Skip to main content


Department of Economics

3: Assessment and Examinations

In this section of the Handbook, we will provide information about the assessment methods used throughout the Degree programme, as well as the various policies and procedures that are in place. You can find details of all policies relating to Assessment and Feedback on the Department’s Assessment and Feedback webpages . In particular, here you will find a link to the Department’s Assessment Strategy.

You will experience a range of assessment methods, including mid-term tests, problem sets, presentations, essays and year-end exams during your Diploma. Any work that contributes towards the final module mark is known as summative assessment. However, for work during the year, you will also receive comments on it and this is part of the formative feedback that we provide.


These rules and procedures relate to all undergraduate courses taught by the Economics Department. You must pay particular attention to the paragraphs Referencing (3.1.7) and Plagiarism (3.1.8) and are strongly advised to read Regulation 11 in the University of Warwick Calendar: .

Marking criteria

Performance is classified into five broad categories of: First; Upper Second (2.1); Lower Second (2.2); Third; Fail. There is a range of marks for each of the classes and the marking criteria are provided in the table below:

Class (Marks)ComprehensionAnalysisCritiquePresentation
FirstDemonstrates command of the subject matter including, where appropriate, methodological, technical and scholarship skills.Presents a tightly-focused, relevant and well-structured answer with full and accurate development of concepts/theories, and excellent use of evidence.Understands and evaluates relevant arguments, debates and/or interpretations in a manner that demonstrates a developed capacity for independent thought. This may amount to an extension of existing arguments, debates and /or interpretations.Provides a thorough and consistent deployment of techniques of academic writing with particular reference to structure, referencing/sourcing and spelling/grammar.
2:1Demonstrates good appreciation of the subject matter including, where appropriate, methodological, technical and scholarship skills.Presents a coherent and closely-argued answer with good structure, accurate use of concepts/theories, and good use of evidence.Understands and evaluates relevant arguments, debates and/or interpretations in a manner that demonstrates a capacity for independent thought.Provides a good deployment of techniques of academic writing with particular reference to structure, referencing/sourcing and spelling/grammar.
2:2Demonstrates an understanding of core aspects of the subject matter including, where appropriate, methodological, technical and scholarship skills.Presents an answer to the question taking into account appropriate structure, development of concepts/theories and reasonable use of evidence.Understands and reproduces relevant arguments, debates and/or interpretations.Acknowledges and employs techniques of academic writing with particular reference to structure, referencing/sourcing and spelling/grammar.
ThirdDemonstrates some familiarity with the subject matter including, where appropriate, methodological, technical and scholarship issues.Shows an understanding of the question with some structure, knowledge of concepts/theories and use of evidence.Demonstrates some awareness of relevant arguments, debates, and/or interpretations.Shows awareness of techniques of academic writing with particular reference to structure, referencing/sourcing and spelling/grammar.
FailDemonstrates little evidence of familiarity with the subject matter including, where appropriate, methodological, technical and scholarship skills.Demonstrates a poor grasp of the question with loose structure, little knowledge of concepts/theories and inadequate use of evidence.Demonstrates little awareness of relevant arguments, debates, and/or interpretations.Provides a poor demonstration of techniques of academic writing with particular reference to structure, referencing/sourcing and spelling/grammar.

The 20-point scale

The 20-point scale is a university-wide marking scale that has been adapted from the 17-point scale, which was in place from 2010. It is based on a mapping of the five broad class categories into a 20-point marking scale, as set out in the table below.

These procedures do not apply to quantitative problems or short-answer questions, which are marked using the whole range of marks between zero and 100. The 20-point marking scale applies to essay-type questions (both coursework and examination).

For example, an essay which is deemed to be an Upper Second class piece of work may be awarded only the mark of 62 or 65 or 68 within the range 60 to 69, according to whether the work is judged to be of low, medium or high worth, respectively, within the corresponding class. One of the motivations for the scale is to encourage essay markers to use higher marks within the first class range and lower marks in the fail range.

For those modules in which the examination paper is made up of a combination of essay-type questions and quantitative problems or short-answer questions, the 20-point scale is relevant only for the essay elements. The final mark will continue to emerge as an aggregation of individual marks, where these individual marks have been obtained in different ways. Note that this means that the aggregate mark itself is not constrained to be one of the 20 marks on the scale.

FirstExcellent 1st100
Exceptional work of the highest quality, demonstrating excellent knowledge and understanding, analysis, organisation, accuracy, relevance, presentation and appropriate skills. At Final Year level: work may achieve or be close to publishable standard.
High 1st88

Very high quality work demonstrating excellent knowledge and understanding, analysis, organisation, accuracy, relevance, presentation and appropriate skills. Work which may extend existing debates or interpretations.

Mid 1st82
Mid 1st78
Low 1st74
Upper Second (2.1)High 2:168

High quality work demonstrating good knowledge and understanding, analysis, organisation, accuracy, relevance, presentation and appropriate skills.

Mid 2:165
Low 2:162
Lower SecondHigh 2:258

Competent work, demonstrating reasonable knowledge and understanding, analysis, organisation, accuracy, relevance, presentation and appropriate skills.

Mid 2:255
Low 2:252
ThirdHigh 3rd48

Work of limited quality, demonstrating some relevant knowledge and understanding.

Mid 3rd45
Low 3rd


FailHigh Fail (sub Honours)38Work does not meet standards required for the appropriate stage of an Honours degree. Evidence of study and demonstrates some knowledge and some basic understanding of relevant concepts and techniques, but subject to significant omissions and errors.
Fail32Work is significantly below the standard required for the appropriate stage of an Honours degree. Some evidence of study and some knowledge and evidence of understanding but subject to very serious omissions and errors.
25Poor quality work well below the standards required for the appropriate stage of an Honours Degree.
Low Fail12
ZeroZero0Work of no merit OR Absent; work not submitted; penalty in some misconduct cases.

Methods of submission


You will submit assessed coursework via electronic submission, accessed via Tabula:

Staff in the Undergraduate Office then distribute this submitted work, which is stored only by University ID number, (and all work is date- and time-coded) to the designated marker.

You can submit your work electronically up until 23:55:00 on the deadline day. You may complete e-submission earlier than the specified assessment deadline. You are asked to carefully read the guidance on the e-submission system before using it.

Any object such as graphs, figures or equations will have to be incorporated into your electronic document. As a last resort this may entail having to scan in from a hard copy (e.g. a picture you have drawn), although this should, where possible, be avoided as such scanned documents take a lot of space and there is a limit on the size of the file you can upload.

In submitting your electronic copy we recommend you submit your work on the deadline day prior to 3:30pm, in order that you can inform us of any problems that arise during the working day. To submit your document online, once you have produced your final electronic file as e.g. a Word document, you will need to create a PDF document from that Word document. It is your responsibility to ensure that the conversion from a Word document to a PDF document is good. To create a PDF document you can download a copy of the free software PDF converter from IT Services and follow the instructions. Alternatively, on the Warwick network go into Delivered Applications and install PDF Converter. You will be able to print (with ScanSoft PDF create!) to produce a PDF file from within Word by choosing File — Print; you will see ScanSoft PDF create! as a printer alongside your other available printers.

You should name the resultant PDF file as the module code-assignment number.pdf (for example, ec201-a1.pdf would be the name for your first Macroeconomics 2 assignment).

You should upload that pdf via the Coursework page on Tabula. If you have a technical problem with your submission then you should print off the error page and then email the pdf submission to [email protected]

Paper submission

You must submit one copy of your work to the Undergraduate Office, S0.98 and you should complete a submission form. This must be attached to your work. All work will be date-stamped on receipt.

The Undergraduate Office will require your University library card when you submit your work. Your submitted work will then be recorded on the Departmental database.


Each piece of work must be submitted by a particular date which is set by the Undergraduate Office and module leader. You will be given notice of these deadlines; the Department’s guidance to markers specifies a minimum of four term-time weeks. It is your responsibility to arrange your own programme and manage your time accordingly. We advise you always to leave a safety margin in case of last–minute difficulties in obtaining books, printing files, and so on. Most assessed work is submitted electronically, but there may be some pieces of work that need to be submitted in hard copy. Your module leader will inform you if a particular piece of assessment should be submitted in hard copy.

Assessment deadlines for the academic year 2017-18 can be accessed through Tabula .

Late submission

Work submitted late will be marked subject to a penalty, in the form of a deduction of percentage points from the awarded mark.

A five percentage points penalty is imposed for work submitted on the day after the due date, and then increases by five percentage points per day thereafter, with a minimum mark for that assessment of zero. Penalties only accrue on working days (not weekends or public holidays).

For work that is submitted electronically, do not leave it too close to the last minute. Penalties cannot be removed in situations where the network was busy around the time of the submission deadline. You must also check your submitted work as invited to do so when e-submitting. Penalties cannot be adjusted if you or we later find that you have submitted a wrong file or a corrupted document. A 20 percentage point penalty will be imposed as a matter of routine, should you submit the wrong piece of work or submit your work to the wrong module code, assessment or department.

For problem sets, where solutions are discussed in module Support and Feedback classes immediately after submission, any late submissions will receive a mark of zero.

All late work should be submitted on Tabula. If this is not possible please bring it to the Undergraduate Office. Late work must not be submitted to the class tutor, personal tutor or module leader.

Extensions and exemptions

If you submit work after the deadline, your work will be marked subject to a penalty and if you miss a mid-term test or final examination, you will normally be given a mark of zero in that assessment. However, during the year there may be times when you are unwell and this might occur in close proximity to assessment deadlines or on the day of a test. If you are unable to complete an assessment by the deadline or are unable to attend a test, you will need to submit an exemption or extension request, together with medical or other supporting evidence.

Requests are considered by the Undergraduate Teaching & Learning Manager, in consultation with the Director of Undergraduate Studies and not by your lecturer, class tutor or personal tutor. All applications and evidence for extensions and exemptions are considered against the twin criteria of force majeure and evidence. If your request is necessitated by factors over which you have no control, and which you could not have reasonably anticipated (force majeure), and if these factors can be documented in some way, your request will normally be approved. Extensions or exemptions may be granted on compassionate grounds, e.g. death or serious illness in your immediate family. Evidence that is in any other language than English must be accompanied by an official translation. It is your responsibility to ensure that the UG Office receives all evidence in a timely manner, which means within one week of submitting your request and from the date of the assessment.

If an extension is granted, a new deadline will be set by the Undergraduate Teaching & Learning Manager. Submission of work to this new deadline will be subject to the normal late submission penalties. If you are granted an exemption to an assessment, then your absence from or non-submission of the assessment will be condoned; this normally means that the percentage weight that your assessment would have attracted will be redistributed to the end-of-year examination.

If you are thinking of asking for an extension or exemption, you should first ask yourself whether you could have reasonably foreseen the reason for your late submission or absence and taken avoiding action. If so, in fairness to those students in similar situations who took the necessary steps or precautions, your request is unlikely to be granted.

Extensions to Assessed Work

To seek an extension for assignments you must fill in an extension request form, available on Tabula.

Any requests for extensions should be made in a timely manner and ideally before the deadline. However, extensions can be applied retroactively, lifting any late penalty you might have already received for that assessment. You will need to submit evidence to support your request and this can either be uploaded onto Tabula or should be submitted within one week of your request to the UG office ( [email protected] ). Should there be an unexplained delay of more than one week before submitting medical evidence, we may not be able to agree to your extension request. Bear in mind that your request will not be the only one coming in, especially during periods of numerous submissions deadlines. Allow reasonable time for the situation to be resolved before contacting the staff involved again.

For assessments that are spread out over a long period of time, such as dissertations, there is an expectation that almost every student will encounter some difficulties in their lives during this period. As a result, it is anticipated that you will handle these situations without impacting on your final submission. Thus, low-level and short-term illnesses and factors such as problems with computers, will not be considered as a basis for an extension for this type of work. This differs from assessments which have a shorter time to complete and for tests that have to be taken at a specific time.

Please ask for an appointment to see the Director or Deputy Director of Undergraduate Studies only if your request relies on highly personal information. Personal lobbying will not benefit your case at all.

If you are taking a module that is offered by a different academic department, it is still your home department (Economics) which makes the decision on an extension or an exemption from a test. In the case of an outside module, you need to email the Undergraduate Teaching & Learning Manager directly and include your evidence. S/he will consider your request and, if it is approved, you will then need to collect and complete the form (if there is one) from the outside department, ask the Undergraduate Teaching & Learning Manager to sign it and take it to that department so they are aware of your extension. With some departments the Undergraduate Teaching & Learning Manager will need to email or telephone the appropriate person in that department. Given the inter-departmental communication, approval is likely to take longer than for an assessment within Economics.

Nature of evidence required for deadline extensions

The nature of evidence that you will need to supply to support a deadline extension request is dependent on the type of assessment, as follows:

For assessments, you will have had lengthy notice of deadlines and plenty of time to prepare. Low-level or short-lived illness should not prevent timely submission. More serious and lengthy illness will easily entitle you to a formal medical certificate signed by a doctor or medical professional and this will be required to avoid late penalties or a mark of zero. In the event that you are not able to submit your assessment, it can be condoned based on the evidence you submit. In this case, the credit for the assessment will be transferred to the summer examination.

Problem sets and presentations

For some assessments, a short-lived illness (less than seven days’ duration) may disturb your preparation or performance and for these lesser assessment events (typically between five and 10 per cent of module credit), we will normally accept self-certification. You are permitted to submit only two self-certifications during the academic year and the form must be submitted within three working days of the assessment event. Frequent self-certification will not be permitted; patterns of self-certification are monitored by the UG office, who will request formal documentary evidence should they feel the need to do so.

If you self-certify illness for failure to submit work on time, you will normally be granted an extension that may vary with circumstances but which will always be short. For problem sets, where solutions are discussed in module Support and Feedback classes immediately after submission, no extensions can be granted, but you may be condoned from the assessment, based on the evidence. The weighting would normally be passed onto the final examination. Information on solution availability can be obtained from module leaders.

Mid-term tests

You cannot apply for an extension to a mid-term test and nor can a test be rescheduled. Please see the section below on exemptions from assessments.

If you are not sure into which category a given assessment falls, please ask the Undergraduate Teaching & Learning Manager.

Regularly refused reasons for extensions

If you are thinking of applying for a coursework extension or exemption from a test, you should be aware that, if your reason is the same or similar to those given below, your request is likely to be refused.

"I travelled abroad over the vacation and was unable to obtain references from local libraries."

Comment: The University doesn’t require you to do academic work in the vacation. It may be a good thing if you do, but some students have to undertake paid employment. You could, and in this case should, have at least completed your research for the essay in term time.

"I travelled abroad over the vacation and as a result I returned late to the University or I had a poor internet connection whilst abroad."

Comment: The University requires you to be in residence in term time, and most assessments are submitted electronically. If you are concerned about poor internet connection you need to check before travelling whether this will be an issue.

"I have a last-minute invitation to an important job interview for which I need to prepare a presentation."

Comment: You knew you’d applied for the job, and building in some slack for interviews is just part of normal time management. You should plan to research and write assessed coursework with a margin to spare so that complications like this, which are predictable, don’t put you into a spin. However, your request will be viewed sympathetically if you get several last-minute invitations to interviews in quick succession. If the interview or assessment centre falls on the day of a test and you have evidence that this event cannot be moved, we may be able to consider an exemption request.

"I had too many other important things going on and forgot to submit my essay on the right day, but my file is dated the day before the deadline, proving that my essay was ready beforehand."

Comment: You have to give the right degree of priority to your academic work. The date on a file is easily manipulated.

"I was about to submit my essays on the day of the deadline when my computer crashed/was stolen, meaning I could not access e-submission website/access my file to upload."

Comment: Don’t leave essential tasks to the last minute; please leave plenty of time to upload your work via e-submission, leaving a margin of error in case of technical difficulties. Always make regular backup copies of files both physically, such as on a memory stick, and using online facilities. Transport issues will also not be accepted as an excuse for late submission.

I submitted the wrong file to the e-submission website, but didn’t notice at the time/I submitted the file for the wrong assessment/to the wrong department’s system"

Comment: You should review your submission before confirming or submitting. Students submitting the wrong file or submitting to the wrong section on the e-submission system will receive a 20% penalty to their mark even if they can prove it was submitted by the deadline. It is your responsibility to check that you have submitted the correct file to the correct assessment/department.

Exemptions from Assessed Work: (Absences)

If you are unable to take a mid-term test or your illness is of such long duration that it prevents you from submitting a piece of work within an appropriate extension, you can apply for an exemption, so that the work is condoned. The weighting of the assessment is normally passed onto your final examination for that module. In the case of WBS modules, if an assessment is missed or not submitted and you request an exemption based on mitigating circumstances, this will not be considered until the Exam Board. You will be given a mark of zero and this will only be condoned when the Exam Board meets.

Mid-term tests

You should notify the UG Office if you have missed a test or expect to miss one. Requests to condone an absence from a test should be made to the Undergraduate Teaching & Learning Manager. If you are unwell and the test is worth up to 10%, you are permitted to self-certify and should submit the form to the UG office within three days of the test. Only two self-certifications are permitted each academic year and they are closely monitored.

If the test is worth more than 10%, you will be required to submit a medical certificate to the UG Office [email protected] . Absence may also be granted on compassionate grounds, e.g. death or serious illness in your immediate family, supported by appropriate documentation. It is your responsibility to ensure that the UG Office receives these documents within one week of the date of the absence. We will not chase you for them and if you do not provide this evidence, your absence will not be condoned.

Please note that requests made to condone absences from tests due to attendance at an interview or an assessment centre will normally be accepted, only if there is evidence that the interview could not be postponed. The Department expects you to make clear to potential employers who may invite you to attend interviews and assessment centres that you have certain commitments throughout the academic year, and that attending tests is a compulsory part of your course.

These reasons for absences will not normally be condoned:

  • Open Days
  • family celebrations
  • holidays
  • mistakes with travel arrangements
  • mistake with time or location of test.

Please note that this list is not exhaustive.

Good practice in assessment

Essay Writing Guidance

Essays are often a major source of uncertainty for incoming students. To understand the criteria used by your tutors to mark your written coursework, you should familiarise yourself with the information here. Not every module requires coursework in the form of essays, but the rules that apply to essays can often help in relation to other kinds of coursework too. Sources of advice on essay writing include:

  • departmental guidance
  • your module Support and Feedback class tutor
  • your lecturer
  • the study skills sessions organised by Careers & Skills
  • online provision from the Library
  • regular drop-in session with the Economics Librarian in the Department.

You are advised to back up your files regularly to minimise the risk of losing documents. Please make sure that you do not leave the submission of your work until the last minute; build in some time to put things right if your computer crashes, as most submission is online, through Tabula.

Word limit

You should remember that work is judged on quality rather than quantity, and you must adhere to word limits. If you feel, however, that you can say what you want to say in fewer words then do so. You should include your final word count on any assignment.


Your work is submitted anonymously, whether by e-submission or hard-copy submission. Anonymisation is based on the University ID number on your library card. If submitting a hard-copy assessment, you must ensure that this number appears on every page. You must not print your name anywhere on your work. If submitting your work by e-submission, you must take care that you have logged into the system using your own university ID number, and that you are not logged in using a friend’s ID number who has used the computer before you.


Work must be clearly and neatly written or typed on one side of the paper only. Double spacing is preferred as this makes reading easier, and leaves space for comments by the tutor. Pages should be numbered.


You must provide a general bibliography at the end of your essay, listing all the works (and people) you consulted when researching the essay. Do not omit any sources. Do not ‘pad out’ the bibliography with works you have not consulted.

Correct referencing is important. To quote facts, figures, theories and theorems without accrediting their original source is an academic malpractice as well as being plagiarism. Direct quotations and results must be footnoted stating the author, publication or book, date and page or table number. If you rework published data or use it as the basis of your own calculations, you must identify the source in the same way. If you paraphrase the arguments or theories of other people you should again acknowledge the source in a footnote. Footnotes should be listed at the end of your essay, term paper or project. The following are three examples of the form of the footnotes.

  • Layard, R. How to Beat Unemployment, Oxford University Press, 1986, page 34.
  • Based on Feinstein C.H., “Capital Formation in Great Britain”, in The Cambridge Economic History of Europe, P. Mathias and M.M. Postan (eds.),Cambridge 1978, page 29, table 2.
  • de Meza, D. and Webb, D. “Risk, Adverse Selection and Capital Market Failure” Economic Journal Volume 100, March 1990, pages 206-14.

In practice, you may find that some of the theories you mention have passed into the public domain and appear in any number of textbooks. Hence, it is not necessary to reference statements like: “Economic theory suggests that demand curves for normal goods are negatively sloped.”

However, any textbooks you use should be listed in the bibliography at the end of the essay, term paper or project. The bibliography should include all books and articles referred to in the particular piece of assessed work. Where tables of data are presented the source of the data should be stated at the foot of the table.

For further information on Plagiarism, you can refer to the online Plagiarism Tutorial on Moodle.


In University Regulation no. 11, ‘cheating’ is defined as ‘an attempt to benefit oneself or another, by deceit or fraud. This includes deliberately reproducing the work of another person or persons without acknowledgement.’

Further details can be found here:

We define plagiarism as a specific form of cheating: the attempt to pass off the theories, inferences, reasoning, computations or work of others as if they were your own. We also include plagiarising of one’s own work under our definition. It is your responsibility to familiarise yourself with individual departments’ policies on plagiarism if you are opting to take one of their modules.

Work submitted to the University of Warwick for official assessment must be all your own work and any parts that are copied or used from other people or from work you have previously submitted at Warwick or elsewhere must be appropriately acknowledged. Failure to properly acknowledge any copied work is plagiarism and may result in a mark of zero.

A significant amount of unacknowledged copying shall be deemed to constitute prima facie evidence of plagiarism, and in such cases the onus will be on you to establish otherwise. The university uses Turnitin as its plagiarism detector and all submitted work is analysed by Turnitin. The reports indicating the amount of your work that is similar to or taken from other sources is available to the marker, together with a reference to the original source.

Penalties for Plagiarism

The penalties for cheating are severe and when we detect cheating we apply them rigorously. The penalties normally range from a mark of zero on the work concerned to a smaller deduction of marks. In the most severe cases, your place on the course may be threatened. There are also wider implications that can affect your future. For example, most employers expect a job reference to confirm that an applicant is honest, to the referee’s knowledge. If you have cheated in a piece of work, your referee may be unable to provide this assurance.

Some examples of plagiarism are:

  • reproducing ideas from another published work without citing the source
  • reproducing words from another published work without quotation marks
  • copying another student’s work and pretending it is yours, with or without their permission, and whether they are a present or past student at this or any other university
  • downloading work from an internet website and pretending it is yours.

The Department provides information regarding academic referencing and how to do it and you should check the referencing section of the Handbook for details of this. Further sources of information are also available through the Library and our dedicated Librarian.

The procedure for dealing with cases of alleged plagiarism is described in University Regulation 11. If a marker decides that he or she suspects plagiarism in a piece of coursework, he or she will report it to the Director of Undergraduate Studies, who will in turn make a recommendation to the Head of Department or designated deputy. Where the Head decides an offence has occurred and exacts a penalty, the maximum penalty is a mark of zero on the relevant piece of assessed work. Alternatively, the Head may report the matter to the Academic Registrar for consideration by an Investigating Committee of Senate. If the Committee finds an offence has been committed it has the power to impose a mark of zero for the entire module unit or some more severe penalty. At each point you have rights of representation and defence which are described in the Regulation.

Good practice and unfair practices

It is not plagiarism to cite without attribution ideas and theories which have passed into the public domain and appear in any number of textbooks: for example, "Economic theory suggests that demand curves for normal goods are negatively sloped." The more widely you read and research your coursework, the quicker and better you will know what is and is not in the public domain, and the more safely you will be able to determine what can go without a supporting reference.

It is important for you to avoid even the suspicion of plagiarism or cheating in your assessed work. The best way is to ensure that you adhere to good practice. Usually this means that when you first take notes from a book or article you should be careful to preserve the details of author, title, date, and page numbers. Such precision is an important transferable skill in itself and shows that you are acquiring a professional approach.

Students who lack confidence in writing sometimes prefer copying or quoting from the textbook to expressing ideas in their own words. Why should they use their own words when somebody else’s words are better? Such students do not intend to cheat. They escape serious consequences by scattering quotation marks and references sometimes, in large quantities. The marker cannot detect plagiarism, but is uneasy because it is not clear that the student has done more than some intelligent cutting and pasting. It is impossible to be sure that the student has an independent understanding of the topic. Such work may pass, but will not get a good mark.

Copying out lecture notes is something we would especially discourage. Notes provided by lecturers should be only a starting point of your research, not your finishing point. Again, work based largely on lecture notes will not get a good mark.

Helping others to plagiarise or collaborate

Discussing your work with your colleagues can be a positive and fruitful learning experience. Often it is enhanced by showing your colleagues what you have done. However, there is no good reason for another student to ask to borrow a disk or file on which your essay or project work is recorded. If your work is copied by another student, and the copying is detected, you lay yourself open to accusations of abetting or colluding with their cheating, or even of engaging in cheating yourself.

Collaboration, or working cooperatively with other students, is an excellent way of acquiring knowledge and testing your understanding of it. Teamwork enables you to cover material more quickly and efficiently. Having to explain things to others clarifies them and fixes them in your mind. But collaboration can give rise to two concerns. Sometimes students fear that collaboration may lead to accusations of plagiarism, in the sense of passing off others’ work as your own. We think there is a clear distinction between the co-operative acquisition of knowledge and the copying of another’s work and submitting it as your own. If you find yourself in a situation where co-operation with another student has become so close that you find yourselves working towards a joint result, discuss it with your Course Director before submitting your work.

Other forms of cheating

Plagiarism is just one form of cheating. There are, of course, other kinds of cheating, such as cheating in tests or exams. This can take several forms, some of which are listed below:

  • concealing information on or near your person during a test or exam and then referring to this information during the test or exam
  • by using electronic devices to retrieve information in a test or exam
  • copying another student’s work or communicating with other students in a test or exam
  • arranging for another student to take a test or exam on your behalf
  • submitting any falsified documentation.

The above list is not exhaustive and any form of cheating can and will be punished by the University. As with plagiarism, the penalties for cheating in a test or exam can be severe. As is stated in Regulation 11, suspected instances of cheating in an exam will be referred to the Academic Registrar and on to the Investigating Committee of the Senate. If an invigilator suspects you of cheating in an exam, the invigilator should let you know that they will be submitting a report to the Academic Registrar.

Once the invigilator has warned you that a report will be made, you will be allowed to complete the exam. Please refer to the University’s Regulation 11 for more information.

In contrast, cheating in class tests is dealt with in the Department, but may still be passed on to the Academic Registrar and the Investigating Committee. If an invigilator suspects you of cheating in a class test, the invigilator should let you know that they will be submitting a report to the Director of Undergraduate Studies. Once the invigilator has warned you that a report will be made, you will be allowed to complete the exam. The investigative process and penalties are then the same as those set out for plagiarism and other forms of cheating in coursework.

Where should I go for advice on these matters?

If you have read all of the above and are still not sure what constitutes plagiarism, collusion or other forms of cheating, you should seek advice in good time from either the module leader, or your Course Director. For advice on the Department’s Plagiarism Procedure, please refer to the Department’s Quality Assurance Manager.

Querying of assessed work marks

Marks for all assessed work will be returned to you within 20 working days of the submission deadline/test date unless there are mitigating circumstances. All assessment and examination results are only provisional and will not become finalised until after the Exam Board.

University regulations state that you may not query a mark awarded on a piece of assessed work, including an examination, on the basis of academic judgement. We will reject any requests by you to have your work reviewed on the basis that you disagree with the marker’s evaluation of your performance. You are entitled to approach the module leader or lecturer to discuss your performance in the assessment, but please note what you must do prior to this, as outlined in the previous section. However, you are not permitted to ask your lecturer or tutor to re-read your work or comment on the mark and certainly not to lobby for a re-mark.

If you believe that the marks for a piece of coursework (not an exam) in a module run by the Department of Economics have been totalled incorrectly, you are permitted to request an arithmetic check on the paper. We have the right, after such an arithmetic check, to adjust the mark upwards or downwards.

Should you wish to request an arithmetic check of your marks for an assessment (not an exam), please complete an Assessed Work Mark Check form, which is available from the useful forms section on the Economics Hub. You should submit it, together with the marked copy of the assessed work in question, to the UG Office within seven working days of the date the assessment was made available for you to collect. We will then carry out a check of the marks. If no discrepancy is found, you will be advised of this and asked to collect your work. You will be advised that there is no right to a further check or questioning of marks. Should a discrepancy be discovered, we will calculate the correct mark for the work and adjust this on our systems. You will then be contacted to collect your work, which will have the corrected mark annotated on it.


Most of your assessment will be in the form of University examinations. For each exam, you are required to bring your student i.d. card and place it on your desk, so that your identity can be checked during the examination. You should avoid bringing a bag with you to the examination room, as you will not be permitted to bring it into the exam with you. The use of PDAs or mobile phones, or any other hand-held devices that facilitate wireless communication is not permissable in examination conditions.

Most second and third-year Economics modules are examined by a combination of a closed-book, unseen examination contributing 80% of the credit for the module, and summative assessment (i.e. in the form of essays/tests/problem sets) contributing 20%. This is called the ‘standard scheme’. The type of assessment can vary from one module to another; this is indicated in the module descriptions. Some non-standard schemes apply, notably in the EC226 Econometrics module and some other quantitative modules.

Modules offered by other departments have their own examination methods. It is your responsibility to inform yourself of these, particularly regarding their rules and procedures for assessed work.

Good practice in examinations

To maximise your chances of success in an examination, there are a number of pointers for good practice, such as:

  • familiarising yourself with what happens in the exam room by reading the Examination Regulations 10.2 ( )
  • familiarising yourself with the rubric beforehand and doing what the rubric asks, including answering the right sections in separate exams booklets (the rubric for each module can be found on the module webpage – it is better to use this source for accurate exam rubric rather than using past papers, as they may be out of date)
  • answering only the required number of questions — not more, questions will be marked in the order their appear until required number is reached
  • filling in the question numbers on the front page
  • not wasting time writing out the question — but do write down the question number
  • striking out any material that is not to be read (e.g. unwanted attempts)
  • writing legibly
  • showing your working in mathematical/quantitative answers enough to be awarded method marks if you get the wrong answer. In any case full marks ought not to be awarded for correct ‘bottom line’ answers — we are also interested in checking reasoning and understanding.

Other advice on how to tackle exams is available through these links:

Warwick SU Examinations Advice:

Managing Exam Anxiety:

Mastering revision:

Use of calculators in exams

You may only use a calculator in an examination if the examination paper rubric states it is permitted. It is your responsibility to ensure that your calculator fulfils the University’s criteria which can be found at:

Use of bilingual dictionaries in examinations

If your first language is not English you are allowed to use a single-volume, non-specialist, general-purpose bilingual translation dictionary covering English and your first language. Permitted dictionaries should give only equivalent words and phrases in English and the first language, and should not include further explanatory text or appendices, other than of a trivial nature. Encyclopaedic, electronic, pictorial or specialist/subject-specific dictionaries (e.g. legal or business dictionaries) are not permitted.

It is your responsibility to provide your own bilingual dictionary. All bilingual dictionaries will need to be authorised by the Department and you should take it to Undergraduate Office (S0.98) prior to the exams period to get it stamped. No notes may be made in dictionaries.

Examination boards

The Board of Examiners comprises a subset of full-time members of the academic staff in the Department of Economics, members of the academic staff from other departments for joint programmes, and one external examiner appointed by the Senate. The Board, chaired by the Deputy Head of Department, makes recommendations that are subject to confirmation by the Senate.

External examiners are experienced senior academics from other universities whose role is to monitor our standards, to advise us on issues including borderline cases, and to act generally as independent arbiters and scrutineers to ensure that the Board’s decisions are fair. Please note that all marks are provisional and may be raised or lowered by the Exam Board.

Failure to meet prescribed deadlines

A zero mark will be recorded when you fail to present yourself for an examination or submit an item of assessment for a module for which you have been registered. In circumstances where a zero mark has been awarded (including instances of plagiarism and cheating, where the opportunity for reassessment has been withheld by those investigating the offence) the Board has the power to deem the taught component failed.

Mitigating circumstances

Where there are mitigating circumstances (e.g. health or family problems) which affect your performance either during the year or at exam time:

  • make sure that either your Course Director or the Directors of Academic and Pastoral Support know the circumstances
  • complete the Mitigating Circumstances form and submit it with your evidence to the UG Office or Course Director. The form must be fully completed with as much information as possible
  • be sure to produce a medical certificate or other relevant document. If medical evidence is provided then the Board of Examiners may be able to exercise its discretion.

The Board might recommend that you sit (as for the first time) in September or the following June, or base a grade for a module on (possibly adjusted) assessment marks, or condone missing work, etc. Note that self-certification, unsupported by a medical consultation, will not be acceptable. Further guidelines on mitigating circumstances are given in the section on Coursework Extensions.

If you are taken ill during an examination you should inform the Senior Invigilator immediately. You will be required to provide a medical certificate from a doctor, which should be submitted either to your Course Director or the Directors of Academic and Pastoral Support or the Undergraduate Office (room S0.98) as soon as possible.

All mitigating circumstances and accompanying evidence must be submitted a week before the meeting of the Board of Examiners. Your Course Director or the Directors of Academic and Pastoral Support will then pass on this information to the Exam Board Secretary so that it can be considered by the Board. You should be aware that, in the event you feel you need to appeal the outcome of an Exam Board, offering mitigating circumstances at that point will need to be accompanied by a good reason why you withheld the information earlier. Failure to disclose such circumstances at a time when you could have done so may subsequently be problematic. We will do all we can to support you in difficult situations.

Assessment and examination scheme

The following are guidelines only, and the Board of Examiners reserves the right to exercise its discretion in individual cases.

You will (full-time) normally take four full modules in one academic year. One full module can consist of two half-weight modules: in such a case the average of the marks for the half module counts as the mark for the full module.

  1. To pass the Diploma

    Aim:To broadly achieve at least a third class honours standard.
    Guidelines:(i) Pass (> 40%) at least 90 CATS
    (ii) An average mark of 40.0% or better over 120 CATS
  2. To pass the Diploma and satisfy the standard to proceed to the MSc

    Aim:Normally you would be required to achieve at least an upper second class honours standard
    Guidelines:(i) Pass (> 40%) at least 90 CATS
    (ii) An average mark of 58.0% or better over 120 CATS
    (iii) A mark of 60.0% or better on at least 60 CATS
  3. Resitting Students

    Normally resit marks will be based on the combined exam and assessment weights, and the total mark will be capped at 40%.

It is a requirement if you wish to proceed to the MSc that you must pass the Diploma at the first attempt and achieve the necessary higher marks outlined in (i), (ii) and (iii) at the first or second attempt.

Examination marks

You will be notified by email when exam results are available with information on how to access them. Compliance with the Data Protection Act (1998) means that we will not give out examination or assessment marks over the telephone or to any third party without your prior written permission.


If an Exam Board decides that your performance merits the award of a lower qualification than the one for which you were registered or does not merit the award of a qualification at all, you have certain rights of appeal within 10 days of notification. You are required to complete a form if you wish to appeal against the decision of the examiners for their course. Find out more about the appeals procedures at:

There is no right of appeal against the requirement to resubmit work or resit examinations.

Appeals may be made on one or more of the following grounds:

  1. There is evidence of exceptional circumstances that affected your performance which you were unable to present in time for the meeting of the Board of Examiners. In this instance, you are required to provide an explanation why the evidence was not available at the meeting of the Board of Examiners.
  2. There is evidence of procedural irregularity or unfair discrimination in the examination process.
  3. There is evidence of inadequacy of supervisory or other arrangements during your enrolment at the University. In this instance, you are required to explain why a complaint was not made at an earlier stage.

Appeals made on grounds covered by (1) or (3) will be rejected if the you do not provide an explanation for the lack of availability of the evidence when the Board of Examiners reached its original decision.

If you have any queries about appeals please contact the Undergraduate Office: [email protected] .


Official transcripts will be provided by the Academic Office after completion of the course.

Higher Education Achievement Report (HEAR)

The University of Warwick issues a Higher Education Achievement Report (HEAR) to all undergraduate students. This is the official record of your academic achievements, including module marks, from your time at the University of Warwick. The HEAR is issued as an electronic document and also provides information about your programme of study and some additional achievements undertaken whilst at university. It is hoped that the information provided on the HEAR will prove useful both to graduates entering the job market and to potential employers, as well as to current students as a formative document.