Adopt a ''No Detriment'' policy for upcoming assessments at Middlesex University

Adopt a ''No Detriment'' policy for upcoming assessments at Middlesex University

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Millenium Gamma started this petition to Middlesex University and

*Adapted from similar university petitions.*

We are calling for Middlesex University to follow in the footsteps of other top UK universities, such as Exeter, Edinburgh, Southampton and Warwick, and implement a no-detriment policy for end of year assessments and exams.

COVID-19 is affecting every student. Online learning means we are missing out on many valuable contact hours. Many students' mental health are being negatively impacted by the pandemic. Some may not have a suitable place to study or sit exams, may have unreliable WiFi, limited access to library books or insufficient computer facilities. The virus itself may also have a very direct impact on some, becoming ill themselves or losing a loved one. All of these factors may hinder students from achieving grades which reflect their true ability. We believe the University should prioritise the wellbeing of its students and should do everything in its power to try to relieve some of the anxiety at this difficult time. 

This petition is asking Middlesex University to take into account these extraordinary and unprecedented conditions, with the introduction of a no-detriment policy. This no-detriment policy would mean that students would still have to participate in end of year assessments, but without the fear that this will negatively impact the grades we have worked so hard towards during our time at university. This would mean that as long as students obtain the pass mark of 40 in further assessments, their average will remain the same as, or higher than, the average already attained. If students achieve higher than their current average in further assessments, then they can still raise their final mark.

This type of mitigating system will help to create more equal results for students being assessed at the University. This is because it allows students to achieve a grade which reflects their work under ordinary circumstances, whilst providing an incentive to do well in summer assessments and still giving students who did not achieve their desired grades last term a chance to improve.

Another concern we have is about the future labour market implications of different universities adopting different policies on this matter. We will undoubtedly be compared to students from other universities when competing for future jobs, and it seems unfair that many will have had more stress relieving measures in place than we at Middlesex currently do. We understand that each university is a private entity but we will all be competing for the same jobs, and so we believe we should try to reach as fair and universal an outcome as possible.

Final year students, in particular, have worked for 3/4 years to get the grade they deserve. A pandemic completely out of our control, massively affecting our wellbeing and ability to work should not affect this.

Here are the articles explaining this policy in more detail from Exeter University, Edinburgh University and University of Warwick:

https://thetab.com/uk/exeter/2020/03/25/exeter-uni-implements-no-detriment-policy-for-summer-assessments-47331

https://thetab.com/uk/edinburgh/2020/03/26/breaking-no-remaining-exams-assessments-can-negatively-impact-your-course-grades-for-this-semester-65113

https://warwick.ac.uk/students/news/newsevents/summer_exams_2020_update-27-march-intermediate-final

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