More than half of Glasgow University students set to graduate without knowing their grade

With graduations starting in six days, students will cross the stage without knowing their degree class

The majority of graduating students at Glasgow University say they are set to attend their graduation ceremonies without knowing their degree class.

In a Glasgow Tab survey taken by 125 graduating students, a combined 52 per cent said they did not receive their degree classifications when their final results were released by the university on Wednesday.

38 per cent of students reported the university told them they had enough work marked to “qualify” for their degree but it could not confirm their final degree classification.

A further 14 per cent said they were told they had “no confirmed outcome”. This means they have so few of their assessments marked, the university isn’t able to confirm the student has achieved more than 40 per cent (a third) and award them their degree.

The university says students in this group can attend their graduation ceremony but they won’t receive a degree parchment on the day and won’t have actually graduated.

Glasgow University says it is “prioritising the marking of outstanding work” for students who have received a no confirmed outcome as “a matter of urgency” but graduation ceremonies are due to begin in just six days’ time.

Alice is a final year ancient history and Celtic civilisation student. She is applying for a Master’s degree which relies on her getting a 2:1. She said the university’s handling of the marking and assessment boycott has made an “already stressful and confusing experience more stressful and confusing”.

She said: “I need a minimum of a 2:1 to proceed with the Master’s course I have been offered at another institution, and by mid-July I will have to put a deposit down on accommodation. Now I have the stress of not knowing whether I’ll have my actual results by then, and I could lose money if the University’s failure to resolve the disputes continues and it affects my place on this Masters course.”

Another final year student said how “appalling” the “lack of communication has been”.

They said: “The anxiety and disappointment I feel are undeniable. The university has one job: to provide a service. They have failed both staff and students with the bare minimum. Whether it be workers’ rights or the basic service of providing a student with their degree on time, the university has failed everyone.”

A law student said how “incredibly frustrating” the process has been. They said: “The school should have communicated better with students with enough time in advance as we are now potentially graduating in a week without knowing our final degree classification due to a lack of results.”

A spokesperson for the university told The Glasgow Tab “the vast majority of staff” are working and it’s doing everything to keep disruption to a “minimum” despite this.

However, only 27 per cent of students surveyed had received their degree classification with all their results marked and returned.

A further 16 per cent had their degree classification but without all their work back.

The UCU has continually vocally disagreed with the University of Glasgow’s handling of the situation, with a UCU Glasgow spokesperson telling The Tab Glasgow how “frustrated” they were on behalf of students.

A spokesperson said: “As lecturers, we’re often not even told what’s going on in our own schools, only finding out after boards have agreed results whether our marking has been carried out by others. Where dissertations and exams have been marked, in some cases it appears marking has been carried out by people outside our subject disciplines without the requisite expertise, or by school management who may not have taught on courses themselves for years.

“Very few of our members – even those who went to exam boards – have even seen the full “mitigation” strategy for allocating these dodgy degrees, and the secrecy adds to our belief that it will be impossible for standards to be applied consistently and fairly across the university. Students deserve better after four years of hard work.

“We’re also frustrated that we have had very limited mechanisms for talking to students about what’s happening. Nonetheless, we urge students to talk to their student representatives and write to the principal calling on him to publicly pressure UCEA to return to the negotiating table – the only way we can return to normal and get students the degrees they rightly demand – a request that he rejected when we met him last week to discuss the boycott.”

The University of Glasgow has stressed to The Tab Glasgow that they expect all students to graduate on time and will work with the students graduating with an unclassified degree on an individual basis. They have said that all work submitted will be assessed in due course.

A University spokesperson said: “We regret the UCU is taking industrial action, but the vast majority of staff continue to work normally and the University is doing everything to keep disruption to students to a minimum. The marking and assessment boycott in no way impacts the quality of degrees – to suggest otherwise is disparaging to all the hard work and effort undertaken by our students.

“We are committed to ensuring that the highest academic standards are maintained while ensuring that no student is prevented from progressing to the next stage of their degree, or graduating, because of the UCU action.”

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