Academic Manual


Section 6: Material Irregularity Procedure

Published for 2022-23

1.A Material Irregularity is an administrative or procedural error which has a significant, negative impact on a student’s performance at summative assessment or a situation in which the integrity of summative assessment has been compromised. A Material Irregularity may affect one student or a group of students. It does not include disagreement with an academic judgement about the quality of student work submitted for assessment.
2.Where a student has a concern about a Material Irregularity, they must follow the procedure set out in Section 7: Academic Appeals Procedure
3.Where a UCL member of staff identifies a potential irregularity in the assessment process, it must be investigated to establish whether the circumstances are material, which students have been affected and how UCL will address the irregularity.
4.Where Industrial Action affects assessment, progression, and award, guidance for staff can be found within Annex 6.6.2: Managing the Impact of the Industrial Action on Assessment.
5.Where the investigation concludes that a material irregularity has occurred, the Faculty Board of Examiners is responsible for determining an appropriate course of action in consultation with UCL Academic Services. This can be done by Chair’s Action if necessary.
6.The options open to the Faculty Board of Examiners include:
 a)Where possible, rectifying or mitigating the irregularity before the assessment takes place, OR 
 b)Offering a coursework extension, OR
 c)Suspending the late submission penalties, OR
 d)Adjusting an existing exam paper or assessment (the External Examiner must be informed), OR
 e)Offering an alternative method of assessment (approved by the External Examiner), OR
 f)Offering the student another opportunity to take the assessment as if for the first time and without penalty (Deferral with or without Tuition), OR
 g)Exclusion of the affected component/ module from Completion, Progression, Award or Classification decisions, OR
 h)Making a recommendation to the Director of Education Services or Director of Student Operations as appropriate on behalf of the Vice-Provost (Education & Student Experience) for a Suspension of Regulations, OR
 i)Where the Board of Examiners has already made a decision on Progression or Award, recommending to the Director of Education Services or Director of Student Operations as appropriate on behalf of the Vice-Provost (Education & Student Experience) that the decision is overturned and a new decision is put in its place, in consultation with the relevant External Examiner, OR
 j)A combination of the above mitigations.
7.In no circumstances should a student be awarded additional marks to compensate for the irregularity.
8. All cases must be clearly recorded in the Faculty Board of Examiners minutes and any changes to student results recorded on Portico.