Newcastle University introduces safety net to offset effects of marking boycott

The university is one of 44 universities taking part in the strike

On 6th May, the UCU informed Newcastle University of its plan to take further industrial action after the last two strikes in February and March didn’t resolve the ongoing pension dispute.

The strike, beginning Monday 23rd May, will include a marking boycott which may result in some students not having their dissertations and other assessments marked on time.

The university has announced a “no detriment” approach to ensure students graduate or progress with the grades they deserve.

A spokesperson for Newcastle University said: “Maintaining the integrity of our degree programmes and supporting you to achieve the degree you deserve is our absolute priority. For those individuals impacted by industrial action, we will introduce a ‘no detriment’ approach.

“This will ensure that students can progress to the next stage of their programme, or graduate, with the reassurance that their academic outcomes will not have been seriously affected by industrial action and they will be able to continue on their programme or be awarded a classification that reflects their achievement.”

The approach will use a temporary calculation of your average for the year based on all your marks so far.

This will enable them calculate and issue a temporary mark for those students with missing marks because of the boycott.

When the marks are made available, students will have their missing marks entered and the average will be recalculated.

This will be issued on a “no detriment” basis, meaning that once all late marks have been received, these would only be used to increase (and not decrease) the degree classification.

However, some programmes have compulsory components that require students to demonstrate a weighted competency in all aspects of their course.

Therefore, these students will have to wait for all their assessments to be marked and the “no detriment” approach will not be applied.

For those final year students affected, if your overall average mark increases, you will be considered for the higher classification award in accordance with the standard University regulations.

When your average increases and it is determined by the examiners that you should receive a higher classification, you will receive a new degree certificate to reflect this.

Click here for more information regarding the strikes from NUSU.

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