Applying our No Detriment Approach

Resit period confirmed as 13-21st August - Updated 14 July 2020.

Finalised  Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Bodies (PSRBs)  'no detriment' register uploaded 01 July 2020.

Following the initial set of questions received via the no_detriment@southwales.ac.uk email address, the FAQs have been updated, as of 16 July 2020, with additional questions and responses (marked 'NEW'). The new updates clarify the resit opportunities for each category of student and provide further information on the methods through which this will be managed. In addition, the questions have now been framed in the past tense to reflect actions that have now taken place.

As part of the University's response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, a ‘no detriment’ approach is being taken to ensure that you don’t end up with a lower result as a consequence of the extreme circumstances that we all find ourselves in, and that it does not negatively impact on your overall outcome for the academic year. This approach applies to assessments with a deadline on or after 16 March 2020, including dissertations or project reports and any assessments that were set to replace examinations.


This approach also takes into consideration guidance that was issued by the Quality Assurance Agency, which safeguards standards in the quality of UK higher education on this subject. This is to ensure that we get the balance right between making sure your achievements are not disadvantaged by the pandemic, whilst still ensuring that you and everyone else has confidence in the standards and integrity of your qualification.

PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS STATEMENT MAY NOT APPLY TO ALL OF YOUR MODULES / OR WHERE THERE ARE COURSE SPECIFIC REGULATIONS

We have worked through these with professional bodies and regulators (PSRBs) and the full list of these exceptions has now been finalised.

Please note that Postgraduate Research Students will be communicated with via the Graduate School. This includes information about the approach to the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) which contains both taught and research elements.

Any queries arising from this statement should be sent to no_detriment@southwales.ac.uk. Emails sent to this address will be used to further develop these FAQs. Please note it will not be possible to respond to queries about individual student circumstances via this email address. You should continue to liaise with your teaching staff for specific individual enquiries. 


ASSESSMENT BOARDS

These FAQs make several references to Assessment Boards. These are boards at which student assessment is considered and agreed. The University operates a two-tier process, as follows:

  • Subject Assessment Board: agrees students’ overall module grades. The subject assessment board then pass the students’ module grades to the relevant Progression / Award Assessment Boards
  • Progression / Award Assessment Boards: responsible for deciding students’ progression, completion and, if appropriate, overall outcome (classification) on the basis of the grades supplied by the subject assessment boards.

1.  Has the University put any measures in place for students who are adversely affected by recent changes?

Yes. We decided to introduce a ‘no detriment’ approach. In addition to more flexible processes for extenuating circumstances, this means that your performance prior to 16 March 2020 has been taken into account in determining your overall outcome for the year.


2.  What is the start date for the no detriment approach?

The no detriment approach applies to any assessment that had an original submission deadline on or after Monday 16 March 2020. 

This date was selected as it was from this date that the University, in response to UK Government guidance, began to transition to online teaching and assessment. The approach therefore applies to all assessments which had original deadlines on or after the 16 March 2020.


3.  Does the no detriment approach apply to all students, regardless of their course or year of study?

The University put in place more flexible extenuating circumstances processes for all students on programmes. The no detriment approach was applied wherever possible for students on taught courses, however, its application varied according to whether you are an undergraduate or postgraduate student and whether you are completing (expecting your award/classification) this year or not.  Please refer to the correct set of questions below, categorised as follows:

  • Classifying – undergraduate and postgraduate students on taught courses expecting to receive their qualification this academic year (students who are in their final year)
  • Undergraduate Progression – students on undergraduate programmes who are not due to receive their qualification this academic year (students who are not in their final year)
  • Postgraduate Progression – students on taught postgraduate programmes who are not due to receive their qualification this academic year

PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS STATEMENT MAY NOT APPLY TO ALL OF YOUR MODULES / OR WHERE THERE ARE COURSE SPECIFIC REGULATIONS

We have worked through these with professional bodies and regulators (PSRBs) and the full list of these exceptions has now been finalised.


4.  Does the no detriment approach apply to exams? 

Yes. This applies to all types of assessment, unless there was a PSRB requirement or other course specific requirement.


5.  I’ve seen other universities’ no detriment policies referring to the yearly average. What is that?

Every university has its own set of regulations and classifications and therefore may refer to yearly averages. At the University of South Wales, we operate on a modular basis. We determine a module outcome based on the marks received for the separate elements of assessment. We do not calculate an overall yearly average. 

For progression, we consider whether you have passed sufficient modules and met learning outcomes. When awarding and classifying, we use the classification methodologies outlined in the Regulations for Taught Courses:

  • Undergraduate: Section A2, pages 32-34
  • Postgraduate: Section A3, page 52


6.  Did I still need to complete my coursework assessments and study for the assessments replacing my exams?

Yes. You were advised that you could still have improved your marks, and you still needed to pass sufficient modules in order to progress or be awarded. See more detail below. 


7.  Did the Disability and Dyslexia Service (DDS) support continuing for students with Individual Support Plan (ISP)? 

Yes. You were advised to liaise with the Disability team if you were experiencing gaps in your support provision with the intention to resolve it.


8.  Did academic misconduct rules still apply? 

Yes. Even though some assessments were modified academic misconduct rules still applied.


9.  Was the no detriment approach applied to the marking process? 

No. Staff marked assessments submitted on or after 16th March as normal. It was for the Assessment Boards to apply the no detriment approach, and only a Board can approve adjustments to marks/outcomes. Assessment modifications were already made at module level, so marking was on the usual basis.


10.  What happens if I don’t achieve the mark I was expecting for an assessment I submitted on or after 16 March 2020?

Exceptionally, if you are not satisfied with your results you are able to elect to resit any of your assessments with an original deadline on or after 16 March 2020 and if you perform more poorly in the resubmitted assessment, you will retain the original mark.  Please note, that if you elect to resit assessment from a failed module that included a failed pre-16 March 2020 piece of assessment, the module will still be capped at the pass mark (normally 40%).

If you elect to resit assessment from a passed module, the module will be uncapped. 

Information on how to do this is on the ‘View Your Results’ and ‘Understanding My Results’ pages. You will have seven days to inform us you wish to do so. 

If you fail, see question 18 for what this might mean.

11. If I already have a mark for the first assessment within a module do I still need to sit the second component? 

Students were encouraged to, where possible, engage and complete any remaining assessments. Wherever possible we have sought to progress or award students based on performance seen by the Assessment Boards, using the no detriment approach previously outlined. Please see question #10.


12.  What if I did better in my assessments submitted on or after 16 March 2020?

You will receive a better module outcome as the better performance will improve your overall module performance and in turn, could potentially lead to a better classification.

 

13.  What if I wasn’t required to submit any assessments before 16 March 2020?

If you weren’t required to submit any assessments before 16 March 2020, you were advised it was even more important to continue to submit assessments. As long as you achieved a pass mark (and have no academic misconduct penalties) in subsequent assessments, these marks have been used to determine your module outcome.

In order to receive your award and a classification, your performance across all of your modules has been taken into account to see if you have met the learning outcomes required for your course.  

If you have failed some modules, the Assessment Board has considered your performance across all of your modules to determine whether you may still have met the learning outcomes required for your course overall.


14. What happens where there were no assessments before March 16th?

Please see question #13.


15.  What happens if I didn't submit my outstanding assessments?

You should have continued to submit assessments, especially where you had weak performance in earlier assessments or had no prior assessments that you were required to submit. See question 10 above for what this might mean.

If you did find yourself in a position where you could not submit assessment(s) by the deadline due to Covid-19 related issues, you were advised to follow the advice on extenuating circumstances.There were also some circumstances where extensions were given to whole cohorts. 


16.  What happens if my grade is lower than overall yearly grade or module average?

Assessment Boards have applied the no detriment approach when determining if students have met learning outcomes at module and course level. Wherever possible, we have sought to progress or award students based on performance seen by the Boards.


17.  What if I don’t achieve the mark I was expecting for an assessment I submitted on or after 16 March 2020? 

Please see question #10. When you receive your results, information on how to where you may be able to elect to resit will be on the ‘View Your Results’ and ‘Understanding My Results’ pages. You will have seven days to inform us you wish to do so. 


18.  What happens if I fail?

If, after the ‘no detriment’ approach has been applied, you still fail a module(s), it might still have been possible for you to be awarded your qualification. As outlined in question 13 above, the Assessment Board will have considered your performance across all of your modules to determine whether you may still have met the learning outcomes required for your course overall. 

Where, in the Assessment Board’s judgement, your performance overall does not meet the standards and learning outcomes for your award, the Board will have made a decision based on your full academic profile and you may have been given Resits, Repeats or Discontinued. Please refer to the Results Service for more information on these outcomes. 

 19.  How will the outcome be calculated for undergraduate degrees? 

Please see question #5.


20.  Resits – If I sit an exam and get less than 40%, I would go on to do the resit. Would the no detriment approach still apply to the resit? 

Please see question #10.


21.  When will resits take place?

You must take the resit at the earliest available opportunity. Most resits are held during the resit period. However, where a Subject Assessment Board determines that this is not possible, for example because the assessment requires studio facilities or involves group work, they are held in the following academic session. 

Please note the main resit period for this year is scheduled for 13-21st August 2020.

 

22.  Will re-sitting the assessment delay receiving the award?

Yes, it will delay receiving an award until after the second set of Assessment Boards have been held between the 1st and 11th September.Resit results will be published on 16th September.  


23.  What if I was already resitting or repeating assessment(s) for a capped mark prior to 16 March 2020?

You will remain capped in line with the standard taught regulations.


 24.  Can I calculate my outcome myself?

Although you have received individual marks, these were subject to a number of considerations and checks and the final outcome (especially as we are taking the no detriment approach) can only be finalised at the Assessment Boards.


25.  What if I think the classification I am given doesn’t reflect what I am capable of overall, even after the ‘no detriment’ principle has been applied?

See Question 10.

26. Does the dissertation of a taught masters fall under the remit of the no detriment approach? 

Yes. As it a taught Masters degree, the dissertation will be covered.

  

27.   I am a postgraduate whose dissertation is due to be handed in September this year. As, technically, this is not during this academic year, will the no detriment approach still apply? 

Yes, the approach will still apply.


 

28.  What happens if I don’t achieve the mark I was expecting for an assessment I submitted on or after 16 March 2020?

Exceptionally, if your assessment counts toward credit that will directly contribute to the calculation for your qualification classification*, you are able to elect to resit any of your assessments with an original deadline on or after 16 March 2020. 

Please see question #10 for more details.

(* this only applies to students on a year of study that is included in their classification, e.g. a second year full-time undergraduate degree student (Level 5) whose Level 5 performance is part of their final degree classification). 

Information on how to do this is on the ‘View Your Results’ and ‘Understanding My Results’ pages. You will have seven days to inform us you wish to do so. 

If you fail, see question 36 for what this might mean.


29.  If I already have a mark for the first assessment within a module do I still need to sit the second component? 

Students were encouraged to, where possible, engage and complete any remaining assessments. Wherever possible we have sought to progress or award students based on performance seen by the Assessment Boards, using the no detriment approach previously outlined. Please see question #28.


30.  What if I did better in my assessments submitted on or after 16 March 2020?

You will receive a better module outcome as the better performance will affect your overall module performance and in turn, could potentially lead to a better classification.

 

31.  What if I wasn’t required to submit any assessments before 16 March 2020?

If you weren’t required to submit any assessments before 16 March 2020, you were advised it was even more important that you continue to submit assessments. As long as you achieved a pass mark (and have no academic misconduct penalties) in subsequent assessments, these marks have been used to determine your module outcome.

In order to be able to progress, your performance across all of your modules has been taken into account to see if you have met the learning outcomes required for your course.  

If you have failed some modules, the Assessment Board has considered your performance across all of your modules to determine whether you may still have met the learning outcomes required overall to enable you to progress.


32.  What happens where there were no assessments before March 16th? 

Please see question #31.

 

33.  What happens if I didn't submit my outstanding assessments?

You should have continued to submit assessments, especially where you had weak performance in earlier assessments or had no prior assessments that you were required to submit. See question 28 above for what this might mean.

If you did find yourself in a position where you could not submit assessment(s) by the deadline due to Covid-19 related issues, you were advised to follow the advice on extenuating circumstances. There were also some circumstances where extensions were given to whole cohorts.

  

34. What happens if my grade is lower than overall yearly grade or module average? 

Assessment Boards have applied the no detriment approach when determining if students have met learning outcomes at module and course level. Wherever possible, we have sought to progress or award students based on performance seen by the Boards.


35. What if I don’t achieve the mark I was expecting for an assessment I submitted on or after 16 March 2020? 

Please see question #28. When you receive your results, information on where you may be able to elect  to resit will be on the ‘View Your Results’ and ‘Understanding My Results’ pages. You will have seven days to inform us you wish to do so. 


36.  What happens if I fail?

If, after the ‘no detriment’ approach has been applied, you still fail a module(s), it might still have been possible for you to progress. As outlined in question 31 above, the Assessment Board will have considered your performance across all of your modules to determine whether you may still have met the learning outcomes required for your course overall.

*NEW clarification 

Where, in the Assessment Board’s judgement, your performance overall does not meet the standards and learning outcomes for your award, then *the Board will have made a decision based on your full academic profile and you may have been given Resits, Repeats or Discontinued.  Please refer to the Results Service for more information on these outcomes.


37. Resits - If I sit an exam and get less than 40%, I would go on to do the resit. Would the no detriment approach still apply to the resit? 

Please see question #28.


38.  When will resits take place?

You must take the resit at the earliest available opportunity. Most resits are held during the resit period. However, where a Subject Assessment Board determines that this is not possible, for example because the assessment requires studio facilities or involves group work, they are held in the following academic session. 

Please note the main resit period for this year is scheduled for (*updated dates*)  13-21st August 2020.


39.  Will re-sitting the assessment delay receiving the award?

Yes, it will delay receiving an award until after the second set of Assessment Boards have been held. *NEW Resit results will be published on 16th September.

 

40.  What if I was already resitting or repeating assessment(s) for a capped mark prior to 16 March 2020?

You will remain capped in line with the standard taught regulations. 

 

41. Can I calculate my outcome myself? 

Although you have received individual marks, these were subject to a number of considerations and checks and the final outcome (especially as we are taking the no detriment approach) can only be finalised at the Assessment Boards.


42.  What happens if I don’t achieve the mark I was expecting for an assessment I submitted on or after 16 March 2020?

Exceptionally, if your assessment counts toward credit that will directly contribute to the calculation for your qualification classification*, you are able to elect to resit any of your assessments with an original deadline on or after 16 March 2020.

*NEW Clarification on failed modules* 

Please note, that if you elect to resit assessment from a failed module that included a failed pre-16 March 2020 piece of assessment, the module will still be capped at the pass mark (normally 40%).

If you elect to resit assessment from a passed module, the module will be uncapped.

Information on how to do this is on the ‘View Your Results’ and ‘Understanding My Results’ pages. You will have seven days to inform us you wish to do so. 


43. If I already have a mark for the first assessment within a module do I still need to sit the second component? 

Students were encouraged to, where possible, engage and complete any remaining assessments. Wherever possible we have sought to progress or award students based on performance seen by the Assessment Boards, using the no detriment approach previously outlined. Please see question #42.


44.  What if I did better in my assessments submitted on or after 16 March 2020?

 You will receive a better module outcome as the better performance will affect your overall module performance and in turn, could potentially lead to a better classification.

 

45.  What if I wasn’t required to submit any assessments before 16 March 2020?

If you weren’t required to submit any assessments before 16 March 2020, you were advised it was even more important that you continue to submit assessments. As long as you achieved a pass mark (and have no academic misconduct penalties) in subsequent assessments, these marks will have been used to determine your module outcome. 

In order to be able to progress, your performance across all of your modules has been taken into account to see if you have met the learning outcomes required for your course.  

If you have failed some modules, the Assessment Board has considered your performance across all of your modules to determine whether you may still have met the learning outcomes required overall to enable you move to the next block of study.


46. What happens where there were no assessments before March 16th? 

Please see question #45.

 

47.  What happens if I didn't submit my outstanding assessments?

You should have continued to submit assessments, especially where you had weak performance in earlier assessments or had no prior assessments that you were require to submit. See question 42 above for what this might mean.

If you did find yourself in a position where you cannot submit assessment(s) by the deadline due to Covid-19 related issues, you were advised to follow the advice on extenuating circumstances. There were also some circumstances where extensions were given to whole cohorts.

 

48. What happens if my grade is lower than overall yearly grade or module average? 

Assessment Boards have applied the no detriment approach when determining if students have met learning outcomes at module and course level. Wherever possible, we have sought to progress or award students based on performance seen by the Boards.


49. What if I didn't achieve the mark I was expecting for an assessment I submitted on or after 16 March 2020? 

Please see question #42. When you receive your results, information on where you may be able to elect to resit will be on the ‘View Your Results’ and ‘Understanding My Results’ pages. You will have seven days to inform us you wish to do so. 


50. What happens if I fail?

If, after the ‘no detriment’ approach has been applied, you still fail a module(s), it might still have been possible for you to progress. As outlined in question 45 above, the Assessment Board will have considered you performance across all of your modules to determine whether you may still have met the learning outcomes required for your course overall.

*NEW clarification 

Where, in the Assessment Board’s judgement, your performance overall does not meet the standards and learning outcomes for your award, then *the Board will have made a decision based on your full academic profile and you may have been given Resits, Repeats or Discontinued.  Please refer to the Results Service for more information on these outcomes.


51. Resits - If I sit an exam and get less than 40%, I would go on to do the resit. Would the no detriment approach still apply to the resit? 

Please see question #42.


52.  When will resits take place?

You must take the resit at the earliest available opportunity. Most resits are held during the resit period. However, where a Subject Assessment Board determines that this is not possible, for example because the assessment requires studio facilities or involves group work, they are held in the following academic session. 

Please note the main resit period for this year is scheduled for (*updated dates*) 13-21st August 2020.

53.  Will re-sitting the assessment delay receiving the award?

Yes, it will delay receiving an award until after the second set of Assessment Boards have been held. *NEW Resit results will be published on 16th September.

 

54.  What if I was already resitting or repeating assessment(s) for a capped mark prior to 16 March 2020?

You will remain capped in line with the standard taught regulations. 


55. Can I calculate my outcome myself?

Although you have received individual marks, these were subject to a number of considerations and checks and the final outcome (especially as we are taking the no detriment approach) can only be finalised at the Assessment Boards.


56. Does the dissertation of a taught masters fall under the remit of the no detriment approach? 

Yes. As it a taught Masters degree, the dissertation will be covered.


57. I am a postgraduate whose dissertation is due to be handed in September this year. As, technically, this is not during this academic year, will the no detriment approach still apply?

Yes, the approach will still apply.