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Section 10: Classification

Published for 2019-20


Looking for the regulations relevant to the Late Summer Assessment period? Please click here to view the 2018/19 version.


Students who have completed the requirements for a qualification should, on the recommendation of the relevant Board of Examiners, be awarded a Classification.
The following regulations apply to:
  • Undergraduate students who first enrolled on their programme at UCL in 2018-19 or 2019-20.
  • All Graduate and Taught Postgraduate students who are fully enrolled on the 2018-19 or 2019-20 academic session, with the exception of Masters of Laws (LLM students) who first enrolled on their programme in 2017-18 or earlier, where the former derogation is being phased out. Further details are in the LLM Programme Summary.

Undergraduate students who first enrolled on their programme at UCL in 2017-18 or earlier should refer to Section 15: Classification for Undergraduate Students first enrolling in 2017-18 or earlier.


10.1 Overaching Principles10.5 Graduate Classification Scheme
10.2 Calculating Classifications10.6 Taught Postgraduate Classification Scheme
10.3 Pre-Honours Classification Scheme10.7 Research Masters (MRes) Classification Scheme
10.4 Honours Degree Classification Scheme10.8 Non-Modular Programmes

10.1 Overarching Principles

Principle 33:    Classification schemes must be transparent, clearly defined and fair to all students.

10.2 Calculating Classifications

10.2.1 Averages and Rounding

1.On programmes operating the Numeric Marking Scale:
 a)The Final Weighted Mark must be calculated from a credit-weighted mean of all counting marks, as specified in each individual Classification Scheme.
 b)Where a Classification Scheme includes multiple years of study, the credit-weighted Year Mean must be calculated first. Each Year Mean must then be weighted according to the Classification Scheme, and the Final Weighted Mark must then be calculated from the mean of weighted Year Means.
 c)The Final Weighted Mark must be rounded to 2 decimal places.
2.On programmes operating the Letter Grade Marking Scale, the Classification must be determined from the number of module credits falling in each Classification Band.

10.2.2 Weighting of Reassessment and Deferral Marks 

1.Marks achieved for reassessed modules must be weighted according to the year in which the module was first attempted.
2.Marks achieved for substitute modules must be weighted according to the year in which the substituted module was first attempted.
3.Marks achieved for modules deferred due to Extenuating Circumstances must be weighted according to the year in which the student was first registered on the module.

10.2.3 Credit Awarded via the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) 

1.Credits awarded via the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) from any institution other than UCL must be counted as part of the qualification requirements but must be excluded from the calculation of the Classification.
2.Credits accrued at UCL and awarded via the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) must be counted as part of the qualification requirements and included in the calculation of the Classification.
3.At the time of admission with RPL, the student should be advised of the number of credits which they are required to pass in order to be eligible for an Award, and the algorithm which will be used to calculate their Classification.
4.The application procedures for the Recognition of Prior Learning are defined in Chapter 1, Section 2.8: Recognition of Prior Learning for Entry to UCL.

10.2.4 Pass / Fail Degrees 

1.Subject to approval by UCL Education Committee, or its nominee, a qualification may be awarded on a Pass/Fail basis i.e. without a Classification. This must be clearly defined in the Programme Summary.

10.2.5 Study Abroad and Placements  

1.Where a programme includes an Integrated Study Abroad or Placement Year or Module, the Classification must be calculated using the standard Classification Schemes below.
2.Where a programme includes an Additional/ Extra-mural Study Abroad or Placement Year or Module, the following rules must be applied when determining the Classification:
 a)Additional/ Extra-mural Study Abroad or Placement Years must be weighted at 0 in the Classification.
 b)Additional/ Extra-mural Study Abroad or Placement Modules must be weighted at 0 in the Classification.
 c)Where a programme includes a Study Abroad or Placement Project Module, the Study Abroad or Placement Year AND the Project Module must be weighted at 0 in the Classification.
 d)Where an Undergraduate Additional/ Extra-mural Study Abroad or Placement Year is in the Final Year, the Penultimate Year must be treated as the ‘Final Year’ in the determination of the classification.

10.2.6 Academic Partnerships

1.Subject to approval by UCL Education Committee or its nominee, a UCL programme delivered under an academic partnership agreement may operate an adjusted classification scheme to take account of the learning undertaken at the partner institution. Further details can be found in Chapter 8: Academic Partnerships Framework. Adjusted classification schemes must be included in the Programme Summary and clearly explained in the Student Handbook or equivalent.

10.3 Pre-Honours Classification Scheme 

1.A student who meets the Award Requirements for a programme of study leading to a Certificate of Higher Education OR a Foundation Degree should be awarded a Pass, Merit or Distinction Classification.
 a)A Cert HE or Dip HE Interim Qualification is not eligible for a Classification (see Section 12: Interim Qualifications).
2.The Final Weighted Mark must be calculated from the following counting marks, rounded to 2 decimal places:
 

Certificate of Higher Education:

Year 1: Best 90 credits, weighted at 1.

Foundation Degree:

Year 1: Best 90 credits, weighted at 1
Year 2: Best 90 credits, weighted at 3.

3.The following rules must be used to determine the Classification:
 

Qualifies for Distinction:

A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 69.50%

or
A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 68.50% 
and
Module marks of at least 70.00% in at least 50% of the Final Year credits.

Qualifies for Merit:

A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 59.50%

or
A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 58.50% 
and
Module marks of at least 60.00% in at least 50% of the Final Year credits.

Qualifies for Pass:

Meets the Award Requirements.


10.4    Honours Degree Classification Scheme

10.4.1 General Principles 

1.A student who meets the Award Requirements for an Honours Degree should be awarded an Honours Classification.
 a)Some Undergraduate qualifications (e.g. the MBBS) do not include a Classification due to the requirements of Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Bodies (PSRBs).
2.All programmes should operate Classification Scheme A.
 a)Subject to approval by UCL Education Committee or its nominee, where a Professional Statutory or Regulatory Body (PSRB) places restrictions on the operation of Condonement, a programme may instead operate Classification Scheme B or C. The scheme in use must be clearly indicated in the Programme Summary.
 b)Subject to approval by UCL Education Committee or its nominee, Non-modular Programmes may instead operate one of the Classification Schemes defined in Section 10.8: Non-modular Programmes. The scheme must be clearly indicated in the Programme Summary.

10.4.2 Honours Classification Scheme A 

1.The Final Weighted Mark must be calculated from the following counting marks, rounded to 2 decimal places:
 

3 Year Bachelors:

Year 1: Best 90 credits, weighted at 1
Year 2: Best 90 credits, weighted at 3
Year 3: All 120 credits, weighted at 5.

4 Year Integrated Masters:

Year 1: Best 90 credits, weighted at 1
Year 2: Best 90 credits, weighted at 3
Year 3: All 120 credits, weighted at 5
Year 4: All 120 credits, weighted at 5.

1 Year Bachelors Top-Up:

Year 1: All 120 credits.

1 Year Integrated Bachelors (iBSc):

Students commencing the UCL MBBS in 2018-19 or 2019-20:

All 120 credits in the iBSc Year (Year 3 of the MBBS), Weighted at 1.

Students from external MBBS programmes commencing the iBSc in 2018-19 or 2019-20:

All 120 credits, Weighted at 1.


10.4.3 Honours Classification Scheme B 

1.The Final Weighted Mark must be calculated from the following counting marks, rounded to 2 decimal places:
 

3 Year Bachelors:

Year 1: All 120 credits, weighted at 1
Year 2: All 120 credits, weighted at 3
Year 3: All 120 credits, Weighted at 5.

4 Year Integrated Masters:

Year 1: All 120 credits, weighted at 1
Year 2: All 120 credits, weighted at 3
Year 3: All 120 credits, weighted at 5
Year 4: All 120 credits, weighted at 5.


10.4.4 Honours Classification Scheme C 

1.The Final Weighted Mark must be calculated from the following counting marks, rounded to 2 decimal places:
 

3 Year Bachelors:

Year 1: Weighted at 0
Year 2: All 120 credits, weighted at 3
Year 3: All 120 credits, weighted at 5.

4 Year Integrated Masters:

Year 1: Weighted at 0
Year 2: All 120 credits, weighted at 3
Year 3: All 120 credits, weighted at 5
Year 4: All 120 credits, weighted at 5.


10.4.5 Determination of Honours Classifications 

1.For all Honours Degree Classification Schemes, the following rules must be used to determine the Classification:
 

Qualifies for First Class Honours (1):

A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 69.50%

or
A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 68.50% 
and
Module marks of at least 70.00% in at least 50% of the Final Year credits.

Qualifies for Second Class Honours Upper Division (2.1):

A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 59.50%

or
A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 58.50% 
and
Module marks of at least 60.00% in at least 50% of the Final Year credits.

Qualifies for Second Class Honours Lower Division (2.2):

A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 49.50%

or
A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 48.50% 
and
Module marks of at least 50.00% in at least 50% of the Final Year credits.

Qualifies for Third Class Honours (3):

A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 40.00%.

2.Where a Study Abroad or Placement Year is in the Final Year, the Penultimate Year must be treated as the ‘Final Year’ in the determination of the classification. See Section 10.2.5: Study Abroad and Placements.

10.5 Graduate Classification Scheme 

1.A student who meets the Award Requirements for a programme of study leading to a Graduate Certificate or Graduate Diploma should be awarded a Pass, Merit or Distinction Classification.
 a)Where a Grad Cert Interim Qualification is an Advertised Outcome from a programme of study, students are eligible for a Classification. Where an Interim Qualification is not an Advertised Outcome, students are not eligible for a Classification (see Section 12: Interim Qualifications).
 b)Some Graduate qualifications may not include a Classification due to the requirements of Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Bodies (PSRBs). 
2.On programmes operating the Numeric Marking Scale, the Final Weighted Mark must be calculated from a credit-weighted mean of all module marks, rounded to 2 decimal places.
3.On programmes operating the Letter Grade Marking Scale, the Classification must be calculated using all credit-weighted module grades.
4.The following rules must be used to determine the Classification:
 

Numeric Marking Scale:

Qualifies for Distinction:

A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 69.50%

or
A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 68.50% 
and
Module marks of at least 70.00% in at least 50% of the credits.

Qualifies for Merit:

A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 59.50%

or
A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 58.50% 
and
Module marks of at least 60.00% in at least 50% of the credits.

Qualifies for Pass:

Meets the Award Requirements.

Letter Grade Marking Scale:

Qualifies for Distinction:

A Grade A in at least two thirds of the credits.

Qualifies for Merit:

A Grade greater than or equal to B in at least two thirds of the credits.

Qualifies for Pass:

Meets the Award Requirements.


10.6 Taught Postgraduate Classification Scheme 

1.A student who meets the Award Requirements for a programme of study leading to a Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or Taught Masters Degree should be awarded a Pass, Merit or Distinction Classification.
 a)Where a PG Cert or PG Dip Interim Qualification is an Advertised Outcome from a programme of study, students are eligible for a Classification. Where an Interim Qualification is not an Advertised Outcome, students are not eligible for a Classification (see Section 12: Interim Qualifications).
 b)Some Postgraduate qualifications (e.g. the Postgraduate Certificate in Education) do not include a Classification due to the requirements of Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Bodies (PSRBs). 
2.All programmes should operate the main UCL Classification Scheme defined in this section.
 a)Subject to approval by UCL Education Committee or its nominee, non-modular programmes may instead operate one of the Classification Schemes defined in Section 10.8: Non-modular Programmes. The scheme must be clearly indicated in the Programme Summary.
3.On programmes operating the Numeric Marking Scale, the Final Weighted Mark must be calculated from a credit-weighted mean of all module marks, rounded to 2 decimal places.
4.On programmes operating the Letter Grade Marking Scale, the Classification must be calculated using all credit-weighted module grades.
5.The following rules must be used to determine the Classification:
 

Numeric Marking Scale:

Qualifies for Distinction:

A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 69.50%

or
A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 68.50% 
and
Module marks of at least 70.00% in at least 50% of all credits.

Qualifies for Merit:

A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 59.50%

or
A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 58.50% 
and
Module marks of at least 60.00% in at least 50% of all credits.

Qualifies for Pass:

Meets the Award Requirements

Letter Grade Marking Scale:

Qualifies for Distinction:

A Grade A in at least two thirds of the credits.

Qualifies for Merit:

A Grade greater than or equal to B in at least two thirds of the credits.

Qualifies for Pass:

Meets the Award Requirements.


10.7 Research Masters (MRes) Classification Scheme 

1.A student who meets the Award Requirements for a programme of study leading to a Masters by Research Degree (MRes) must be awarded a Pass, Merit or Distinction Classification.
2.On programmes operating the Numeric Marking Scale, the Final Weighted Mark must be calculated from a credit-weighted mean of all module marks, rounded to 2 decimal places.
3.On programmes operating the Letter Grade Marking Scale, the Classification must be calculated using all credit-weighted module grades.
4.The following rules must be used to determine the Classification:
 

Numeric Marking Scale:

Qualifies for Distinction:

A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 69.50%
and
A mark greater than or equal to 70% in the Dissertation

or
A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 68.50% 
and
Module marks of at least 70.00% in at least 50% of the taught credits 
and
A mark greater than or equal to 70.00% in the Dissertation.

Qualifies for Merit:

A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 59.50% 
and
A mark greater than or equal to 60% in the Dissertation.

or
A Final Weighted Mark greater than or equal to 58.50% 
and
Module marks of at least 60.00% in at least 50% of the taught credits 
and
A mark greater than or equal to 60.00% in the Dissertation.

Qualifies for Pass:

Meets the Award Requirements.

Letter Grade Marking Scale:

Qualifies for Distinction:

A Grade A in at least two thirds of the credits which must include the Dissertation.

Qualifies for Merit:

A Grade greater than or equal to B in at least two thirds of the credits which must include the Dissertation.

Qualifies for Pass:

Meets the Award Requirements.
 


10.8 Non-Modular Programmes  

10.8.1 BA (Hons) English 

1.The Final Weighted Mark must be calculated from the following ten, equally-weighted marks:
 a)8 course units in Years 2 and 3, AND
 b)The Research Essay mark, AND
 c)The Course Assessment mark.
2.The Honours Classification must be determined using the following rules:
 

Qualifies for First Class Honours (1):

3 marks above 69 and numerical aggregate of at least 666.

Qualifies for Second Class Honours Upper Division (2.1):

6 marks above 59 and numerical aggregate of at least 590.

Qualifies for Second Class Honours Lower Division (2.2):

8 marks above 49 and numerical aggregate of at least 520.

Qualifies for Third Class Honours (3):

9 marks above 39 and numerical aggregate of at least 460.

3.The work of candidates who meet one but not both of the criteria for any given class must be referred to the External Examiner for review. The work of candidates who are close to both of the criteria for any given class but fulfil neither may be referred to the External Examiner for review. Please see Chapter 9, Section 4.3: Responsibilities of External Examiners for further details.

10.8.2 BA (Hons) Fine Art 

1.The Final Weighted Mark must be calculated from a weighted mean of the following marks, rounded to 2 decimal places:
 a)History and Theory of Art Coursework in Year 2, weighted at 10%, AND
 b)History and Theory of Art Independent Study in Year 3, weighted at 10%, AND
 c)Degree Exhibition in Year 4, weighted at 80%.
2.The mark/s from the Additional Study is/are used as a moderator in borderline cases.
3.The Honours Classification must be determined using the standard rules in Section 10.4.5: Determination of Honours Classifications.

10.8.3 BFA (Hons) Fine Art 

1.The Final Weighted Mark must be based on performance in the final year Studio Work, weighted at 100%.
2.Critical Studies is marked Pass/Fail and subsumed into the final mark for Studio Work.
3.The Honours Classification must be determined using the following rules:
 

Qualifies for First Class Honours (1):

A Final Mark greater than or equal to 70.00%.

Qualifies for Second Class Honours Upper Division (2.1):

A Final Mark greater than or equal to 60.00%.

Qualifies for Second Class Honours Lower Division (2.2):

A Final Mark greater than or equal to 50.00%.

Qualifies for Third Class Honours (3):

A Final Mark greater than or equal to 40.00%.

4.As the Classification is based on one mark, Borderline Criteria do not apply.

10.8.4 MBBS (Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery)

1.The MBBS does not include an Honours Classification, and the regulations in Section 10: Classification do not apply to this programme.
2.The iBSc does include an Honours Classification and is subject to the standard UCL regulations in Section 10.4: Honours Degree Classification Scheme.

10.8.5 MA Fine Art 

1.The Final Weighted Mark must be calculated from a weighted mean of the following counting marks, rounded to 2 decimal places:
 a)History and Theory of Art Spring Course Essay in Year 1, weighted at 5%, AND
 b)History and Theory of Art Research Essay in Year 1, weighted at 5%, AND
 c)History and Theory of Art Report in Year 2, weighted at 15%, AND
 d)Studio work in Year 2, weighted at 75%.
2.The Classification must be determined using the standard rules in Section 10.6: Taught Postgraduate Classification Scheme.

10.8.6 MFA Fine Art in the Slade School of Fine Art

1.The Final Weighted Mark must be based on performance in the Studio Work in Year 2, weighted at 100%.
2.Critical Studies is marked Pass/Fail and subsumed into the final mark for Studio Work.
3.The Classification must be determined using the following rules:
 

Qualifies for Distinction

A Final Mark greater than or equal to 70.00%.

Qualifies for Merit

A Final Mark greater than or equal to 60.00%.

Qualifies for Pass

A Final Mark greater than or equal to 50.00%.

4.As the Classification is based on one mark, Borderline Criteria do not apply.