Marking scales and non-numeric marks

The University has two marking scales and a series of marks which all examiners should use.

Faculties and schools (other than the Schools of Medicine and Dentistry in relation to the MBChB and BChD programmes) must mark undergraduate and postgraduate modules, exam scripts and other assessed work on one or other of the University's marking scales:

  • 0-100 
  • 20-90 

Teaching schools may elect to use one of these scales for publishing module marks and returning marks to the Exams team but a single scale must be used consistently within a school and the marking scale being used should be declared to students and the Exams team.

All assessed work is marked, within the relevant scale, according to the achievement represented. In both scales the mark of 40 corresponds to a borderline third and 70 to a borderline first.

0-100 marking scale

The full range of marks from 0-100 is available. 

20-90 marking scale 

Marks are awarded in the range 20-90. The mark of 0 is no longer used for modules that are assessed on this scale, so 20 is the lowest mark that can be given. The only exception to this is when a mark of 0 is given as a penalty for plagiarism, and in these cases a mark of 0G (awards credit) and 0H (withholds credit) will need to be recorded as the module mark to indicate whether or not the student has been awarded the credits. The penalty mark will remain as 0 when calculating the classification. 

A mark of AB (Absent from exam/failed to produce coursework) should still be used to signify that the student was absent from the whole exam and failed to submit any assessed work required irrespective of whether this is deliberate or not. AB will translate to a module grade of 2.0 for classification purposes.

Any marks of 0 that have been recorded in Banner in the past will remain as 0, but in the classification tool they will be changed to 20 (2.0) for the calculations. 

Marks used 

The following table includes all non-numeric grades/marks approved for use within all the University's grading schemes. Schools may elect to mark/grade individual modules on the University's standardised 20-90 scale or on the full/extended 0-100 scale. The marks with an asterisk are not for use in taught postgraduate modules. Fuller descriptions of the situations in which these marks are used is given below the table.

40 - 90/100* Pass marks (undergraduate module levels 1, 2, 3 and 4)
0/20 - 39* Fail marks with resit opportunity (undergraduate module levels 1, 2, 3 and 4)
50 - 90/100 Pass marks (postgraduate level M)
0/20 - 49 Module failed (postgraduate level M)
AB Absent from exam/failed to produce coursework
S* Performance derisory - denied an August resit opportunity; or the format of the resit is unsuitable to be assessed in August
V Compulsory module component(s) incomplete - credits denied
C Module component(s) incomplete owing to Special Circumstances
D Deferred mark
G Plagiarism penalty - credits awarded 
H Plagiarism penalty - credits withheld
I Incomplete pending investigation of plagiarism
P Pass
F Fail
Z Student either temporarily or permanently withdrawn/appeared on marksheet in error

Some of the above marks can be combined in the following ways:

  • PV
  • PC
  • FV
  • FC
  • ABV
  • ABC
  • ABS*.

Description of marks

Grades/marks including a decimal point are not permitted. Where a non-numeric code constitutes a part of a grade/mark, this must be recorded in upper case. Further information is given in the Rules for Award.

The use of 39N and 49N has been discontinued from the 2014/15 session.

40 - 90/100* (pass marks - undergraduate modules only)

Where a candidate has completed the requirements of a level 1, 2, 3 or 4 module and achieves a mark of 40 or more in that module they are deemed to have passed that module and will be awarded the credit for it. No further attempt is permitted.

0/20 - 39* (fail marks with resit opportunity - undergraduate modules only)

Where a candidate has completed the requirements of a level 1, 2, 3 or 4 module and achieves a mark of 39 or less in that module, they are deemed to have failed that module and will not awarded the credit for it.

For schools marking on the University 20 - 90 module grade scale, a mark of "20" (or "AB" if appropriate - see below) should be recorded for those who have failed to produce any work worthy of assessment. The minimum mark for any serious attempt is 20.

A candidate will be permitted a resit in the module at a time permitted under the rules for progression. They will have up to a total of three attempts at the assessment. The maximum mark that can be awarded for a resit is 40.

Exam Boards can in some circumstances allow a student to retake an assessment as a "first attempt". In this situation, the full range of marks is available.

50 - 90/100 (pass marks - postgraduate modules only)

Where a candidate achieves a mark of 50 or more in an M level module, they are deemed to have passed that module and will be awarded the 'M' level credits for it. No further attempt is permitted.

0/20 - 49 (fail marks with resit opportunity - postgraduate modules only)

Where a candidate has completed all the requirements of an M level module and achieves a mark of 49 or less in that module, they are deemed to have failed that module and will not be awarded the credit for it.

For schools marking on the University 20 - 90 module grade scale, a mark of "20" (or "AB" if appropriate - see below) should be recorded for those who have failed to produce any work worthy of assessment. The minimum mark for any serious attempt is 20.

A candidate will be permitted a (single) resit in the module at a time permitted under the rules for progression. The maximum mark that can be awarded for a resit is 50.

Exam Boards can in some circumstances allow a student to retake an assessment as a "first attempt". In this situation, the full range of marks is available. 

AB (absent from examination/failed to produce coursework)

Signifies that the student was absent from the whole examination and failed to submit any assessed work required for a module irrespective of whether this is deliberate or not. If unredeemed on a further examination allowed as a first attempt or on re-examination this translates to a module grade of 2.0 for classification purposes. (Examiners should use the "V" and "C" codes below to indicate where only part of the assessed work or exam has been completed.)

S*- for undergraduate modules only:

i) to indicate that the Module Board has determined that the student should be denied a resit in August on the grounds of exceptionally poor performance at the first attempt. It is used only in exceptional circumstances;

ii) to indicate the format of the resit is unsuitable to be assessed in August.

The suffix S is not shown on a student transcript; the numeric mark achieved at the first attempt will be shown.

V (compulsory module component(s) incomplete - credits denied)

A grade with the suffix V signifies mandatory criteria (such as submission of mandatory components or meeting minimum accreditation requirements) have not been met. The V suffix is used to show that the module is not passed and credit is not awarded (if a pass mark). If the V remains unredeemed on classification; the maximum classification grade of 3.9 for undergraduate modules and 4.9 for taught postgraduate modules should be used. The transcript will show 'INC' to signify that the work is incomplete.

For a student to redeem a V, a deadline for the submission of outstanding work must be set by the faculty/school; on submission of the outstanding work to a satisfactory standard, the suffix is removed and credit awarded. The final module grade is unchanged, except for the removal of the V. Once the V is removed, the normal rules on the classification grade apply and the mark appears on the transcript.

C (module component(s) incomplete owing to Special Circumstances1 )

A grade with the suffix C signifies that one or more elements of assessable work remain to be presented or completed, owing to special circumstances. The original grade should reflect only the proportion of assessable work that has actually been done. Where no work has been completed (a deferred mark) 0C or 20C should be returned. 

For a student to redeem a C, a deadline for the submission of outstanding work must be set by the faculty/school; on submission of the outstanding work, the grade is recalculated to include the marks awarded for the submitted work and the suffix is removed. If unredeemed, the mark stands unless some mandatory criteria has not been met. Then the V mark replaces the C.

D (deferred assessment through teaching arrangements)

The D suffix is not used to signify a grade or mark but to identify the position in which the grades/marks for all students following a particular module is deferred due to a specific teaching pattern. The use of this suffix awards credit.

G (plagiarism penalty - credits awarded)

This can be used with any mark from 0 to 99 to indicate a plagiarism penalty. It will award credit where the mark is less than the pass mark.

H (plagiarism penalty - credits withheld)

This can be used with any mark from 0 to 99 to indicate a plagiarism penalty. It will withhold credit where the mark is more than the pass mark and would normally receive credit.

I (incomplete pending investigation of plagiarism)

Indicates that a mark is not available due to an ongoing investigation into possible plagiarism.  The "I" is a temporary mark and should be amended as follows once an outcome has been reached:

  • If the student is found not guilty of plagiarism, the "I" mark should be replaced with the actual mark that the student achieved.
  • If the student is found guilty of plagiarism, the "I" mark should be replaced with the penalty mark "0H". 

P (pass)

Denotes a pass in a study abroad or work placement module which is being marked on a pass/fail basis.

F (fail)

Denotes a fail in a study abroad or work placement module which is being marked on a pass/fail basis.

Z (no mark required2)

Indicates that a student has either temporarily or permanently withdrawn from the University or should not have appeared on a particular mark list, for example through administrative error or through having received APEL for the module concerned.

Students who have already withdrawn will show on the mark list as WD.

* marks not for use in postgraduate modules.

Combinations

  • ABS - Signifies that the student was absent from the exam or failed to submit coursework (on a module assessed by 100% coursework) and is debarred from re-sitting the module in the August re-examination period and forfeits the second attempt.
  • ABV - Signifies that the student was absent from the exam or failed to submit coursework (on a module assessed by 100% coursework) and that one or more elements of assessable work remain to be presented and that it/these must be passed before credit can be awarded
  • ABC - Signifies that the student was absent from the exam or failed to submit coursework (on a module assessed by 100% coursework) and that one or more elements of assessable work remain to be presented owing to Special Circumstances 1.
  • PC - Denotes a pass in module which is being marked on a pass/fail basis and one or more elements of assessable work remain to be presented owing to Special Circumstances 1.
  • PV - Denotes a pass in a module which is being marked on a pass/fail basis and one or more elements of assessable work remain to be presented and that it/these must be passed before credit can be awarded.
  • FC - Denotes a fail in a module which is being marked on a pass/fail basis and one or more elements of assessable work remain to be presented owing to Special Circumstances 1.
  • FV - Denotes a fail in a module which is being marked on a pass/fail basis and one or more elements of assessable work remain to be presented and that it/these must be passed before credit can be awarded.

1 'Special circumstances' can be defined as any situation which would normally involve further action e.g. consideration of mitigating circumstances at departmental exam boards or a case submitted to the FSCC.

2 Z should be entered via Banner with an annotation on the hard copy of the mark sheet to inform the Exams Team of the reason why the student should not have appeared on the marksheet or, if the student has withdrawn, whether the withdrawal is permanent or temporary.