Rules and Regulations concerning the submission of assignments / coursework as part of Compulsory Components of the Course

For a number of modules/units, deadlines for submission of assignments/ coursework will be given. Failure to adhere to these deadlines will normally result in a penalty being enforced. Academic Council has recently issued the following rules.

Late submission of assessed coursework
Assessed coursework submitted after the deadline will be penalised at the rate of 5% of the assessed mark awarded for each working day late, up to a maximum of five working days (i.e. Monday to Friday excluding days of official University closure), after which a mark of zero will be awarded. Where the assessed work element accounts for a certain proportion of the module mark, the 5% penalty will apply to the assessed element only and not to the overall module mark. Exemptions shall be granted only if there are extenuating circumstances, and where the student has made a case in writing to the member(s) of staff designated by the School within three days of the deadline for submission. A list of guidelines on acceptable extenuating circumstances is published by the Academic Council Office and is presented for your information below. A copy of the form to be used for application for exemption from penalties is also provided; when required copies of these forms may be obtained from the School Office.

The following table provides a few examples of extenuating circumstances which have arisen in the past from students seeking an extension to assessed work submission. It is a guide and is not meant to be prescriptive. Individual staff should continue to use their own judgement and discretion when deciding if an extension is warranted on the basis of the facts presented.

Extenuating Circumstances
Normally acceptable
1. Death of a close relative
‘Close’ means parents and guardians, partner or spouse, children and siblings. It may include grandparents or other relatives if the School is satisfied that their relationship was close.
2. Serious illness of student
It should be an incapacitating illness or an on- going illness or medical condition. It also includes breaks and serious sprains to the normal writing hand/arm. Medical certification must be obtained; self-certification is not acceptable.
3. Serious illness of a close relativent
See notes above for the definition of ‘close’.
4. Financial Problems
Stress brought on by financial concerns.
Note: It is the student’s responsibility to maintain a proper balance between work and study.
5. Civil unrest
Terrorist activity; widespread public disorder; bomb attacks; bomb scares; withdrawal of and delays to rail/road public transport services. A letter from a local member of the clergy or community representative must be provided to support such grounds.
6. Serious personal disruption
Divorce; fire; burglary; serious assault; jury service. Corroborating evidence must be produced.
7. Pregnancy
A medical report from the student’s doctor or midwife must be provided in support of such grounds. It also includes the stages following childbirth. Pregnancy of a wife/partner would be acceptable in appropriate circumstances.
Not normally acceptable
1. Social activities
Hectic social life; parties; visits to/from friends.
2. Temporary self-induced medical conditions
Hangover; drug taking (excluding prescribed medication)
3. Minor ailments
Coughs; colds; sprains (other than in the writing hand/arm).
4. Non serious personal and domestic disruptions which could have been anticipated or planned.
Moving house; weddings; holidays; failed transport arrangements.

General Points
1. A breakdown in the student’s car on assessed work submission day should not be treated more generously than any similar misfortune on other days. It is incumbent on students not to leave things until the last minute. If they do and arrangements go wrong, the University is under no obligation to alleviate the consequences. This is distinct from clear cases of force majeure, for example rail strikes, civil unrest, where things done by other people affects the student’s ability to do things properly.

2. All applications for extension of time or penalty exemption are required to be on the approved form (copy attached). This is to ensure comparability of evidence, and to assist with comparability of outcomes. Extenuating circumstances may NOT be considered unless the student has requested it.

3. Supporting documentation should, where appropriate, accompany the application form. Self-certification is not acceptable, nor are uncorroborated statements from friends or relatives.

4. Assessed work submitted after the published submission deadline will be penalised at the rate of 5% of the assessed mark awarded for each working day late, up to a maximum of 5 working days late, after which a mark of zero will be awarded.

5. Application for late submission of assessed work should be made to the member(s) of staff designated by the School within 3 days after the deadline for submission of the work.