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has anyone else ever failed a masters assessment? feel shit

13 replies

fatherliamdeliverance · 06/10/2020 18:39

Hi all.

I am doing a masters currently. It has been a crazy year so far, working on the covid response all hours (policy, not front line) and working since May on a professional exam that I have just taken. This exam is really demanding and took hours of prep, solid weekends plus evenings. I am also doing a Master's and had to do an assignment during the final stages of prep for my professional exam.

I dashed it off and hoped for the best (all my other marks have been solid). I've just got the mark back and it is a fail.

In short, I haven't answered the question in full and have gone off piste doing my own calculations when it should have been an assessment of existing data. I made a number of assertions based on my professional knowledge, so not backed up by citations (they've not been marked as wrong but it is noted that there was no evidence). All in all, a sloppy piece of work.

I know that I was otherwise engaged and it was better to submit something (I was told that another exam would not really be grounds for an extension) than nothing but I feel so stupid and deflated. I think I might get chance to resubmit but just feel such an idiot.

Just venting here as I feel too ashamed to tell anyone in real life that I messed up. Added to which I don't know what the professional exam results will be as my nerves really kicked in at one stage. I need to pick myself up and move on but just feel useless academically and as though I shouldn't be on the course.

Has anyone ever failed and been allowed to resubmit?

OP posts:
fatherliamdeliverance · 06/10/2020 18:47

just to add, the exam date was changed due to covid, I thought it would have been well out of the way by the time this assignment came round plus the prep course I did for it started late

OP posts:
twointhemorning · 06/10/2020 18:57

I'm sure others more knowledgeable than me will come along. You'll need to check your university's regulations but I would guess you'll be allowed to resubmit the assignment but your maximum grade for the resubmitted work would be the pass mark.

Don't be too harsh on yourself, sounds like it's been hard juggling work and study. In the future as long as you get the qualification, nobody will care about your actual marks.

fatherliamdeliverance · 06/10/2020 20:41

Thank you Twointhemorning I will speak to my tutor tomo.

OP posts:
Notanothercherrybakewell · 06/10/2020 21:11

Usually a resubmission would have a capped mark on it, so you would be unable to attain anything more than a pass on that piece. That isn't the end of the world though!! And your overall grade will take into account the other work you have submitted so while it will affect the final grade it won't necessarily drag it down too low if you've handed in excellent work so far.
Contact your supervisor or course leader to ask the process (it should be laid out on your intranet or in your submission handbook too).
My advice would be to start working on this piece ready for submission again. In my experience it might be better to totally start again rather than trying to rework what you already have. Take the key pieces and totally rework it to fit the question. I'm surprised at masters level you haven't had it drummed into you about citations and not using personal opinions though. In business/marketing we were taught that each paragraph should have at least 2 citations to defend your point.
From what you've said you've been turning in strong work consistently so don't let this knock your confidence too much! We've all been there and turned in something subpar before, dust yourself and carry on.
You've already explained where you went wrong, so you know exactly how to fix it already WinkGrin

weaselwords · 06/10/2020 21:20

Oh god yes. I’m doing the Advanced Clinical Practice MSc, so all paid for by Health Education England (no pressure) and spectacularly failed my OSCEs.

Like you I was crawling with shame, but resat and passed. Phew! I’d never failed anything in my life up to then.

dangerrabbit · 06/10/2020 21:26

Yes I have, I failed an exam in my master's and now have to retake and it is capped at 40%, if I fail again I have to retake the whole module.

No helpful advice but just wanted to let you know that I'm another person currently in this situation and sending sympathetic vibes your way Wine Gin Cake

On a positive note my friend failed the same module and has just heard she passed the retake, so maybe there is hope for us all! Flowers

fatherliamdeliverance · 07/10/2020 00:43

Thanks everyone CakeWine to you all too.

That's useful advice about starting again rather than trying to improve what's there, cherrybakewell. one of the criticisms was that I didn't use a wide enough range of data sources (genuinely just trying to pick a subject and get it done quickly) and there wasn't much available on my topic so I will probably start again entirely. You're right in that the uni are quite thorough on citations, references etc. This was nothing more than poor practice on my part as I let myself run out of time by prioritising the exam. Gah. I had a look at the policy and think I can re-do it, capped at a pass. Hopefully that should be OK.

I might ask whether working on covid would be an extenuating circumstance and allow the retake to be uncapped. This feels really cheeky though tbh.

OP posts:
MindyStClaire · 07/10/2020 04:21

I wouldn't start working until you know what the resit assessment will be - I'm an academic and sometimes the resit assignments are different to the initial ones for various reasons. Did you just fall that assessment or the module as a whole? If you passed the module overall you may not have to resit anything. Also, if it was from the academic year just gone there may be different regulations in place due to covid so well worth double checking what will happen.

Contact your lecturer and ask what will happen next. They're probably up to their eyeballs ATM so you might be waiting for a reply, but they won't mind you asking.

Don't beat yourself up, it's just one assessment and you were up to your eyeballs. I've done the working plus professional exams thing, can't even imagine adding a masters on top. Failed assessments happen, it's not a big deal, that's why resits exist.

Sleepingdogs12 · 07/10/2020 08:11

Give yourself some credit . You ve been working hard, completed study for the professional qualification and tried to keep up with your masters. I am the sort of person who would never willingly put myself under this level of additional stress ,so well done and you'll crack it next time.

fatherliamdeliverance · 07/10/2020 11:49

Thanks Mindy. unfortunately it is one assessment per module so I have failed the module. Ah well. I'll hopefully get another crack at it.

Sleepingdogs thank you thats so kind. I am now doubting the wisdom of taking all of this on!

OP posts:
sergeilavrov · 07/10/2020 12:24

Always, always ask to get what you want in academia. You’d like to have an uncapped resit? Prepare a decent case and ask nicely for it. It’ll take you a long way.

Yoloyohol · 07/10/2020 13:26

Also please have a look on your uni's main pages about 'no detriment ' policies. Most uni's have had them in place to deal with the stress students are under for all sorts of reasons connected to the pandemic.
If you can't find anything follow it up with SU, it tends to be the sort of thing they're good at.

Camomila · 07/10/2020 14:29

Me too, had to re-do 2 assignments one year, and 1 the next - combination of small DC/not enough childcare to study/struggling with the material (regression analysis)...but it's finished now! Just waiting on the dissertation results.

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