On 5th February, Education Officer Matt Styles put forward a motion to SU Council that proposed a criteria for the Grade Point Average (GPA) if the University of Nottingham decides to implement as an alternative to current degree classifications.
The motion, which was seconded by Postgraduate Officer Laura Theobald, passed with no opposition.
Using a GPA system would mean that students would receive letter grades for their assessments before being given an overall point average that would be calculated through weighting the various grades accordingly.
Under the GPA system, there is not pass/fail mark, meaning that some universities may decide to making the first year of a degree count towards the final grade in order to encourage students not to slack.
The idea behind the proposal was the belief that several Russell Group universities are considering adopting the GPA system which will help employers tell where graduates fell within their classification.
Styles pointed out that the motion did not mean that the Students’ Union would push for the University to take up the GPA system, rather that if they did they would have to meet certain criteria to make sure that it was not detrimental to students.
The motion means that the SU will try to stop the University using the GPA system alone, but instead introduce it alongside current classifications so that students are able to present either to future employers.
In adopting the proposal, the SU has committed to encouraging the NUS to conduct research to find out the pros and cons of moving to such a system, which would include talking to both students and employers.
Styles warned against a situation where only a few Universities implemented the GPA system. If only Russell Group universities took it up, he said, then it would be looked upon as an elite concept, which is not desirable.