Making full use of the BU Generic Assessment Criteria.

The current form of the Generic Assessment Criteria (Academic Regulations Policies and Procedures 6f) is the outcome of a collaborative project led by the Centre for Excellence in Learning, the forerunner of FLIE, involving Faculty representatives, the BU Students Union, and Academic Quality, with scrutiny and input from committees, staff consultation events and final ratification from Senate in May 2016. The criteria currently apply to all taught programmes from Level 3 to 7.

Here is the link to the policy document

An extract from the policy document:

“1.1 The generic assessment criteria provide an essential frame of reference for the development, review and use of Faculties’ assessment criteria and a means to measure student achievement against specified learning outcomes. As such, they offer a consistent vocabulary for providing feedback to students on their assessment performance. Additional ‘feedforward’ statements are presented alongside the generic assessment criteria to encourage further learning and academic development. “

It is important to recognise that the Generic Assessment Criteria statements are intended to be supplemented by the markers with assignment-specific, discipline-specific or profession -specific feedback comments.  An electronic rubric has been developed to be added to the markers’ comments, derived from the Generic Assessment Criteria.

Here is the link to the Brightspace Resources section “Using turnitin rubrics’


The policy is underpinned by a principles-based approach

  1. Landscape tables for clarity and ease of comparison between grade bands

The criteria apply to all taught programmes from Level 3 to 7, with a table for each academic level.

  1. Neutral language replaced the previous deficit approach which students had reported as upsetting.

The statements refer to the work produced for the assessment and not the student producing it.

  1. Importantly, the criteria are based on the principal of assessment for

This is a key principle adopted by BU and which also underpins the Assignment Design Policy (Academic Regulations Policies and Procedures 6c).

  1. Common language for all levels

A common set of terminology for each of the grade bands was adopted to encourage a clearer match between the feedback comments provided by the marker and the mark awarded. For example, good for 2.2; very goodfor 2.1; excellent for 70-79% and outstanding for 80+%.

The Generic Assessment Criteria tables should be included in Programme handbooks and it is helpful if they are also included under the Assessment tab in Brightspace for individual units.


Anne Quinney, Principal Lecturer, FLIE.

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