Frequently asked questions about....academic problems
NB; depending on the year you started your course, you will have different course regulations to follow, these can be found here.
i haven't received my results, what can i do?
If they are not on Moodle and you have not received them by post by the end of June, you must chase this up with your student HUB immediately. Any errors or issues that you have with your results will need to be looked at as soon as possible as there are strict deadlines for academic appeals.
help, i've failed a unit! What can i do?
The most important thing to remember is that this should not mean the end of your university career.
For first and second year undergraduates you will be allowed to re-sit the failed assessment(s) but it will be capped at 40% (meaning that you cannot get a higher mark that this). This re-sit will be in August unless you have failed more than 60 credits and then you will not be able to re-sit until the following May. This means that you cannot enter the next year of your course until you have passed these re-sits.
If you re-sit in August and fail you will be given one further re-sit opportunity (the following May) but ONLY if you ‘engage’ with the first re-sit in August i.e. attend the re-sit exam or re-submit the failed assignment. If you cannot ‘engage’ with the August re-sit (due to Exceptional Factors, sadly having booked a holiday doesn’t count!), come and see us to discuss what options you have before the date of your re-sit.
Final year students normally also get two re-sit opportunities, but if you fail the first re-sit (August) you won’t be able to qualify for an honours degree but will receive a Pass Degree. If you have Exceptional Factors, come and see us to chat about them.
Postgraduate students are normally allowed to re-sit up to 60 credits on two occasions but they must ‘engage’ with the first attempt (which is usually in August). If you fail more than 60 credits you will fail the course unless you have had personal difficulties or illness which contributed to you failing (known as Exceptional Factors). Re-sits will be capped at 50%. Postgraduate students may have further specific regulations to follow so ensure that you are up to date with them. http://www.mmu.ac.uk/sas/studentservices/guidance/
For further advice on re-sits see our booklet - Academic Problems and Academic Appeals which can be downloaded
from the website, or contact us at the Advice Centre.
When will i have to do my re-sits?
For most courses at MMU, results are normally sent out in June each year, after all examinations and assignments are submitted. It should be clear from your results letter if you have to do any re-sits. If you have to re-sit, you will normally be expected to do this as soon as possible with the re-sit period normally being during the summer holidays in August. However, if you have failed a lot of credits (more than 60), you will not be able to sit them in August but will have to re-sit them during the next academic year.
If you do August re-sits but fail again or have to sit more than 60 credits, you cannot progress on to the next level of your course until you have passed them. You will have to re-sit the following May and the University will decide if you have to ‘attend’ the unit(s) again or ‘repeat the unit (s) without attendance’. Both options can have financial implications so come and see us to discuss this further.
You should be aware that if you repeat without attendance you will not
usually be able to get any student loans or grants for that year (unless you have significant hardship) and you cannot
apply for benefits such as Job Seekers (unless you have children or disabilities). Many students struggle financially in this circumstance but come to see us
to discuss what your options will be.
I've only failed one unit - do I have to wait until next year before I can continue on my course?
You should be able to re-sit one module in the August re-sit period. If you do not pass it then it is likely to mean you have to delay your course by a year whilst you re-do it. This is because the university expects you to pass all units before progressing onto the next stage of your studies. There will be financial implications of repeating the following year so please come and see us to discuss this further.
what is condonement and can I have it?
In some cases, if you achieve 35-39% in a unit (undergraduate) or 45-59% (postgraduate) you may be condoned in the unit. This means that you will not have to re-sit it but you will be considered to have passed it. Unfortunately not all courses or academic years have condonement so do not expect that you will be able to have it. Your academic year specific regulations will determine if you are eligible.
What if exceptional circumstances have been affecting my ability to do my assessments?
If your results have not yet been issued, you should inform the University of the difficulties that you are having using the Exceptional Factors procedures. You should contact your student HUB to see if you are in time to submit the form as the Exceptional Factors Panels meet on set dates.
You will need to include a detailed statement stating WHAT HAPPENED, WHEN IT HAPPENED and HOW your studies have been affected - and provide evidence.
If the Panel accepts that your performance was affected by Exceptional Factors then they will decide on what outcome to recommend, such as extra time for submission of coursework or being allowed to re-do the assessment “as if for the first time” – it all depends on the circumstances.
More information can be found in our Exceptional Factors leaflet and Academic Appeals booklet. If you are too late to submit Exceptional Factors then you may need to use the University’s academic appeals procedures – please see below.
The exceptional factors panel have already met. What can i do?
If you are too late to submit an Exceptional Factors form, you may have to use the Academic appeal procedures instead but only once your results have been issued. You will need to complete an appeals form, you will still have to do a statement and get evidence, such as a GP letter.
Importantly you will need to state why you did not let the University know about your Exceptional Factors before. You must submit your appeal form within 14 days from the date of your results letter. You must have very good reasons for them to accept an appeal later than 14 days.
For further reading see our Appeals booklet and MMU’s guidance on appeals.
Contact us at the Advice Centre if you would like help with your appeal.
I'm struggling with particular aspects of my course, what can I do?
There is a lot of support available to you depending on what exactly you're struggling with. If you are having problems grasping what you are being taught, you should speak to your tutor or unit leader for further guidance – they should be approachable and willing to answer further questions to help you try and get your head around the subject.
Alternatively, if you're struggling with academic skills like note taking, essay planning or referencing, contact your Faculty Student Support Officer.
If you are struggling due to dyslexia or another disability, the Learner Development Service should be able to help you.
If you are feeling stressed by all the work, the Counselling Service can help with one-on-one sessions and group workshops on stress busting and relaxation techniques. The Counselling service may also be able to help if you have other, more personal issues that are making things difficult for you and affecting your studies.
Finally if you are unsure of where to go, come and see us at the Advice Centre
and hopefully we can point you in the right direction.
I’ve received a letter accusing me of plagiarism, will they kick me off my course?
If this is your first offense this is unlikely!
Plagiarism has several meanings and depending on your year of study and whether you have done it before the penalties vary. You should contact us for an appointment to discuss what outcome you may receive and bring along all the relevant paperwork, including the actual assignment and any evidence of plagiarism that your department has sent you.
If you do not have any paperwork, go to your student HUB and request a copy. We may also be able to attend the meeting with you if we are given enough notice. For more information on plagiarism look at our Plagiarism leaflet and MMU’s guidance on plagiarism.
I’m not happy with my course, can i change to something else?
This is a fairly common situation and so can be a straightforward process. You could try speaking to your Programme Leader (or equivalent), as it might be that the course will improve or become more suited to you. You are encouraged to also speak to your Faculty Student Support Officer.
You could chat with Careers to discuss your future career path.
You should then approach the Programme Leader of the new course to discuss the possibility of a transfer and complete the transfer form available from your student HUB.
Transfers can be refused but you could seek similar courses in other Uni’s if you wish.
You should contact us to discuss the possible financial implications of any course change, especially if you have studied more than one year at University. You may also want read our Academic Problems booklet.
I’ve made a huge mistake, uni is not for me. how do i leave?
University is not for everyone. However, before you just leave us, have you considered the fact that you may be on the wrong course? You could see about transferring to a different course (see above).
There may be other reasons why you want to leave, such as financial or personal reasons. Please come and speak to us as we may be able to help you to resolve these issues or we can look at other options such as taking time out of your studies (deferring/suspending). It’s best to come and talk to an adviser because there will be financial implications if you suspend or withdraw.
If you do decide you really want to leave, then come along to the Advice Centre and speak to us anyway as there are many issues that you may need to consider such as, future funding implications, accommodation, benefits.
There is a formal withdrawal procedure that you should follow.