Assessment Criteria

Departmental criteria for undergraduate written work

The College and University criteria are available from the College’s Student Handbook. The Departmental criteria for written work are as follows. All written work is judged on the following criteria:

Knowledge and coverage of the material: do you have a good understanding of all the issues? Have you covered all the relevant material? Have you researched the topic in adequate depth?
Structure and argument: is your work clearly structured? Is it analytical? Is your argument well supported? Does it avoid unnecessary repetition?
Critical technique: does your work show an awareness of scholars' debate and disagreement on a topic? Does your work show an awareness of the problems and biases of particular source materials?
Originality: how original is your work in terms of content and structure? How far do you express your own views?
Style and presentation: is your work clearly written? Does it conform to the style guidelines laid down in the relevant departmental guidance? Do the references conform to the style guide provided by the department? Have you checked it for spelling and grammatical errors? 

Departmental criteria for seminar presentations

For module-specific aspects, see the module descriptor for each module. Although the statements below give general levels for the range of criteria, it is always possible that presentations may gain higher or lower marks if they are very strong or very weak on a key aspect such as the actual academic content presented, even if on other criteria they might fall into a lower or higher band.

First Class: 70-100%

90-100%  - An exceptionally clear and well-delivered presentation, showing strong originality, outstanding depth of research, outstanding critical reflection and exceptionally thoughtful engagement with scholarship within the time allowed. The presentation will be accurate and clear throughout, and questions will be handled exceptionally well. There will be no significant ways in which the presentation could have been improved.

80-89% - An extremely clear and well-delivered presentation, showing originality, striking insight, exceptional depth of research, excellent critical reflection and thoughtful engagement with scholarship, within the time allowed. The presentation will be accurate and clear throughout, and questions will be handled extremely well. The quality of the work overall far outweighs any shortcomings or possibility of improvement

74-79% - As for 70-73 but with some elements that are outstanding.

70-73% - A very clear and well-delivered presentation, showing extensive and relevant research, a full understanding of the topic, good critical reflection and thoughtful engagement with scholarship, within the time allowed. Questions will be handled well. This high quality will predominate, but won’t be sustained across the whole presentation.

Upper Second Class: (2.1) 60 – 69

A clear and well-delivered presentation, showing a good grasp of the topic, the ability to reflect critically upon it, and a good amount of preparatory research. The presentation will be accurate and clear, demonstrating a good understanding of the topic within the time allowed. Questions will mostly be handled well.

Lower Second Class: (2.2) 50 - 59

A reasonably clear presentation, covering at least most of the main points but withsome gaps, or with some lapses in understanding, perhaps showing insufficient preparatory work. The presentation may contain some inaccuracies or lose clarity in parts. Response to questions will be somewhat limited in some respects.

Third Class: 40 - 49

A presentation that lacks sufficient clarity, covering some relevant points but with serious and major gaps, and often poor understanding, perhaps showing insufficient preparatory work. The presentation will probably contain serious inaccuracies or shortcomings. Response to questions will be seriously limited.

Fail: 39 and below

26-39 - A presentation that lacks clarity and contains only little substance of relevance to the topic. Insufficient knowledge and understanding are demonstrated, though some evidence of study of the topic will be apparent. Response to questions will demonstrate insufficient knowledge of the topic for University level work.

0-25 - A presentation that lacks clarity and contains no, or very little, substance of relevance to the topic. Insufficient knowledge and understanding are demonstrated. Response to questions will demonstrate insufficient knowledge of the topic for University level work.

Departmental criteria for language work

[Please note: these criteria may be subject to change in 2010-11. If so, students will be advised in good time.] The criteria on translation apply to both prepared and unseen translation, but a higher threshold of competence is expected with prepared translation. It is very important to produce your own translations even if you have worked with an English translation of the Bible (e.g. NRSV, NIV). It is also very important to attempt to translate all of the passage set. Failure to do so will result in lowered marks, even if the part attempted meets the criteria for a higher class.

If it is clear that you have memorised a translation and not worked it out for yourself, your work will be marked down accordingly.

Avoid “translationese”, i.e. the translation of words or phrases in the original so literally that they sound odd in English. Try to represent the Greek/Hebrew as accurately as possible, but in idiomatic English that is also appropriate to the style and level of the original.

Marking is based on all appropriate criteria listed below:

First Class: 70-100%

90-100% - Virtually flawless idiomatic translations, grammatical comment that is full and accurate, Hebrew pointing (as applicable) that is virtually flawless, and penetrating insight into differing aims and strategies in translation, clearly identifying and persuasively accounting for the key points of difference between translations. There will be no significant ways in which the translations or comments could have been improved.

80-89% - As for 85-100, but showing a very small number of errors and/or infelicities in translation, grammatical comment, or Hebrew pointing, and insight into differing aims and strategies in translation or the key points of difference between translations that is uniformly excellent (with a very few slips), but not consistently outstanding.

74-79% - As for 70-73% but with some elements that are outstanding (e.g., some particularly felicitous translations, excellent insight into grammatical subtleties, or persuasive accounts of differences between translations.

70-73%

Translation: idiomatic English, showing a full and mostly accurate translation of the passage, with a small number of significant errors.
Translation and/or grammatical comment: the grammar and syntax of the passage are very well understood.
Hebrew pointing: a highly competent grasp of the principles of Hebrew vocalization, with few significant errors.
Comment on published translations: intelligent understanding of differing aims and strategies in translation, clearly identifying most key points of difference between translations, without providing a thoroughly persuasive account of all of them.

Upper Second Class: (2.1) 60 – 69%

Translation: in acceptable English, showing a good overall understanding of the passage, with accurate translation of at least three-quarters of the passage.
Translation and/or grammatical comment: reasonably strong understanding of the grammar and syntax.
Hebrew pointing: a competent grasp of the principles of Hebrew vocalization, with at least three-quarters of the passage accurate.
Comment on published translations: reasonable grasp of differing aims and strategies in translation, identifying and accounting for some key points of difference between translations.

Lower Second Class: (2.2) 50 - 59%

Translation: in acceptable English, showing an understanding of at least a half of the passage and translating at least half of the passage reasonably accurately, sometimes as isolated clauses, phrases, or words.
Translation and/or grammatical comment: showing a basic competence in the grammar and syntax of the passage.
Hebrew pointing: at least half of the passage pointed with reasonable accuracy.
Comment on published translations: some reflection on the differing aims and strategies in translation, and comment on some significant points of difference between translations.

Third Class: 40 - 49%

Translation: a weak grasp of the overall drift of the passage, with less than half of the passage accurately translated, often as isolated clauses, phrases, or words, and/or in poor and unidiomatic English.
Translation and/or grammatical comment: a little evidence of competence in the grammar and syntax of the passage.
Hebrew pointing: a little evidence of understanding the principles of Hebrew vocalization.
Comment on published translations: a very basic understanding of aims and strategies in translation, and weak grasp of significant points of difference between translations.

Fail: 39% and below

26-39%

Translation: little intelligible evidence of an overall grasp of the passage, with some, but very little, accurate translation of sentences, clauses, phrases or words.
Translation and/or grammatical comment: some, but a very little, evidence of competence in the grammar or syntax of the passage.
Hebrew pointing: some, but a very little, evidence of understanding the principles of Hebrew vocalization.
Comment on published translations: some, but a very little, evidence of understanding aims and strategies in translation, and of ability to identify significant points of difference between translations.

0-25%

Translation: no intelligible evidence of an overall grasp of the passage, with extremely little or no accurate translation of sentences, clauses, phrases or words.
Translation and/or grammatical comment: extremely little or no evidence of competence in the grammar or syntax of the passage.
Hebrew pointing: extremely little or no evidence of understanding the principles of Hebrew vocalization.
Comment on published translations: extremely little or no evidence of understanding aims and strategies in translation, or of ability to identify significant points of difference between translations.