University of Portsmouth: impose 'no detriment' policy to remaining assessments this year

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We are in the midst of an incredibly uncertain, worrying and unprecedented time. We as students believe that it is now vital to seriously consider the wellbeing of everyone at the university, and what measures can reasonably be put in place in order to combat additional stress and anxiety. We are calling for the University to impose a 'no detriment policy' similar to what Southampton University has put into place.

We acknowledge that some measures have already been put into place, but believe more can be done not only to benefit our wellbeing, but to ensure that grades aren't negatively impacted. We have gathered the main points of our petition:

 

1. Examinations sat at home are too problematic

The implementation of a system where exams are sat at home leads to a plethora of difficulties. Many students will be at a disadvantage as their home setting cannot provide appropriate exam settings and will be too distracting for a student to perform well.

 

2. We are not performing to the best of our ability

We are in the middle of a global pandemic. Whether we're key workers, looking after at-risk family members, or just incredibly anxious about the entire situation, we are absolutely not in the right mindset to be producing our best work. 

 

3. Student and Staff Wellbeing 

In the face of a global pandemic, students are already experiencing increased stress and anxiety. Having assessments and exams on top of this will inevitably lead to some students developing mental health issues relating to stress such as depression and insomnia.

Many students have also told me of their personal circumstances, in which they are absolutely not in the position to work at their potential. The extended deadlines will not help these students out at all, as they will still be in the position they're currently in. We need a policy that protects the average grades that we've worked so hard to attain already and that, given normal circumstances, we would be achieving anyway.