Return of Marked Work
The University's Policy on the Return of Marked Work was approved by Senate, on the recommendation of the Academic Policy Committee, in July 2011
- Download full details about the University's Policy on the Return of Marked Work (PDF)
- Feedback and provisional grading on coursework will be returned within 21 days of the submission date for campus-based programmes; 28 days for distance learning and approved programmes*.
- In exceptional circumstances where this is not possible, the following actions should be taken:
- Students should be notified in advance of the expected return date and the reasons for the longer turn-round time
- Where possible, staff should provide some interim feedback: for example in the form of generic feedback to the class regarding common errors and potential areas for improvement
- Students should be notified early in each module, through module handbooks or their equivalent, of both the submission date and the return date for all coursework.
- Staff engaged in marking should be notified, well in advance, of the marking schedules, in particular the submission and return dates for each piece of work for which they will be responsible so they can plan their diaries accordingly.
- Submission and return of assignments within a module should normally be scheduled such that students receive feedback on one assignment before completion of a further assignment of a similar format.
- If the assessment design for a programme comprises single, summative module assignments that are to be submitted around the same time, then there should be provision of an element of formative feedback prior to submission.
- Where there are co-requisite modules that are taken in parallel within a programme, there should be co-ordination between module convenors such that students receive feedback on one assignment before completion of a further assignment of a similar format.
- Where possible, end of term/semester submission dates should be avoided in respect of marking and return of hard-copy submissions in order to avoid lengthy delays between the marking of the work and its collection due to intervening vacations. Note that where work is being marked on-line or posted back to students these constraints need not apply.
- The returned work should incorporate appropriate feedback guidance to enable the students to identify both where they have demonstrated particular strengths and how to improve their performance in future assignments. Further guidance regarding the provision of feedback is provided on the University website.
- It is recognised that some very large scale pieces of work, such as dissertations, may not be returned within the 21 days. In such cases, staging points should be scheduled when effective feedback on progress can be provided.
- Consistency of implementation and management of expectation are essential. Heads of Department (or their delegated representatives) should therefore monitor and take responsibility for the turn-round time of coursework and provision of feedback for all their modules. Departments will be asked to comment in their Annual Development Reviews on any exceptions to the turn-round policy.
- Departments should regularly review their methods of marking and assessment design, incorporating a range of approaches as appropriate.
*The periods of 21 and 28 days are defined as 21/28 calendar days from the published submission date of the piece of work, excepting when this period includes public holidays and days when the University is officially closed, these days of closure being added into the total. There are certain campus-based programmes for which, for professional reasons, large numbers of external experts are involved in marking. Subject to approval, these will also be permitted the longer turn-round time of 28 days.
- Following the approval of the provisional results by examination boards, departments should make the results available to students within 14 days. Where appropriate this should include a breakdown at the level of the examination and coursework. Students will not normally be informed of their marks on individual examination questions.
- Students will not be allowed to see their examination scripts.
- Departments should arrange for feedback on examination performance to be provided in the form of a overview feedback session/written report identifying generic performance strengths/issues. This requirement will not normally apply to finals or end-of-programme examinations.
- Students should have the opportunity to discuss their results with their personal tutor or adviser.