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Open university degree grading?

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    How do the TMAs for UO students count towards final degree classification?

    I'm considering enrolling for the Law degree (W200, W201, W300, W301) which seem to be 6-8 TMAs and an exam.

    Will the TMAs count towards the grade or are they just a way of assessing your own strengths and weaknesses in preparation for the exams?

    Furthermore, I'm sure the first few TMAs I submit will not be as high a standard as those later on down the line when I have become more accustomed to studying by distance learning, so I assume that the level 1 courses carry less weight towards the final degree to give me time to adjust to studying alongside working.
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    The Level ! courses don't count towards your degree classification. You just need to pass them, which requires 40% overall for TMAs and the same for the exam (if there is one).

    When you become an OU student there is a qualification planner on the website and you can work out what grades you would need to achieve for each degree classification.

    On most, if not all, courses the TMAs and the exams carry equal weight.
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    http://www3.open.ac.uk/our-student-p.../honsclass.pdf

    this should help, although it confuses me terribly
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    Regarding degree classification, have a read through this document Soazak: http://www3.open.ac.uk/our-student-p.../honsclass.pdf

    It explains it better than I ever could but one key point to take away is that your level 1 results make no contribution to your final degree classification.

    As for individual courses, most tend to follow this pattern:

    Your marks for the year are split up into two scores, your overall continuous assessment score (OCAS), an average of all your TMAs scores through the year, and your overall examinable score (OES), which can come from either an exam or a year-long project depending on the course. The grading system has the following thresholds:

    Distinction = 85% and higher
    Grade 2 = 70% to 84%
    Grade 3 = 55% to 69%
    Grade 4 = 40% to 54%
    Fail = 39% or lower.

    And typically, to be assigned a certain grade you need to get above the threshold in both your OCAS and OES. To illustrate. In one of the first courses I took, I got an OCAS of 78% and an OES of 64%. Now if you average them you get 71% and I initially thought I would be getting a Grade 2, yet because my OES hadn't met the required threshold, I was given a Grade 3.

    There does appear to be some wiggle room in the above rule though as in a later year I got an OCAS of 85% and an OES of 65%, yet was awarded a Grade 2 even though I missed the threshold by 5% on the OES.

    EDIT - Sorry for repeating some of the earlier advice, I type rather slowly
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    Thank you both, that is exactly what I am looking for!
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    Sometimes there is a "Final TMA" which carries more weight than the others. At least there is on M150. There's an "assessment calculator" which calculates your predicted score which you can access when you've started. Which is kinda funky.
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    I am currently studying with the Open University, and I know this post is five years after this thread last saw any activity, but I'd like to clarify that the percentage of your grade requires completely on the type of course you are studying.
    I require 40% on my OCAS (TMA essays) and then 40% for my OES (Exam) on one module, but on another I need 30% OCAS and 50% OES.

    To forward Niel.A.H's point...
    I am studying BA(Hons) Humanities: Literature and Classics, and in my first module I am averaging 88.85% on my OCAS, which would be a first class honours if it were in year 2 or 3. For my OES, I am predicted a score of 75% (my results are still pending). Even so, with pass marks of 88.85% and 75%, my degree is still only classified as a Pass, not a Distinction, meaning that you must achieve above 85% on both areas, not just overall or in one area, in order to obtain a first class degree.
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    I am also studying with OU and science seems to work differently

    We have x amount of TMA's throughout the year and you need an accumulated of 40% to be able to sit the exam then the result from that determines your grade and only the exam result

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    Hi everyone. Is the grading described above still correct? As its 2013
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    (Original post by Aledevans1990)
    Hi everyone. Is the grading described above still correct? As its 2013
    Hi Aledevans1990,

    It varies a lot from module to module. All the information people have given so far is correct, but there isn't a general system that applies to all modules.
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    (Original post by Aledevans1990)
    Hi everyone. Is the grading described above still correct? As its 2013
    What will you be studying, may be able to help further


    Posted from TSR Mobile
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    Hiya. Sorry for once again revivng this thread but does anyone else think it's a little unfair that you are awarded the lowest grade into which your OCAS or OES falls? ie. the whole "you must reach the scores shown in Section 4.5 in both OES and OCAS to guarantee a pass at that grade" bit in the Assessment Handbook?

    If you got 100 in one and 40 in the other, whichever way around it was, you could end up with a basic pass for the lot :/ I'm terrible at exams... just the idea of an exam room makes me shudder and it tends to be reflected in my exam results. Not a happy bunny
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    Yes it is unfair in my opinion. It's not just exams but your final tma called something EMA that can do exactly as you've described and happened to and a fellow student. After having to marks all the way through our course that year we appear to have dropped unlucky with the examiner Even our tutors felt we had done well, they do see a copy of the ema, and felt we deserved far better marks, but could do nothing. There is no appeal for examination components. I would never do an open university degrees course again.
    This is not sour grapes, the one poor mark did not affect my final result top much, i would have got 80% instead i got 78% for my final degree result. But it did sour my belief in fairness from open university. I consistently achieved 75-85% over my course and got 89% in a previous exam.
    Had i done home study with another university i could have appealed and also i would have a first class honours not a 2-1. No matter how you explain it people will not understand/believe it is equivalent to a good first class degree.
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    (Original post by giorgioscia)
    Hiya. Sorry for once again revivng this thread but does anyone else think it's a little unfair that you are awarded the lowest grade into which your OCAS or OES falls? ie. the whole "you must reach the scores shown in Section 4.5 in both OES and OCAS to guarantee a pass at that grade" bit in the Assessment Handbook?

    If you got 100 in one and 40 in the other, whichever way around it was, you could end up with a basic pass for the lot :/ I'm terrible at exams... just the idea of an exam room makes me shudder and it tends to be reflected in my exam results. Not a happy bunny
    Not really as you are only as strong as your weakest link.

    The average can sometimes be used as decider by the exam board for people very close to the grade boundaries but if someone who gets 40 in one part and 100 in the other the average is 70% but if you are just scraping through one aspect it's not the same as someone who reached 70 in both parts who would be given the same grade. That to me would seem unfair. Exams are a unfortunate fact of academia. I hate exams too, and drop grades, but the best thing to do is identify the problems you have with them and work on them.

    A lot of brick uni modules are decided solely on exam grades (and some of the new OU ones are based on that model too) or if coursework is included it's usually a small percentage of the final grade.

    The lowest of the two is making sure the people being awarded a grade have reached an appropriate threshold in both types of assessment as they are testing different ways of learning and how you are using your understanding.
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    (Original post by Chrissyholly)
    Yes it is unfair in my opinion. It's not just exams but your final tma called something EMA that can do exactly as you've described and happened to and a fellow student. After having to marks all the way through our course that year we appear to have dropped unlucky with the examiner Even our tutors felt we had done well, they do see a copy of the ema, and felt we deserved far better marks, but could do nothing. There is no appeal for examination components. I would never do an open university degrees course again.
    This is not sour grapes, the one poor mark did not affect my final result top much, i would have got 80% instead i got 78% for my final degree result. But it did sour my belief in fairness from open university. I consistently achieved 75-85% over my course and got 89% in a previous exam.
    Had i done home study with another university i could have appealed and also i would have a first class honours not a 2-1. No matter how you explain it people will not understand/believe it is equivalent to a good first class degree.
    There's nothing stopping you putting your final percentages and the grade they equate to on your CV though, the only people who matter are employers and if you do that they can see the percentages you got.

    I had a similar thing in S104, (in the olden days, before the exam). I averaged about 88% over all the TMA's, then got 82.5% in the EMA. As it's a level 1 and you only get a pass or distinction grade I ended up with a pass. Which sounds really bad considering the actual marks I achieved consistently. It's frustrating, but just one of those things.

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Updated: January 29, 2016
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