FAQs for PGT Students started their studies in or before January 2020
- 1. How will my work be marked?
Your grades will be marked in accordance with the Common Grading Scale (CGS)
- 2. What is an alphanumeric course grade?
- 3. What is a numeric grade point?
The numeric grade point (e.g. 17.65) is the numeric grade associated with each alphanumeric course grade. The grade points are used to determine the overall course grade from a number of components (e.g. end of course exam and essay mark). They are also used to determine overall Grade Point Average (GPA).
- 4. Why does the University not round my numeric grade point?
Unrounded numeric grade points are used to calculate degree outcome. Their publication ensures close alignment of course grades and the degree outcome awarded and enhances the transparency of information provided on the degree transcript.
- 5. Why do I have rounded and unrounded grade points on my student record and/or student transcript?
Prior to academic year 2020/21, rounded grade points were released to students. Unrounded grades were, however, used to calculate GPA. The publication of unrounded numeric grade points ensures close alignment of course grades and the degree outcome awarded and enhances the transparency of information provided on the degree transcript.
- 6. How can I work out my overall grade for a course if there is more than 1 component of assessment?
Overall course grades are calculated as a weighted average of component assessments. Each assessment is awarded a grade on the CGS. Each CGS grade is associated with a numerical Grade Point (0-22). These Grade Points are used for the purposes of aggregation. By aggregating the Grade Points the overall Grade for the course can be determined. Note that the grade point is expressed to two decimal places.
For example, a course has two essays each weighted 20% and one exam weighted 60%, the Grades for which are B2, A3 and C1 respectively. The overall grade for the course would be determined as follows:
(20% x 16) + (20% x 20) + (60% x 14)
= 3.2 + 4 + 8.4
= Overall Course Grade of B3.
- 7. If I fail a subject, what happens?
In the event that you fail or fail to complete a course and wish to be awarded credit for the course, you will be required to resit. Normally, for resit calculation purposes, resit pass grades (RP) are capped at D3.
If you failed a PGT course (as a first attempt) during the period of Covid-19 (defined as 16 March 2020 to the end of the 2019/20 academic year) and were successful at a subsequent resit attempt, your passing resit grade was not capped. The grade achieved will be used for calculating your Degree Award.
In order to be eligible to take a resit, you must hold a valid class certificate. The validity of a class certificate is limited to the academic year in which it is awarded and to the academic year immediately following. Only in exceptional circumstances may the University Senate extend the validity of a class certificate. Candidates holding a valid class certificate are permitted a total of two opportunities of assessment.
If you fail a resit you will not normally be permitted to progress into the next stage of the programme. You can however attend the next stage pending your resit outcome.
For PGT resits, a pass will receive a grade of RP (resit pass); a failed paper will receive a grade of RF (resit fail).
Resits will take place as soon as possible after the initial examination diet to enable students to receive their results early in the next stage of the programme. The timing of resit examinations is determined by individual Schools.
- 8. What happens if I submit an assignment late - can alpha-numeric grades be deducted from the CGS grade that I was awarded?
Schools operate their own local policy in this regard. The course coordinators for your courses will be able to tell you the sanctions they will enforce if you submit an assignment late
- 9. What will appear on my transcript?
Your transcript will reflect all the marks you have achieved while studying at the University of Aberdeen. For each of your courses, the unrounded alphanumeric CGS grade achieved will appear on your transcript.
For PGT students who started their PGT programme before September 2014, transcripts will include both CAS marks and CGS grades. An explanation of the reason for differing marks/grades will be provided.
A Grade Point Average (GPA) will not appear on transcripts.
- 10. How will my degree be classified?
Your degree classification is based on your performance across your PGT programme as a whole.
PGT students, who will graduate in 2020/21, were undertaking their studies during the impact of Covid-19 (the period defined by the University as 16 March 2020 to the end of the academic year). As such, ‘No Detriment’ procedures apply to this cohort of students and directly impact upon how their degrees are calculated.
Students graduating in 2020/21 will have their degree classification calculated via both the Grade Point Average system and the Grade Spectrum, with students receiving the higher of the two classifications should differences occur.
The PGT Award and Classification webpage provides further information and summary and full codes of practice.
- 11. What period do the no detriment procedures apply to?
The University ceased face to face teaching on 13 March 2020 and therefore No Detriment procedures apply to assessment undertaken during the period between 16 March 2020 and the end of the 2019/20 academic year, referred to as the context, period or impact of Covid-19.
- 12. I am graduating this year; will no detriment apply to me?
Yes. We have a range of different measures which will support different students in different circumstances in different ways. Assessment that you undertook during the impact of Covid-19 will not have a detrimental impact on your degree classification when you graduate.
- 13. What is a borderline candidate?
Degree award is determined by the calculation of an aggregate Grade Point Average (GPA). Details of the GPA bands associated with each PGT award are provided below. If you are a borderline candidate, you will have achieved one particular classification, but your GPA is nearing the level required for a higher classification. As such, all borderline candidates will be considered in detail at the examiners meeting to see whether their overall performance suggests that a higher classification be awarded.
For students graduating in 2020/21, whose studies during 2019/20 were impacted by Covid-19, the No Detriment procedures widened the borderlines from 0.5 to 0.99 of a GPA point. As a direct consequence, more students will be considered as borderline at Examiners’ Meetings.
Grade Point Average
MSc with Distinction*
greater than 17.0, less than 18.0
MSc Commendation Borderline Distinction
15.0 – 17.0
MSc with Commendation#
greater than 14.0, less than 15.0
MSc Borderline Commendation
12.0 – 14.0
greater than 11.0, less than 12.0
9.0 – 11.0
greater than 8.0, less than 9.0
0 – 8.0
- 14. What happens if my performance during the impact of Covid-19 was adversely affected, but I am not classed as a borderline candidate? How does no detriment apply to me?
Exams officers for each School will look at the overall grade profile (i.e. look at all your course results together) of each final year undergraduate students before the examiners’ meeting. Any student whose grade profile indicates a negative impact of Covid-19 will be presented to the examiners meeting in addition to borderline candidates.
- 15. I have mitigating circumstances (e.g. illness, family problems), what do I do?
If illness or other personal circumstances have caused you to miss classes or may have affected your performance in all or part of an assessment, you must submit details to allow these circumstances to be taken into consideration.
Further information regarding reporting absence, including information on when you must submit supporting documentation, is available in the University’s Policy and Procedures on Student Absence.
Where illness or other good cause has impaired your performance on an in-course assessment or an examination, it is not possible for the Examiners to make a judgement about the extent of the impact and thereby to determine the compensation which should be applied to the obtained grade. Rather, where the Examiners agree that illness or other good cause has impacted on performance, the following will be followed:
- If the Examiners are confident that the assessments completed by a candidate provide evidence that they have met the learning outcomes of the course then, subject to at least 75% weighting of the assessments for the course having been completed, an overall grade for the course may be returned;
- Where less than 75% weighting of the assessments for the course have been completed, the assessment will be set aside and the candidate will be given a further opportunity of assessment with this being considered to be their first attempt.
- Where the Examiners do not consider the grounds presented to be sufficient good cause, the assessment will be treated in the same way as it would have been had no mitigating evidence been submitted. No partial compensation for good cause can be given.
- 16. What happens if I want to challenge a mark of my degree result?
Should you wish to challenge the mark you have been awarded, you should use the University’s Policy and Procedure on Academic Appeals.
Academic appeals will only be considered on grounds where:
- it is believed that the University’s procedures were not followed; or
- it is believed that the person/body making the decision did not have the authority to do so; or
- it is believed that the person or body making the decision did not act impartially; and
- a student considers that they have suffered, or could suffer, material disadvantage as a result.
- 17. One of my courses is a zero credit-rated course that I must take. How is this accounted for when my degree is classified via the Grade Point Average system?
In the case of zero credit-rated courses the relative weighting of these towards the determination of overall awards must be identified by the School and clearly stated to students.
- 18. What implications are there for a student's GPA if s/he chooses to take extra credit courses at L 2, 3, 4 or 5 (including PGT)?
If a PGT student takes extra credit, e.g. 10 credits, the GPA calculation would be out of 190 credit points and not 180 credit points
- 19. Where can students see their GPA?
The GPA is only available to students following the decision of the final exam board and submission of the award result to Registry. Students can then find out their GPA from their student record cards, available to download from their Student Hub, or by requesting a copy from the Infohub