An online petition has been launched urging College to implement a “no detriment” policy for this year’s summer assessments. The policy, similar to measures taken by several UK universities in light of the coronavirus pandemic, would mean that as long as students receive a passing mark their overall average grade cannot be brought down by upcoming assessments.
The petition argues that the policy is necessary due to the special circumstances of the closure of Trinity along with other higher education institutions in response to the coronavirus.
Under the policy, if a student receives a mark higher than their average up until the closure of College their average mark would go up, but if they received a mark lower than their average but high enough to pass, their average would remain the same.
At the time of publishing the petition had gained over 250 signatures.
Similar petitions calling for the policy to be implemented across other Irish higher education institutions have also been launched. The petition calling for the policy in Dublin City University (DCU) has reached over 1,000 signatures, while a petition started by students of University College Cork (UCC) has been signed by nearly 3,000 people.
A second similar petition has also been launched on the website change.org, calling for the implementation of a no detriment policy in Trinity, so far signed by around 40 people.
The petition started by Trinity students which has gained the greater number of signatures argues that “the university closure has been disruptive to students’ study habits, in particular those that are dependent on university facilities such as the library or laboratories”.
It further states that “since the university ceased all in-person operations on March 13th, a large proportion of students are now bereft of a suitable working environment, WiFi, laptops, computers and even office equipment. Some students are exposed to toxic living conditions, without proper access to a safe place to do assessment in, or exposed to and caring for sick family members”.
Colleges across Ireland will remain closed until at least April 19 in an effort to help contain the spread of the coronavirus, the government has said.
Trinity’s campus is currently closed to all undergraduate students with the exception of those who live on-campus, which has been reduced to a small number who fit certain criteria.
Access for staff is to continue, while postgraduate students who require access to the campus in order to engage in “critical research projects” are to be admitted if they show they have received permission through email from their supervisors.