Marking assessments

The University recognises a variety of approaches to marking, so long as it is valid and reliable. Within Senate Regulation 7, the following marking practices are acknowledged:

  • Single marking: Work is marked by a single marker
  • Double marking: two markers work to the same mark scheme. They may either (a) mark blind in parallel, or (b) the second marker reviews the reliability of the first marker’s comments and gradings (rather than directly evaluating the students’ work). An agreed mark must be reached for each piece of assessment. Double marking increases marking and feedback turnaround times, and should therefore only be used where close scrutiny of individual work is required; sampling or moderation should normally be sufficient. If there is an unresolved disagreement between the two markers, then another individual marker should be involved.
  • Sampling: work is marked by the first marker and a sample of work is seen by a second marker who blind marks (samples can be a random selection, a stratified random sample from different grade boundaries, borderline cases between grade boundaries, or other samples as appropriate). If there is an unresolved disagreement between the two markers, then another individual marker should be involved.
  • Moderation: work is marked by a first marker. A second marker receives a full set of marks of the work and a sample of work (samples selected as described above in sampling) against which to test the robustness of the marking. They do not directly evaluate the students’ work.
  • Blind marking: work is provided to second markers or moderators as original copies without any grades or comments from the first marker.
  • Peer marking: where summatively assessed, students who mark other students’ work within a cohort should follow the same guidelines for first markers as described above. Second marking, sampling or moderation by internal examiners should be applied to ensure fairness and reliability.
  • Automated marking: Work is marked automatically by electronic or other means (either through Blackboard or through some other approved system).
Normally marking will combine two or more of these approaches, such as single marking with moderation or sampling applied; but different approaches will be appropriate for each assessment, cohort and department.

Online assessment and feedback

This can potentially improve submission and feedback speeds, and help with the administration of assessed work. Careful thought to the process is needed, however, to avoid increases in staff workload.

The University supports online assessment/feedback using either GradeMark online marking for Turnitin assignments, or Flexible Online Marking using a variety of online/offline methods including BlackBoard features as follows:

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