Academic Office

Extensions to coursework

Extensions to Coursework and Extended Assessments

The following policy was approved by the 85th Meeting of the Academic Policy and Standards Committee. It sets out the circumstances in which, exceptionally, extensions to coursework and extended assessments may be approved.


Part 1

i) Extensions to hand-in dates for coursework and other extended work contributing to formal assessment will be allowed in the following circumstances:

(a) where the student has a registered disability recorded with the Student Support Unit, and;

(b) where a short extension to a deadline will enable a student to manage their academic workload effectively such that they do not suffer disadvantage by reason of their disability.

(c) where the piece or pieces of assessment are undertaken over an extended period of time, either as coursework carried out outside formal timetabled teaching sessions, or as extended assessments in the formal examination period (including take-away papers).

The rule applies only to work contributing marks to a course.

(d) Use of the policy is not restricted to clashes resulting from multiple pieces of extended-time assessment being due on the same date (although that may commonly be a reason), and its application should take into account the overall pattern of academic work being undertaken by the student during the period concerned.

(e) The use of extensions is a pre-emptive tool to enable students to manage their work. It may not be used reactively to address an emergency arising in the final stages of an assessment cycle where other appropriate mechanisms are available through the Mitigating Evidence Committee process.

(f) Applications for extensions should normally be made at least three weeks prior to the published hand-in date.

ii) In the circumstances outlined in (i) the student should apply for an extension to the Director of Student Support in the school in which they are registered. The student should indicate the extension being sought.

iii) The Director will confirm the likely impairment in consultation with the Student Support Unit and, in consultation with the course convenor of the course(s) concerned and Student Support Unit, determine an appropriate extension to the hand-in date(s). It should not be presumed that a longer piece of work will always receive a lengthier extension than a short piece.

iv) The extension will not normally exceed 5 days, and will be no more than 10 days.

v) The Director of Student Support will ensure that administrative colleagues managing examination systems are informed of the approved extension, and will advise the course convenor and Deputy Chair of the Examination Board of the extension.

vi) These procedures apply to all assessments contributing marks to a course described under (i), including assessments required as resits. The need for extensions during the September resit period should be identified at an early stage and extensions must be managed to ensure that examination board requirements for secure marks can be met.

vii) Details of extensions will be monitored by the Student Support Unit to ensure parity of treatment across the university.

Part 2

It is important that the stability and integrity of the examination system is maintained throughout, and care should therefore be taken to avoid applying extensions as a general solution to poor curriculum and assessment planning. Accordingly, and in order to meet the needs of the Disability Equality Duty and DDA, curriculum planners should identify assessment patterns likely to lead to a need for an extension and take steps, wherever possible, to reduce that need.