The University of Sydney Law School Policy on moderation of grades
The purpose of this policy is to ensure an appropriate degree of fairness and consistency in assessment. It will allow a meaningful comparison of marks, where a grade given in one subject signifies a level of achievement that is similar to that reflected by the same grade in another subject. In this way, the moderation policy aims to support students (by promoting fairness and transparency), to assist academics (by providing appropriate guidance in their assessment of students’ works), and be more useful and transparent for other universities (who look at students’ grades for accreditation and admission purposes) and for prospective employers. The moderation policy also aims not only to ensure an appropriate degree of fairness and consistency in marking across a particular year, but from year-to-year, to ensure relative stability in the level of marks awarded, and to maintain the integrity of the marks given and to avert “grade inflation” and its consequent impact on the award of honours and ranking on graduation.
Where JD and LLB students are taught the same syllabus and complete the same assessment in a semester, all students will be treated as if they were enrolled in the same unit of study for the purposes of this policy.
Passing grades in undergraduate and JD units shall conform to the following distribution:
1. A minimum of 3% of the students must receive a grade of HD;
2. No more than 10% of the students may receive a grade of HD;
3. A minimum of 10% of the students must receive a grade of D or above;
4. No more than 40% of the students may receive a grade of D or above.
The percentages may be applied so as to allow the rounding up or down to the nearest whole number of students.
The above distribution does not apply to units of study with fewer than 25 students enrolled on the first day of the examination period.
This policy applies to units of study in summer and winter schools.