32.   Awards and Classification - in Non-Modular Programmes

32.1      The final programme mark is calculated by averaging the weighted individual unit marks. The result of the calculation of both the overall average mark achieved for the year and the final programme mark should be recorded to one decimal point.

32.2      If there is evidence that the performance of a student at the time of examination is likely to have been affected by extenuating circumstances, Section 17 ‘Extenuating Circumstances’, applies.

32.3      Requirements which are inherent to the design of the programme, such as the requirement for the student to pass a particular assessment or component in order to graduate, must be described in the relevant programme specification, and be implemented before these rules are applied.

32.4      The marks gained in all units within the approved programme structure that are undertaken by the student will contribute to the final programme mark. Where students are given exemption from units of the programme due to accredited prior learning, including from other higher education institutions, marks previously gained for any such units will not contribute to the calculation of the final programme mark.

32.5      Unit marks will be weighted for any calculation of the year and the final programme mark, as described in the relevant programme handbook. Students must be informed of any weighting in advance of commencement of the year of study.

32.6      Assessments which only test competencies on a pass/fail basis will not contribute to the unit mark and therefore will also not contribute to the year mark or the final programme mark.

32.7      The award of a degree in the non-modular professional programmes is determined by the final programme mark, as follows:

  • Pass               50 and above
  • Fail                 49 and below

32.8      The classification of a degree is determined by the final programme mark in relation to the overall performance in the cohort, as follows[1]:

  • The top 10% of the student cohort on the programme will be awarded a degree with distinction;
  • The next 15% of the student cohort on the programme will be awarded a degree with merit;
  • All other students that have a final programme mark of 50 out of 100 or more will be awarded a professional degree. The rank of the remainder of students may be published, at the discretion of the relevant faculty Board of Examiners.

32.9        Where programmes decide to award distinctions or merits for individual units, the same method provided in 32.8 will apply.

32.10      No further rules will apply for the calculation of the final programme mark and the award of a degree with merit and distinction following application of these rules.

[1] The professional programmes determine student performance primarily on the attainment of a threshold of competence. For this reason these degrees are not classified.  However potential employers require the university to recognise excellence and the simplest, most transparent and justifiable approach is by ranking within a cohort of students. All three programmes have sufficient students each year to minimise the risk of students being disadvantaged by any year effect.