The lastest on the UCU Marketing and Assessment Boycott action.
Yesterday (1 June 2023) your SU President, Education Officer, and elected student Senate Rep attended an additional meeting of University Senate to discuss measures to mitigate against the current UCU Marking and Assessment boycott (MAB). The University has created a set of measures, currently just for undergraduate finalist students (postgraduate taught, continuing undergraduate, and doctoral are still to be written), to ensure the quality of degrees awarded is maintained and plans for summer graduation ceremonies.
Officers have been continuously lobbying the University behind the scenes on this emerging issue daily for the past couple of months, to ensure that likely student concerns were considered when creating a response.
At this meeting of Senate, the SU members abstained from the vote regarding the measures. Prior to the meeting, the contents of the paper were confidential so we could not share with you to gather your feedback to inform our vote. Following the referendum held in February students voted for The SU to not support UCU action for the remainder of this academic year, which includes this MAB.
Officers also read out a statement at Senate which recognised the significant impacts that many of our students have faced not only this year but in recent previous years.
The meeting of Senate voted to approve the measures outlined in the paper outlining how?final year undergraduate students affected by the MAB will receive marks and awards, as well as the effect on graduation ceremonies.?
The approved recommendations included that in some cases where there will be delays to the release of final marks, some students will be awarded interim marks. To ensure the quality of degrees, some students will experience assessment marking delays. This unfortunately means that some students may temporarily have missing marks. In the case that a final classification cannot be made due to missing marks, students may be awarded with an interim award based on what a student is eligible for given the marks and credits they already have.? ?
Ceremonies will still be continuing for all students expecting to graduate this summer but with two alterations. The first is that students will be called up by course rather than by qualification. This is to ensure all students are treated the same whether they have already received their finalised award or not. The second is that students who have not received?their final award at the time of their ceremony will be provided with a letter explaining their situation, instead of a certificate. These will be in identical envelopes to ensure there is no visible difference. Students will be notified in advance if they are not going to receive their final award.?
Due to the complexity of the boycott, we do not know how many students will be impacted, and to what extent as this goes down to an individual unit level. Some students may not be impacted at all, and others may see significant impacts. If you are uncertain about whether you might be affected or not, please speak to your Director of Studies. We hope that the University will release further details soon, with updates sent to your Department so that they can support you and answer your questions, as well as updating the student FAQ page.
We understand that this is an uncertain time for you, and you want to know how, and to what extent, you may be impacted by the boycott and what this may mean for your marks. We are continuing to meet with the University frequently and will be feeding in your concerns and questions to ensure that the University is responding. To help us to do this, please complete our feedback form with any concerns or questions you have.
We understand this may be upsetting news for many of you and would like to assure you that as the SU, we are doing all that we can to work with the University to mitigate these effects and will continue to feedback student questions and concerns.
For independent advice on how to appeal a final result or make a complaint, please contact the SU Advice Team in confidence at firstname.lastname@example.org
For advice on how the measures will affect your particular situation, please speak to your Director of Studies.
To speak to someone if you are feeling anxious or concerned the Be Well – Talk Now service is available 24 hours a day by phone or online chat.
If you have any concerns or queries, the University also has a central email you can contact email@example.com
We will also be organising a student Town Hall online event where you can directly ask your questions and share your concerns with the University. Further details will be announced once a date is finalised.
This is a challenging time for all and we want to assure you that we will continue to do everything we can to make the student voice heard.