No-detriment policy

by The Students' Union 06 January 2021, 13:23

Category: Students Union Petition

Voting closed

Uncapped resits petition5

This petition is calling on Oxford Brookes University to implement a no-detriment policy and offer uncapped resits for all students immediately. 


While we appreciate that the University is trying to adapt to a difficult set of circumstances, we feel that not enough has been done to protect students academically. Following the Government's announcement on 4th January, it is clear that the rest of the academic year will be fraught with further coronavirus restrictions, placing students under immense pressure to complete work in environments not suited to teaching and assessment. Due to the nature of blended/online learning, the quality of teaching students have received has undoubtedly been affected. Though this is often not the fault of either the students, lecturers or University, we feel the onus has been placed on individual students to make up for the lack of teaching quality. Students are being asked to receive grades for the work they submit this semester, despite having to juggle a change in living arrangements, poor wifi connectivity, financial difficulty, lack of access to books and technology, audio loss, screen share malfunctions and so on. This is especially true for final year students completing a dissertation, who now have no access to library resources and books needed to complete their dissertations, and placement students who’ve already had to postpone their end dates. 


The University has already made some changes in teaching and assessment which have helped mitigate some of the effects of the pandemic on students. However, we feel that this has now not gone far enough. The only way to protect and support students, is to introduce a ‘no detriment’ policy which acts as a safety net to ensure students obtain a fair grade. A no detriment policy gives examination boards the ability to take a range of actions to ensure that every student receives a grade in line with their previous pattern of results as well as previously graduating cohorts. A no-detriment policy would give students the assurance they need to complete work to the best of their ability this term. Students should also be offered uncapped resits on all coursework and exams, to ensure that every student has the opportunity to gain the best grade possible this semester. 


While we appreciate that many courses at Oxford Brookes receive professional accreditation, we believe the University needs to be working closely with professional bodies to ensure that no students are unfairly graded, regardless of PSRB status. The University should also work with partner colleges and institutions to ensure that a no detriment policy, or something as close to this as possible, applies to all students at partner institutions too. 


Many institutions have already voluntarily applied a no detriment policy. Given the uncertainty placed upon students by the Government this year, the University should be taking proactive steps to ensure that clear and effective policies are in place to avoid further anxiety, uncertainty and discrimination for students. We need uncapped resits on all assessments, and a no detriment policy applied immediately. 


The implementation of a no detriment policy may feel like an admission of failure, but it is not. Rather, it is a recognition that despite the hard work of both students and staff, difficult circumstances mean there is no way that teaching, learning and assessments will retain their pre-pandemic standard. A no detriment policy and uncapped resits would be a welcome assurance that the University will not jeopardise the futures of hard working students while it adjusts to teaching under these new arrangements. We hope the University listens to students on this issue, and implements these changes immediately. We look forward to hearing from you. 


- From the Brookes Union officer team


  • Default avatar
    Chirag Chikmagalur Raghuram   wrote, 07-01-2021 - 10:08

    We want free resit

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    Luana Dibenedetto   wrote, 08-01-2021 - 21:41

    Students really need the university’s support in this terrible situation.

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    Jessika Linhaca   wrote, 15-01-2021 - 17:36

    We’ve been paying extortionate amounts for bare minimum tuition. We’ve basically been teaching ourselves the entire course all year. We deserve uncapped resits and way more time to complete coursework than we have been given.

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    NADI GANESAN VISWANATHAN   wrote, 15-01-2021 - 19:08

    At this critical time, when the whole world without exception is reeling under unpredictable uncertain and unimaginable times,and when all of our lives are at risk, not to talk about the health, studies and future career; our lives are under suspended animation; the entire gamut of life is under threat and under a suspended dark period - nobody can make sense of anything going on, and hopefully expect not yet another lock-down; under this, we must get a solace that our financial shortages are taken care of by liberal tuition and hall fees reduction - IT IS ALL THE MORE RELEVANT FOR THE PUPILS WHO ARE STRUCK IN THEIR HALLS and it is unfair to leave them out in any reduction schemes - all students have to be treated alike and those who remain in the halls, without being able to visit their families and friends deserves equal care, if not more care.

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    Aminul Islam   wrote, 20-01-2021 - 08:35

    Resits without any additional cost should be allowed!!

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    Dominic Nicholson   wrote, 26-01-2021 - 16:15

    Compare a long distance face-time relationship to a real life physical interactive relationship with a partner or a friend. One is pixels on a screen that disappear after the end of a session, the other is an opportunity to network and work with like minded people towards shared goals and makes learning fun. The energy and the buzz is missing. The physical university experience is what people signed up for, not a restricted prison like experience where everyone is forced to wear masks, watched closely and threatened with fines and made to feel uncomfortable. This year has felt like all enjoyability has been zapped and it has become something which I did not sign up for and is very disappointing. For me I find I learn far better when I am immersed in the subject forming bonds with fellow students, lecturers and seminar leaders and learning as a group. Working solely online has made my grades really suffer as it lacks the memorability which I find comes from the experience of physical group learning and real network formation of work based relationships, not the lectures and seminars themselves. Change needs to happen as this cannot continue.

  • Default avatar
    Aminul Islam   wrote, 19-02-2021 - 17:46

    Our current full-time officers are really working hard to get this work. Hopefully, it will work soon.

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