‘It’s beyond ridiculous’: Edinburgh final years react to their ‘no decision degrees’

‘Anyone wanting a decent university education should avoid Edinburgh University’

The ongoing UCU marking boycott has resulted in Edinburgh final-year students’ degrees being marked as unclassified, and in some situations students have received no formal degree at all. There is no indication as to when this confusion will end, or when final decisions will be made regarding students’ degrees, meaning that many are facing the possibility of graduating without a result, all while masters’ places and job offers hang in the balance.

The Edinburgh Tab spoke to the students affected, most of whom are upset and concerned about how this will all pan out for their degrees and their futures.

According to a fourth-year history student, there has been no direct correspondence from the School of History, Classics and Archaeology with regards to combatting the grade delay, and said they were “absolutely disgusted that our degree classification is being used as a bargaining chip”.

Another student, with a Masters’ degree in at the Courtauld Institute dependent on receiving a grade by the 15th August, says that it’s “frustrating” and that they have signed a lease in London already, but does not know if the situation will be resolved in time.

Even international students’ places in the UK are now also unstable, as classification is required for job offers which one student says they “need to stay in this country”.

One fourth year Politics student, with a ‘delayed’ classification, spoke to The Tab Edinburgh anonymously and said: “What an utter shambles this is. I have absolutely no idea when I’ll get my degree – it could be September, it could be next year, honestly not a clue. What a pathetic university this is, with a senior management team which shows no regard for their students or their staff. Anyone wanting a decent university education should avoid Edinburgh University.”

A Linguistics and Social Anthropology student’s deferred degree result

The Tab Edinburgh heard from a Chemical Engineering student who said that in their case, all marks had been returned and that friends in other engineering disciplines had also had the same experience, but the majority of students in other schools appear to have been left without this clarity.

Other reactions to the ‘no decisions degree’ include:

“Does this surprise anyone? They just want our money and hate unions”

“Can’t be fucked to turn up to graduation anymore”

“Feel like taking the whole uni to court over this”

“Honestly can’t believe this is happening”

“Students graduating WITHOUT A DEGREE is absolutely abhorrent”

“This university is a piss take”

“It’s beyond ridiculous – it does such a disservice to us final year students and our work”

A History and Politics’ student unclassified degree award

“Will be graduating with no confirmed degree. This uni is shite”

“Really feels like I’ve wasted four years at the moment”

“Don’t know what I’ve got and don’t know when I will know”

“Degree classification delayed, it’s a fucking joke”

An email from the University of Edinburgh to final years

A spokesperson for the university said:

“Many of our final year students have received their degree results as expected today. Some students have received a provisional award and will receive their degree classification at a later date. For others, a decision regarding the outcome of their degree has been delayed owing to the marking and assessment boycott. We have contacted these students individually to advise them of next steps. We recognise the impact this is having on their lives and future plans and we share their frustration at being caught in the crossfire of this national dispute.

“Graduations will continue as planned. All students who have been awarded their degree, final or provisional, or who are awaiting a final decision on their degree outcome, will be able to participate in a ceremony. As in any year, those who have failed or not completed their final year for reasons not directly related to the marking and assessment boycott will not be able to participate in the graduation ceremony.