- What assessment are Boards of Examiners required to make?
Boards of Examiners should be able to assure themselves that a student for whom they are recommending an exit qualification has met the relevant learning outcomes, noting that these are currently generic, but that departments may develop course specific learning outcomes for any degree programme via the course approval process. Where generic learning outcomes are used the title of the exit award will not reflect the parent award, e.g. CertHE (not CertHE in Physics).
- What if a student withdraws prior to the meeting of the Board of Examiners?
Where a student has permanently withdrawn from the University they should still be recommended for an exit qualification. The withdrawal process will instigate a prompt to the student and the department regarding this possibility. For students who withdrew during 2017-18, the new regulations may be applied retrospectively.
- Can Departments apply more stringent criteria?
Where a department proposes their own course specific exit awards, more stringent criteria may be applied in order to ensure that learning outcomes are met. Departments may require students to pass more than the minimum volume of credit to be awarded, and also to pass certain core modules. In both cases, these requirements must be captured in course regulations/ student handbooks.
- What regulations and conventions have changed?
Regulations 8 (Regulations Governing Degrees) and Regulation 9 (Regulations Governing the Constitution of Boards of Examiners), and the First Year Board of Examiners Harmonised Conventions have been updated. With respect to First Year Boards of Examiners, it should be noted that the University’s First Year Board of Examiners’ Harmonised Conventions states that ‘A candidate who achieves passes in whole modules totalling at least 80 credits, who has also passed in all required core modules, and has achieved an overall average mark of 40, should proceed’, and that the threshold for awarding the CertHE is 90 credits. However, this disharmony will be addressed via the University’s review of assessment.
- Can students appeal against the award of an exit qualification?
Students can appeal against a recommendation that they are required to withdraw, and also where they have been awarded an alternative qualification, but in practice students are likely to appeal a decision that they are required to withdraw rather than the recommendation of an exit qualification. Students should appeal within 10 working days of receiving the recommendation that they are required to withdraw. Should their appeal be successful any exit qualification subsequently awarded would be rescinded.
- Are exit awards conferred at degree congregation?
No, students awarded a qualification lower than a bachelor’s degree are not eligible to attend congregation; certificates will be issued in due course by the Awards and Ceremonies team. Awards are not classified.
- Will the HEAR show the exit award?
Yes, records will be coded such that the HEAR will show whether a CertHE or a DipHE has been awarded.
- Do exit qualifications supersede Aegrotat degrees?
No, they do not. The regulations with respect to Aegrotat degrees should still be applied and an exit award only recommended in cases where the conditions for an exit award are met, but where an Aegrotat degree would not be awardable.
- How can my department develop exit qualifications that recognise a parent award?
Detailed guidance will be issued on the Course Approval webpages in due course. There is an expectation that all new course proposals will include course specific exit qualifications, but there will be no compulsion to develop course specific exit qualifications for courses that are already in use.
- Will an exit award impact future funding?
Where a student receives an exit award, they may still apply for funding from Student Finance (England), but if this is at an equivalent level of study, the amount of funding they receive will be impacted. Applicants are required to declare qualifications, but it is the length of study at degree level that is used to calculate available funding, not the exit award.
- How do students find out they have received an exit award?
A letter will be sent after the meeting of the Institutional Board of Examiners, explaining the award and that a hard copy certificate will be sent subject to any debt being cleared (sample CertHE letter, sample DipHE letter).