UCL News


UCL announces COVID-mitigation measures for 2020-21 exams and assessments

8 February 2021

Message to students from Professor Anthony Smith, Vice-Provost (Education and Student Affairs) on behalf of UCL Education Committee.

A view of the Wilkins Building and Portico, with blue sky

UCL has today announced a package of adjustments to examination and assessment arrangements for 2020-21 to make sure you are not disadvantaged by the coronavirus pandemic.

We have listened to what you have told us about the impact of the pandemic on your life, study and support networks. This has helped the work we have done with Students’ Union UCL to develop 2020-21 COVID-19 mitigation measures to support you before, during and after assessment.

Your department will contact you as soon as possible to explain exactly what this ‘no detriment’ package means for you and your programme. 

You have told us that you are concerned that you will not be able to show what you are truly capable of and so the measures we are putting in place are designed so that you can demonstrate your full academic potential and what you have been able to achieve in the context of the pandemic. They complement the adjustments that UCL departments have already made to every aspect of your education in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

In this challenging year, all your teaching and assessments have been designed to recognise that you are working remotely, in unusual and very often not ideal circumstances and, that you have not had access to facilities such as the library in the normal way. You are experiencing the physical and mental impacts of the pandemic in a myriad of different ways, and that is why we have sought to make sure that you can access targeted support that recognises your individual situation. Staff will be marking your work understanding and taking into account the challenges that you have faced. For example, this might mean that you have drawn examples from a narrower range of reference sources than you would have done in a normal year with full access to all library facilities.

Maintaining academic standards has been a high priority also as we have made these adjustments to teaching and assessments, and we have sought to strike the right balance between supporting you properly over the coming months and our responsibility to protect the long term value of your UCL qualification, such that it remains respected by employers and universities worldwide.

Thank you once again for your patience, your commitment to your studies and rising to all the challenges that the pandemic has thrown at you. 

With best wishes,

Professor Anthony Smith
Vice-Provost (Education & Student Affairs)