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Extenuating Circumstances Briefing for Chairs of Extenuating Circumstances Groups and Professional Support Staff.

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Presentation on theme: "Extenuating Circumstances Briefing for Chairs of Extenuating Circumstances Groups and Professional Support Staff."— Presentation transcript:

1 Extenuating Circumstances Briefing for Chairs of Extenuating Circumstances Groups and Professional Support Staff

2 Session outline Managing Extenuating Circumstances Requests; Sharing practice / Identifying issues; Recording Extenuating Circumstances on SIMS; Working through examples; Examining Boards and future sessions.

3 Managing Extenuating Circumstances Applications What are Extenuating Circumstances; Extensions and Supplementary Assessments; What’s expected of students; What’s expected of Schools; Role of the Sub-group; Outcomes of the Sub-group;

4 What are Extenuating Circumstances Senate Assessment Regulations (11.1.1) defines Extenuating circumstances: Extenuating Circumstances must be: – Severe and exceptional; and – Unforeseen or unavoidable; and – Close in time to the Assessment, or where the student can demonstrate that the circumstances continued to have an impact on their academic performance in the Assessment.

5 Evidence Evidence includes: Medical notes; Death certificates; Orders of service; Letter from Student Support; Police report; Letter from counsellor/University counselling; Supporting statement from parent, partner, friend; Letter from alternative therapist

6 Evidence Students should be encouraged to complete the form even if they don’t have their evidence to submit; Students should be allowed additional time to present evidence where possible and provided with a further clear deadline and informed of the consequences of not providing it within this time; If the evidence is not presented with the form or after the further agreed deadline, the Board should consider the case on the basis of the information provided; The group should consider whether the evidence is reasonable and whether the person verifying the circumstances is suitably qualified; Do not require students to provide multiple pieces of evidence to verify a circumstance, but if the evidence presented is not suitable then explain why and request further clarification; The judgement on the circumstances is a subjective one and should be made on a case by case basis, dependent on the evidence presented by the student.

7 What can be remedied prior to the Board The Chair of the Extenuating Circumstances Group should assess extenuating circumstances forms and if the circumstances meet the criteria, it should be considered whether a remedy can be put in place prior to the Examining Board, either: 1.Grant an extension; a)Do you have a maximum amount of time? 2.A supplementary examination; a)This needs be done on a consistent basis within the programme. Boards are not permitted to raise marks in assessments affected by Extenuating Circumstances.

8 What’s expected of students: Report circumstances to the School for either: – An extension request for coursework; or – To be considered by Examining Board after the assessment(s). Report in a timely way and by the School deadline; Report circumstances which they believe have impacted negatively on their performance; Complete the University Form; and Provide evidence in support of their circumstances or inform the School of when the evidence will be available.

9 What’s expected of Schools That the deadlines and process are advertised clearly in Handbooks, via Learning Central and by at times of assessments and at key points throughout the programme; that information submitted by students will remain confidential and will be considered sensitively; To inform students promptly of any agreed extension; To ask students for further evidence if appropriate (reasonably considering any evidence submitted); To inform students whether their circumstances have been accepted as extenuating or not. Where students staff regarding circumstances that they are responded to and advised of the procedure, (although in some cases it may be appropriate to advise students to take a short-term absence or an Interruption of Study).

10 Role of Extenuating Circumstances Group (ECG) 1.Consider whether the student’s circumstances meet the definition of Extenuating Circumstances; 2.Integrate consideration of equality and diversity issues into the deliberations; 3.Disregard reports of Extenuating Circumstances if: – the circumstances do not satisfy the definition of Extenuating Circumstances; and/or – appropriate supporting evidence has not been presented; and/or – the circumstances have been provided for by other adjustments fully.

11 Outcomes of Extenuating Circumstances Groups 1.Circumstances are likely to have impacted on the student’s performance in the Assessment and are supported by appropriate evidence; and/or 2.Circumstances that have impacted on the student’s performance in the Assessment, but have already been taken into account by other adjustment; 3.Circumstances are unlikely to have impacted on the student’s performance in the Assessment and/or are not supported by appropriate evidence. Where the Circumstances are accepted, record if they relate to protected characteristics; The ECG is required to provide and record reasons for the decision.

12 Sharing practice / Identifying issues; Should the University have a separate form for ‘Extension’ applications? Should we be setting more supplementary assessments and/or exams? How can we best manage evidence when medical issues arise? Has the number of applications risen? A chance to share experiences and/or issues that have arisen.

13 How Extenuating Circumstances are treated in SIMS Online Extended codes are available to record extenuating circumstances which have not been remedied; This enables Examining Boards to see all the information related to extenuating circumstances in a single place. To record extenuating circumstances relating to an assessment: enter an ‘A’ next to the mark or a ‘B’ where the Extenuating Circumstances are related to protected characteristics. EXAMPLE /1 EXAMPLE /1

14 Module grades relating to Extenuating Circumstances Module Grade Outcome PX Module passed but potentially eligible for discounting at classification stage AR Module pass mark not reached - Resit assessments in the resit period before the start of next academic session AE/AI Module pass mark not reached - Resit assessments externally/internally in the following academic session AW Student is required to withdraw from the Module

15 Module Grade Assessment grade Outcome PX At least one BStudent has choice to resit assessment(s) affected by Extenuating Circumstances relating to protected characteristics. A report will identify these. PX At least one A where the assessment has been passed Student has to accept pass, but Module potentially eligible for discounting at classification stage PX At least one A where the assessment has been failed; no Bs Student has choice to resit failed assessment(s) affected by Extenuating Circumstances AR/AE/AI At least one A or BStudent to resit failed assessment(s) affected by Extenuating Circumstances Recording decisions at Examining Boards

16 Viewing Module grades relating to Extenuating Circumstances in SIMS Online Once you have calculated your Module, the Module mark and grade will be visible via the ‘View Module Results’ screen. The assessment marks and grades are shown to the right of the module marks and grades. EXAMPLE 1 EXAMPLE 2 EXAMPLE 3 EXAMPLE 4 EXAMPLE 5 EXAMPLE / / / / / /1

17 Group Discussion You are the Extenuating Circumstances Group and should consider the following submissions in accordance with the Extenuating Circumstances Procedure: Take into account: – the students form; – the evidence submitted; – whether other adjustments that have been made. Confirm your decision.

18 Extenuating Circumstances and Exam Boards To agree the action that will be taken where Extenuating Circumstances have likely affected a student’s performance; Examining Boards should not: – Receive or discuss the details of individual Extenuating Circumstances cases; – Consider possible Extenuating Circumstances where these have not been reported through appropriate channels, and; – Seek to review or overturn decisions made by Extenuating Circumstances Groups.

19 Examining Board Remedies Where students fail and are likely to have been affected by Extenuating Circumstances, the Board may: 1.permit the student to sit the Assessment, as a first attempt; or 2.permit the student to progress without further Assessment, or where appropriate, recommend that the student be awarded the qualification without further Assessment. 3.permit the student to have up to 1/6 of their qualifying marks discounted from their qualification average. Boards are not permitted to raise marks in assessments affected by Extenuating Circumstances.

20 Exam Board remedies and protected characteristics Where students pass assessments but their circumstances are linked to a protected characteristic under the Equality Act the board may: In consultation with the student, permit them to resit the assessment as a first attempt with the higher mark (from either attempt) standing; Under the Equality Act a student should not be disadvantaged where their Extenuating Circumstances relate to a protected characteristic.

21 Managing Remedies in 2013/14 Taught postgraduate students; Undergraduate students in schools in which Progression Boards have not ‘remedied’ modules that have been passed; – SIMS will discount modules with Extenuating Circumstances from final award calculation

22 Managing transition Schools are requested to work with the Students Records Team in Registry, so that the ‘new’ module codes can be added to modules taken previously where needed; Where ‘remedies’ have been applied by previous Boards, no further adjustments shall be made.

23 Discounting Discounting shall be permitted in up to a maximum of 1/6 th of the Credits that contribute to the Final Award; Discounting shall not apply to any Credit awarded for the Dissertation and/or research stage of a Modular Taught Postgraduate Programme.

24 Ongoing work Meeting with schools currently being undertaken; Further training / briefings are being arranged between now and April 2014: Mock Examining Boards (for Exam Board Chairs) January / February 2014; Preparing for Examining Boards and Running Exam Board reports (for administrative staff) April 2014; Managing academic appeals (to be arranged). Ongoing support is available from Registry.

25 Advice and support is available from General Advice Student Cases Service or Student Records Assessment Matters or Disability Services Advice for students Students’ Union Advice and Representation


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