University students are currently waiting to hear what support they will receive due to the third Lockdown.

Those who attended University in 2019/20 academic year will remember a ‘no detriment’ policy introduced in April. This assured students they had a baseline mark of what they were achieving up until the first lockdown. Any marks they received after this could not be lower than those they had already received.

For example, if you had been receiving 2:1 grades all year, you could not receive lower than a 2:1 for the rest of the year. Students were still able to receive higher than their baseline mark. This safety net relieved students of fears around the impacts of Covid-19 on their grades.

Following the third lockdown announcement, Universities advised students to stay at their family home. If they’d already travelled back to University, they were asked to stay there. The majority of students have no access to libraries, in-person studying or even just seeing their University housemates.

Some of the University of Manchester and Manchester Metropolitan University‘s libraries are open – but space is extremely limited. Wherever a student is, there will be a huge impact and disruption to their studying as we all quarantine again.

Although each University’s regulations are different, there wasn’t much discussion of this policy until this week.

Russell Group Universities released a statement that they will not be offering a ‘no detriment’ policy this year:

  • They state that it is not ‘necessary’ due to students embracing the new ‘blended learning models’.
  • They ‘recognise the challenges faced by all students and the exceptionally difficult circumstances that some students are facing this year’. 
  • However, they must ‘uphold the integrity of our degrees’.

A lot of petitions are circulating student groups, hoping to put pressure on the governors of institutions. These include, but are not limited to, Liverpool, Lancaster and Leeds.

With Semester One exams and the start of Semester Two edging closer, students are in need of some hope.

Do you think Universities are supporting students enough? Let us know @pieradiouk