This archival information applied to finalist undergraduates and students on integrated Master's programmes in the academic year 2019/20.
Will I be classed?
All final-year undergraduate students and fourth-year students on integrated Master’s programmes will have the opportunity to receive a classed degree.
Most third-year students on integrated Master’s programmes will have the opportunity to receive a classed degree, if it is necessary for their progression to the fourth year of study or if they intend to graduate after their third year.
The University is adopting a ‘safety net’ for final-year undergraduate students. It will apply to some integrated Master’s students, detailed in the section below.
The ‘safety net’ means that, as long as a final-year undergraduate student passes their assessments, they will not receive a class lower than the class they were awarded in their second-year exams in the same or different Tripos. The 2020 assessments will therefore only confirm the class awarded in their second year or improve it. Therefore, if you were awarded a 2.1 in your second-year exams, you will not receive lower than a 2.1.
Final-year undergraduate students must take the 2020 assessments they have been set and must pass them. This can be either in the main assessment period or the second assessment period, depending on your circumstances.
The marks awarded will be included on your University transcript. Your degree class will be determined on the basis of the marks achieved, except where this potentially results in you being awarded a class lower than the one you achieved in your second year. In these circumstances, the class you were awarded in your second year will be awarded in 2020 and recorded on the University transcript.
What if I wasn’t classed in second year?
If you were not classed in your second year (if, for example, you received an allowance) the safety net will not automatically apply with reference to your first-year result.
Students who were not classed in their second year should take their assessments in either the first or second assessment period. If when assessed, your final-year classification is lower than your first-year result, you can apply via your College to the Examination and Assessment Mitigation (EAMC) Committee for a review.
When assessing your situation, the EAMC will look at:
- Your first-year result and marks
- Any marks from your second year
- Any marks from any third-year assessment
- Other evidence of the quality of your work in your third year, including supervision reports and marks on formative assessment, such as essays or mock exams.
If the EAMC concludes that you were capable of achieving a higher class than the one you were awarded, they will make a recommendation to the Chair of Examiners to award a higher class. This recommendation will be considered by the Chair of Examiners and up to (any) two examiners. If approved, the higher class will appear on the transcript.
Safety net for integrated Master’s students
As a result of detailed discussion with relevant Faculties and Departments, the safety net for integrated Master’s courses will apply as follows:
- Category A — The safety net will apply to Category A courses, where the fourth year of the course is fully integrated into the undergraduate portion of the course and the modified assessment which has been arranged will provide a student with the opportunity to be classed. These courses are: Chemical Engineering, Manufacturing Engineering, Natural Science Tripos (except Astrophysics).
- Category B — The safety net will not apply to the Category B course Computer Science because Part III is not fully integrated with Part II and is effectively a stand-alone Master's course.
- Category C — The safety net will not apply to Category C courses because there will be a pass/fail assessment in the summer and students will be given the opportunity to return to Cambridge when the University is operational again to sit exams to obtain a class. These courses are: Astrophysics and Engineering.
Safety net for Part II Maths
For Part II Maths, the safety net will take the following form: Students will take an online pass/fail exam and those who are successful will receive the class awarded in their second year exams. Successful students will be given the opportunity to take a conventional Part II exam (not online) at a later date and, if they achieve a better result in this exam, then their class in Part II will be upgraded. Taking the conventional exam will likely require students to return to Cambridge.
Safety net for fourth-year undergraduates
Fourth-year undergraduates (such as those studying the Management Studies Tripos) have the safety net from their third-year result, not their second year. The intention being that you can rely on the result from your last classified exam.
Where a fourth-year undergraduate was not classed in their third year, but was classed in their second year it will be possible to rely on their second-year class as their safety net. This includes students who were on a Year Abroad in their third year.
What if I can’t take my assessments in Easter Term 2020?
If you are unable to take your assessments in Easter Term 2020 for any of the reasons mentioned in the general assessment guidance you will be expected to take them in the second assessment period. Please be aware that sitting your assessment in the later period will impact when you will be able to graduate.
If you are unable to take any assessment either in the first or second assessment period, or you can only take some of the assessment, you should speak with your College about making an application for an allowance to the Examination Access and Mitigation Committee.
One of the allowances available to finalists is Deemed to have Deserved Honours (DDH). This means that the evidence indicates that the student would normally have achieved Honours in the examination.