A number of students have been in touch with the Union recently regarding the changes to the way your degree is calculated.
The Union and I wanted to inform you all of our understanding about the changes that have been made and find out if it is different from your understanding.
For background, the Office for Students - who regulate Higher Education institutions in the UK – asked the University (and other universities) to review the way in which they calculate degree classifications (i.e. 3rd, 2:2, 2:1, 1st etc.) as the number of “good degrees” (1st or 2:1) had increased significantly in recent years. The Office for Students believed that the methods that universities were using caused grade inflation, by essentially ignoring the bad grades in order to give better outcomes to students. Grade inflation is not good for UK Higher Education because it means that more people get 1st and 2:1 degrees, making them less valuable.
Your final degree classification is made up of 120 credits. Previously, this was made up of your third-year results, except if you had 30 credits (or 2x 15 credits) in your second year that were better than one of your 30 credit results from your third year, in which case up to 30 credits of your second-year units could be used instead.
The University of Bedfordshire’s way of managing grade inflation has been to take all 120 credits from third year to calculate degree classifications, without having the fall back of a second-year result.
Students who are in their third year currently and have already completed second year under the old system will not be affected by these changes. Current first and second years will graduate on the new system.
I understand that a number of second year students are concerned and confused about this, and feel they were not informed on this matter. As such, my fellow officers and I are making representations to the university on this topic.
If you would like to add your voice to further develop our understanding of student opinion, please use our Digital Rep system, here: this forum allows you to share views and opinions with your course mates, academic rep and the union. This is the most effective way for us to understand and evidence to the University how widely or deeply felt this is amongst the student body.
Alternatively, please feel free to email me if you would like any further information and I will do my best to track down the correct information. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Looking forward to hearing from you.
Your VP Education,