Undergraduate Teaching

Allowances & rearranging coursework: Faculty Board guidelines

Allowances & rearranging coursework: Faculty Board guidelines

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Rearranging coursework & allowances: general rules

Introduction

The Faculty Board of Engineering has issued the following guidelines about the circumstances under which coursework activities may be rearranged or allowances granted. The Head of Department delegates all the responsibilities mentioned in this document to the Director of Undergraduate Education. All forms are processed via the Teaching Office.

In Parts IA and IB students' coursework assignments are set by the lab rotas issued by the Teaching Office. In Parts IIA and IIB students are to a great extent responsible for setting their own coursework timetables by signing up for lab experiments etc. associated with the modules they are doing.

Main rules

  1. Students should make all reasonable efforts to complete any missed exercises at a later date and so must first try and make rearrangements with the lab leader.
  2. Applications should be made at the time rearrangement proves not to be possible, and at latest by the end of the relevant term.
  3. Any application for an allowance must be made on the standard form. This form must be completed in full by both student and Tutor. The Tutor may be required to submit supporting medical evidence (e.g. if the period affected is over 7 days).
  4. Forms should be submitted as soon as it is clear that an allowance may be required.  No forms will be accepted after the deadlines.
  5. A total allowance of more than four weeks coursework will not normally be given, in any year.

Types of allowance

The granting of an allowance implies either:

  1. an extension of the scheduled period for completion and submission of an activity (applicable to both standard credit and positive credit activities); or
  2. the allocation of a number of marks for the activity missed, if it proves impossible to rearrange or catch up the activity. For standard credit activities, the mark allocated will normally be the qualifying mark for the activity. For positive credit exercises, any mark allocated will depend upon the student's performance in related assessed activities.

In all cases, the Director of Undergraduate Education will consider the allowance form submitted by the student and Tutor, and decide upon the type and extent of any allowance to be made. These are incorporated in the final coursework marks sent to the Chairmen of Examiners. The Teaching Office will notify the Tutor and the student of the outcome of any application.

Allowances for individual activities are described in more detail for each Part:

Reasons for arranging coursework

Reasons for seeking to rearrange course work fall into one of the following five categories:

Illness

Educationally it is always preferable to rearrange coursework missed through illness, and this should be attempted wherever practicable. If rearrangement is not possible, then students should apply for the appropriate allowance.

‘Illness’ is defined as any illness, injury or other grave cause which, in the opinion of both the student's tutor and the Director of Undergraduate Education, prevents the student from completing their scheduled coursework activities on time, or in some cases at all. 

Compassionate or religious grounds

Students will, wherever practicable, be allowed to rearrange coursework on compassionate or religious grounds (for instance, to enable them to attend a funeral, or because the coursework is scheduled on the day of a religious festival). The student concerned should try to rearrange the coursework in advance. If rearrangement proves impossible, then an application for an allowance may be made with the support of the student's tutor.

Interviews

When applying for jobs, work placements or sponsorship, students may be invited for interview on days that conflict with coursework activities. Students should in the first instance seek to rearrange the interview rather than the coursework. If this proves impossible, then the student should try to rearrange the coursework. Allowances are not normally given for coursework missed through interviews.

Sporting commitments

Coursework may not be rearranged to accommodate College sporting commitments. Students will, wherever practicable, be allowed to rearrange coursework that conflicts with University sporting competitions (i.e. representing the University of Cambridge in a competitive event) but not for training sessions.

NB. Allowances are not normally available if such rearrangement is possible.

Other reasons

If a student wishes to seek to rearrange coursework for any reason not covered by the four categories above, they should discuss the matter with the Director of Undergraduate Education.

How to rearrange coursework

Part I coursework

For Part I coursework (including sign-up sessions) students should identify an appropriate replacement slot in the timetable, in discussion with the appropriate chief technician, and then clear this with the lab leader in charge of the activity.

Contact details of lab technicians are available online: IA, IB.

 

Part II coursework

For Part II coursework, students should contact the staff member in charge of the coursework activity (e.g. lab/EAA leader or module leader). Wherever possible, arrangements should be made in advance – failure to do so when the need for rearrangement was foreseeable may result in the request being refused. In some cases, it may be necessary to apply for an extension to a deadline to allow coursework to be completed.



Part I allowances

For lab experiments and projects, drawing and computing, students should make every attempt to complete the missed activity at a later date. Allowances of marks will not normally be granted for the Engineer in Society report or the Product Design project (in IA), or the Sustainable Engineering poster (in IB), unless illness is continuous from the date the task is set to the date on which submission is due. The credit available for IA activities can be found here and for IB activities here.

Part IA summary

Application deadlines: One week after the end of Michaelmas and Lent Full Terms for activities missed in those terms. All other applications must be received by one week after the last Part IA lecture in Easter Term.

Activity

Deadline extension

Marks

Dimensional analysis

Microprocessors

Not applicable

Yes, if lab cannot be rearranged

Drawing and computing

Yes

Not normally, and only if activity cannot be rearranged

Statics experiment, exposition

Yes

Yes, if activity cannot be rearranged

Lab experiments

Short labs - N/A
Long labs - Yes

Yes, if lab cannot be rearranged

Structural design project
Integrated electrical project

Yes

Yes, but not if the student can join another project group

Engineer in society report
Product design project

Yes

Yes, but only if illness is continuous from date when task was set to handing in date

Part IB summary

Application deadlines: One week after the end of Michaelmas and Lent Full Terms for activities missed in those terms. All other applications must be received by one week after the last Part IB lecture in Easter Term.

Activity

Deadline Extension

Marks

Lab experiments

Short labs - N/A
Long labs - Yes

Yes, if lab cannot be rearranged

Computing

Yes

Not normally, and only if activity cannot be rearranged

Integrated design project

Yes

Yes, but not if the student can join another project group

Sustainable engineering poster

Yes

Yes, but only if illness is continuous from date when task was set to handing in date

 



Allowances

Overview

During the Michaelmas and Lent terms, Part IIA undergraduates submit a minimum of 8 reports/essays associated with modules, and 2 full technical reports (FTR), and complete an Extension Activity (ExA). During the Easter term, students undertake 2 projects.  Students are expected to make all reasonable efforts to complete missed experiments, FTRs and ExAs at a later date, and should contact the member of staff in charge of the activity concerned as soon as possible. 

An allowance of marks will not normally be made for more than the coursework for 4 modules and an ExA. Applications should be made at the time rearrangement proves not to be possible, and at latest by the end of the relevant term. Allowance forms can be downloaded here.

Part IIA projects

Students are expected to complete as much as possible of the work associated with their two projects, but the four week timetable imposes tight constraints.  If there is any significant disruption to your project work (whether or not a report deadline is missed), you must notify your Tutor, project leader(s) and the Director of Undergraduate Education by email immediately, and the Tutor should submit a IIA project allowance form (NB: this is not the standard form used for all other allowances).  If the deadline for any report is missed, a form must be submitted by the student’s Tutor within three working days of the report deadline.

Following first notification of disruption of a project due to illness, weekly consultations involving the Director of Undergraduate Education, project leader(s) and Director of Studies will be required until the project is back on track.  This is in order to determine reasonable extensions to deadlines, or to agree a reduced or alternative submission of project work if appropriate.

Extensions for interim reports may be made until the final project deadline. Extensions for final reports are limited to a maximum of four days, and only in exceptional circumstances, since the Examiners must publish the final class lists two weeks after the submission date. An allowance of marks may be made only if a substantial part of the project work has been submitted, with the total mark being extrapolated in suitable proportion.  Note that allowances are considered separately for each project, i.e. marks awarded for one project will not be used as a basis for awarding marks on the other project.  Failure to submit any reports on a project will be treated in the same way as a missed examination: zero marks awarded.

Summary

Application deadline: Applications for coursework in Michaelmas and Lent Terms must be made on an Allowance form and received by one week after the end of the relevant Full Term. All other applications must be received by the Wednesday of the last week of Easter Full Term.

Activity

Deadline extension

Marks

Lab experiments and management exercises

Yes

Yes, but not if it is possible to reschedule. Allowance will not normally be made for more than four experiments/exercises

Full technical reports

Yes

Not normally

Extension Activity

Yes

Yes, but not if student can join another group

Easter term projects:
- Interim reports
- Final reports

 
Yes
No (or up to 4 days in exceptional circumstances)

 
Not normally, and only if a substantial part of the project work is submitted

 



Part IIB allowances

Module coursework

Students are expected to make all reasonable efforts to complete any missed coursework, normally during the term in which the module is taught or the following vacation. Extensions to deadlines are expected to cater for most circumstances in Part IIB. Students should notify the relevant group administrator if they need to submit work late, because of illness, but the extension must be authorised by the Director of Undergraduate Education using the allowances form. Module leaders will apply lateness penalties, which will be removed if the extension is approved. Extensions may not be negotiated ad-hoc with the group administrator or module leader.

Coursework extensions will not normally be permitted beyond the start of the term following that of the module.

If it is impossible to complete a piece of coursework, an allowance of marks may be made, if it is possible to base a fair mark on a partial submission or an alternative exercise arranged with the module leader, with marks being extrapolated in suitable proportion.  Failure to submit any coursework for assessment on a module will be treated as follows:

  • for 25% coursework modules: award the average mark obtained on the associated exam, if taken;
  • for 100% coursework modules: zero marks awarded. Referral may be made by Tutors to the University Applications Committee.

Projects

Also see the information on Part IIB project deadline problems.

Extensions to deadlines are expected to cater for most circumstances. Students unable to give their presentations at the scheduled times should notify their project supervisor as soon as possible. Students will be asked to join another group, or a one-off presentation may be arranged. Similarly, progress reviews may be rearranged due to illness. In either case, an extension must be applied for through the Teaching Office. If rescheduling proves impossible, an application may be made for an allowance of marks.

Extensions to deadlines will be permitted for good cause for the technical milestone report and the final report (limited to ten days inclusive of weekends for the final report). Allowances of marks will not normally be awarded, and only for cases in which a substantial partial submission has been made. Failure to submit any project reports for assessment will be treated in the same way as a missed examination: zero marks awarded and referral by Tutors to the University Applications Committee.

Given the overall importance of project work in part IIB, students are encouraged to ask their tutors to document any significant disruption due to illness during the year as soon as it occurs, without specific claim for an extension.  For these purposes, notification may be by email to the project supervisor, director of studies and Director of Undergraduate Education.

Summary

Application deadline: Applications for coursework in Michaelmas and Lent Terms must be received by one week after the end of the relevant Full Term. All other applications must be received by the Wednesday of the last week of Easter Full Term.

Activity

Deadline extension

Marks

Coursework associated with modules

Yes

25% coursework modules: yes if exam also taken

100% coursework modules: no

Project reports

Yes.

For the final report it is limited to ten days (inclusive of weekends).

Not normally, and only if substantial part of the project work is submitted

Project presentations/progress reviews

Yes. Consult supervisor to rearrange.

Yes, but only if rearrangement proves impossible

 



MET Part II allowances

Part IIA

In MET Part IIA, the major project is a group activity which runs throughout the year. A candidate may receive an allowance for absences totalling over two weeks, but an allowance will not normally be made for more than four weeks absence or where more than one submission is involved. For other coursework assignments, which may include reports, essays and exercises, an extension of up to two weeks may be allowed.

Applications for credit for missed industrial visits or debrief sessions must be made using the MET Application form.

Application deadline: Applications for other coursework in Michaelmas and Lent Terms must be received by one week after the end of the relevant Full Term. All other applications must be received by the Wednesday of the last week of Easter Full Term.

Activity

Report deadline extension

Marks

Michaelmas and Easter term project

Yes

Yes, for absences totalling over two weeks but not for more than four weeks absence or more than one submission

Other coursework assignments

Yes, up to 2 weeks

Not normally

Part IIB

MET Part IIB is organised on a modular basis and thus even a comparatively short absence through illness or injury may make it unreasonable to expect a candidate to complete a particular module assessment exercise or industrial assignment. Hence allowances may be made.

Application deadline: Applications for coursework in Michaelmas and Lent Terms must be received by one week after the end of the relevant Full Term. All other applications must be received by the Wednesday of the last week of Easter Full Term.

Activity

Deadline extension

Marks

Module assessment exercises and industrial assignments.

Yes

Yes, for absences which make it unreasonable to expect candidates to complete a particular exercise or assignment

 

Last updated on 24/09/2013 16:47