Managing assessments in a period of major disruption: Emergency Regulations for Course Assessment Boards (CABs)
8.1.1. The University of Huddersfield is committed to upholding the highest academic standards in all circumstances. However, during a period of major disruption like a pandemic or industrial action, it is recognised that it may be necessary to vary the normal protocols on an exceptional basis.
8.1.2. In all cases, the objective is to ensure students are not disadvantaged by circumstances beyond their control or that of the University, whilst ensuring quality assurance and consistency in progression and awards decisions.
Course Assessment Boards (CABs) are expected to operate in adherence to these underlying principles:
8.1.3. These alternative regulations will not be implemented without the permission of Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Bodies (PSRBs), where applicable.
8.1.4. The emergency regulations will only be introduced where it is likely that not to do so would cause protracted delay and/or severe disadvantage.
8.1.5. These regulations will only come into force following consultation with students through their elected representatives. The decision to implement will be approved by UTLC and Senate (by virtual meeting or by Chair’s action as necessary) and will be lifted under the same authority. Schools will be informed as soon as the emergency regulations are invoked.
8.2.1. Where the performance of a group of students’ is affected by adverse circumstances which are not personal to them but as a result of a wider issue (for example technical, social, political or public health problems), the University, through its Registry, will issue guidance to Schools on how to consider students’ performance under these circumstances.
8.2.2. CAB decisions must be taken in the context of: available information; the programme intended learning outcomes; the discipline and level; the time of year; University regulations; any professional requirements. Decisions may depend on whether the student is/is not at the final stage of the programme. The External Examiner should be consulted in all cases, although it may not be possible for them to be present (physically or virtually) at the board. All decisions reached should be clearly documented within the minutes.
8.2.3. The Extenuating Circumstances process should be followed in all cases before the CAB can exercise discretion. A student or staff member (with the student’s permission) should submit an EC claim noting that the adverse impact was directly related to the major disruption. If other factors contributed as well, these should also be noted. The CAB will keep a record of all cases where the major disruption is accepted as an extenuating circumstance.
8.2.4. Where the impact of the major disruption causes postponement of the usual CAB schedule, additional assessment opportunities and extra CABs for students may be introduced in order to minimise the delay to progression and award decisions.
8.2.5. An interruption of study may be preferable to some students. If this is agreed, there will be an expectation that the student returns at the same point in the following academic year to recommence studies. The fees for both the year of the disruption and the following year will be charged pro rata.
8.2.6 For non-standard cases Schools are required to consult with Registry in advance of the CAB.
8.3.1. If the student’s profile of marks is incomplete due to disruption-related extenuating circumstances, progression will be permitted under one of the following mechanisms:
8.3.2. Where assessments have been taken but marks are not available, students will normally be permitted to progress, with post-emergency recovery action required as soon as marks are available.
8.3.3. Where missing results relate to core, pre-requisite or PSRB requirements, the CAB may exceptionally delay a progression decision, with post-emergency recovery action required as soon as marks are available.
8.3.4. Where the regulations allow alternative assessment or incomplete assessment as detailed in sections 9.4 and 9.5.
8.4.1. If the student’s profile of marks is incomplete due to disruption-related extenuating circumstances, the CAB may consider an award as follows:
8.4.2. By determining an overall module mark based on partial completion of the module assessment if the learning outcomes have been met.
8.4.3. Exceptionally, where there is no reasonable expectation that an assessment opportunity can be made available, the CAB may record a pass mark for the module, if it is otherwise assured that the student has completed the module to a satisfactory standard. This will be noted on the transcript.
8.4.4. Confirm the award, subject to later confirmation of the classification.
8.5.1. Where necessary, alternative assessments will be provided and marks will be made available to the CAB. However, some components of assessment may be disregarded as detailed below.
8.5.2. In the Foundation year (year 1) or Pre-foundation year (year 0) of the course:
8.5.3. In the Foundation year (year 1) or Pre-foundation year (year 0) of the course, where alternative assessments cannot reasonably be set, progression may be determined on a pass/fail basis for each of the module(s) affected. The transcript will record the reason for this.
8.5.4 In the Intermediate year (year 2) of the course:
8.5.5. In the Intermediate year (year 2) of the course, where alternative assessments cannot reasonably be set by the second point of consideration, progression may be permitted with outstanding assessments trailed into the following year. Where the trailing of credit is considered, the following must apply unless the PRSB regulations differ;
8.5.6. In the Honours year (year 3 or 4) and Final year of Integrated Masters:
8.5.7. In all cases where these regulations are brought into force, students will be informed how the CAB will proceed and on what basis it will make its decisions.
8.6.1. The University’s accelerated procedure in the event of a major disruption will be followed. For all other complaints unrelated to the disruption, the standard regulations and procedures will apply.
8.7.1. When the Vice-Chancellor or Pro Vice-Chancellor Teaching and Learning determines the emergency over, and this has been approved by UTLC and Senate (by Chair’s action if necessary), action will be taken to:
8.7.2. The University reserves the right to correct errors made during an emergency, particularly if these affect licence to practice. Ordinarily however:
8.7.3. Exceptionally, where no alternative assessment is possible and/or as stipulated by the PSRB, the student may be required to withdraw from the course.
8.8.3. Sandwich courses
Where sandwich students were on placement in 2019/20, variations to the regulations were approved to support the completion of placements.
Where designated sandwich course students attained I level (level 5) credit in 2019/20, their profiles will be considered using two algorithms:
8.8.4 Integrated Masters Programmes
In 2022/23, candidates who have achieved credit at I level (level 5) in 2019/20 shall have their profiles considered using two algorithms:
8.8.5 Postgraduate Taught Programmes
In 2022/23, final year candidates for an award over a three-year programme shall have their profiles considered using two algorithms:
8.8.6 Non-standard Programmes
For any other courses with a delivery pattern which differs from the above, the same principles will apply. At the point of determining the award, candidates’ profiles will be considered using both the standard algorithm and by excluding credit achieved in 2019/20 and reweighting as appropriate. The better outcome will apply.