Postgraduate student Martina describes the differences between grades in the UK and what they really mean below. Something that many of our international students find difficult in the first semester. To find out more about the courses we offer at Bournemouth University in the UK, visit our website or follow our instagram to learn more about our international students.
My name is Martina Gardeva and I am a Bulgarian postgraduate student in tourism management and marketing. What can be confusing when you go to study in another country is how your projects and exams will be graded and what you need to pass your degree.
What are the postgraduate degree classifications in the UK?
There are three types of masters: integrated, research and teaching. An integrated masters program in the UK is usually assessed using the standard university assessment system. On the other hand, the success or failure of a masters program is usually due to research. Then there is the taught masters program. This is your standard one-year program for 180 credits. Most UK taught masters programs use the same ranking and grading, which includes honours, merit (or commendation) and passing.
The honors degree is the highest and most valuable qualification in postgraduate study. It means you are the best person and will be valuable to potential employers.
It also means that you are highly qualified to enter your chosen field and know more than enough about the subjects you have studied.
What percentage of Masters students fail?
In the UK, students invest heavily in masters studies. First, they are often quite expensive, averaging £8,740 in 2022 for one year for a taught masters.
For more information on the cost of a master’s degree, see this article Think of a student. If you are interested in how to pay these high costs, you can also check the Consider the Student article on student loans for masters students.
Old British grading system
Institutions in Northern Ireland and Wales use this system. A is the highest possible grade and G is the lowest. It is considered a D-level pass.
English schools use this system. Under the new system, the highest possible grade is 9 and the average passing grade is 4. Students who score lower in both grading systems receive a U. However, as Indian students attend universities British students for undergraduate, postgraduate and professional programs, this grading system does not apply to them. But it is important to understand the GCSE assessment system before moving on to the other systems. A guide to the UK education system