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MSc Awarding of Degrees

Student progress is formally assessed at two Examination Boards. The Chair of the Examination Board is the Head of the Department of Mathematics. An external examiner who is a senior academic at another leading university ensures that standards are maintained. The first of the Boards is a progress review Board in the Summer Term; the second is a final exam Board in September.

The progress review Board receives the result of all coursework assessments and examinations. Students who pass are permitted to proceed to the dissertation.

In September there is a meeting of the full Board of Examiners for the MSc (including the External Examiner) where the results from all examinations and dissertations for each candidate are available.

The Board makes use of University Regulations and Departmental guidelines on the award of MSc degrees and Postgraduate Diplomas. Based on all the available information, including any special circumstances, the Board will make one of the following recommendations. Special consideration is given to borderline or special cases.

  • Award of MSc degree
    Normally awarded if the average mark on the taught modules and the dissertation mark are both greater than or equal to 50%, and if at least 60 CATS of level 7 taught modules (year 4 or above e.g. MA4xx, MA5yy) have been passed at the 50% level. In the (very unusual) event of a student averaging 50% over all taught modules, but failing to get 50% in 60 CATS of the relevant taught modules, there is the possibility of resitting one or more modules in September.

  • Award of Merit Grade
    Normally awarded if the average combined mark on the taught modules and the dissertation mark is at least 60% and, in addition, the mark on the dissertation is at least 60%.

  • Award of MSc with distinction

    Normally awarded if the average combined mark on the taught modules and the dissertation mark is at least 70% and, in addition, the mark on the dissertation is at least 70%.

  • Award of Postgraduate Diploma
    Normally awarded under the following conditions:
    (a) average mark on taught modules in the range 40% - 49%,
    (b) marks of 50% or more in at least 60 CATS of level 7 taught modules,
    (c) a mark of at least 40% in the dissertation or postgraduate diploma project (see below).

    Candidates for the MSc degree who have submitted an MSc dissertation but who fail to reach the required standard for the award of an MSc are considered for the award of a Postgraduate Diploma. Candidates who do not achieve the required standard at the end of the taught stage of the MSc are normally asked to submit a postgraduate diploma project (30 CATS) rather than the dissertation (90 CATS), for the consideration of an award of a Postgraduate Diploma.

  • Fail

    Failure to meet any of the above conditions.


The above decisions are subject to approval by the Senate.

Resits and Resubmission of dissertations

Under some circumstances the Examinations Board may allow students to resit some taught modules in September. The maximum possible mark in any resit exam is 50%.The resit for a failed module could either be a written exam or a viva, depending on the recommendation of the Examination Board.

Resubmission of dissertations is likewise possible in certain circumstances. Where minor corrections are required the Board may pass the candidate subject to the necessary changes being made. It is then the duty of the supervisor to confirm that these have been carried out.


Overview
 
 Supervisors
 
 Coursework and Examinations
         
 Dissertations
 

Awarding of Degrees
 
Taught Modules for MSc and PhD Students