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Programme structure: Palaeobiology (MSc) - what's running in 2020/21

EASCM0034 Literature Review and EASCM0038 Research Methods in Palaeobiology are must pass units. For the definition of must pass units please see the Glossary of Terms from Annex 1 to the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.

Students are able to take this programme on a part-time basis over two years. Part-time students will enrol on a selection of the units listed below and then take the others in their second year. All mandatory units must be completed over the course of the programme. The Thesis is completed in Year 2.

Unit name Unit code Credit points Status Teaching Block
Current Controversies in Palaeobiology and Macroevolution EASCM0001 10 Mandatory TB-1A
Phylogenetic Methods in Palaeobiology EASCM0035 10 Mandatory TB-1A
Literature Review EASCM0034 20 Mandatory TB-2
Research Methods in Palaeobiology EASCM0038 30 Mandatory TB-2
Thesis (MSc Palaeobiology) EASCM1016 60 Mandatory AYEAR
and 50 credit points from the list below:
Please note - in order to meet the requirements for the Taught Masters degree award as stated in the University's Credit Framework, for this MSc programme a MAXIMUM of 30cp of options below Level M is allowed.
Geology for Research Palaeobiologists EASCM0037 10 Optional TB-1A
Micropalaeontology EASCM0040 10 Optional TB-1A
Advanced Vertebrate Palaeobiology and Biomechanics EASCM0055 20 Optional TB-4
The Cambrian Explosion - the origin of animal body plans EASC30052 10 Optional TB-2C
Macroevolution EASC30066 10 Optional TB-1B
Evolutionary Biology BIOL20212 10 Optional TB-1B
Tree of Life BIOL30004 10 Optional TB-4
Plant Evolution, Development and Diversity BIOL30007 10 Optional TB-4
Early Human Origins ARCHM1000 10 Optional TB-1
Msc Palaeobiology   180      

Progression/award requirements

The pass mark set by the University for any level 7(M) unit is 50 out of 100.

For detailed rules on progression please see the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes and the relevant faculty handbook.

Exit awards

All taught masters programmes, unless exempted by Senate, must allow the opportunity for students to exit from the programme with a postgraduate diploma or certificate.

To be awarded a postgraduate diploma, students must have successfully completed 120 credit points, of which 90 must be at level M/7.

To be awarded a postgraduate certificate, students must have successfully completed 60 credit points, of which 40 must be at level M/7.

Degree classifications:

An award with Merit or Distinction is permitted for postgraduate taught masters, diplomas and certificates, where these are specifically named entry-level qualifications. An award with Merit or Distinction is not permitted for exit awards where students are required to exit the programme on academic grounds. An exit award with Merit or Distinction may be permitted where students are prevented by exceptional circumstances from completing the intended award.

The classification of the award in relation to the final programme mark is as follows:

Award with Distinction*: at least 65 out of 100 for the taught component overall and, for masters awards, at least 70 out of 100 for the dissertation. **Faculties retain discretion to increase these thresholds.

Award with Merit*: at least 60 out of 100 for the taught component overall and, for masters awards, at least 60 out of 100 for the dissertation. Faculties retain discretion to increase these thresholds.

* The MA in Law has separate regulations for awarding distinction and merit.

** For the award of Distinction, the Faculty of Engineering requires at least 70 out of 100 for the taught component overall and, for masters awards, at least 70 out of 100 for the dissertation.

Diploma/certificate stages:

All taught masters programmes, unless exempted by Senate, must allow the opportunity for students to choose, or be required, to leave at the postgraduate diploma or certificate stage.

To be awarded a postgraduate diploma, students must have successfully completed 120 credit points, of which 90 must be at level M/7.

To be awarded a postgraduate certificate, students must have successfully completed 60 credit points, of which 40 must be at level M/7.

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