Feedback on Exam Performance

The University has introduced five schemes for providing students - initially undergraduate only - with feedback on their examination performance. Departments are able to follow any of the five schemes that they consider to be most suitable for their students.

Background

The University successfully piloted the schemes in the 2013/14 academic year. In light of the pilot departments' experiences the Academic Policy Committee, on the recommendation of the Assessment and Feedback Working Group, has agreed that the flexibility of the five schemes should be retained in rolling out the scheme on a more widespread basis.

Departments should note that the introduction of these schemes are a change to previous University policy whereby students were not permitted to have sight of their examination scripts for feedback purposes.

When is it a requirement for departments to adopt one of the schemes?

From 2015/16 onwards, departments are required to operate one of the following schemes for undergraduate student examination feedback.

Whilst it is not currently a formal requirement for the schemes to be extended to include taught postgraduate examinations, they can be if departments considers such feedback would benefit their students and time and staffing resources allow. The University will keep under review the schemes and their extension to include postgraduate examination under review.

The five schemes

The first four present differing systems for providing students with generic or student specific feedback on their examination performance. The fifth scheme gives departments the flexibility to design their own bespoke system by combining features of the other schemes and/or creating new examination feedback mechanisms.

1

Students are invited to attend sessions when they will have the opportunity to view their scripts and, following that, can complete a request form to meet with a personal tutor/module convenor to talk through any specific question(s) where they feel they need further explanation.

It is explicitly stated that this is not an opportunity to challenge the marks awarded. The viewing session is to be monitored by ‘invigilators’ and the students are not allowed to write on or remove any paper, or to take any photographic record etc. 

2

Generic feedback is written regarding overall performance on each paper, along with median marks, so students can see how they were placed in relation to the cohort. For essay papers, this includes the median marks awarded for each question and a brief commentary on common strengths and weaknesses. For SAQ papers this could take the form of a note of the question topic (not the full question) and the median marks along with identification of any specific common errors.

The feedback can be provided either in a lecture session or be posted on BlackBoard.

3 The exam scripts are distributed to the personal tutors and the tutees invited to attend a routine tutor meeting to discuss their performance.
4 A short, generic checkbox template is drafted which can be completed for each question: this is probably most applicable to essay papers. As the marker undertakes the marking of each essay s/he can fill in the template which can be returned to the student. This template could take the form of 5 or 6 features of the essay, each of which would be scored on a 5 point scale.
5 This can be any other scheme you would like to adopt. Please give details.

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