Condonement, free resits and widened classification borders: The UCL No Detriment policy 2021
If 50 per cent of your modules are graded at 70 or higher you will be eligible for a first with an average higher than 67.5
UCL has confirmed the full package that will make up this year’s no detriment policy. Their approach involves a number of actions targeting coursework, exams and retroactive safety nets.
The university has broken down the safety net into three stages that they believe will ensure there will be no academic detriment towards students: 1. Preparing and planning for assessments; 2. Supporting you during assessments and 3. Ensuring fair classification.
Many students are already aware of the new academic borderlines that will be in place, widening all boundaries by one per cent. However, a huge step that UCL has taken is the introduction of a ‘condonement’ policy which will allow students who are “on a programme with formal progression requirements, such as a Bachelors, MSci/MEng, and some two-year PGT Masters programmes, to progress to next year”. Alongside condonement, there will now be extra time in all exams, the opportunity to self certify extenuating circumstances up to five times and waived resist fees.
UCL has confirmed that certain subjects will be exempt from the following academic mitigations but their departments will be making “bespoke packages” to account for any disruptions students may face. Exempt courses include: those in Fine Art, the MBBS, Initial Teacher Education, the Anna Freud Centre and the MBBS. Some exemptions will apply to students studying for an LLB or LLM and BA English Students.
Widened Grade Boundaries
There are now two major ways students will be able to achieve their desired degree grade:
A final weighted mark that is within .5 per cent of the next highest grade boundary overall, or, a final weighted mark within 2.5 per cent of the next highest grade boundary with more than four modules have marks within that higher grade boundary.
Below is a more detailed explanation from UCL:
“For 2020-21 graduates apart from those listed as exemptions, the following criteria apply:
Qualifies for First Class Honours (1)
• A final weighted mark greater than or equal to 69.50% .
• Or, a final weighted mark greater than or equal to 67.50% and module marks of at least 70.00% in at least 50% of the Final Year credits..
Qualifies for Second Class Honours Upper Division (2.1)
• A final weighted mark greater than or equal to 59.50%
• Or, a final weighted mark greater than or equal to 57.50% and module marks of at least 60.00% in at least 50% of the Final Year credits.
Qualifies for Second Class Honours Lower Division (2.2)
• A final weighted mark greater than or equal to 49.50%.
• Or, a final weighted mark greater than or equal to 47.50% and module marks of at least 50.00% in at least 50% of the Final Year credits.
Qualifies for Third Class Honours (3)
• A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 40.00%.”
“If you fail up to 30 taught credits you may be eligible for condonement”
- ‘Condonement’ means that you are allowed to fail a small number of assessments and still progress or graduate without resitting the assessment, if you meet certain conditions.
- Make sure you check your Student Handbook or Moodle to see if you are eligible e.g. some modules are not eligible for condonement and you will need to get a year average above a certain mark.
“If you fail up to 30 credits you may be able to take your resits next year”
- ‘Provisional Progression’ means that you can progress to the next year of your programme even if you have some outstanding credits, and complete your resits next year. Make sure you check with your department whether you are eligible e.g. you cannot trail failure if you have already used up all of your attempts and it is not available on some professionally-accredited programmes.
- You will still have to take the trailed modules next year and you will need to pass those modules in order to finish your degree.
“If you fail up to 60 credits you may be eligible for condonement and to take some resits next year.”
- During 2020-21, if you fail up to 60 credits you might be eligible for condonement in up to 30 taught credits and to trail up to 30 credits of resits into next year, if you meet all of the above criteria. “
2019/2020 No Detriment Impact
UCL has confirmed: “If you are a continuing student, last year’s No Detriment arrangements will be applied to any assessments which you took in the 2019-20 academic session. Find out how this works on your specific programme.”
Other mitigating circumstances
Five self-certified extenuating circumstances:
“Self-certification can be used to access an extension or deferral, or to waive the late submission penalties for up to 14 calendar days. The 14-day period covers any coursework or exams due within the two-week window. Normally, these periods must be 14 calendar days apart, although Faculty EC Panels can use their discretion to accept self-certified claims within a shorter interval if, for example, you have two self-isolation periods close together.”
Extra time in all exams:
“Most online exams will be 24 hours (written exams are usually between one and three hours long). This extra time is designed to help you manage your assessment in a way that works for you, allowing for time-zone differences, examination adjustments, childcare, work commitments, internet connection difficulties or any other circumstances which might make it harder for you to study. You are not expected to work for more than a few hours within the 24-hour window.”
UCL will not charge resit fees
“Unlike many universities, UCL does not charge resit fees. We will continue to allow students a second in-year attempt without any additional costs. Make sure you check the regulations around resits for full details about second attempts e.g. some students may be required to repeat modules next year, and there are usually fees for repeat tuition.”
For more information about the no detriment package please refer to the UCL website here.