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No Detriment Classification 2019/20

If you took assessments in 2019/20, UCL adopted a “No Detriment Classification” principle to address the severe disruption caused by Covid-19. Find out how this will affect you when you graduate

This page was last updated on 15 March 2021.


Contents:
What is No Detriment Classification?
General No Detriment Classification principle
Which ‘no detriment’ classification applies when? 
Undergraduate No Detriment
Graduate and Taught Postgraduate No Detriment
How No Detriment Classification works on your programme


What is No Detriment Classification?

For assessments taken in 2019/20, UCL adopted the “No Detriment” approach to classification recommended by the UK Office for Students and adopted by a wide range of Russell Group universities. 

No Detriment Classification aimed to ensure that no UCL student would be academically disadvantaged by the emergency changes to assessments and teaching that we needed to put in place from March to September 2020. This included adjusting assessments and adjusting classifications to reassure students going into unfamiliar assessment that they would not be disadvantaged.


General No Detriment Classification principle

The basic approach for No Detriment Classification is to use only the best 50% of any assessments taken in the 2019/20 academic session for classification purposes, unless this would disadvantage the student. 

As UCL has a wide range of different Undergraduate, Graduate and Taught Postgraduate programmes, this page explains how this broad principle applies to your specific programme.


Which ‘no detriment’ classification applies when?

As the 2019/20 assessment period was delayed as a result of Covid, with reassessments for finalists taking place in January 2021, there is an overlap between the 2019/20 and 2020/21 academic sessions. The Which ‘no detriment’ classification applies when? page explains how to understand which no-detriment rules apply in different scenarios.


Undergraduate No Detriment  

If you were in Year 1 of your programme in 2019-20:

Your assessments for Year 1 were adapted into a pass/fail 120-credit ‘capstone project’ which will be weighted at 0 in your classification. 

Example: If you were in Year 1 of a 3-year Bachelors programme in 2019/20, and your programme uses Honours Degree Classification Scheme A:

The Final Weighted Mark will be determined from the mean of the following:

• Year 1: The capstone project, weighted at 0 (No Detriment)
• Year 2: The credit-weighted mean of your best 90 credits, weighted at 3
• Year 3: The credit-weighted mean of all 120 credits, weighted at 5

Your transcript

A Supplementary First Year Module Report will be issued in addition to your Year 1 transcript and show the results of any assessment components that you completed that were subsequently replaced by the capstone module. It will include an explanatory statement about the document and the results presented on it, confirming that the results have not been used for progression or award purposes.

If you were in Years 2, 3, 4 or 5 of your programme in 2019-20:

If you completed a full year of study in the 2019-20 academic session:

You still need to meet the Progression, Award and Qualification Requirements for your programme of study, but your classification will be adjusted.

The weighted year mean for 2019/20 used in final classification will be based on your best 60 credits. If use of your best 60 credits results in a detrimental outcome, 2019/20 assessments will be excluded from the classification (weighted at 0).

Example: If you were in Year 2 of a 3-year Bachelors programme in 2019/20, and your programme uses Honours Degree Classification Scheme A, the following algorithms will be applied and you will be awarded the higher classification of the two.

The Final Weighted Mark will be determined from the mean of the following:

EITHER:
• Year 1: The credit-weighted mean of your best 90 credits, weighted at 1
• Year 2: The credit-weighted mean of your best 60 credits, weighted at 3 (No Detriment)
• Year 3: The credit-weighted mean of all 120 credits, weighted at 5.

OR:
• Year 1: The credit-weighted mean of your best 90 credits, weighted at 1
• Year 2: 0 credits (No Detriment)
• Year 3: The credit-weighted mean of all 120 credits, weighted at 5.

Where credits do not easily split in half we will work out the "best 50%" by viewing each module as a group of several modules e.g. if you achieve a mark of 73% for a module worth 45 credits, that is exactly the same numerically as if you had achieved marks of 73% in three 15 credit modules.

All modules will still appear on your transcript.

If you completed a partial year of study in the 2019-20 academic session:

If you have interrupted, or have taken resits, repeats or deferrals, you may have only taken a partial year of study in 2019/20. 

If this is the case, the best 50% of assessments taken in the 2019-20 academic session will be used in the calculation of your classification. If use of your best 50% of assessments results in a detrimental outcome, any assessments taken in 2019/20 will be excluded from the classification (weighted at 0). 

This means that:

• If you started a year of study in 2018/19 but completed some of your assessments in 2019/20: The 2018/19 assessments are not eligible for No Detriment but the 2019/20 assessments are.
• If you started a year of study in 2019/20 but will be completing some of your assessments in 2020/21: The 2019/20 assessments are eligible for No Detriment but the 2020/21 assessments are not.
• If you have taken any resits or deferrals after 11 September 2020, those assessments will not be eligible for No Detriment and will be weighted as normal in the classification.

If assessment in 2019/20 relates only to one module of 15 credits or fewer (i.e. all other assessment for the year of study has previously been completed), the module mark may be discounted from the classification if this results in a higher outcome.

If you are not on a standard classification scheme

The above principles will be adapted for programmes with non-standard classification schemes such as BA/ BFA Fine Art, BA English and 4-year Laws programmes. For 2019/20 finalists, your classification is available via Portico. For continuing students, detailed descriptions for each scheme will be confirmed with departments and published in Portico soon.

If you are on an MEng or MSci programme

Where a classification mean is used to determine progression on MSci and MEng programmes, the same principles will apply: The year mean for 2019/20 will be based on your best 60 credits. If use of your best 60 credits results in a detrimental outcome, 2019/20 results will be excluded from the progression decision (weighted at 0).

Example (please note this is just an example and does not necessarily apply to your programme): If a student was in Year 2 in 2019/20, and continuation on their Integrated Masters programme includes achieving a classification-weighted mean across Years 1, 2 and 3 of at least 55.00%, the progression decision will be determined from the higher outcome of:

EITHER:
• Year 1: All 120 credits, weighted at 1
• Year 2: Your best 60 credits, weighted at 3 (No Detriment)
• Year 3: All 120 credits, weighted at 5

OR:
• Year 1: All 120 credits, weighted at 1
• Year 2: Weighted at 0 (No Detriment)
• Year 3: All 120 credits, weighted at 5


Graduate and Taught Postgraduate No Detriment

Taught programmes

Including Taught Masters, PG Dip, PG Cert, Grad Dip and Grad Cert

You still need to meet the Progression, Award and Qualification Requirements for your programme of study, but your classification will be adjusted.

Your eligibility for a Merit or Distinction will be based on the higher outcome of:

EITHER:
a) All assessed modules

OR:
a) The best 50% of any modules assessed during the 2019-20 academic session
AND:
b) All modules assessed before or after the 2019-20 academic session

Example: A 2-year Taught Masters programme includes 90 credits in each year of study, totalling 180 credits. If you started this programme in 2019-20 and are completing it in 2020-21, your classification will be based on the higher outcome of:

EITHER:
a) All 180 credits

OR:
a) The best 45 credits assessed during the 2019-20 academic session
AND:
b) All 90 credits assessed in the 2019-20 academic session

Where credits do not easily split in half we will work out the ""best 50%"" by viewing each module as a group of several modules e.g. if you achieve a mark of 73% for a module worth 45 credits, that is exactly the same numerically as if you had achieved marks of 73% in three 15 credit modules.

If assessment in 2019/20 relates only to one module of 15 credits or fewer (i.e. all other assessment for the year of study has previously been completed), the module mark may be discounted from the classification if this results in a higher outcome.

All modules will appear on your transcript.

Pass/Fail programmes

Some UCL programmes – such as Initial Teacher Education (ITE) and some Clinical Psychology programmes - are assessed on a pass/fail basis with no classification. For these students we can’t apply No Detriment to the classification but other special arrangements were put in place for the 2019-20 academic session, such as an additional uncapped assessment attempt. 

Non-Modular programmes

The No Detriment principles have been adapted for non-standard classifications such as MA/ MFA Fine Art, and some LLM students who started at UCL before 2017/18. Detailed descriptions for each scheme will be confirmed with departments soon.

MRes programmes

If you submit your dissertation/ research project for assessment in the 2019-20 academic session, your eligibility for a Merit or Distinction will based on your Final Weighted Mark or Grade only, and the normal, separate requirement to achieve a certain mark in the dissertation/ research project will not be applied.

• If you are on a September-start programme, you will need to submit your dissertation/research project by 31 January 2021 to be eligible for No Detriment.
•If you are on a January-start programme, you will need to submit your dissertation/research project by 30 April 2021 to be eligible for No Detriment.

MRes taught modules are not automatically eligible for No Detriment Classification as most taught modules were assessed before the pandemic. However if you did take taught module assessments between March 2020 and the end of the 2019-20 academic session, and these were badly affected by lockdown, you can apply to your Faculty Board of Examiners for special consideration. You should contact your Programme Director in the first instance.

1+3 MRes/ Doctoral programmes

Some programmes include progression requirements for you to move onto the doctoral programme. If you are unable to meet the normal progression requirements, your Programme Director/ Departmental Graduate Tutor will consider the possibility of progression on a case-by-case basis.


How No Detriment Classification works on your programme

Finalists and MSci/ MEng students 2019/20

The ‘Programme Progression and Award Rules’ tool in Portico shows you the standard classification rules for your degree, and how the No Detriment policies will be applied.

To access the tool, click on the new 'My Programme' box on the 'My Studies' page in Portico. You will find the 'Progression and Award Rules' link below your programme information. 

My Programme - Portico

Finalists 2020/21 onwards

If you are due to graduate in 2020/21 onwards, the rules for your programme will be made available in Portico in the Spring term 2021. In the meantime, this webpage includes examples of how No Detriment Classification applies to different programmes. If you have any questions about how No Detriment Classification will be applied to your programme, please contact your department in the first instance.