Wednesday, 29 May 2019

How 2nd Marking Works at Escape Studios

Michael Davies teaching at Escape Studios
Now that the academic year is coming to an end, our tutors at Escape Studios are busy marking student work, and also carrying out second marking.

Second marking at Escape Studios is part of the process by which we ensure that our academic standards are being rigorously applied. Was the marking fair? Is it reasonable? Were the correct criteria applied?

Looking at your students' work through the eyes of another is a valuable exercise; it is a reminder of how personal marking can be, and how important it is to apply rigidly objective criteria. We don't always get it right first time, which is why second marking is so important.

Kent University is our degree awarding partner
How Second Marking Works
Our second marking rules are governed by our degree-awarding body, Kent University.

At both post-graduate (MA) and undergraduate level (BA), there are five stages to the marking process:
1. First marking of all work
2. Second marking of a sample of work by an experienced internal examiner
3. Moderation between first and second marker
4. Review by external examiner (for the UG animation course, that is Alan Lewis)
5. Checking marks recorded on SITS against original student work.

Second marking samples
The sample for second marking in each module must include:
a. All fails
b. A representative sample across all classification bands (ie 1st, 2:2, 2:2, 3rd)
c. Marks just below a classification band i.e. 49, 59, 69.
d. The highest scoring work
e. At least 10% of the students taking the module
f. At least 6 students. 

Alan Lewis - External Examiner
How marks are agreed between first and second marker
Second marking is intended as a second opportunity to mark student work afresh; it is not merely a means to check the first marker’s work. Therefore, second marks are unlikely to be identical to the first marks. If the discrepancy between first and second marks for the module is within a tolerance of 5 percentage points, then the first marker’s proposed marks go forward as the agreed marks.

5 Point Tolerance
If the second marks are outside the 5 point tolerance, then first and second marker meet to moderate the marks, and complete the Assessment Moderation Form to record the second marks, give reasons, and agreed a moderated mark.

If it appears that mark adjustments are required, following the moderation meeting, then consideration should be given to opening up a larger sample, or re-marking the entire cohort, depending on the nature of the discrepancy.

After 2nd Marking and Moderation
Following second marking and moderation, the first marker completes the mark sheet to show the agreed marks; this is then submitted to Student Services.

Submission to external examiner
Finally, a sample of student work is forwarded to the External Examiner in accordance with the External Examiner policy. In the case of undergraduate animation students, that's Alan Lewis from South Bank University.

What this means is that the grades awarded for student work gets checked twice before the marks are final. As a result, all our students at Escape Studios can be confident that the marks awarded are fair, reasonable, and accurate.

The Escape Studios Animation Blog offers a personal view on the art of animation and visual effects. To apply for our BA/MArt in 3D Animation, follow this link. To apply for our storyboarding evening class, visit this page here. For the next 12 week animation course, click here.

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