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Coronavirus 2020 FAQ

For general information about the University's response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, please visit www.cam.ac.uk/coronavirus/students.  This page provides supplementary information relating specifically to assessment arrangements for students in the Faculty of Music during Easter Term 2020.

Contents

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Initial Communication Regarding Assessment

Tripos Assessment Schedule (current)

Part IA

Part IB

Part II

Updates and Amendments

Rationale for Part II Assessment Plan

 

FAQs

The following represents questions which have come in to the Faculty office since we originally communicated assessment plans to students between 31 March - 02 April 2020.  If you have a question which is not answered here, please contact (for Tripos-related queries) or (for queries relating to MPhil, MMus or PhD).

What should I do if I am unable to complete the online assessments during Easter Term?

We understand that personal circumstances may well mean that a number of students are unable to complete some or all of their online assessments during the main examination period in Easter Term. 

For students at all Parts the Faculty can give extensions if required. Students should approach their College Tutor in the first instance who will contact the relevant Exam Board Chair with the request.

Please note that as all Part IA and Part IB assessments are formative and will result only in advisory grades per paper, we are setting the final deadline for all examinations and coursework as June 5 in a spirit of fairness to all students, and work submitted after that date may not be graded.

How has the Faculty made decisions regarding adjusted assessment plans for 2020?

Working within a set of principles and policies set out by the University, the Faculty’s Assessment Planning Group met a number of times to develop plans for assessment.  The Group focussed particularly on undergraduate finalists and 1-year Masters programmes.  The Group developed a rationale document to give some background to its thinking around Part II.

How will my assessed work be marked at Parts IA & IB?

At Parts IA and IB, single marking will be used and markers will offer feedback on the work with an indication of the quality of the work produced.  As assessment for these Parts will be formative rather than summative, you will undertake the assessment and get feedback on it but will have no recorded marks on your University transcript.

As the University has decided that formative assessments will not fall within the remit of the Examination Access and Mitigation Committee, there is neither need nor provision for Part IA and Part IB students to make applications for examination allowances.

All work submitted via Moodle will automatically be submitted to Turnitin for screening.

How will my assessed work be marked at Part II?

At Part II, we intend to follow our usual marking arrangements for double-blind marking.  Should this prove impossible due to the availability of staff, the Exam Board may consider a moderating second marker.

All assessed work at Part II will receive marks and will be considered by a full Exam Board as usual.

Any applications for mitigating circumstances must be made by the student’s College to the Examination Access and Mitigation Committee (EAMC).

All work submitted via Moodle will automatically be submitted to Turnitin for screening.

How will my assessments be scheduled?

All coursework deadlines have been delayed by 28 days (please see the detailed schedule below for revised submission dates).

All online assessments will be released on 11 May with a final available submission date of 05 June.  Example schedules are available for Part IA, Part IB and Part II to give you a sense of how you to manage your time and you should discuss this with your Director of Studies to create a timetable that works best for you.

How long should I spend on each of my online assessments?

Unless you have already been granted extra exam time through the SSD system, we would expect you to spend no more than 2 hours answering each exam-paper question. No student should feel constrained to complete a whole exam paper at one sitting.

Preparation time between release of exam papers and the writing of answers will need to be organised by each student individually in consultation with their DoS, perhaps with reference to the suggested timetables attached for Parts IA, IB or II as appropriate. We recommend uploading completed answers in sequence, to prevent bunching at the end.

Will online assessments be “open book”?

Yes, you will be able to refer to resources, but it is recommended that you do your preparation for the questions beforehand and spend no longer than the recommended time on writing your answers.

Is there a word limit for online assessments?

Each answer for a written paper should be not more than 2,000 words, with footnote references and bibliography optional (these are therefore not included in the word count). As these are optional, you are not required to use a particular style.

Students should bear in mind that markers are not obliged to read material that lies beyond the word limit.

In general, we are asking students to provide 2 answers for what was formerly a 3-hour paper, and 1 answer for what was a 2-hour paper. The maximum word-length for any one paper is accordingly 4000. Please note that the word limit is not a target.

Do answers need to be typed?

Yes. We require typed answers. We suggest that you format as follows:

Coursework: Label each answer clearly; use a legible and professional-looking font in size 11 or 12; use default margins; number pages sequentially; think about using 1.15 or 1.5 line spacing. Supervisors can advise on dissertation formatting if you have queries and you must remember to include the declaration and abstract.

Exams: There are no specific formatting guidelines for exam paper submissions beyond ensuring that they are clearly laid out and easily legible.

Is acceptable to submit handwritten score?

Handwritten submissions are absolutely fine, provided they are clearly legible. These must be submitted as a single file if at all possible. If sending typeset scores or musical examples, these must be in pdf or similar. Please do not send Sibelius or Finale files. If there are difficulties with this, please contact undergraduate@mus.cam.ac.uk for advice.

What should I do if there is a problem with the question paper for my online assessment?

Candidates are invited to highlight questions or queries regarding the question papers to the Undergraduate Administrator between 11 May (when the papers are released) and 12pm on 18 May.  Queries will be passed to the Exam Board for comment and any clarifications will be sent via email to all students in the relevant Part. On the afternoon of 18 May, you will receive an email confirming all clarification announcements made during the week. 

Has the requirement to submit recordings of pieces been dropped?

Yes. Recordings are no longer a required element of the Composition and Tonal Skills submissions. Students may submit these if they have a completed recording, but assessment will be based on scores only.

Given that only one more submission is now required for IB Paper 5 Composition Portfolio, what now happens to the duration requirement for the portfolio (previously 14 mins)? Is there any requirement for the instrumentation of one of the works being for a certain number of real parts or similar?

There is no longer a requirement a minimum duration (or number of parts, etc) for IB Composition, although the more substantial your submission (within reason), the more you will be able to receive feedback on. If things are difficult, Richard Causton (rjc94@cam.ac.uk) is happy to look at what you've done and offer informal feedback in cases where that might be useful.

Are candidates still expected to submit scores for the Part II Paper 1 Analysis Portfolio?

Due to new availability of online scores, in most cases this won’t be necessary. If there are any issues with this, students will be contacted individually.

Will marks out of 100 be given for Parts IA and IB?

Students will not be given marks but feedback on the assessments will be given. 

For students in Part IB, the Faculty will also provide an indication of grades for each paper completed (e.g. “mid-2i”).  No marks will be recorded on your University transcript.

When will I get my final MPhil/MMus transcript?

In view of the delayed final submission date, the Examination Board for the MPhil/MMus will take place in late August, and we would hope that results should be available in early September.

I have a query/comment on central University decisions on revised assessments. Who can I write to?

Any queries on the new central assessment guidelines should be directed to the Communications office at communications@admin.cam.ac.uk.

I am concerned that the Faculty is not fairly dealing with my concerns about the assessment process. What should I do?

We would encourage you to discuss your concerns with the Director of Undergraduate Studies (for Undergraduate Students) or the Director of Graduate Education (for Graduates) in the first instance and/or with your College Tutor.  If you wish to escalate your concerns, you can follow guidance for Student Complaints.

Initial Communication Regarding Assessment

Email to Undergraduate Students 31/03/2020

Email to MMus Students 31/03/2020

Email to MPhil Students 01/04/2020

Email to PhD Students 02/04/2020

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Tripos Assessment Schedule (current)

PART IA

Paper         

Assessment Arrangements

1

Music and Musicology
Today

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 1 question, not 2.

Performance: Feedback on the basis of a teacher report and student self-reflection to be submitted by Friday 22 May.

Composition: Due Friday 22 May

Extended Essay: Due Friday 22 May

2

Music History I

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

3

Music History II

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

4

Introduction to Music  
Analysis        

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

5

Tonal Skills I:
Counterpoint 

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June

Takeaway: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June

6   

Tonal Skills II:
Harmony

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June

Takeaway: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June

An example schedule for Part IA is available to give you a sense of how you to manage your time and you should discuss this with your Director of Studies to create a timetable that works best for you.

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PART IB

Paper         

Assessment Arrangements

1

Historical Studies
(C20th & C21st)

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

2

Analysis

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 1 x 19thC unseen and 1 x 20thC unseen, out of 4 provided (there is no set work component).

3

Applied Tonal Skills

Coursework: Due Wednesday 3 June. No recording required. 2 submissions required but students may submit all 3.

Orchestration: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June

4

Introduction to
Performance Studies

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 1 question, not 2.

Performance: Feedback on the basis of instrumental teacher's report and student self-reflection to be submitted by Friday 5 June. Optional Skype live session with one of the performance examiners.

Essay: Due Friday 22 May

5

Composition Portfolio

Coursework: Due Friday 22 May. No recording required. 2 submissions required but students may submit all 3.

6

Dissertation

Coursework: Due Tuesday 26 May. Students needing to change their abstract should contact their supervisor and DoS for approval.

7

Notation

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students complete 1 transcription and the commentary question (no second transcription).

8

Keyboard Skills

Cancelled.

9

Introduction to
Ethnomusicology

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 1 question, not 2.

Essay: Due Friday 5 June. Students who cannot complete fieldwork as intended are encouraged to foreground theoretical work/critique, virtual ethnography, use of questionnaires.

10i

Don Giovanni

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

10ii

Carmen in Context

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

11i

Women in Music

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

11ii

Music in Jazz Age Paris

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

12

Introduction to Music
and Science

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

An example schedule for Part IB is available to give you a sense of how you to manage your time and you should discuss this with your Director of Studies to create a timetable that works best for you.

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PART II

 

Paper         

Assessment Arrangements

1     Analysis Portfolio Coursework: Due Friday 29 May. Students needing to change their abstract should contact their supervisor and DoS for approval.

2

Composition
Portfolio

Coursework: Due Friday 22 May

3

Notation and
Source Studies
Portfolio

Coursework: Due Tuesday 2 June

4

Advanced Performance

Performance Portfolio: Due Friday 5 June

Revised Paper 4 & 8 Marking Criteria

5

Dissertation

Coursework: Due Tuesday 26 May. Students needing to change their abstract should contact their supervisor and DoS for approval.

6

Advanced Tonal
Skills

Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June

Coursework: Due Tuesday 2 June

7

Fugue Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June

8

Advanced Skills

Performance Portfolio: Due Friday 5 June except:

Options 5 & 6 (Advanced Keyboard and Choral Performance tests) and Option 9 keyboard tests: Released 12pm, Monday 25 May for submission by 12pm, Tuesday 26 May

Revised Paper 4 & 8 Marking Criteria

9

The Sequence from
Notker to the Carmina
Burana
Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

10

Music and Worship in
Tudor England
Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

11

After Napoleon: Music
and Modernity in the
1820s
Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

12

Brahms’s Ein
deutsches Requiem
in Context
Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

13

Late Stravinsky Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

14

Film Music: History
and Aesthetics
Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

15

British Popular Music
from c. 1960 to the
Present
Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

16

Decolonizing the Ear Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

17

Exploring Music
Psychology
Exam: Released Monday 11 May for submission by Friday 5 June. Students answer 2 questions, not 3.

An example schedule for Part II is available to give you a sense of how you to manage your time and you should discuss this with your Director of Studies to create a timetable that works best for you.

Updates and Amendments

Date     Paper(s) Affected Amendment
09/04/2020 Part IB, Paper 5:
Composition Portfolio
Clarification that 2 submissions required but students may submit all 3.
15/04/2020 Part IA, Paper 1: Music and Musicology Today Update to deadline for performance alternative assessment (feedback on the basis of a teacher report and student self-reflection). This will now be due for submission by Friday 22 May in line with the Paper 1 coursework.
16/04/2020 Marking Arrangements Updates to FAQ regarding marking arrangements to clarify difference between marking for Parts IA & IB and Part II.
16/04/2020 Handwritten Scores Addition of FAQ regarding accepting handwritten scores.
16/04/2020 Part IB, Paper 5:
Composition Portfolio
Addition of FAQ regarding duration requirement of final submission.
28/04/2020 Part II, Paper 8:
Advanced Skills
Clarification of release dates and deadlines for Part II, Paper 8.
30/04/2020 Handwritten Scores Amendment to handwritten scores FAQ regarding typeset scores.
04/05/2020 Referencing/Bibliography style Amendment to word count FAQ to confirm that no specific style is required for references and bibliography.
11/05/2020 Word count Amendment to word count FAQ to clarify that markers are not obliged to read any content of answers beyond the word limit.
11/05/2020 Extension requests Amendment to FAQ on inability to complete assessments to confirm that extension requests for all Parts should come through the DoS directly to the Exam Board Chair.
14/05/2020 Typed answers - formatting guidance Extension to FAQ regarding typed answers to provide formatting guidance.
02/06/2020 Second assessment period  The mention of a second assessment period was removed as this is not relevant to the Faculty's alternative method of exams. Extensions will be granted to submission dates as appropriate.

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Rationale for Part II Assessment Plan

The Faculty's plans for assessment in Easter Term 2020 were developed in the context of University-wide assessment principles which ensures that all finalists will have the opportunity to receive a classed degree.  The Faculty's Assessment Planning Group developed this document to provide background on how the assessment plan for our Part II was developed.

Part II Assessment Plan Rationale

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