited to one of the 17 marks on the
scale).
The tables attached show each class of degree (including the subdivisions) and the marks
assigned to each position in the class on the 17 point mark scale, alongside the University’s
generic descriptors for work in the class.
1
FIRST CLASS
Class
Excellent
1st
Mark Point
96
Generic University Descriptor
Exceptional command of the subject, including material which ranges well beyond
that covered in lectures/classes. Work of exceptional insight, bringing new
perspectives to bear on the materials, or developing new knowledge or techniques.
Achieves or is close to publishable standard.
High 1st
Mid 1st
Low 1st
89
81
74
Very high quality work, with full understanding of the subject matter. Work that
demonstrates intellectual maturity, and is perceptive with highly developed
organisation. An ambitious project carried out successfully, with sophisticated
handling of primary and secondary material, reasoned, analytical argument. Some
degree of originality, independent research and thought.
SECOND CLASS: DIVISION I (UPPER SECOND)
Class
High 2.1
Mid 2.1
Low 2.1
Mark Point
68
65
62
Generic University Descriptor
Highly competent in organisation and presentation, evidence of individual research;
appropriate and intelligent use of primary and secondary material, good
understanding of subject matter allied with perceptive analysis.
SECOND CLASS: DIVISION II (LOWER SECOND)
Class
High 2.2
Mid 2.2
Low 2.2
Mark Point
58
55
52
Generic University Descriptor
Conscientious work, attentive to subject matter and title/task set; a focused
response to the task demonstrating good knowledge, balanced more towards the
descriptive than the analytical. Good knowledge, reasonable understanding of
material and task. Descriptive rather than analytical.
THIRD CLASS
Class
High 3rd
Mid 3rd
Low 3rd
Mark Point
48
45
42
Generic University Descriptor
Some relevant knowledge, some accurate repetition of lecture/class notes/work.
Partial or pedestrian description.
FAIL CLASS
Class
High Fail
(near
miss)
Mark Point
38
Generic University Descriptor
Work does not meet standards required for the appropriate stage of an Honours
degree, albeit with some basic understanding of relevant concepts and techniques.
Fail
Low Fail
25
12
Ineptitude in knowledge, structure, academic/professional practice. Failure or
inability to answer the question/respond to the task. No evidence of basic
understanding of relevant concepts/techniques.
Zero
0
Work of no merit OR absent work not submitted, penalty in some misconduct
cases.
2
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