Guidance on late submission (to accompany the Policy on Submission of Work for Summative Assessment)
Please note: this Guidance was updated in November 2020, in relation to the wording in paragraph 5.
This Guidance accompanies the Policy on Submission of Work for Summative Assessment.
For a full PDF version of the Guidance, please see below:
C. Communications to students
- The Policy on Submission of Work for Summative Assessment was revised and approved in June 2015 for implementation from September 2015. It sets out the University’s policy on the process of submission and sets out the penalties associated with late submission. Updates were also made to the Policy in February 2019 for implementation from September 2019.
- As noted in paragraph 4.5 of the Policy, there is a standard University penalty for all work that is submitted late. This must be used by Schools in relation to large pieces of work (e.g. dissertations/projects)). It is also the default penalty for all other pieces of work, unless alternative arrangements are agreed by the relevant Faculty. Schools are required to make a case to their Faculty for any exceptions to the standard penalty and, if agreed, any variation must be made clear on each piece of assessment. Faculties should review any variations annually.
- For small pieces of work, in exceptional circumstances a Unit Lead may decide not to accept late submission of assessed summative work. These circumstances must be approved by the Faculty and be detailed within Unit Specifications, and the rationale and consequences must also be clearly articulated in Assignment briefs (see paragraph 4.10 in the Policy on Submission of Work for Summative Assessment).
- The following guidance is provided for Schools to assist in their implementation of these aspects of the Policy. Reference should also be made to the Undergraduate and Postgraduate Degree Regulations, which provide more information in relation to assessment and progression, including compensation and referrals.
5. Definition of late submission
Any work that has been submitted after a deadline has passed is classed as late except in cases where an extension has already been agreed via mitigating circumstances procedures and DASS extensions. There should be no discretionary periods or periods of grace. A student who submits work at 1 minute past a deadline or later will therefore be subject to a penalty for late submission.
This guidance relates to first attempts/first sits only (including deferrals). Students who submit referral assignments (including carried forward failed credit) after the deadline will be automatically subject to a mark of zero. There should be no sliding scale in operations for resits/referrals and there are no further resit opportunities for referred assignments that are submitted late.
6. Application of penalties for late submission
In cases where a piece of work does not represent an entire assessment or unit, the penalty applies to the individual piece of work, not the total assessment or unit.
No calculations should be made for part-days. Any work submitted at any time within the first 24 hours following the published submission deadline will receive a penalty of 10% of the maximum amount of marks available. Any work submitted at any time between 24 hours and up to 48 hours late will receive a deduction of 20% of the marks available, and so on, at the rate of an additional 10% of available marks deducted per 24 hours, until the assignment is submitted or no marks remain.
If a piece of work is not marked out of 100, the deduction per day is proportional to that for work marked out of 100. For example, for a piece of work marked out of 60, the deduction would be 6 marks per day/24 hours. The reduction is therefore 10% of the total assessment value, rather than 10% of the mark awarded for the piece of work.
The Policy relates to 24 hours/calendar days, so includes weekends and weekdays, as well as bank holidays and University closure days. If an assessment deadline is at noon on a Friday and the student submits it just before noon on the following Monday, their penalty would be a 30% mark deduction, based on being late by three days/72 hours. Schools are therefore advised to consider the implications of deadlines (particularly for hard copy submissions) and are encouraged to avoid deadlines on a Friday.
Schools must make it clear to students that submission dates and times are in UK local time and it is the responsibility of students to ensure that they check the relevant time zone. (This may be of particular relevance to distance learning students).
Should Schools require both online and hard copy submission of an assignment, the late submission penalty would apply to the piece of work with the earliest submission date.
7. Professionally accredited programmes
The requirements of Professional and Statutory Bodies can take precedence over the requirements of the Policy. Therefore, PSRB accredited programmes which have a deadline/time related Intended Learning Outcome (ILO), for example related to professionalism, are permitted to apply a zero tolerance approach and issue a penalty of zero marks for late submission.
Conversely, in areas where students need a mark/credit for PSRB purposes, they should still be given a mark for work submitted late, if that is a PSRB requirement.
8. Procedure for the handling of cases where a student receives a pass mark for an assignment (including dissertations) but then fails the unit due to the deduction of marks as a penalty of late submission
Students whose assignment mark falls below a pass as a result of a late penalty should not be routinely* asked to resubmit the assignment; instead, the original assignment will be used in lieu of a referral, and normal resit/referral procedures will apply, with unit marks receiving a suffix of ‘C’ or ‘R’, as described below. If a student’s original unit mark before the application of the penalty was a pass, the mark recorded for the unit will not fall below the minimum compensatable pass mark for the programme.
*However, if the student has exhausted all their compensation allowance or the unit is a core/compulsory unit which does not permit compensation, the student would need to take a referral for progression purposes, and would receive an ‘R’ suffix – see example 8.2 below.
8.1 In cases where a student’s overall unit mark is in the compensation zone (following application of a late submission penalty) and the student has compensation credit remaining, normal compensation procedures will apply. For example, UG marks after the penalty of between 30 and 39 are recorded as 30-39C. PGT marks after the penalty of between 40 and 49 are recorded as 40-49C.
8.2 In cases where a student’s overall unit mark is in the compensation zone (following application of a late submission penalty) but the student has exhausted all their compensation allowance or the unit is a core/compulsory unit which does not permit compensation, the student would need to take a referral of the unit for progression purposes, and would receive an ‘R’ suffix.
8.3 In cases where a student’s overall unit mark falls below the compensation zone, following application of a late submission penalty, the original assignment submission is treated as a referral and the mark is capped, with the final unit mark recorded with a suffix of ‘R’ to denote its treatment as a referral. For example, UG course unit marks that were pass marks before the penalty but that after the penalty fell to below 30 are recorded as 30R (i.e. the minimum compensatable pass mark). PGT course unit marks that were pass marks before the penalty but that after the penalty fell to below 40 are recorded as 40R.
Programmes with minimum compensatable pass marks that are different from the above should adopt an approach that is equivalent but that reflects their pass mark.
9. Procedure for the handling of cases where a student’s original mark was in the compensation zone before the deduction of marks as a penalty of late submission
Students whose assignment mark was in the compensation zone should not be routinely asked to resubmit the assignment*; instead the student’s original mark will be used in lieu of a referral with the students’ unit marks being capped at the lowest compensatable mark (normally 30 for UG and 40 for PGT programmes) and the mark receiving a suffix of ‘R’ to signify that it is being used in lieu of a referral. For example, a UG student whose assignment makes up 100% of the unit and whose original assignment mark was 35, and receives a mark of 5 for the unit as a result of late submission penalties, would have their unit mark recorded as 30R.
*However, if the student has exhausted all their compensation allowance or the unit is a core/compulsory unit which does not permit compensation, the student would need to take a referral of the unit for progression purposes, and would receive an ‘R’ suffix.
10. Shared units/students undertaking units from another School
In the case of shared units/students undertaking units from another School, it would be good practice for the application of any late submission penalties to be clearly communicated to the student’s programme owning School.
11. Work submitted more than 9 calendar days late
If work is submitted more than 9 but less than 10 calendar days late, this is considered as a late submission and a penalty will be applied that results in the mark being reduced to zero. The work should still be marked and feedback given.
If the work is submitted more than 10 calendar days late then it is considered as a non-submission and a mark of zero applied.
12. Providing feedback in relation to work submitted late
Work submitted within 10 calendar days of the deadline should be marked and feedback provided; the feedback should reflect the mark achieved before the penalty was imposed. If a student submits work more than 10 calendar days late, there is not a requirement for the work to be marked or feedback provided. However, Schools may choose to mark and provide feedback.
C. Communications to students
13. Schools should ensure that they make clear to students the deadlines for submission of work and how the students are expected to submit (i.e. the format – online or hard copy, etc.) Students should be advised via the handbook of the penalties that will be applied if they submit late and the implications for feedback.
14. Students should also be advised that if they submit referred assignments late, a mark of zero will automatically be given.
 Large pieces of work, for this purpose, are defined as being single pieces of assessed work carrying a credit weighting of 30 credits or more.
Version 1.4, November 2020