Calculation error affects Arts GPAs


Reports have emerged that an administrative error resulted in a number of Arts graduates from last year being awarded an incorrect Grade Point Average (GPA).
The University Observer understands that the error affected students who started their undergraduate course in 2005, but who sat repeat exams in their second and/or third years. This was due to the unique grading system in place during the first year of UCD’s Horizons program, which was launched in 2005.
Problems arose in 2006 when students were informed that their GPA would be split evenly between second and third years. Following numerous complaints from both students and student representatives regarding how late students were informed of the change, academic authorities amended the degree weighting. Second year results were reduced to 30 per cent of students’ final GPA, with third year results making up the remaining 70 per cent.
However, in subsequent years, the exam results from both second and third year have been awarded equal weighting in determining a student’s final GPA.
Initially, Arts students who started in 2005 and graduated this year having sat repeats, did not have their GPA calculated as agreed. Their GPA was originally split evenly between second and third year instead of the original 30/70 weighting. The mistake was subsequently corrected.
One student affected by the miscalculation explained, “I was concerned when I saw that the original GPA given was not as high as expected […] UCD, to their credit, did correct my grade a number of weeks later, but this mistake was easily preventable.”
“This had the potential to upset and worry students, especially those depending on [their final degree grade] to get a postgraduate course,” the former student continued. “Thankfully, despite the mistaken grade I was given I was still accepted to my chosen postgraduate course, but others may not have.”
An official statement from the University stated that there had been “no general issue in relation to final year grades this year”, but that if a student wished to query their final grade they should “follow the normal appeals procedure.”