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Coronavirus and the School of English and Drama

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Date: Tuesday, 26 May 2020, 2:10 AM

Email from Head of School and Director of Education to UG Students -- 5 May 2020

Dear Student

 

This message is an updated version of the email you received on 4 May.

 

Please note that you should submit a Semester 2 Extenuating Circumstances (EC) application for any Semester 2 assignments you are unable to submit that were due between 16 February and 8 March. You do not need to submit evidence to support your EC application. No EC application is needed for assignments that were due on or after 9 March.

 

Please also note that no evidence is needed to support your Late Work Report application for any assignments you submit after the 14-day “grace period” ends but please make sure you submit an application for each late submission you make.

 

Apologies for any confusion caused.

 

Best wishes

School of English and Drama

 

 

This is a message for all undergraduate students studying in the School of English and Drama,

 

We hope this message finds you well. We also very much hope that the last three weeks have involved some rest alongside your other commitments.

 

As we enter into the examination period we also wanted to take this opportunity to remind you of sources of information and support summarised on our FAQs, and explain the new rules for Extenuating Circumstances in response to the message you received from the Vice-Principal on 28 April (summarized below).

 

Once again, you’re very welcome to be in touch with sed-information@qmul.ac.uk if you have any general questions not covered by our FAQs.

 

Finally, we want to wish you all the best as you work on your final assignments for the year. We know it has been, and continues to be, a very challenging time.

 

With all good wishes

Catherine and Markman

Head of School and School Director of Education

 

 

Summary of the new rules for Extenuating Circumstances – and what it means to you

 

Grace Period

You can submit your work up to 14 days late without the need for a Late Work application. The 14-day “grace period” applies to all assignments due in Semester 2 (i.e. those with deadlines from 16 February) and the Exam Period.

 

Late submission after the ‘grace period’ ends

If you are unable to submit an assignment within the "grace period", you can still submit it until the final submission deadline of 1 June 2020 at 12:00 noon, however, you will also need to submit a Late Work Report to explain the reasons for your late submission. The regular evidence requirements have been lifted due to the coronavirus pandemic, so you do not need to submit evidence to support your application. The important point is that you submit an application for each late submission you make.

 

Assignment non-submission

Any assignments due in Semester 2 (on or after 9 March) and the Exam period that you are not able to submit by the 1 June deadline will be treated has having extenuating circumstances and will be awarded a first sit without penalty at the next opportunity, which is in August 2020. You do not need to submit an Extenuating Circumstances application to request this.

 

If you did not submit a Semester 2 assignment due between 16 February and 8 March, you will need to submit an Extenuating Circumstances application to be awarded a first sit without penalty. The regular evidence requirements have been lifted due to the coronavirus pandemic, so you do not need to submit evidence to support your application. The important point is that you submit the application.

 

The submission deadline for any outstanding assignments is 12 August 2020 at 12:00 noon, and we will send you detailed submission instructions after the July Exam Board. We strongly recommend that you continue to work on your assignments and DO NOT wait until you receive your results in July. This will ensure that the work is ready for submission in good time.

 

If you did not submit an assignment that was due in Semester 1, you also have until 12 August 2020 at 12:00 noon to submit any outstanding assignments, however, your module mark might be capped/uncapped depending on whether you submitted an End of Semester EC in January 2020 or not.

 

New ‘Fit to sit’ rule

Normally the core principle behind the extenuating circumstances policy is the 'fit to sit' rule. By taking an assessment (submitting an assignment or taking an exam), students declare themselves fit to take it; any claim for extenuating circumstances relating to that assessment is not considered, and the assessment is marked.

 

To recognize the difficulties students are facing during the current circumstances, the ‘fit to sit’ rules have been partially lifted and students can now submit extenuating circumstances even if you have attempted the assessment provided you do so before marks/feedback for the given assignment is released.

 

This new rule is in effect from Tuesday 28 April. Therefore, only claims that are submitted for assignments where grades were released on or after 28 April will be considered. Claims can only be submitted BEFORE grades are released and you will need to submit a claim for each assignment affected.

 

The deadline to submit a ‘Fit to sit’ claim to request a first sit without penalty of a previously submitted assignment is 1 June 2020 at 12:00 noon.

 

Request to retake a period of study in attendance

In exceptional cases, if you missed the deadline to interrupt your studies but have been affected by exceptional circumstances, you can request to ‘retake’ your current developmental year again in attendance.

 

This has serious financial consequences and a special request needs to be made to the University. For further information please read the following website and contact sed-studentsupport@qmul.ac.uk with any questions or if you wish to submit a claim. 

Email from Head of School and Director of Education to PGT Students -- 5 May 2020

Dear Student

 

This message is an updated version of the email you received on 4 May.

 

Please note that you should submit a Semester 2 Extenuating Circumstances (EC) application for any Semester 2 assignments you are unable to submit that were due between 16 February and 8 March. You do not need to submit evidence to support your EC application. No EC application is needed for assignments that were due on or after 9 March.

 

Please also note that no evidence is needed to support your Late Work Report application for any assignments you submit after the 14-day “grace period” ends but please make sure you submit an application for each late submission you make.

 

Apologies for any confusion caused.

 

Best wishes

School of English and Drama

 

 

This is a message for all undergraduate students studying in the School of English and Drama,

 

We hope this message finds you well. We also very much hope that the last three weeks have involved some rest alongside your other commitments.

 

As we enter into the examination period we also wanted to take this opportunity to remind you of sources of information and support summarised on our FAQs, and explain the new rules for Extenuating Circumstances in response to the message you received from the Vice-Principal on 28 April (summarized below).

 

Once again, you’re very welcome to be in touch with sed-information@qmul.ac.uk if you have any general questions not covered by our FAQs.

 

Finally, we want to wish you all the best as you work on your final assignments for the year. We know it has been, and continues to be, a very challenging time.

 

With all good wishes

Catherine and Markman

Head of School and School Director of Education

 

 

Summary of the new rules for Extenuating Circumstances – and what it means to you

 

Grace Period

You can submit your work up to 14 days late without the need for a Late Work application. The 14-day “grace period” applies to all assignments due in Semester 2 (i.e. those with deadlines from 16 February) and the Exam Period.

 

Late submission after the ‘grace period’ ends

If you are unable to submit an assignment within the "grace period", you can still submit it until the final submission deadline of 1 June 2020 at 12:00 noon, however, you will also need to submit a Late Work Report to explain the reasons for your late submission. The regular evidence requirements have been lifted due to the coronavirus pandemic, so you do not need to submit evidence to support your application. The important point is that you submit an application for each late submission you make.

 

Assignment non-submission

Any assignments due in Semester 2 (on or after 9 March) and the Exam period that you are not able to submit by the 1 June deadline will be treated has having extenuating circumstances and will be awarded a first sit without penalty at the next opportunity, which is in August 2020. You do not need to submit an Extenuating Circumstances application to request this.

 

If you did not submit a Semester 2 assignment due between 16 February and 8 March, you will need to submit an Extenuating Circumstances application to be awarded a first sit without penalty. The regular evidence requirements have been lifted due to the coronavirus pandemic, so you do not need to submit evidence to support your application. The important point is that you submit the application.

 

The submission deadline for any outstanding assignments is 12 August 2020 at 12:00 noon, and we will send you detailed submission instructions after the July Exam Board. We strongly recommend that you continue to work on your assignments and DO NOT wait until you receive your results in July. This will ensure that the work is ready for submission in good time.

 

If you did not submit an assignment that was due in Semester 1, you also have until 12 August 2020 at 12:00 noon to submit any outstanding assignments, however, your module mark might be capped/uncapped depending on whether you submitted an End of Semester EC in January 2020 or not.

 

New ‘Fit to sit’ rule

Normally the core principle behind the extenuating circumstances policy is the 'fit to sit' rule. By taking an assessment (submitting an assignment or taking an exam), students declare themselves fit to take it; any claim for extenuating circumstances relating to that assessment is not considered, and the assessment is marked.

 

To recognize the difficulties students are facing during the current circumstances, the ‘fit to sit’ rules have been partially lifted and students can now submit extenuating circumstances even if you have attempted the assessment provided you do so before marks/feedback for the given assignment is released.

 

This new rule is in effect from Tuesday 28 April. Therefore, only claims that are submitted for assignments where grades were released on or after 28 April will be considered. Claims can only be submitted BEFORE grades are released and you will need to submit a claim for each assignment affected.

 

The deadline to submit a ‘Fit to sit’ claim to request a first sit without penalty of a previously submitted assignment is 1 June 2020 at 12:00 noon.

 

Request to retake a period of study in attendance

In exceptional cases, if you missed the deadline to interrupt your studies but have been affected by exceptional circumstances, you can request to ‘retake’ your current developmental year again in attendance.

 

This has serious financial consequences and a special request needs to be made to the University. For further information please read the following website and contact sed-studentsupport@qmul.ac.uk with any questions or if you wish to submit a claim. 

Email from Director of Education to All Students -- 15 April 2020

Dear students studying in the School of English and Drama,

 

We hope you had a good long weekend and that you’re staying safe and well.

 

We’ve added the following assessment FAQ in response to some queries we’ve received:

 

How will the “grace period” affect the expected return dates for grades and feedback?

The introduction of the 14-day “grace period” generally means that your grades and feedback will be returned 14 days later than expected return date published on QMplus. This is because staff aren’t able to start assessing your work until the “grace period” has passed. This delay is to avoid any risk of marking the wrong version of your assignment if you replace it (without penalty) during the 14-day “grace period”. 

 

If you haven’t already read through SED’s FAQs, we strongly encourage you to do so, especially the ones relating to assessment.

 

Please email sed-information@qmul.ac.uk if you have any questions not covered by the FQAs.

 

Best wishes

Markman Ellis

Director of Education 

School of English and Drama


Email from Head of School to All Students -- 6 April 2020

Dear students studying undergraduate and MA modules in the School of English and Drama,

 

I very much hope this message finds you well and that you’re doing ok at this difficult time.

 

Following Professor Colin Bailey’s announcement of changes to assessment in response to the coronavirus pandemic, we have updated our School FAQs with the University guidance and additional information from the School of English and Drama. Please take some time to read through these details.

 

If you have questions not covered by the guidance, please email sed-information@qmul.ac.uk

 

It’s important to note that the School: 

  • will follow all University guidelines on degree classification and other regulatory matters (i.e. there is no local variation at School level).
  • cannot offer students provisional year averages or degree classification calculations for 2019-20 (we don’t offer this facility outside of our examination processes). Instead we have provided guidelines so that you can calculate your provisional average(s) for previous years, calculate your provisional Semester 1 average for 2019-20, and calculate your estimated degree classification. Please note that all calculations completed using these guidelines are provisional. Official results are confirmed by the Examination Boards, and will be released to students via MYSIS in July.
  • cannot advise you which pieces of assessment to complete so as to maximise your year average and/or degree outcome. We still encourage you to complete as many assignments as you can, but if you are not able to submit some assignments due to extenuating circumstances, please make sure you submit an End of Year Extenuating Circumstances application (we will advise you of this process for 2019-20 in May).

 

Many thanks once again for all your questions, comments and queries – we really appreciate your feedback.

 

Take care,

Catherine


Email from Head of School to All Students -- 23 March 2020

This is a message for all students studying on undergraduate and MA modules in the School of English and Drama,

I very much hope you're all doing as ok as possible.

Many thanks for all your questions, comments and queries in relation to your studies at this very difficult time -- we really appreciate you getting in touch. 

We've just updated our FAQs with some important information about assessment, which we hope you'll find helpful. 

If you haven't yet read the FAQs, or haven't reviewed them recently, please take the time to read them through, especially the section on assessment (we also added some updates on Friday). 

Given the concerns raised about assessment, we've revised our Late Work policy for the remainder of this academic year. From the FAQs:

"In light of the coronavirus pandemic (as well as the effects of the recent industrial action), the School of English and Drama will not apply Late Work Penalties to any assignment submitted within two weeks (14 days, or 336 hours) of the deadline. You therefore do not need to submit a Late Work Report application for any written assignment submitted less than two weeks late. 

 

This 14-day “grace-period” applies to all assignments due in Semester 2 and during the Semester 2 Exam Period. In other words, all assignments with deadlines that fall between 16 February 2020 and 31 May 2020, and MA dissertations (due in August), can be submitted up to two weeks late, without penalty. It does not apply to the formal alternative examination arrangements for ESH101 Shakespeare and ESH110 Literatures in Time (details to follow from the convenors shortly), which are subject to different assessment regulations." 

There is more detail on the FAQs, including answers to questions including (but definitely not limited to):

  • I need to submit my work after the deadline. Do I need to submit a Late Work application? 
  • I didn’t know about this change in policy and I’ve already submitted my assignment. Can I update it without penalty?  
  • What do I do if I need to submit my work more than 14 days (or 336 hours) late? 
  • I have outstanding assignments from Semester 1 for which I had ECs accepted in January 2020. Do I also get a “grace period”? 
  • I’m a student resitting out of attendance, or have a resit assignment from last year. Do I also get a “grace period”?
  • What if I miss an assignment submission altogether? [note: EC deadline will be updated to 1 June, 12:00 noon, from tomorrow on the FAQs]
  • How will my assignments be marked fairly given the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and industrial action?
  • I'm a first year student. I've heard the 10% weighting of the first year will be removed when my degree is classified in my Final Year. Is this true?

Please be in touch if you have further questions and comments. 

Take care,

Catherine


Email from Head of School to All Students -- 17 March 2020

Hello again to everyone studying in SED,

I'm writing with some further updates to the FAQs (these changes have also been made online). If you haven't yet read the FAQs, please take some time to read them through as they provide important details about online teaching and assessment, and other topics.

SED's Admin Team and Tech Team are now working remotely in response to the coronavirus pandemic, and the School reception is physically closed. Remote support and advice is still available: please contact the Admin Team at sed-information@qmul.ac.uk; please contact members of the Team Team by individual email.

Campus buildings and services are still open including ArtsOne and Drama spaces.

We've also added FAQs specifically for PhD students, along with a button on graduation with a link to Queen Mary's graduation site.

Please let us know if you have any questions that haven't been answered and we'll add further details. We've also added a time stamp to the page so you can see when it was last updated.

Take care,

Catherine


Email from Head of School to All Students -- 16 March 2020

Dear student studying in the School of English and Drama,

 

I hope you’re ok at this very uncertain time.

 

Thanks for all the questions and queries you’ve collectively sent in response to our shift from face-to-face to online teaching and support. To help with your preparations for online teaching and assessment, and to answer other questions you may have, we’ve put together a list of FAQs, available here. Please take some time to read them through.

 

I appreciate some of you have concerns caused by our shift to online teaching and support. We took this decision in order to address multiple concerns about student and staff wellbeing, and to ensure a parity of experience for all students, including those who have been forced to absent themselves from class and/or return home due to the current pandemic. Our joint honours partner Schools have made similar decisions, replacing face-to-face teaching with online teaching: the School of Languages, Linguistics and Film has cancelled all face-to-face teaching from Monday 16 March and the School of History has cancelled all face-to-face teaching from Tuesday 17 March. Our decision is supported by the Principal of Queen Mary, Professor Colin Bailey. 

 

Please email sed-information@qmul.ac.uk if you have any questions not covered by the FAQs.

 

Please look after yourselves.

 

Take care,

Catherine

Email from Head of School to All Students - 12 March 2020 9:30pm

Dear students studying in the School of English and Drama,

Hello again. 

I'm writing again this evening to let you know that all in-person classes in the School of English and Drama have been cancelled with immediate effect, including classes on Friday 13 March. This is due to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic and concern for the health and wellbeing of students and staff. 

Module convenors not taking strike action will be in touch to advise you of arrangements for online delivery and alternative assessments (where appropriate). I hope you'll understand that there may be a bit of a delay as we make preparations. Colleagues taking strike action will be in touch when the action is concluded.

I have included my message earlier this evening below. 

I want to again offer reassurance that you will not be disadvantaged in your studies and grades as a result of COVID-19.

We have put in place contingency plans in the School in relation to teaching and assessment and will adjust our approaches as necessary over the coming weeks.

 

Teaching

Our approach is to focus on providing you with online materials, activities and advice (principally via QMplus) to support your learning and assessment as fully as possible in the event that the campus is shut down and/or that very significant numbers of students and staff are unable to attend class.

 

We are in the process of migrating our teaching for online delivery. Staff taking strike action will not be in a position to undertake this work until the conclusion of the action, so please be aware that arrangements for those modules may take a bit longer to finalise and communicate. Module convenors will be in touch to advise you of the arrangements for individual modules. 

 

Assessment

We have plans in place to offer alternative assessments, and will advise you as details become available. In the meantime, please continue with your preparations for all assignments (travel/health permitting for group and other work), the majority of which will be able to be submitted via QMPlus, as usual.

 

If you have had to travel home, we will make provision for alternative assessments in the case of assignments that are dependent on being on campus. More details to follow.

 

Please contact sed-information@qmul.ac.uk if you have questions.

 

Please make your health your first priority, and look after yourselves and others.

 

Best wishes

Catherine


Email from Head of School to All Students - 12 March 2020 6:18pm

Dear students studying in the School of English and Drama,

 

I’m writing with further updates from the School in relation to COVID-19 (coronavirus). This update supplements earlier messages from the School and from Colin Bailey.

 

I want to offer reassurance that you will not be disadvantaged in your studies and grades as a result of COVID-19.

 

We have put in place contingency plans in the School in relation to teaching and assessment and will adjust our approaches as necessary over the coming weeks.

 

Teaching

Our approach is to focus on providing you with online materials, activities and advice (principally via QMplus) to support your learning and assessment as fully as possible in the event that the campus is shut down and/or that very significant numbers of students and staff are unable to attend class.

 

We are in the process of migrating our teaching for online delivery. Staff taking strike action will not be in a position to undertake this work until the conclusion of the action, so please be aware that arrangements for those modules may take a bit longer to finalise and communicate. Module convenors will be in touch to advise you of the arrangements for individual modules. 

 

Assessment

We have plans in place to offer alternative assessments, and will advise you as details become available. In the meantime, please continue with your preparations for all assignments (travel/health permitting for group and other work), the majority of which will be able to be submitted via QMPlus, as usual.

 

If you have had to travel home, we will make provision for alternative assessments in the case of assignments that are dependent on being on campus. More details to follow.

 

Please contact sed-information@qmul.ac.uk if you have questions.

 

Please make your health your first priority, and look after yourselves and others.

 

Best wishes

Catherine


Email from Head of School to All Students -- 6 March 2020

Hello everyone who is studying in the School of English and Drama,

 

As we approach the end of Reading Week, I’m writing with updates in relation to Coronavirus and Industrial Action.

 

Coronavirus

You’re probably aware from the media of the rapid spread of coronavirus and the discussion of its potential impacts at an international, national and local level. Queen Mary has been preparing for different possible scenarios for a number of weeks, and it has a FAQ page here.

 

The situation could change quite rapidly and the University will keep you informed as events unfold. I just wanted to reassure you that at School level, we are already undertaking contingency planning to manage any virus-related impact on your education.

 

Health concerns and uncertainty may be worrying for members of the School, staff and students, especially for those of us who have increased risk of complications, or who have caring responsibilities. If you would like to speak to someone about how your studies may be affected, please contact sed-information@qmul.ac.uk. For medical information, please consult the NHS guidance.

With best wishes (and a reminder to keep washing your hands),

Best wishes

Catherine

 

*

Dr Catherine Silverstone

Head of School

Reader in Theatre and Performance

 

School of English and Drama

Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

Queen Mary University of London

Mile End Road

London, E1 4NS

UK

 

Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 8579

Email: c.silverstone@qmul.ac.uk

http://www.sed.qmul.ac.uk/staff/silverstonec.html

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