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Law School Undergraduate Grading Descriptors for Oral Presentations

These Grading (or ‘Class’) Descriptors interpret the University of Hull Undergraduate Grading
Descriptors, and should be read and applied in conjunction with the level descriptors of the
QAA’s The framework for higher education qualifications in England, Wales and Northern Ireland
(August 2008), reproduced below.
QAA Level Descriptors1
Descriptor for a higher education qualification at level 4: Certificate of Higher Education
The descriptor provided for this level of the FHEQ is for any Certificate of Higher Education which should meet
the descriptor in full. This qualification descriptor can also be used as a reference point for other level 4
qualifications.
Certificates of Higher Education are awarded to students who have demonstrated:
 knowledge of the underlying concepts and principles associated with their area(s) of study, and an ability
to evaluate and interpret these within the context of that area of study
 an ability to present, evaluate and interpret qualitative and quantitative data, in order to develop lines of
argument and make sound judgements in accordance with basic theories and concepts of their subject(s)
of study.
Typically, holders of the qualification will be able to:
 evaluate the appropriateness of different approaches to solving problems related to their area(s) of study
and/or work
1 From: the QAA’s The framework for higher education qualifications in England, Wales and Northern Ireland (August 2008), available at:
http://www.qaa.ac.uk/en/Publications/Documents/Framework-Higher-Education-Qualifications-08.pdf .

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communicate the results of their study/work accurately and reliably, and with structured and coherent
arguments
 undertake further training and develop new skills within a structured and managed environment.
And holders will have:
 the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of some personal
responsibility.
Holders of a Certificate of Higher Education will have a sound knowledge of the basic concepts of a subject, and
will have learned how to take different approaches to solving problems. They will be able to communicate
accurately and will have the qualities needed for employment requiring the exercise of some personal
responsibility. The Certificate of Higher Education may be a first step towards obtaining higher level
qualifications.
Descriptor for a higher education qualification at level 5: Foundation Degree
The descriptor provided for this level of the FHEQ is for any Foundation Degree which should meet the descriptor
in full. This qualification descriptor can also be used as a reference point for other level 5 qualifications, including
Diplomas of Higher Education, Higher National Diplomas, etc.
Foundation Degrees are awarded to students who have demonstrated:
 knowledge and critical understanding of the well-established principles of their area(s) of study, and of the
way in which those principles have developed
 ability to apply underlying concepts and principles outside the context in which they were first studied,
including, where appropriate, the application of those principles in an employment context
 knowledge of the main methods of enquiry in the subject(s) relevant to the named award, and ability to
evaluate critically the appropriateness of different approaches to solving problems in the field of study
 an understanding of the limits of their knowledge, and how this influences analyses and interpretations
based on that knowledge.
Typically, holders of the qualification will be able to:
 use a range of established techniques to initiate and undertake critical analysis of information, and to
propose solutions to problems arising from that analysis
 effectively communicate information, arguments and analysis in a variety of forms to specialist and nonspecialist audiences, and deploy key techniques of the discipline effectively
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enabling them to perform effectively in their chosen field. they will have learned to evaluate the appropriateness of different approaches to solving problems. and/or to solve problems. the expectations of the qualification descriptor (and the Foundation Degree qualification benchmark) Holders of qualifications at this level will have developed a sound understanding of the principles in their field of study. some of which are at the forefront of a discipline o to describe and comment upon particular aspects of current research. ambiguity and limits of knowledge University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 3 of 23 . or informed by. This qualification descriptor can also be used as a reference point for other level 6 qualifications. And holders will have:  the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making. Bachelor's degrees with honours are awarded to students who have demonstrated:  a systematic understanding of key aspects of their field of study. Descriptor for a higher education qualification at level 6: Bachelor's degree with honours The descriptor provided for this level of the FHEQ is for any bachelor's degree with honours which should meet the descriptor in full. at least some of which is at. Their studies may well have had a vocational orientation. including acquisition of coherent and detailed knowledge. Through this. Holders of qualifications at this level will have the qualities necessary for employment in situations requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making. for example HNDs. in full. and will have learned to apply those principles more widely. using ideas and techniques. graduate diplomas etc. develop existing skills and acquire new competences that will enable them to assume significant responsibility within organisations. in the discipline  an appreciation of the uncertainty. The Foundation Degree is an example of a qualification that meets. undertake further training. including bachelor's degrees. or equivalent advanced scholarship. the forefront of defined aspects of a discipline  􀁺 an ability to deploy accurately established techniques of analysis and enquiry within a discipline  conceptual understanding that enables the student: o to devise and sustain arguments.

Through this. refereed research articles and/or original materials appropriate to the discipline). And holders will have:  the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring: o the exercise of initiative and personal responsibility o decision-making in complex and unpredictable contexts o the learning ability needed to undertake appropriate furthertraining of a professional or equivalent nature. for example. Bachelor's degrees with honours form the largest group of higher education qualifications. BSc (Hons). and to initiate and carry out projects  critically evaluate arguments. and decision-making in complex and unpredictable circumstances. some of it at the current boundaries of an academic discipline. Holders of a bachelor's degree with honours should have the qualities needed for employment in situations requiring the exercise of personal responsibility. to reach sound judgements and to communicate them effectively. and taken usually by those who are already graduates in another discipline.or identify a range of solutions . consolidate. and to frame appropriate questions to achieve a solution . assumptions. extend and apply their knowledge and understanding. abstract concepts and data (that may be incomplete). based largely on undergraduate material. learning outcomes for these programmes would be expected to be achieved on the basis of study equivalent to three fulltime academic years and lead to awards with titles such as Bachelor of Arts. Typically. problems and solutions to both specialist and non-specialist audiences. Holders of a bachelor's degree with honours will have developed an understanding of a complex body of knowledge. BA (Hons) or Bachelor of Science.to a problem  communicate information. holders of the qualification will be able to:  apply the methods and techniques that they have learned to review. The holder of such a qualification will be able to evaluate evidence. arguments and assumptions. graduate certificates or graduate diplomas. leading to. the holder will have developed analytical techniques and problem-solving skills that can be applied in many types of employment. ideas. In addition to bachelor's degrees at this level are short courses and professional 'conversion' courses. to make judgements. University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 4 of 23 . and to make use of scholarly reviews and primary sources (for example. the ability to manage their own learning. Typically.

The descriptors outlined in this document aim to provide a framework for articulating expected standards of students’ work. outstanding. The final grade for the work should always be matter of academic judgement based on the balance of this. in turn. University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 5 of 23 . Level 4. A programme of study’s published assessment criteria differ from grading descriptors as they create a direct link between the learning outcomes of the module(s) under study. facilitate transparency in feedback to students. the generic grading descriptors contained in this document and the particular level of study (i.pdf The grading descriptors outlined in this document are not mutually exclusive. their work should always be assessed against published assessment criteria.e. helping students to understand how to improve their performance. and the way it is used in the published assessment criteria will necessarily vary depending on the nature of the assessment task. 5 and 6 please refer to the Quality Assurance Agency’s Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (2008) available at: http://www. for example. Students’ work may demonstrate some characteristics of.uk/Publications/InformationAndGuidance/Documents/FHEQ08. field of study or area of practice. Examiners should be prepared to award the full range of marks and should interpret the descriptors in the context of their discipline. excellent. in order that students are able to understand exactly how they are being assessed and the standard of work they are expected to achieve. For further information on the differences between Levels 4. However. module leaders will need to be able to identify and explain what exemplary. For example. The emphasis given to each descriptor. the level of study and the disciplinary area. 2 Using the grading descriptors: some key principles The descriptors included here outline the key features and general characteristics of assessed work associated with each grade-band. The appropriate descriptors for the level of study that students are undertaking should be made available to students in all programme and module documentation. 5 or 6) at which the student is working.ac.Preamble to the University Grading Descriptors 1 Introduction The University of Hull Grading Descriptors for levels 4. the 50-59 and 60-69 categories. 5 and 6 have been developed to align with the Quality Assurance Agency’s Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (2008) and the SEEC Credit Level Descriptors for Higher Education (2010). The framework provides clear and consistent statements to describe student performance which.qaa.

University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 6 of 23 .good or satisfactory looks like in relation to the learning outcomes of their module in order that students are able to understand why they have received the grade they have and how they could improve their work.

5 and 6) Exemplary First Class Honours 90-100 All learning outcomes and associated assessment The work represents an exemplary response to the task and attains the very highest standards of scholarship that can be expected of an undergraduate submission. It is likely to demonstrate most or all of the following characteristics: University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 7 of 23 .THE UNIVERSITY OF HULL UNDERGRADUATE GRADING DESCRIPTORS (Levels 4.

• The work displays exemplary levels of creativity. concepts. • There is exemplary evidence of high quality analysis. including the required time to an limit. initiative. where appropriate. decision-making. synthesis. theory and other relevant information and artefacts is exemplary. • Use and application of a depth and breadth of contextual evidence. and self reflection. • The work is inspirational. structure and standard of presentation of the work. • There is an exemplary standard of oral communication (including articulateness. ideas. creative. independence of judgement and insightful contextualisation are exemplary. exploration and insight and/or research. including referencing standard. exemplary • The organisation. are exemplary throughout. Levels of intellectual rigour. pace. Higher Order Academic Criteria: • There is an exemplary display of in-depth understanding. evaluation and critical appraisal. innovative and authoritative. and appropriate engagement with the audience) and the use of disciplinary terminology and techniques displays the highest level of accuracy and understanding that can be expected.criteria have Technical Characteristics: been achieved • All requirements for the assessment task have been adhered to. University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 8 of 23 .

Outstanding First Class Honours 80-89 All learning outcomes and associated assessment The work represents an outstanding response to the task and attains some of the highest standards of scholarship that can be expected of an undergraduate submission. It is likely to demonstrate most or all of the following characteristics: University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 9 of 23 .

• The organisation. • The work consistently displays outstanding levels of initiative. insight and/or research. are outstanding throughout. theory and other relevant information and artefacts is outstanding. • There is outstanding evidence of high quality analysis. Technical Characteristics: • All requirements for the assessment task have been adhered to. • The work is inspirational. decision-making. structure and standard of presentation of the work. Levels of intellectual rigour. and self reflection. independence of judgement and insightful contextualisation are outstanding.criteria have been achieved to an outstanding level and some to an exemplary standard. and appropriate engagement with the audience) and the use of disciplinary terminology and techniques displays the highest level of accuracy and understanding that can be expected. concepts. innovative and authoritative. • There is an outstanding standard of oral communication (including articulateness. Higher Order Academic Characteristics: • There is an outstanding display of in-depth understanding. • Use and application of a depth and breadth of contextual evidence. including the required time limit . synthesis. evaluation and critical appraisal. creative. exploration. pace. including referencing where appropriate. ideas. University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 10 of 23 .

It is likely to demonstrate most or all of the following characteristics: University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 11 of 23 .First Class Honours 70-79 All learning outcomes and associated assessment The work represents an excellent response to the task and mostly attains the highest standards of scholarship that can be expected of an undergraduate submission.

criteria have been achieved to high level of excellence and some to an outstanding. including referencing where appropriate. • The organisation. theory and other relevant information and artefacts is excellent. and self reflection. Levels of intellectual rigour. are excellent throughout. ideas. • The work consistently displays excellent levels of initiative. innovative and authoritative. University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 12 of 23 . pace. including the required time limit. creative. exploration. decision-making. • The work is inspirational. insight and/or research. • There is an excellent standard of oral communication (including articulateness. concepts. • There is evidence of high quality analysis. • Use and application of a depth and breadth of contextual evidence. Technical Characteristics: • All requirements for the assessment task have been adhered to. Higher Order Academic Characteristics: • There is an excellent display of in-depth understanding. structure and standard of presentation of the work. evaluation and critical appraisal. synthesis. and appropriate engagement with the audience) and the use of disciplinary terminology and techniques displays the highest level of accuracy and understanding that can be expected. independence of judgement and insightful contextualisation are excellent.

including referencing where appropriate. independence of judgement and insightful contextualisation though it may lack finesse.2(i) 60-69 All learning outcomes and assessment criteria have been achieved to a good standard with many (at the higher ranges of this band) achieved to a very good/excellent standard. and appropriate engagement with the audience) and the use of disciplinary terminology and techniques display good levels of accuracy and understanding. and self reflection. pace. evaluation and critical appraisal. structure and standard of presentation of the work. including the required time limit. • The work displays evidence of creativity and innovation in the use of ideas. It is likely to demonstrate most or all of the following characteristics: Technical Characteristics: • All requirements for the assessment task have been adhered to.Upper Second Class Honours . • The work displays good levels of initiative. • The organisation. concepts. insight and/or research. synthesis. • There are some good examples of critical analysis. University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 13 of 23 . • There is a good standard of oral communication (including articulateness. • There is a good display of understanding. • The work shows evidence of intellectual rigour. misunderstandings or errors. decision-making. The work represents a good to very good response to the task and attains good standards of scholarship. Higher Order Academic Characteristics: • There are no significant inaccuracies. exploration. theory and other relevant information and artefacts. are good throughout.

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Lower Second Class Honours .2(ii) 50-59 All learning The work represents a satisfactory response to the task and attains competent standards of scholarship. It is likely to demonstrate most or all of the following characteristics: University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 15 of 23 .

structure and standard of presentation of the work are satisfactory. theory and other relevant information and artefacts. University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 16 of 23 . misunderstandings or errors are mostly minor. • There is some evidence of understanding. but there are some gaps. and appropriate engagement with the audience). concepts. Topics are mostly addressed but not always examined in sufficient detail. and self reflection. though some errors may be present. exploration. • The work is conscientious and attentive to the subject matter or task set but is balanced more towards a descriptive approach than a critical and analytical approach. including divergences from the required time limit. pace. decision-making. insight and/or research. The use of disciplinary terminology and techniques displays satisfactory levels of accuracy and understanding. Technical Characteristics: • There may be some minor divergences from the specifications of the assessment task. • The organisation. Higher Order Academic Characteristics: • Inaccuracies. • The work displays some but limited examples of initiative. • The work shows some but limited evidence of intellectual rigour. • There is a reasonable standard of oral communication (including articulateness. • The work shows some but limited examples of creativity and innovation in the use of ideas. although some instances of poor organisation or limited use of referencing conventions may be present.outcomes and assessment criteria have been achieved to a satisfactory standard with some (at the higher ranges of this band) achieved to a good standard. independence of judgement and insightful contextualisation.

concepts. but weak response to the task and attains very limited standards of scholarship. but are not significant enough to impact on the ability of the work to meet the learning outcomes and assessment criteria.Third Class Honours 40-49 All learning outcomes and assessment criteria have been met but only to the minimum required level. The work represents an adequate. University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 17 of 23 . structure and standard of presentation of the work are poor. • There is a basic but poor standard of oral communication (including articulateness. • Students’ grasp of ideas. and appropriate engagement with the audience). theory and other relevant information is weak and is poorly articulated or contains flaws. • There is limited evidence of understanding. • The work displays a descriptive approach and evidence used is likely to be limited to that provided by lecturers. decision-making. • The organisation. It is likely to demonstrate most or all of the following characteristics: Technical Characteristics: • There may be some major divergences from the specifications of the assessment task. including divergences from the required time limit. insight and/or research. independence of judgement and insightful contextualisation. pace. The use of disciplinary terminology and techniques displays minimal levels of accuracy and understanding. Higher Order Academic Characteristics: • Inaccuracies. and self reflection. exploration. • The work displays very limited examples of initiative. misunderstandings and/or errors are present. • The work shows limited evidence of intellectual rigour.

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It may display some strengths but One or more these are outweighed by several weak features. It is likely to demonstrate most or all of the of the learning following characteristics: University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 19 of 23 .Marginal Fail 30-39 The work represents an unsatisfactory response to the task.

outcomes and assessment criteria have not been met. there may be significant flaws in spelling. misunderstandings or errors which affect the ability of the work to meet the learning outcomes and assessment criteria. • The work does not make any real attempts to assess or apply the evidence or theory. personal responsibility. Technical Characteristics: • The work pays insufficient attention to the assessment criteria and significantly diverges from the specifications of the assessment task. • There is insufficient demonstration of learning outcomes to justify a pass grade. grammar and composition which undermine the clarity of meaning. University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 20 of 23 . • There is an unsatisfactory standard of oral communication (including articulateness. including referencing where appropriate. decisionmaking and self-reflection. The use of disciplinary terminology and techniques does not meet required levels of accuracy and understanding. and appropriate engagement with the audience). including the required time limit. • The work is disorganised and unclear and the standard of presentation. Higher Order Academic Characteristics: • There are substantial inaccuracies. literature and other artefacts. Examples are occasionally provided but are poorly articulated. There is very little evidence of wider reading and very limited evidence of the mechanics of scholarship. It contains some material of merit but shows very limited insight and/or research. pace. • The work does not meet expected levels of understanding and exploration of major ideas. theory. • The work demonstrates no substantive evidence of initiative. • The work draws on a very limited range of contextual evidence. is weak.

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Any strengths of the work are heavily outweighed by its weaknesses. It is likely to demonstrate most or all of the following characteristics: University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 22 of 23 .Fail 1-29 Most or all of the learning The work represents a very unsatisfactory response to the task.

Non-submission 0 University of Hull Grading Descriptors UGMay 2014: Version 1 Page 23 of 23 . including referencing where appropriate. Higher Order Academic Characteristics: • There are significant inaccuracies. Technical Characteristics: • The work pays insufficient attention to the assessment criteria and there are serious deviations from the specifications of the assessment task. Citations are almost or entirely absent and awareness of mechanics of scholarship is very weak. grammar and composition which undermine the clarity of meaning. • The work is disorganised and unclear and the standard of presentation. • The work is wholly descriptive and lacks any sustained arguments or critical appraisal. • The work demonstrates no evidence of initiative. including the required time limit. The use of disciplinary terminology and techniques is extremely limited and unsophisticated. is extremely poor. decision-making and self-reflection. and appropriate engagement with the audience) . • The work draws on a very limited range of contextual evidence. literature and other artefacts. misunderstandings or errors. personal responsibility.outcomes and assessment criteria have not been met. • The work does not meet expected levels of understanding and exploration of major ideas. It shows very limited insight and/or research. theory. pace.there are significant flaws in spelling. • There is an unsatisfactory standard of oral communication (including articulateness.