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Durham University

Learning and Teaching Handbook

6.1.2: University policy on the summative assessment of group working

1. This policy should be read in conjunction with:

 a. The University's Principles of Assessment (http://www.dur.ac.uk/learningandteaching.handbook/6/principles/);

 b. The University's policy on the Quality Assurance of Assessment – Learning and Teaching Handbook Section 6.1.1;

 c. The University's policy on the Retention of Assessed Work – Learning and Teaching Handbook Section 6.1.4.

 2. If groupwork skills are to be assessed summatively, departmental/school education committees must ensure the following.

 3. If one or more of the learning outcomes of a module are to be assessed by groupwork the module proforma should identify how the groupwork component will be assessed if a student has a resit opportunity.

 4. The standard University assessment regulations apply, with the exception of the collusion regulations where group-submissions are a requirement of the activity.

 5. Feedback for summative and formative work should be made available to all group members not simply a group representative.

 6. Where a group has a member with a disability, departments/schools should ensure that they provide reasonable adjustment to ensure that the member can actively participate in the work. However, at no time, unless requested to do so by the specific student, should staff make other group members aware that one of their group has a disability.

 7. Group work assessment outlines should clearly identify to students:

 a. How their marks will be allocated to the outcome of the group's product(s) and if marks will additionally be allocated for process (such as how well the team collaborated).

 b. How their work will be submitted. For instance, should a single submission be made on behalf of a group or should each individual submit.

 c. If each member of a group will obtain the same mark, or if individual contributions will be assessed and if so how these individual contributions will be derived.

 8. Module documentation should clearly identify to students:

 a. How groups will be formed. For instance, self-selecting or pre-assigned, and:

 i. strategies that will be applied if students drop out of groups (i.e. withdraw from the module).

 ii. if groups are to be self-selecting what the minimum / maximum size of the group should be and any penalties to be applied to groups that fall outside these boundaries (taking note of strategies identified above).

b. How groups will be managed. For instance, whether this will be student led or if a group will be assignment a tutor, and:

 i. if a group is assigned a tutor, the tutor must be clearly defined. For instance, students must be informed if a tutor is observing group meetings to assign a process mark to each group participant;

 ii. the opportunities available for group communication including the availability of pre-timetabled session, access to technology or software (such as a module blogs) or if students will be required to make their own arrangement;

 iii. what groups should do if have a member who is not contributing. Departments/schools are likely to want to provide separate instructions for groups where members are absent due to long-term sickness and for those that are not participating to an expected standard.