Quality Manual
   
   
  

Degree Classification: (with effect from 2015/16) for students who entered Qualifying year or Part I from September 2015 and for students who entered Taught Postgraduate awards from 2016/17

Honours and Integrated Masters Degrees

These regulations take effect from 2015/16 for students entering Qualifying year or Part I from September 2015. Students entering Qualifying year or Part I before September 2015 are subject to the former regulations.

Standardised weightings between Parts apply unless an approved PSRB or other exemption has been given and this is stated in the relevant programme specification(s).

Arithmetic Mean Model

1. Unit marks (footnote 1) are numeric. 

2. Module mark is calculated from unit marks and rounded to a numeric integer

3. Module marks are weighted accordingly to the number of credits attached to the module e.g. a 20 credit module is weighted double compared to a 10 credit module.

4. The relative weightings of Part I/II/III marks are given in programme specifications.

5. A weighted numerical average is calculated using the weightings indicated in 3 and 4 above.

6. The weighted numerical average is rounded (see "Rounding" in Marking and Grading).

7. Weighted numerical average is translated into degree classification according to Table 1.

 

Table 1

 I  70%+
 II-1 =  60% - 69%
 II-2 =  50% - 59%
 III =  40% - 49%
 Pass* =  40%+ (which can include reassessment marks from Parts I/II/III)

*ie an unclassified degree and therefore awarded without honours.

Only the following rounded marks will be regarded as “borderline”:

48/49 Borderline II-2

58/59 Borderline II-1

68/69 Borderline I 

At the III/Fail boundary there is no borderline. 

Other Undergraduate Awards

Ordinary Degrees and Undergraduate and Graduate Certificates and Diplomas are classified using a weighted numerical average as defined under the Arithmetic Mean Model above. The classifications are: 

Distinction = 70%

Merit = 60% - 69%

Pass = 40% - 59%

Only the following rounded marks will be regarded as borderline:

58/59 Borderline Merit

68/69 Borderline Distinction 

At the Pass/Fail boundary there is no borderline.

When calculating an overall average, in the case of Ordinary Degrees, classification is based on the best marks obtained from 100 credits at Part I and the best marks obtained from 100 credits at Part II.

In the case of Undergraduate Diplomas the classification is based on the best marks obtained in 120 credits taken in stage 2 or 3 including at least 90 credits at level 2.

Taught Postgraduate Awards (to apply to courses beginning in September 2016 and after)

The classification rules for Taught Masters, Postgraduate Diplomas and Postgraduate Certificates (i.e. the award of Merits and Distinctions) are contained in the University’s Taught Postgraduate Regulations. The classifications are:

Distinction = 70% and above

Merit = 60% - 69%

Pass = 50% - 59%

Borderlines for these qualifications are:

68/69 Borderline Distinction

58/59 Borderline Merit

50 Pass (there is no borderline at Pass/Fail)

All Awards

Use of Borderlines

Following moderation an agreed algorithm is used to determine the final composite mark.  If this falls within a borderline as defined above, the weighted profiling system as stated in the programme specification will be applied to determine the final classification (footnote 3).

Extenuating Circumstances

Students with acceptable extenuating circumstances should be considered in accordance with the Extenuating Circumstances Policy and Procedures.

Footnotes

1. “Unit mark” is the mark awarded for an individual piece of assessed work, which goes towards the computation of a module mark using a weighting formula. 

2. For students registering on programmes from 2009/10 onwards, Schools should use only a weighted profiling system for determining the degree class of borderline students.  The profiling system must be stated in the programme specification and made explicit and clear to students from the start of their studies through School Handbooks

3. For students entering Qualifying year or Part I from 2015/16 onwards, Schools should use only the standardised weighted profiling system for determining the degree class of borderline students.

A student should be given the higher class if either of the following criteria are met: 

  • Half or more of the final stage credits are in the higher class;
  • Half or more of the final and penultimate stage credits are in the higher class.

For students entering Taught Postgraduate programmes from 2016/17 onwards, Schools should use only the standardised weighted profiling system for determining the degree class of borderline students. 

A student should be given the higher classification if the following criterion is met: 

  • Half or more of all credits are in the higher class.

This does not preclude the consideration of Extenuating Circumstances of students, whether inside or outside the borderline.

Return to Marking and Classification home page

Amended 13 September 2016

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