Newsletter - February 2020

Right now on the Vice-Chancellor's table: the possibility to resit exams for higher grades

Saco-S at Uppsala University has called for a negotiation on the issue of allowing students to resit exams for higher grades on tests they already have approved grades on, so-called "plussning".

”Plussning” was prohibited under the Higher Education Ordinance until 1993. Uppsala University as a whole retained the ban until 1996 when the engineering programs were granted an exception. The fact that the question is now back on the agenda is due to the fact that the engineering students have classes with students on other courses and programs that does not allow “plussning”. The justness of the fact that some get “plussning” while others do not has therefore been questioned. Uppsala Technological and Sciences Students (UTN) says that it’s about national competitiveness between the engineering programs, but that locally at the Faculty of Science and Technology (TekNat) is about creating a just environment for the students. The Uppsala Student Union, for its part, would prefer to see a national ban.

The issue was initially about an extension of the exemption to the entire TekNat. The Vice-Chancellor has now expanded the issue to the entire University by transferring the mandate to decide on the issue to each faculty board, and to remove the general rule according to which the person approved in a test at Uppsala University are not allowed to resit an examination for higher grades.

Saco-S at Uppsala University sees the risk that students at other parts of the University will experience the unjustness if the TekNat students get to resit exams while they themselves do not. We fear that in a few years' time, this may mean that it becomes more common with this kind of exams at different faculties.

The possibility to resit exams will mean an increased workload for both teachers and administrators. A more general use of plus at our faculties may entail significantly increased costs for education at the University, which may ultimately mean, for example, reduced teaching time. It would be unfortunate when some educations already have a tight time budget with very few lectures and seminars. The Uppsala Student Union has also lifted the students' stress and the risk of gradual inflation in connection with the fact that they propose a national ban. Another consequence could be that higher grades than “passed” are completely removed on courses as a time-saving measure.

Saco-S at Uppsala University is a union, a negotiating part, whose mission is to safeguard the interests of our members. One of the most important interests is our working environment. Among other things, this includes that there is enough time for all the tasks that we are expected to accomplish. Saco-S at Uppsala University believes that the Vice-Chancellor should make a deeper analysis of the issue before making a decision, that has the potential to change the working conditions of both teachers, students and administrators.

Did you you know that…
Saco-S at Uppsala University's Board members get "union time" to negotiate different agreements and help members on different types of membership issues, but at the end of the day the Board consists of university teachers, researchers and technical/administrative staff, just like the rest of us.

Last modified: 2023-03-30