Disha Seechurn 0

Engineering level 1:Appeal against a decision made by the board of examiners

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Regarding module-BE1805, December Examination (statics)

We would like to appeal the decision to cap the reassessment of this exam for reasons detailed in the sections below. Due to the shutdown of the university and our summer exams being cancelled, the weighting of exams completed in December was increased from 25 to 100%. The students who failed this exam will now have to retake and will received a capped grade for this assessment. While this grade will not appear on our transcripts, it will affect our placement applications, which are bound to be even more competitive due to the current circumstances.

Grounds for Appeal

The procedural irregularity is that this exam consisted of only one question, and if a student were to misread or misunderstand the question then they may receive no marks at all. If the exam consisted of several smaller questions, or even a choice of questions as in other exam formats, the student would have had a fair opportunity to demonstrate their understanding and competence.For this reason, we believe that the outcome of the examination could have been different. This is demonstrated by the fact that a disproportionate number of students who are required to retake failed this exam.

Furthermore, many of these students achieved high grades in the assignment for this content which demonstrates their competence and knowledge. Prior to the release of results, an email was sent out that our examinations were replaced by assignments (study tasks) which were completed and handed in to wiseflow. It was understood that these submissions would be looked at if the student were on the borderline of progression and a therefore lot of effort went into them. This information was also clarified by a professor. Many students received an A in the assignment (10 credits) and an F grade in the exam (20 credits); with the weighting considered, wouldn’t the student receive a D, and therefore, a passing grade overall?

What do you think the decision should have been?

Considering that many of the students affected by this decision were already able to demonstrate some competency in the assignment portion of the module, the study tasks that had replaced the summer exams should have been looked at to find further competency before deciding on a retake. This is especially important in the case of this module due to the irregularity of the exam format.

If it is too late to do so, then I believe that allowing the retake of this module to be uncapped will be a fair decision. The department has said that the decision to cap the retakes will not affect students as our grades will not appear on our transcripts; however, students wishing to apply for placements will be at a disadvantage as companies do ask for grades upon application. Students having a D on their application because of failing an exam which consisted of one question is unfair.

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