The university and students’ union have looked at improving coursework feedback.

SU Undergraduate Education officer Mary Leishman revealed UEA schools have been asked by university management to ensure assessments are explicitly set out and made clear to students. Marking systems must be explained to students to ensure fairness.

Ms Leishman said, “In the last few years the university has worked hard and succeeded in ensuring that coursework is now returned on time.

“However, students are consistently telling us – loud and clear – that when it comes to assessment, what they also need is marking that’s fair, criteria that’s clear and feedback that feeds forward to help them improve in the future.”

Ms Leishman continued, “The outcome of our meetings with Uni management is great news! I look forward to seeing development and implementation in the months ahead”.

To improve on the feedback provided to students, teaching staff now have to explicitly state how a students’ work could be improved. Ms Leishman further explained how “all academic staff and Associate Tutors are to be immediately inducted and mentored in UEA policies on assessment and feedback. In addition, the University is considering how it might make online marking and feedback via Blackboard mandatory over the next two years.”

One other key change to assessment feedback is that university schools must “ensure that the checks and balances in UEA’s marking system that ensure the fairness of marking are talked about and explained by students”.

Ms. Leishman said these changes are needed “in order to achieve your full potential in your degree”. To make improvements, she added, “it’s important to get feedback on your work from your tutors that is clear, fair, timely and useful.”

Maddie Colledge, SU Postgraduate Education officer, told Concrete, “Although it’s great news on fairness and usefulness, we know students are still concerned about assessment deadline bunching and the way in which students with Specific Learning Difficulties are supported.”

Ms. Colledge added: “It’s also crucial that the University works with academic staff to ensure that these new requirements are manageable within workloads. We’ll be taking forward these concerns in partnership with Uni management throughout this term”.