31 May 2022

Catch-up dissertation presentations

This year, we did our dissertation presentations in person again. That is; most students did their presentation live. But there are always students who are ill, are dealing with a family emergency, or have some other reason why they can't present on the day. And this year there were quite a lot of those. 13% of the cohort had something or other going on which made them eligible for presenting at the later date. So I organised a sort of online additional event in which we could mop all of these up. I had to squeeze it between the exams and the deadline for all marking. And that ended up being the last day of the exam period. Two of the students still had an exam on that day, but we could make adjustments for those. We also made separate arrangements for one student who had an important appointment on that Friday, and two students whose supervisor couldn't attend the Friday session.

We did this session online, as we know quite a lot of students go back to their parents after the lectures stop. All exams were still online, so they didn't need to be on campus to do these. I had made four parallel sessions; that way all students had at least two members of staff marking, but nobody had to attend more than seven presentations. It seemed like a Goldilocks situation!

As I am the module organiser, I had my own session on the Friday afternoon, and was second marker the students with separate arrangements. But it wasn't an onerous task. Student presentations are quite intense, but they are quite enjoyable anyway.

At the end of the day, an additional 15 students had presented. Only 8%! But we have done our best for those who didn't show up. And now I need to continue my efforts at making sure all presentation grades are published where they should be

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