Grads could be made to repeat a year of uni to finish their degrees, warns regulator

With any luck, you’ll be eligible for the state pension by the time you actually have a graduation ceremony

Some of this year’s grads could be made to repeat a year to finish their degrees, a uni regulator has warned.

Students should be offered the chance to come back after graduation to make up for lost teaching, guidance released by the Quality Assurance Agency – which regulates degree standards – has recommended.

The QAA ahas also suggested emergency changes to degrees, with qualifications given on the basis of the theoretical elements, rather than the planned practical elements – meaning students could graduate with different degrees to those they signed up for.

Courses with accredited elements, like architecture or journalism, could be offered degrees recognising the theory work already done, keeping the door open to students becoming accredited later on.

While universities have adapted well to online teaching, Dr Ailsa Crum of the QAA said, the pandemic has still made things challenging. “The pandemic makes elements of some courses incredibly difficult if not impossible to manage or deliver,” she told The Times.

“Students who enrol on courses that have been accredited by professional bodies have a right to expect that they will be able to work in that profession on successful graduation,” Nick Hillman, director of the HEPI think-tank told The Times.

“Everyone loses if people enter important professions before they are safe to practise the work.”

Related stories recommended by this writer:

All but one of the Russell Group unis accepted more ethnic minority students in 2020

Government announces ‘new student Covid hardship funding’ – of just £20 per student

MPs say students should have their rent refunded by the government during lockdown