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4: Examinations

Much of your assessment will be in the form of University examinations. For each exam, you are required to bring your student ID card and place it on your desk, so that your identity can be checked during the examination. A seat plan will be displayed outside of the exam hall for University exams and you must sit in your allocated seat. For the Introductory Maths and Statistics Test in week 1 of the Autumn Term you may sit in any seat.

In some departments where modules are assessed by a combination of coursework and examination, examiners prohibit you from answering exam questions that overlap with coursework previously submitted. This is not the case in Economics. In all EC-coded examination papers, you may answer any question subject to the restrictions (rubric) written on the question paper itself, regardless of the assessed work you have submitted. Modules offered by other departments have their own examination methods. It is your responsibility to familiarise yourself with these, particularly regarding their rules and procedures for assessed work.

In principle, all materials outlined in the module overview document, content presented in lectures and in Support and Feedback Classes, and content from further readings, are examinable. The module syllabus, given on the module webpage, also indicates what is examinable. We do not specify what topics are to be included in or excluded from examinations, as is standard procedure in the Department and the University.

MSc Assessment and Examination Scheme (L1P6, L1P7)

The following are guidelines only, and the Board of Examiners reserves the right to exercise its discretion in individual cases.

(A) Examination Components

The examination components for the MSc in Economics and MSc in Economics and International Financial Economics are as follows, with the weighting of the module mark towards the final mark being in proportion to the number of CATS listed:

Comp Module Weighting* CATS
A1 EC901 Economic Analysis:
Average of EC9011 Microeconomics (50%)
and EC9012 Macroeconomics (50%)
23.9% 44
A2 EC902 Quantitative Methods:
Econometrics A or
EC910 Quantitative Methods:
Econometrics B
27.1% 50
A3 Optional Module 1 9.8% 18
A4 Optional Module 2 9.8% 18
A5 Optional Module 3 9.8% 18
A6 EC959 MSc dissertation 19.6% 36

* in Overall Average

(B) To be allowed to proceed to the MSc dissertation

You will normally need to pass:

  • The components A1 and A2 with a mark of 50.0% or more; and
  • A mark of 50.0% or more on at least two of the three components of the MSc listed above as A3, A4 and A5, providing that a mark of 40.0% or more is obtained in the failed component.

You normally have one opportunity to remedy failure in modules that equate with no more than one half of the taught element of the course.

(C) To be awarded the MSc

You must also get a mark of 50.0% or more for the component A6 (dissertation). You can resubmit a failed dissertation once.

(D) To be awarded the PG Diploma in place of the MSc

You will have to obtain:

  • A pass mark of 50.0% or more in components A1, A2, A3, A4 and A5 totalling at least 90 CATS; and
  • A mark of 40.0% or more in failed components A1, A2, A3, A4 and A5 totalling at least 30 CATS.

The PG Diploma will also be awarded if you fail to get a mark of 50.0% or more for the dissertation.

(E) To be awarded the PG Certificate in place of the MSc

You will have to obtain:

  • A pass mark of 50.0% or more in component A1 or A2; and
  • A pass mark of 50.0% or more in component A3 or A4 or A5.

(F) Marking Scheme

The MSc degree carries a Distinction, a Merit and a Pass classification. If you have an average mark of 70.0% or higher taken across all components of the course, with no individual module mark of less than 50.0%, you will be normally considered for a Distinction. If you have an average mark of between 60.0% and 69.9% taken across all components of the course, with no individual module mark of less than 50.0%, you will be normally be considered for a Merit.

For the purposes of the individual elements of the course, the following marking conventions are in place:

Mark Grade
> 70.0 Distinction
60.0 - 69.9 Merit
50.0 - 59.9 Pass
< 49.9 Fail

(G) Resitting Students

Normally resit marks will be based on the combined exam and assessment weights. All resit marks are capped at 50.0% for A1, A2, A3, A4, A5, A6.

There is a fee (currently £77) for resitting your exam(s). The payment of the resit fee constitutes your formal registration for the examination(s). Please note, resit fees are non-refundable and that the fee covers whatever number of examinations may be sat.

MSc Assessment and Examination Scheme (C8P8)

The following are guidelines only, and the Board of Examiners reserves the right to exercise its discretion in individual cases.

(A) Examination Components

The examination components for the MSc in Behavioural and Economic Science (Economics Track) are as follows, with the weighting of the module mark towards the final mark being in proportion to the number of CATS listed:

Comp Module Weighting* CATS
Taught (core modules) EC901 Economic Analysis: Microeconomics 11.8% 22

EC907 Quantitative Methods: Econometrics A
or
EC987 Quantitative Methods: Econometrics B
16.1% 30

PS922 Issues in Psychological Science 8% 15

PS923 Methods and Analysis in Behavioural Science 8% 15
Taught (optional modules)

Choose 5 modules from: 
EC984 Experimental Economics
EC989 Behavioural Economics
PS918 Psychological Models of Choice
PS919 Behavioural Change: Nudging and Persuasion
PS927 Neuroeconomics
IB9AN Principles of Cognition
IB9Y2 Behavioural Finance

Each 8% 15
Project (core module) PS916 Research Project 16.1% 30

* in Overall Average

(B) To be awarded the MSc in Behavioural and Economic Science (Economics Track)

You will normally have to achieve:

  • A pass mark of 50.0% or more in modules totalling at least 150 CATS, including all core modules; and
  • A mark of 40.0% or more in any failed modules.

You normally have one opportunity to remedy failure in modules that equate with no more than one half of the taught component of the course.

You can resubmit a failed project once.

(C) To be awarded the PG Diploma in place of the MSc in Behavioural and Economic Science (Economics Track)

You will have to achieve:

  • A pass mark of 50.0% or more in modules totalling at least 90 CATS; and
  • A mark of 40.0% or more in any failed modules totalling at least 30 CATS.

The PG Diploma will also be awarded if you fail to get a mark of 50.0% or more for the project.

(D) To be awarded the PG Certificate in place of the MSc in Behavioural and Economic Science (Economics Track)

You will have to obtain:

  • A pass mark of 50.0% or more in modules totalling at least 60 CATS.

(E) Marking Scheme

The MSc in Behavioural and Economic Science (Economics Track) degree carries a Distinction, a Merit and a Pass classification. If you have an average mark of 70.0% or higher taken across all components of the course, with no individual module mark of less than 50.0%, you will be normally considered for a Distinction. If you have an average mark of between 60.0% and 69.9% taken across all components of the course, with no individual module mark of less than 50.0%, you will be normally considered for a Merit.

For the purposes of the individual elements of the course, the following marking conventions are in place:

Mark Grade
> 70.0 Distinction
60.0 - 69.9 Merit
50.0 - 59.9 Pass
0 - 49.9 Fail

(F) Resitting Students

Normally, resit marks will be based on the combined exam and assessment weights. All resit marks are capped at 50.0% for modules in the taught and project components.

There is a fee (currently £77) for resitting your exam(s). The payment of the resit fee constitutes your formal registration for the examination(s). Please note resit fees are non-refundable and that the fee covers whatever number of examinations may be sat.

Exam timetable

MSc examinations normally take place in the first week of the Spring Term (EC9011 Microeconomics and EC9012 Macroeconomics) and weeks three and four of the Summer Term (Quantitative Methods: Econometrics and optional modules). Exams for modules run by other departments may be scheduled at other times.

Please note that the central University Exams Office is responsible for scheduling exams and, as such, the Department has no control over which exams are held on which day. The scheduling process is very complex and, whilst direct clashes will be avoided, it is quite common for students to have two papers on the same day, or papers on adjacent days, and this is comparable to the position at other UK universities similar to Warwick in size and complexity.

It is your responsibility to check the date, time and location of your exams and ensure you are there in time. If you miss or are late to an exam, you are not permitted to sit the exam later in the day. You will receive a mark of zero.

Mitigating circumstances

Detailed guidance on how to submit a case for mitigating circumstances and the evidence required to substantiate a case is available here.

Mitigating circumstances are defined as:

  • Situations that the student could not have predicted and had no control over (e.g. serious illness, death of someone close, being the victim of crime, family difficulties and financial hardship);
  • Situations with negative impact on the student’s ability to undertake assessments/examinations which are independently evidenced in a timely fashion; (e.g. doctor’s note during illness showing duration and level of negative impact);
  • Situations that are acute or short term, the timing of which are relevant to the impact on study (normally within three weeks of the relevant assessment event deadline).

Mitigating Circumstances must be submitted to the Department using the Mitigating Circumstances Form.

Deadlines

Where you are applying for an extension to a coursework deadline because of mitigating circumstances, you must apply as soon as possible and before the submission deadline. For mitigating circumstances affecting your exam performance you must submit the form and evidence as soon as possible and no later than three working days following the last day of your University examinations. All other mitigating circumstances claims must be submitted as soon as possible and no later than five working days before the Mitigating Circumstance Panel, which normally takes place one week in advance of the exam board. For the June Exam Board the deadline for submitting claims is 4 June 2019.

Without wanting to invade your privacy, the University does expect that you bring such circumstances to the Department’s attention in a timely manner, despite the discomfort you might feel in so doing. The Department will do all it can to support you in difficult situations. You should be aware that mitigating circumstances not submitted by the relevant deadline cannot be considered by the Department and may only be considered by an Academic Appeals Committee as part of an academic appeal.

Medical evidence

Evidence is a vital part of a mitigating circumstances submission. It must written by an independent qualified practitioner (letters from relatives are not acceptable); dated and written on headed or official notepaper and in English. If the letter is in another language students must provide both a copy of the original note and a certified translation into English. When requesting medical evidence to support your application for mitigation, you are advised to make clear to your doctor that the information will be shared with a number of people and to discuss with your doctor the most appropriate wording of the medical evidence.

Who to talk to

In order for your circumstances to be considered as mitigating by the Department, they must be conveyed formally to the Mitigating Circumstances Officer in the Department using the Mitigating Circumstances Form. For MSc students the Mitigating Circumstances Officer is the Postgraduate Teaching and Learning Manager (Taught Degrees).

We are aware that in some cultures it is considered shameful or embarrassing to disclose the details of these kinds of circumstance to those outside one’s family. This is not the case in the prevailing UK culture and you should be aware that the Department and the University are fully supportive of students in difficult circumstances and want to assist if at all possible. If you feel inhibited from talking to a Personal Tutor, Director of Academic and Pastoral Support or Postgraduate Teaching and Learning Manager (Taught Degrees), you may also consider talking to a member of the GSSLC, the Students’ Union, the Dean of Students or a member of staff in Student Support for initial, informal advice. Be assured that we treat all information in a confidential manner and our electronic filing system is secure. If you believe that your mitigating circumstances submission contains sensitive personal information and/or highly confidential evidence, you may submit your mitigating circumstances marked “strictly confidential and for the attention of the Chair of the mitigating circumstances panel only”.

Exam anxiety

Exams are a stressful time for all students and hence you should expect to feel some degree of anxiety during the exam period. When taking an exam, it is not uncommon for students to feel a rising level of anxiety and to think that it is a panic attack. A panic attack during an exam will not be taken as a severe mitigating circumstance, unless:

  • the Department already has evidence to confirm that you have a history of similar anxiety and panic attacks and can provide medical evidence of this panic attack.
  • significant medical evidence can be provided that documents the symptoms of the panic attack during the exam and confirms that you would have been unable to complete the exam under the circumstances.

Mitigating Circumstances Panel

The Mitigating Circumstances Panel is Chaired by the Director of Academic and Pastoral Support and membership includes the Director of Graduate Studies (Taught Degrees), the Director of Studies, the Head of Department and the Postgraduate Teaching and Learning Manager (Taught Degrees). The panel has the following remit:

  • To considers details of applications for mitigating circumstances and makes recommendations on the outcome of each application to the Board of Examiners.
  • To determine whether the circumstances submitted are acceptable grounds to grant mitigation and to grade them as rejected (R), weak (A), moderate (B) severe (C).
  • To ensure that decisions are equitable and that there is consistency of treatment across cohorts.

Acute mitigation (e.g. for assessed work extension requests)

The Postgraduate Teaching and Learning Manager (Taught Degrees) will review the mitigating circumstances in confidence and decide whether an extension or late submission penalty waiver is appropriate. A decision will be communicated to you within three working days. Detailed guidance on extension requests can be found here.

Possible action by the Exam Board

For severe mitigating circumstances the Exam Board might recommend the candidate sits (as for the first time) in September or the following January/ May, offer a further opportunity for re-examination, or recalculate a module mark based on the elements of the assessment which were not affected by the mitigating circumstances. It may be recommended that no action is required in terms of progress decisions, but the circumstances will be carried forward and be considered when determining the degree classification at a future meeting of the Board of Examiners.

Reasonable Adjustments 

Long term chronic conditions (normally greater than a term in duration and that are likely to continue) and disabilities are dealt with under the reasonable adjustments (RA’s) policy. However a significant deterioration of a permanent or chronic condition already reported and covered by reasonable adjustments, is classed as a mitigating circumstance. Guidance in relation to reasonable adjustments is available on the University web pages and is summarised below.

The Equality Act 2010 requires the University to make reasonable adjustments where a candidate who is disabled (within the meaning of the Act), would be at a SUBSTANTIAL DISADVANTAGE in comparison to someone who is not disabled.

  • Noting ‘substantial’ is defined as ‘more than minor or trivial’ and that a disability is defined as ‘a physical or mental impairment that has a substantial and long-term negative effect on the ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities’.
  • Students who have long term chronic conditions or disabilities and who believe they are entitled to reasonable adjustments should in the first instance contact Disability Services or Mental Health and Wellbeing and request an appointment to discuss their support requirements.
  • A reasonable adjustment may be unique to the individual and could include special examination arrangements, delayed deadlines but also alternative methods of assessments.
  • Any reasonable adjustments made are evidence based; students are required to supply appropriate and recent medical evidence, or, in the case of a specific learning difference such as dyslexia or dyspraxia, a full diagnostic assessment. The type of appropriate evidence required can be discussed with Disability Services or Mental Health and Wellbeing.
  • Once a student has met with Wellbeing Support Services, the adviser will contact the student's department and the Examinations Office (with their permission) to recommend any specific adjustments.
  • Reasonable adjustment recommendations for examinations must be made before the annual deadlines as set out by the Examinations Office on the Disability Services website. Recommendations that are made AFTER these deadlines will be handled under the Mitigating Circumstances Policy.
  • Recommendations to apply reasonable adjustments may include for the student to be able to complete assessments via alternative assessment methods; bearing in mind that academic or professional standards in relation to core competencies and assessed criteria still need to be met.
  • Further information on disabilities and reasonable adjustments can also be accessed in the University’s Disability Policy.

Good practice in exams

To maximise your chances of success in an examination, there are a number of pointers for good practice, such as:

  • familiarising yourself with what happens in the exam room by reading the Examination Regulations 10.2
  • familiarising yourself with the rubric beforehand and doing what the rubric asks
  • arrive in good time and check the seating plan located outside the exam hall and find you name and seat number
  • answering only the number of questions indicated in the examination rubric; if you answer more questions than are prescribed by the rubric, and fail to provide a clear indication of which answers should be discarded by the marker (e.g. by crossing them out), then the marker will mark answers in the order in which they appear in the exam booklet and, after the prescribed number is reached, will discard the rest
  • filling in the question numbers on the front page
  • not wasting time writing out the question - but do write down the question number
  • striking out any material that is not to be read (e.g. unwanted attempts)
  • writing as legibly as possible
  • showing your working in mathematical/quantitative answers - enough to be awarded method marks if you get the wrong answer. In any case full marks ought not to be awarded for correct ‘bottom line’ answers - we are also interested in checking reasoning and understanding
  • Make sure that if you use more than one answer booklet, you label them appropriately. Ensure that the separate booklets are tightly bound together so that they will not come apart before they reach the markers.

Other advice on how to tackle exams is available through these links:

Use of calculators in exams

The purchase price of a calculator is normally around £10 and you will need one during your MSc degree. You may only use a calculator in an examination if the examination paper rubric states it is permitted. It is your responsibility to ensure that your calculator fulfils the University’s criteria; any devices capable of information storage and retrieval are not permitted in University examinations.

Use of mobile phones in examinations

The use of mobile phones, or any other handheld devices that facilitate wireless communication, are not admissible in examination conditions. A mark of zero will be given for the exam if you are caught with a mobile phone regardless of whether you were using the phone.

Use of bi-lingual dictionaries in examinations

If your first language is not English you are allowed to use a single-volume, non-specialist, general-purpose bi-lingual translation dictionary covering English and your first language. Permitted dictionaries should give only equivalent words and phrases in English and the first language, and should not include further explanatory text or appendices, other than of a trivial nature. Encyclopaedic, electronic, pictorial or specialist/subject-specific dictionaries (e.g. legal or business dictionaries) are not permitted.

It is your responsibility to provide your own bi-lingual dictionary. All bi-lingual dictionaries will need to be authorised by the Department and you should take it to the Postgraduate Office (S0.89) prior to the exams period to get it stamped. No notes may be made in dictionaries.

Bags in examination rooms

You are reminded that you should not take any bags, cases, or rucksacks into the examination rooms.

The only exceptions to this are:

  • small pencil cases may be used for pens, pencils and rulers etc.
  • if necessary plastic carrier bags may be used to carry permitted texts or other material into open-book examinations (unless you have been given special individual permission to have any other kind of bag with you in connection with an approved special examination arrangement)

Small personal items such as keys, wallets and purses that you would normally carry with you may be kept on the person e.g. in pockets or in permissible pencil cases.

Further information about bags in exam rooms can be found on the Exams website.

Handwriting legibility

You are responsible for ensuring that handwritten answers in exam scripts are legible and can be read by markers.

Markers will make reasonable efforts to read scripts, and those found to be illegible will be checked by a moderator to confirm whether or not the handwriting can be deciphered. If the marker and moderator are unable to read a script it should be forwarded to the Director of Postgraduate Taught Programmes for scrutiny. If the answers are still deemed illegible, the indecipherable sections will not be marked. The relevant Teaching and Learning Manager will annotate the mark grid to indicate to the Board of Examiners any scripts with illegible handwriting, to help inform the Board’s decisions about resits and borderline cases.

We do not allow scripts deemed illegible to be retyped following a first examination, unless there is medical evidence of mitigating circumstances that would have affected a candidate’s handwriting in exam conditions. Except for circumstances in which a disability could not have been anticipated, students should provide medical evidence for special exam arrangements by the deadline set by the Academic Office.

The Department believes the onus for writing legibly should rest with students. Students with illegible handwriting who still achieve sufficient marks to pass a module will not be allowed a resit attempt. Students failing a module at the first attempt, where sections of an exam script have been found to be illegible, will normally be offered a resit opportunity. Students will be offered the chance to type their answers in the resit exam. The maximum mark which may be awarded for a module on re-examination is 50 for postgraduate modules.

Examination boards

The Board of Examiners comprises a subset of full-time members of the academic staff in the Department of Economics, members of the academic staff from other departments for joint programmes, and three external examiners appointed by Senate. The Board, chaired by the Director of Graduate Studies (Taught Degrees), makes recommendations that are subject to confirmation by Senate.

There are two exam boards at which your progress is formally assessed: a progress review board after the May exams (the Board usually meets at the end of June) and a final exam board in November after the course has finished.

External examiners

External examiners are experienced senior academic from other universities whose role is to monitor our standards, to advise us on issues including borderline cases, and generally to act as independent arbiters, scruitinisers and to ensure that all the Board's decisions are fair. External Examiners also contribute towards the upkeep of standards of marking by moderating a sample of student assessments. We have three MSc external examiners:

  • Professor Guido Ascari (University of Oxford)
  • Professor Miltos Makris (University of Southampton)
  • Professor Steve Leybourne (University of Nottingham)

The role of the External Examiner is to ensure that:

  • degrees awarded are comparable in standard to those in similar degree courses in other universities in the United Kingdom
  • the assessment system is fair and is fairly operated in the classification of students
  • degrees awarded are at the appropriate level as set out in the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (Chapter A1 of the UK Quality Code) and take appropriate account of the relevant Subject Benchmark Statement
  • students achieve the learning outcomes for the degrees set out in the relevant Course Specifications.

External Examiners also write a report on their views of the quality and standards of the assessments and examinations conducted in the Department and on the administrative processes behind this. The Department considers these reports at the Graduate Management Committee, sends a formal response back to the External Examiner, and considers how to incorporate any suggestions made into Departmental provision. The reports are shared with the Graduate Student-Staff Liaison Committee.

June exam board

The Board receives the results of all the coursework assessments and examinations and will consider your progress in the taught components. It will determine whether you:

  • proceed to the Dissertation/Project
  • are required to be re-examined in specific modules
  • are required to withdraw.

The June Exam Board shall also determine degree awards for students from the previous academic year who submitted their dissertations for the March deadline.

If you pass the taught components you are permitted to proceed to the dissertation to be submitted in September. The dissertations are marked in October and the full set of marks is presented to the final Exam Board in November. If you fail any modules you have the right to resit for one further attempt only up to half of the taught element of the course. The June Exam Board will determine whether the resit should be in September (this is likely in the case of marginal and moderate failures), or the following January/May (this is likely in the case of bad failures). Candidates who successfully resit in September will normally submit their dissertation the following March.

Informally we allow students with a single resit to do the dissertation in parallel with their resit, if they wish to do so, and hand it in by the September deadline, on the understanding that this is done at their own risk. However, it should be stressed that such a student is not required to do the dissertation for the September deadline, and moreover that the dissertation will not be considered if the resit is failed.

Candidates who fail at the second attempt but still achieve a certain minimum standard may be awarded the Postgraduate Diploma or Postgraduate Certificate in place of the MSc.

November Exam Board (final)

The Board, at which students who have completed the full requirement of the degree are considered, will determine whether a student shall:

  • be awarded the degree
  • be awarded the degree with Distinction or Merit
  • be permitted re-submission of the dissertation
  • be awarded the Postgraduate Diploma or Postgraduate Certificate
  • not be awarded the degree or the Postgraduate Diploma or the Postgraduate Certificate.

Failure to meet prescribed deadlines

A zero mark will be recorded if you fail to present yourself for an examination or fail to submit an item of assessment for a module for which you have been registered. In circumstances where a zero mark has been awarded (including instances of plagiarism and cheating, where the opportunity for reassessment has been withheld by those investigating the offence) the Board has the power to deem the taught component failed.

In accordance with University regulations, failure to submit any assessment by the specified submission deadline will incur a penalty of three marks per day unless a formal extension has been granted in advance.

Prizes

The Department of Economics currently has the following prizes and awards to bestow on MSc students in the 2018-19 academic year. Please note that the Department reserves the right not to award any of these prizes in any one year.

  • Examiners’ Prize for the best performance across the MSc in Economics, MSc Economics and International Financial Economics and MSc Behavioural and Economic Science (Economics Track) - £100 (one award sometimes split jointly between two or more students);
  • Dissertation Prize for the best dissertation - £100 (one award sometimes split jointly between two or more students);
  • Shiv Nath Prize for the best MSc student performance in the field of Development Economics - £100 (one award sometimes split jointly between two or more students).

Examination feedback

Following the decisions of the Exam Board, you will be notified by email when exam results are viewable. We will not give out examination or assessment marks over the telephone or to any third party without your prior written permission.

We want to assure you that the marking and moderation for all our examinations is fair, consistent, robust and reliable and hence give you confidence that when you receive a mark, the mark has been arrived at following a detailed and rigorous process. All examination scripts have a first marker and a moderator and undergo an administrative check to ensure the marks have been totalled correctly. All results are considered by a Board of Examiners. Further details regarding the assessment procedures in the Department can be found on our Assessment and Feedback webpages.

Following the September examination period, you will be provided with feedback from the main examinations, in the form of a break down of the marks you obtained per question on each module and, where the number of students is large enough, the summary statistics per question and the overall mark distribution will also be available so that you can compare your performance with others on the module. Generic feedback on main examinations will also be provided through a summary covering what was generally done poorly and what was done well. Bottom line solutions to quantitative papers will also be provided as a further form of feedback. All feedback will be provided after the September examination period so that no student is advantaged and the feedback will be available for a limited period of time. The feedback is there for you to reflect on your performance, but you are not permitted to discuss the feedback with any member of staff.

If you are re-sitting exam(s) in September /January you will be given your failed exam script to see how this has been marked. We provide the scripts as a way for you to review and reflect upon your performance and as a way of helping you to prepare for your resit. This copy provides all of the information that can be provided. You will not be able to use the information to demand further explanation from tutors or lecturers, or to challenge marks or academic judgement. You must not approach lecturers, tutors, or markers to ask for additional feedback. While you may submit an academic appeal against the decision of an exam board on various grounds, there is no provision for students to challenge academic judgement of examiners or to dispute marks awarded in individual modules or pieces of work. Note, also, that the moderation process may have had the effect that the final mark on your script does not coincide exactly with the marks given to each part answer. This policy only applies to EC-coded modules. Other departments may have their own policy for their own modules, which you will need to ask those departments about.

If you have any concerns or feedback about the examination process then please contact the Quality Assurance and Examinations Coordinator in the first instance.

Appeals

If an Exam Board decides that your performance merits the award of a lower qualification than the one for which you were registered or does not merit the award of a qualification at all, you have certain rights of appeal. Appeals must be submitted within 10 University working days of the date of notification of the decision of the Board of Examiners that is the subject of the appeal. The academic appeals process is to be completed typically within 80 University working days. You are required to complete a form if you wish to appeal against the decision of the examiners for your course and should consult the Postgraduate Academic Appeals website.

The appeal procedure may not be used to challenge the academic judgement of examiners, dispute marks awarded in individual modules or pieces of work, appeal against the requirement that a student is required to resubmit work or resit examiners, or challenge the decision to award an MSc degree at pass level rather than with distinction or merit.

Appeals may be made on one or more of the following grounds:

(a) You are in possession of evidence relevant to your examination performance which was not available to the Board of Examiners when their decision was reached. You must provide evidence of good reason for not having made the Board of Examiners aware of this evidence prior to the assessment decision.

(b) There is evidence of procedural irregularity or unfair discrimination in the examination process.

(c) There is evidence of inadequacy of supervisory or other arrangements during your enrolment at the University. In this instance, you are required to explain why a complaint under the Student Complaints Resolution Procedure was not made at an earlier stage.

If you have any queries about appeals please contact pgappeals@warwick.ac.uk

University requirements for Postgraduate Taught Awards

1) Principles

(a) The University has a single set of rules for the award of taught postgraduate qualifications which are not otherwise constrained by accreditation requirements.

(b) The classification system for the award of merit and distinction is based on averaging.

(c) These arrangements are consistent with the QAA Framework for Higher Education Qualifications and take account of module and course learning outcomes.

(d) The system is designed to be transparent, clear and comprehensible for students and staff.

(e) In arriving at decisions for an award, a fail mark for a module may not be condoned and a module may not be passed by compensation.

(f) The award of Master will normally be made on successful completion of 150 credits at level 7, providing that a mark of at least 40 is obtained in the failed module(s) and all core modules are passed. Where departments require students to attain higher volume of credit at level 7 for the award of Master this must be clearly specified in information supplied to students.

(g) The award of Postgraduate Diploma will normally be made on successful completion of 90 credits at level 7, providing that a mark of at least 40 is obtained in the failed module(s) AND all core modules are passed. Where departments require students to attain 120 credits at level 7 for the award of Postgraduate Diploma this must be clearly specified in information supplied to students.

(h) It is the responsibility of examination boards to act in accordance with these rules. Where professional, statutory or regulatory bodies specify requirements for accreditation which are inconsistent with these rules, departments must propose alternative arrangements which must be approved by Academic Quality and Standards Committee. No additional conventions may be specified by departments.

(i) Where departments wish to maintain flexibility of award as outlined in (f) and (g) above, they may indicate modules, which students must take, but where the achievement of a pass mark of 50 is not critical for progression (within the context of paragraph (f) above). Any such arrangements must be clearly specified in information supplied to students and these ‘required’ modules listed.

2) Marking

(a) All marks should be given on a 0-100 scale.

(b) The minimum pass mark for all postgraduate modules is 50.

(c) Departments must specify in module proposals and in information supplied to students whether students must pass all elements of the assessment on a module in order to be awarded a pass mark. In the event that departments do not do so, students will be awarded a pass in the module if they attain an average mark, weighted according to the percentage of the individual elements of the assessment, which is not lower than 50.

3) Re-examination

(a) Students on taught postgraduate degrees should normally be allowed one opportunity to remedy failure in initial assessment in modules that equate with no more than one half of the total credits awarded in the taught element of the course. Only one re-examination will be permitted for each module except as set out in (g) below.

(b) Students should normally be allowed one opportunity to remedy failure in their dissertation/project module. Students obtaining a mark of 30 or less in the dissertation/project carrying a credit weighting of more than 60 credits will only be permitted to submit a re-worked submission for examination against different learning outcomes, the achievement of which would enable them to be considered for the award of a Postgraduate Diploma, except as set out in (g) below.

(c) Where the failure on an initial assessment in a taught module, dissertation or similar piece of independent project work is the result of penalties for late submission, the student should normally not be allowed to revise or resubmit the same assessment in order to remedy that failure but should be required to undertake a new assessment, dissertation or project. Where it is impracticable for the Department to allow the student to undertake a new assessment, dissertation or project that has failed due to penalties for late submission, the initial failure should be allowed to stand and the matter referred to the Board of Examiners for their consideration of all the circumstances relevant to the case.

(d) Where a failure results from a finding of cheating under University regulations, it should be for the Head of the Department (or his or her authorised deputy), the University Investigating Committee or the Board of Examiners to determine whether the student should be allowed to remedy that failure.

(e) Where a student has failed to reach the minimum pass mark for a module which contains more than one element of assessment the student shall normally be required to be re-examined only in the element(s) of the assessment which has (have) not met the minimum pass mark, noting that the appropriate method of reassessment should be determined by the Board of Examiners.

(f) The maximum pass mark which may be awarded for a module on re-examination is 50, irrespective of the mark(s) which have been given for other elements of the assessment for that module, except as set out in (g) below. Departments are however required to keep a record of the uncapped mark, although it would not appear on the student's transcript.

(g) Where there is evidence of serious medical or personal problems disclosed to, and discussed by, the relevant departmental Special Cases Committee, that committee may make recommendations to the relevant Examination Board as to the extent to which these special circumstances should be taken into account in offering to the student an opportunity to be examined as a first attempt or offered a further opportunity for re-examination. Any discretionary consideration should be clearly minuted by Examination Boards. The Examination Board should not amend a module mark or the mark for any element of assessment as a result of special circumstances being taken into account except that where there are a number of elements to the assessment, the Examination Board may recalculate a module mark based on the elements of the assessment which have attained a pass mark and which were not affected by the special circumstances.

4) Progression

(a) Where students are not initially enrolled for a full Masters award, they may normally only progress to the next stage of a course when they have acquired the required minimum number of credits specified in the tabulated summary at Appendix A, including passing all modules designated as core to ensure that the stated course learning outcomes have been met. If a department requires that students must also obtain a specified average mark across some or all modules before progressing from a postgraduate certificate to a postgraduate diploma, or from a postgraduate diploma to the Masters, this must be clearly specified in information provided to students.

(b) Course proposals and documentation provided to students must, therefore, explicitly identify the core modules on any course for which credit must be achieved in order to progress.

(c) Where any additional modules are required to be passed (in addition to the total minimum credit volume to be passed as specified in Appendix A) to meet the learning outcomes for an award or for progression to the next stage of a course, this must be indicated clearly in the course approval and specification and be made clear in documentation supplied to students.

5) Awards and classification

(a) Students are eligible for the awards shown in Appendix A if they obtain the minimum number of credits at the appropriate level(s) and all core modules are passed. Where departments require students to attain a higher volume of credits at level 7 for the award of Master this must be clearly specified in information supplied to students.

(b) Where departments require students to attain 120 credits at level seven for the award of Postgraduate Diploma this must be clearly specified in information supplied to students.

(c) Subject to the provisions of (d) below the award of Master, Postgraduate Diploma, Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Award should be with merit if a student attains an Award Average (weighted according to the credit rating of the modules comprised within the award) of between 60.0 and 69.9 inclusive and with distinction if a student attains an Award Average of 70.0 or above. Where departments specify that a student must attain a mark on a particular module or modules of 60.0 or above for an award with merit or 70.0 or above for an award with distinction this must be specified in information provided to students.

(d) Irrespective of the award average attained by a student and subject to the provisions of (e) below no student may receive an award with merit or distinction if the student has not received the minimum pass mark for any module.

(e) Where there is evidence of serious medical or personal problems disclosed to and discussed by the relevant departmental Special Cases Committee that committee may make recommendations to the relevant Examination Board as to the extent to which these special circumstances should be taken into account. Any discretionary consideration should be clearly minuted by Examination Boards.

Appendix A: Tabulated Summary of Credit Requirements for Awards

Qualification Total minimum credit to be taken Total minimum credit to be passed: including all core modules Highest level of credit Minimum credit to be passed at highest level
Master (PGT) 180 150* 7 150
PGT Dip 120 90** 7 90
PG Cert 60 60 7 60

* The award may be made where a student has obtained 150 credits providing the student has obtained a mark of at least 40 in the failed module(s).

** The award of Postgraduate Diploma may be made where a student has obtained a mark of at least 40 in the failed module(s).