Reinstate the "no detriment" policy for final year students at the University of Edinburgh

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Back in March 2020, the University of Edinburgh launched a ‘help not hinder’ policy. This meant that that the remaining exams and coursework that students needed to complete at home after fleeing Edinburgh would be assessed on a non-detrimental basis only. The policy ensured that students’ final academic year average would be the same as, or higher than, the average they had attained through assessment that had already been undertaken. The University thankfully acknowledged that there were not normal times, and the safety net was warmly welcomed by students forced to complete their final exams and assessments in the most “unprecedented” of times.

Fourth year students in the academic year 2020/21 have not been quite so lucky. Having already faced a semester of online uni (not just a few weeks or so like in March/April), face-to-face teaching only in the rarest of instances, virtual dissertation meetings and now another national lockdown, these are some of the toughest conditions final year students have ever had to endure. And yet, somehow, we are still expected to perform as if the world isn’t falling apart around us.

The University has thus far failed to equip these students with a ‘no detriment’ policy, despite them having to deal with far more disruption to their studies than in early 2020. These students deserve the same level of protection that the Class of 2020 were afforded, if not more, and so we are calling for the ‘no detriment’ policy to be reinstated. We appreciate the University is doing all it can to help us, but a safety net is an absolute necessity at this point to protect students’ grades, mental health and trust in our educational provider. Please sign this petition if you agree that the Class of 2021 (who will end up completing 75% of their Honours modules against the backdrop of COVID-19) deserve, at the very least, the reinstatement of the ‘no detriment’ policy (based off grades achieved before March 2020).