SECTION 7: Award, Progression, Reassessment, Failure in a Module and Extenuating Circumstances (ECs)

 

7.1 Undergraduate and Postgraduate grading scales

7.1.1. The following grading scales are applied by the University when grading modules and determining award classifications, unless otherwise stated in the module and/or programme specification document.

1. Undergraduate-Level Modules

Pass/Referral Bands

Pass

40%

Refer

0-39%

Module Grading Bands

A

70% +

B

60-69%

C

50-59%

D

40-49%

R/F*

0-39%

Undergraduate Modules*

Initial CAB consideration allows a referral opportunity between 0% and 39%

CAB consideration following referral will conclude fail between 0 and 39%

R = Referral

F = Fail

2. Integrated Masters Modules 

Pass/Referral Bands

Undergraduate Level Modules

Postgraduate Level Modules

Pass

40%

Pass

50%

Refer

0-39%

Refer

35 - 49%

Module Grading Bands

Undergraduate Level Modules

Postgraduate Level Modules

A

70% +

A

70% +

B

60-69%

B

60-69%

C

50-59%

C

50-59%

D

40-49%

R**

35-49%

R/F*

0-39%

F**

0-49%

Undergraduate Modules*

Initial CAB consideration allows a referral opportunity between 0% and 39%

CAB consideration following referral will conclude fail between 0 and 39%

R = Referral

F = Fail

Postgraduate/Masters-Level Modules**

Initial CAB consideration allows a referral opportunity between 35% and 49%

CAB consideration following an initial will conclude fail between 0 and 49%

R = Referral

F = Fail

3. Postgraduate/Masters-Level Modules

Pass/Referral Bands

Pass

50%

Refer

35-49%

Module Grading Bands

A

70% +

B

60-69%

C

50-59%

R**

35-49%

F**

0-49%

Postgraduate/Masters-Level Modules**

Initial CAB consideration allows a referral opportunity between 35% and 49%

CAB consideration following an initial will conclude fail between 0 and 49%

R = Referral

F = Fail

7.2 Regulations on Progression for all Awards and Maximum Period of Registration

7.2.1. The University must set out the way(s) in which students progress through the course, and identify the modules that are compulsory, core, optional. The standard principles for progression and classification are listed in this section. Where exceptions to those regulations are required, they should be clearly stipulated in the Programme Specification Document.

7.2.2. Where attendance is not only compulsory and monitored but is required at a certain level for the student to pass the module/course, the course related materials must give details of the attendance requirements to be met by students.

7.2.3. Students are awarded credit at a Course Assessment Board (CAB) for each module that they pass, including a condoned pass. Where a student is an associate student and is not linked to a named course, Schools must assign responsibility for the award of credit to an appropriate CAB and issue a record of achievement.

7.2.4. Subject to relevant progression regulations, students at whatever point in their course of study shall have the right, following a first failure, to repeat and be reassessed once only. This includes where appropriate, Tutor Reassessment and referral in the failed module, provided that it is still possible to complete the course within the maximum period of registration.

7.2.5. The maximum period of registration for a full-time taught student is the length of the course as set out in the programme specification document plus 2 years and for part-time students, pro-rata. If a student is unable to achieve their award within the maximum period of registration, they will be withdrawn from their course and any interim award will be conferred, as appropriate.

7.2.6. Students may, following a first failure in an optional module (and in accordance with the appropriate course regulations), choose to substitute a different optional module in preference to exercising their entitlement to a capped second reassessment for the original failed module . These modules will be termed substituted modules. Students who elect to study substituted modules will not be capped at the minimum pass mark upon successful completion of the substituted module. However, following first failure to pass the substituted module, they will not be entitled to a full module repeat and no further resit opportunities will be available.

7.2.7. Students are not permitted to substitute an optional module where the initial failed module was failed under the Academic Misconduct Regulations

7.2.8. Each module must have the status either of being graded or of being non-graded. Normally and or subject to PSRB regulations all Postgraduate modules and Undergraduate Honours level modules contributing to a classified award must be graded. A maximum of 40 Undergraduate Intermediate level credits may be ungraded. An exception to this rule will be permitted in the case of existing ungraded placement Intermediate level modules.

7.2.9. Students who obtain the minimum pass mark or more on a graded module will be deemed to have passed that module unless additional criteria have been explicitly approved as part of the validated module specification.

 

7.3 Progression for Students with Professional Practice and PSRB (Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Bodies) Requirements

7.3.1. For students studying with a professional practice component, and for those courses where a PSRB has set a specified requirement, unless stated otherwise in the Programme Specification Document , the following rules will apply:

  • Where the theory and practice components reach the minimum pass mark or above and the practice element has been passed, the credit will be awarded with the appropriate full mark and grade.
  • Where the theory component reaches the minimum pass mark or above and the practice component has been referred the credit will not be awarded until the practice component has been passed and the full theory mark and grade will be awarded.
  • Where the theory component is referred and the practice component has been passed the credit will not be awarded until the theory component has been passed, and the mark and grade will be capped at the minimum pass mark.
  • Where either the practice and/or theory component is failed after referral the standard University regulations for retaking modules will apply

 

7.4 Full-time undergraduate progression consideration and failure to achieve an award

Initial CAB

Decision

Second/Subsequent CAB

Decision

120 credits

May progress or be awarded (7.4.3)

120 credits

May progress or be awarded (7.4.4)

Less than 120 credits

Decision deferred (7.4.3)

Minimum 90 credits

May progress with trails (7.4.5)

 

Minimum 80 credits with failed 40 credit single module graded over 30%

May progress with trails (7.4.6)

Minimum of 80 credits with at least one deferred module

May progress with trails/deferrals (7.4.7)

Minimum of 50 credits (fails and/or deferrals)

May not progress/may repeat year(7.4.8)

Less than 50 credits

Fail and withdrawal from the course (7.4.9)

No credit awarded in two academic years

Fail and withdrawal from the

course

7.4.1. Students at the point of initial consideration by the CAB who have been awarded a total of 120 credits for the current stage of assessment may progress or be awarded. Progression or award decisions for all other students without 120 credits at the point of initial consideration by the CAB will be deferred, pending the outcome of referral or deferral assessments.

7.4.2. At all times, progression shall be subject to the provision that it is still possible for the student to complete the course within the maximum specified period (7.2.5). Students cannot normally progress to H level with trailed F level modules. The student must complete this work before the CAB can confer their progression into H level.

7.4.3. Students at the point of initial consideration by the CAB shall have the right to be referred in any module where credit has not been awarded.

7.4.4. Students at the point of second or subsequent consideration by the CAB who have been awarded a total of 120 credits for the current stage of assessment may progress or be awarded.

7.4.5. Students at the point of second or subsequent consideration by the CAB who have been awarded a minimum total of 90 credits for the current stage of assessment may progress with any failed modules to be trailed/retrieved in the subsequent session, unless there are prohibitions on this nature of progression stipulated in the validated programme documents.

7.4.6. Students at the point of second or subsequent consideration by the CAB who have been awarded a total of 80 credits for the current stage of assessment may progress with a single failed module to be retrieved in the subsequent session, unless there are prohibitions on this nature of progression stipulated in the validated programme documents . This must be a 40 credit single module in which the student has achieved a minimum overall mark of 30%.

7.4.7. Students at the point of second or subsequent consideration by the CAB who have been awarded a total of 80 credits for the current stage of assessment may progress with incomplete modules to be retrieved in the subsequent session, unless there are prohibitions on this nature of progression stipulated in the validated programme documents and provided that the profile of incomplete modules includes at least one deferral (from either the first or second instance of consideration by the CAB).

7.4.8. Students at the point of second or subsequent consideration by the CAB who have been awarded at least 50 credits for the current stage of assessment but who do not fall into one of the categories outlined in the three points above may not progress but will be permitted to return in the subsequent session to retrieve failed modules, subject to any PSRB requirements. The second full attempt of any outstanding modules will normally be completed with attendance in the next academic session, unless an exception has been approved by the Director of Registry (or nominee).

7.4.9 Less than 50 credit rule - Students at the point of second or subsequent consideration by the CAB who have been awarded 40 or fewer credits for the current stage of assessment shall be deemed to have failed the course and lose any opportunity for further reassessment. A student who has been failed under the less than 50 credit rule, will normally be required to take a break in registration of at least one full academic session before they are permitted to return to the University. If a student returns at a later date to the University to complete the same course for which they were withdrawn, any modules which were failed and are now being repeated will be capped at the minimum pass mark. If a student is returning to the University on a new course for which they have not yet studied or failed a module, their marks will not be capped.

7.4.10. Students who, after exercising their entitlement to a second attempt at a failed module, fail to achieve a pass in undergraduate modules totalling 60 credit points at any level or combination of levels, shall normally lose their right to count their existing credits towards any award on which they are enrolled and for which they have not yet become eligible.

7.4.11. Two Years No Credit (full information in section 4) - An undergraduate student’s registration for an award of the University will be terminated if two academic years (including standard resit periods) elapse without the award of credit. The CAB will confer any interim award to which the student is entitled.

7.4.12 The maximum period of registration if a student is unable to achieve their award within the maximum period of registration, they will be withdrawn from their course and any interim award will be conferred, as appropriate.

7.4.13 Students enrolled on a Professional Doctorate will be awarded by a CAB for level 7 credit as part of the first part of their course. The programme handbook for specific Professional Doctorates outlines the modules that candidates will follow during the taught-phase of their programme. The taught phase will typically cover the first year of the programme (or two years for part time), though this may vary between programmes. Candidates may only progress to the research phase when they have successfully completed the taught element. At the end of the taught phase, candidates may:

  • Progress to the Doctoral research phase of the programme; OR
  • Request to transfer from the DBA to DPA, or vice versa and progress to the Doctoral research phase of the programme; OR
  • Progress to complete a shorter research project and submit for the Master of Research (MRes) award; OR
  • Accept the interim awards appropriate to the completed taught element (PGDip / PGCert), where available.

 

7.5 Part-time undergraduate awards progression consideration failure to achieve an award

7.5.1. Part-time undergraduate students shall be subject to the same progression principles outlined above, taking account of the maximum number of credits permitted for registration by a part-time student. Progression for part-time undergraduate students will be considered at the end of each academic stage.

7.5.2 The maximum period of registration If a student is unable to achieve their award within the maximum period of registration, they will be withdrawn from their course and any interim award will be conferred, as appropriate.

 

7.6. Postgraduate award credit achievement and failure to achieve an award

7.6.1. Students who, after exercising their entitlement to a second attempt at a failed module, fail to achieve a pass in modules totalling 30 credit points at postgraduate level, shall normally lose their right to count their existing credits towards any award on which they are enrolled and for which they have not yet become eligible.

7.6.2. Two Years No Credit - A postgraduate student’s registration for an award of the University will be terminated if two academic years (including standard resit periods) elapse without the award of credit. The CAB will confer any interim award to which the student is entitled.

7.6.3 The maximum period of registration If a student is unable to achieve their award within the maximum period of registration, they will be withdrawn from their course and any interim award will be conferred, as appropriate.

 

7.7. Reassessment regulations for taught undergraduate and postgraduate students

7.7.1. The decision as to whether a module should be declared as deferred, referred, condoned or failed lies with the discretion of the CAB. These decisions apply to graded and ungraded modules. The decisions may reflect whether or not the student submitted the original attempt. The maximum mark available for a graded module following referral is the minimum pass mark for their course.

7.7.2. Students are not permitted to retake a module or component of assessment which they have passed unless they have a deferral in place . This also applies to undergraduate and postgraduate programmes where a student is due to repeat a failed module in full with attendance. The student should only repeat the element(s) of assessment not passed at the first opportunity. Any erroneous attempt made at an already passed element of assessment will not replace any earlier marks already awarded.

7.7.3. If a student fails to attend an examination or to submit assessed work by the agreed submission date (after allowing for any extension or Extenuating Circumstance that might have been granted) the CAB will record a mark of zero, leading to failure in that examination or assessed work.

7.7.4. In calculating the mark for a module following a deferral, the higher of the marks achieved for each element of assessment will be the mark used in the calculation of the overall mark.

7.7.5. When retrieving a deferral in a module that also contains a referral, the deferral should be completed first unless completion of the deferral alone is unlikely to result in a pass mark being obtained. If a pass mark cannot be obtained through successful completion of the deferral then the referral should be completed at the same time as the deferral attempt as to avoid delaying the student’s opportunities to pass the module and/or progress/be awarded. However, if in accordance with the course requirements all components of a module must be passed, then referral assessments should be completed at the same time as the deferral.

7.7.6. Assessments other than formal examinations and end assessments as identified in the Assessment and Feedback Strategy should be marked and made available for return to students within three term-time weeks of the submission date. In cases of extensions or renegotiated deadlines, the return date should be within three term-time weeks of the revised submission date.

7.7.7. Other than in the case of a Tutor Re-assessment, deferred or referred work can only be considered after the initial result has been formally published as a deferral or referral by a CAB. Assessment of deferred or referred modules must be completed by a standard time as specified in the University’s Academic Administration timetable. Where a student is deferred or referred in a pre-requisite module, the work should normally be assessed before the student starts the post-requisite module. Where a piece of work submitted for Tutor Re-assessment attains a mark less than the minimum pass mark and the student’s overall mark for the module is less than the minimum pass mark then the student shall be deemed to be referred or failed (depending on how many attempts at the assessment have occurred).

 

7.8. Tutor Reassessment

7.8.1. Tutor Re-assessment is where an undergraduate or postgraduate student is given the opportunity to resubmit a piece of coursework in-year, if available, and for it to be re-marked prior to the CAB at which the module is to be considered. In calculating the mark for a module following a Tutor Re-assessment, the higher of the marks achieved for the assessment will be the mark used in the calculation of the overall module mark.

7.8.2. Tutor Reassessment is not available for formal examinations but may be available for in-class tests. The Module Specification Document should be referred to for definitive confirmation of whether a Tutor Reassessment is available.

7.8.3. A Tutor Re-assessment may only be applied when:

  • A student achieves a mark within the specified referral range in an assessment which is conducted under coursework protocols;
  • The work was submitted on time or within the 5-day late submission period;
  • It is possible for the student to complete the work and for it to be marked and moderated before the CAB meets.

7.8.4. A Tutor Re-assessment will not normally be offered to a student who fails to submit a piece of work for the original assessment.

7.8.5. The maximum mark for a successful Tutor Re-assessment will be the minimum pass mark. An EC claim or an extension request cannot be submitted for an assessment that has been offered as a Tutor Reassessment.

 

7.9 Condonement of a module

7.9.1 Condonement is the process that may allow students to be awarded credit in order to allow for progression or award, despite failing to achieve a pass mark at a first attempt of a module. Programme Specification Documents must make it clear which modules are condonable.

7.9.2. Condonement is not permitted on ungraded modules or pre-foundation modules or awards.

7.9.3. In all cases where a module has been condoned, the credit for the module will be awarded, and the actual mark achieved will be recorded.

7.9.4. Where a module has been condoned, the module will be accepted as a prerequisite for subsequent relevant modules.

7.9.5 Condoned modules should not be used as APL. Core modules are available for condonement, however compulsory modules cannot be condoned.

7.9.6. Condonement of an Undergraduate Module
Students on undergraduate awards who at any point in their studies fail to achieve a pass in a single 20 or 30 credit module or in two 10 credit modules but who have passed all other modules in that level of award (i.e. Foundation, Intermediate or Honours level) will be awarded a condoned pass in the module(s) in question provided that:

  1. The mark achieved in the module(s) in question is in the range of 30% to 39%;
  2. The module has not been identified as compulsory for that course;
  3. The student has achieved the learning outcomes, educational aims and all other modules of the level as a whole;
  4. 4. The student would otherwise have been referred, remained referred (through deferral) or failed the module in question;
  5. The overall average achieved by the student for all modules at that level exceeds 40%;
  6. The module is not subject to a proven allegation of academic misconduct;
  7. The total condoned credits for the student do not exceed 60 credits across a 360 credit honours award (pro rata for awards of fewer credits);
  8. There are no professional body requirements preventing condonement.

7.9.7 Condonement of a Postgraduate Module
Students on postgraduate awards who at any point in their studies fail to achieve a pass in a single module, which does not exceed 30-credits or two 15-credit modules, but who have passed all other modules will be awarded a condoned pass in the module(s) in question provided that:

  1. The overall mark achieved in the module(s) in question is in the range of 45% to 49%;
  2. The module has not been identified as compulsory for that course;
  3. The student has achieved the learning outcomes and educational aims;
  4. The student would otherwise have been referred, remained referred (through Deferral) or failed the module in question;
  5. The overall average achieved by the student for all modules at that level Exceeds 50%;
  6. The module is not subject to a proven allegation of academic misconduct;
  7. The module does not form part of a ‘top-up’ stage;
  8. The module does not incorporate the major project or dissertation;
  9. There are no professional body requirements preventing condonement.

 

7.10 Referral in a module

7.10.1 Undergraduate students who achieve an overall mark within the specified referral range (0-39%) and postgraduate students who have achieved an overall mark within the specified referral range (35%-49%) in a graded module or who fail to secure a pass in an ungraded module within these ranges will normally be referred for a first reassessment opportunity by the CAB in the first instance, unless the module has satisfied the Condonement of a module criteria. The maximum mark available for a graded module following referral will be the minimum pass mark.

7.10.2 Postgraduate Approved Referral
Students on a postgraduate module who achieve an overall mark below the specified referral range (35-49%) will normally be failed by the CAB. In the light of a student’s good overall performance, a CAB may require that a student who has achieved a mark below the specified referral range in the first instance should be given a reassessment opportunity provided that:

  1. The module in question has not been identified as ‘not open for Approved Referral’;
  2. The module in question carries a value of 30 credits or below;
  3. The profile of Approved Referral for an individual student does not exceed a total of 30 credits across the 180 of a full MA/MSc (pro rata for other courses where available) or 30 credits across the 120 M level credits within the M level stage of an integrated masters award;
  4. The student’s profile to date does not include a proven allegation of academic misconduct at M-level;
  5. All other modules taken to date on the course have been passed at a minimum of the specified pass mark plus 10%.

7.10.2.1 This should be recorded as an Approved Referral on the student record. The nature of the re-assessment is at the discretion of the CAB. The maximum mark available for the module following approved referral is the minimum pass mark.

 

7.11 Failure in a module and timings of initial reassessment

7.11.1. Students who fail to achieve the specified pass mark in a graded module or who fail to secure a pass in an ungraded module will normally be failed by the second/subsequent CAB unless the module has satisfied the Condonement of a Module criteria.

7.11.2. If available for the course, the CAB will normally grant a second full reassessment attempt at a failed module to normally take place with attendance in the subsequent session, unless an exception has been approved by the Director of Registry (or nominee). In the case of postgraduate awards, the second full attempt will be undertaken when the module is next offered. The maximum grade awarded for the module when taken as a second full repeat will be the minimum pass mark, regardless of the actual grade achieved.

7.11.3 Second full reassessment attempt at a failed module with attendance:

Undergraduate students
Where a student fails their first full attempt at an undergraduate module, the student will normally repeat the module with attendance in the subsequent academic session. The repeat will normally include repeating and re-submitting only the component(s) of assessment that were not previously passed which should not comprise of any previously submitted material. Any components of assessment within the module previously passed should not be taken again, any erroneous attempt at already passed components will not be considered by the CAB. The maximum mark available for a graded module taken for the second time is the minimum pass mark.

Postgraduate students
Where a student fails their first full attempt at a postgraduate module, the student will normally repeat the module with attendance and undertake a new and different full set of assessment activities, normally when the module is next offered in a subsequent academic session. Exceptionally and for postgraduate dissertation or postgraduate project modules only, a CAB may require a student who has failed a dissertation or project module to rework the original assessment rather than undertake a new and different assessment. The maximum mark available for a module taken for a second time is the minimum pass mark.

 

7.12 Extenuating Circumstances (ECs)

7.12.1 The University, through the University’s Teaching and Learning Committee has an approved Extenuating Circumstances (EC’s) regulation and procedure which comes under ‘Consideration of Personal Circumstances’ and is managed by Director of Registry (or nominee). EC’s approved by this procedure will be notified at the CAB who will take appropriate action in relation to progression and award decisions.

 

7.13 Breach of Fitness to Practise regulation

7.13.1 If a student is found to be in breach of the University’s Fitness to Practise regulation, then the CAB may decide to act to remove some or all of their academic credit achieved on the programme thus far, including but not confined to any credits that might otherwise lead to them being able to claim an interim award recognised in any way by the profession. External Examiner(s) will be made aware of the circumstances and will be asked to support and uphold the decision of the CAB.

 

7.14 Award or credit for a student under investigation

7.14.1 If a student is being investigated under any of the University’s regulations, the CAB cannot withhold academic credit or postpone an award except in the case of an academic misconduct investigation, or, for good reason under regulation 7.14.1.