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16th Nov 2018
A new report, published by the Higher Education Academy, is urging British universities to trial the grade point average (GPA) system, as used by universities in the US, Canada and Asia.
The report states that GPA gives students a more precise grade by providing a cumulative score of average marks throughout a student's degree - providing employers with a more accurate picture of how students perform throughout their studies. It also offers greater international comparability of degree results.
The current system, whereby students are awarded a first, 2:1, 2:2 or a third, has been criticized by employers for being too crude, as it makes it hard to differentiate between students within those classifications - for example, students who achieved 60% and those who achieved 69.9%.
A pilot study at the University of Leicester in 2013-14 found that a GPA system could boost student motivation and engagement throughout their studies, and help employers by offering more detailed information at an earlier stage.
Oxford Brookes is the only British university to have adopted the GPA system so far, but a five-year trial will run at other universities, alongside the current honours degree model.
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