The development of students’ knowledge is assessed throughout the degree programme.
Knowledge assessment is based on learning outcomes and assessment criteria set in the course description. Assessment methods support the goal-oriented skills development. In addition to the evaluation and feedback by the lecturer, self-assessment and peer-assessment are also used. In Oulu UAS the knowledge assessment and feedback given to students are both numerical and qualitative.
Students who have a right to study and have enrolled as present students are entitled to take exams. Majority of the examinations, exams, are organized inside the study courses in a timetable provided by the teacher. If needed, you can ask for a possibility to participate to an exam with another student group. Also, you can prove your know-how with the help of the electronic examination system Exam.
The Electronic Examination System Exam
Oulu University of Applied Sciences uses the electronic examination system Exam. The examination system provides a possibility for students’ flexible participation in an examination according to the opening hours of the examination rooms and to the timetables defined by the teachers. Please see student guide on Exam (includes, among other things, the opening hours of the premises).
Recognition and Accreditation of Learning (HOT)
The aim of recognition and accreditation of learning is to create a flexible and motivational learning path for students and to promote progress of studies according to the Personal Study Plan (PSP).
The student starts the accreditation process and can have guidance for that. Accreditation of learning (HOT) application is filled in Peppi. The student is given guidance for the accreditation process by the Head of the Degree Programme/teacher responsible for the option, campus study counsellors, teacher tutor or the teacher of the course. In addition, the staff of Academic Affairs can help student with the application.
Student’s Recognition and Accreditation of Learning (HOT) Path
INSTRUCTIONS AND COUNSELLING FOR RECOGNISING ACQUIRED COMPETENCE
RECOGNITIONUnderstanding the curriculum, recognising competence and comparing it with the curriculum
DISCUSSION (if necessary)One course: the teacher
More than one course: the Head of the Degree Programme
APPLYING FOR THE ACCREDITATION OF COMPETENCEPeppi
DEMONSTRATING COMPETENCE IN THE AGREED WAY
UPDATING PSPSpeeding up studies or slowing down the studying schedule (PSP)
By recognizing, the student parses his/her acquired skills in relation to the learning objectives so that it is possible to describe and demonstrate the skills. The Head of the Degree Programme or teacher(s) evaluates the student’s skills in relation to the learning objectives. Accreditation means formal approval of the student’s competence.
In HOT skills may have been acquired through studies completed elsewhere prior to or during current studies, work experience or leisure-related activities (see Image 1.). In HOT, the competence is approved as compulsory, optional or fee-choice studies.
IMAGE 1. Options for recognizing acquired competence
Substitution means that the course in a student’s PSP will be replaced by another course, which has been completed elsewhere, or previously in OUAS, or by acquired skills during work or leisure. If there is no corresponding course in the PSP, the course or other acquired skills will be added as such (Inclusion).
Ways of demonstrating acquired skills
Skills acquired through studies are demonstrated with a certificate/transcript of records. If needed, they are complemented in the ways described below.
Skills acquired during work or leisure can be demonstrated in one or more of the following ways
- a work certificate that shows personal competences
- demonstration of skill in a real or simulated situation
- writing an article
- written assignment, for example an essay, report
- video and recording
- learning portfolio or learning diary
- expert lecturing
- written or oral exam
- another way proposed by the student
Studification means that a student utilizes in his/her studies the skills that he/she accumulates during work or leisure. A student and an agreed counsellor make a plan beforehand regarding the studification where the required competence and its scope in credits are written down.
Process of recognition and accreditation
The process of recognition and accreditation of learning (HOT) is presented in short in Image 2. The way the acquired skills are demonstrated is agreed between the Head of the Degree Programme/teacher(s) and a student.
IMAGE 2. Summary of the HOT-process
The Head of the Degree Programme accredits the learning to study modules, individual courses or parts of courses. A teacher can accredit the learning to an individual course or a part of it. The decision can be positive or negative or a request for complement. The schedule of the assessment follows the Assessment Procedure for Study Attainment. After accreditation of learning, the student updates his/her PSP and discusses with a tutor teacher if needed. If a decision is negative, the student acquires the learning by taking part in courses or makes a rectification.
Recognition of language and communication studies
Language and communication studies are recognised in accordance with the following principles:
- Language and communication studies included in a Bachelor’s degree (first-cycle degree) completed at a Finnish-language/Swedish-language higher education institution are recognised as such for students entering a Master’s degree programme (second-cycle degree) at a university of applied sciences.
- If a student has completed language and communication studies at a Finnish or foreign higher education institution that meet the requirements (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, CEFR) of their target degree, their studies are recognised as such, regardless of any minor differences in extent. The grades will be in line with those given by the previous higher education institution.
In each educational field the director of the School will consider on the basis of the requirements of the educational field, if the students have to prove additionally, that they have sufficient command of specialized terminology in their own educational field in order to recognize previous study attainments in the Swedish and English languages.
- If a student has completed studies other than language studies abroad, such studies will not be recognised directly as part of the language studies required for their degree. However, such studies may be recognised as language studies to a relevant extent if the studies include a clearly identifiable language and communication component and correspond to the skill level required for the foreign language studies included in their degree.
Studies in the Swedish language are recognised as part of the Civil Service Language Proficiency Certificate, if the student has completed studies in the Swedish language at a university or a university of applied sciences to an extent required for their target degree. Further studies are needed if the extent of the studies in the Swedish language does not meet the requirements of their target degree curriculum. In such a case, further studies must be completed in accordance with the instructions provided by the teacher responsible for studies in the Swedish language. If further studies are required, the grade will be the arithmetic average of the grade for the previous studies and that for the further studies.
Grades for studies in the Swedish language previously completed at another university of applied sciences or university will be converted in accordance with the following principles:
- If the grade for the previously completed studies in the Swedish language is “approved" or “pass”, the teacher responsible for studies in the Swedish language will ask the student to take a competence demonstration examination so that his/her oral and written language skills can be evaluated numerically.
- If the student has been given a single grade for their studies in the Swedish language at a university of applied sciences or university and his/her grade is “satisfactory” or “good”, with no separate grades for oral and written language skills, his/her grade will be converted as follows: the same grade, “satisfactory” or “good”, will be given for both oral and written language skills (e.g. “satisfactory”, equalling numerical grade 3, means that the student’s grade for written skills will be 3 and his/her grade for oral skills will be 3). This applies to grades given before 1 August 2008. Students who have been given a single grade for their Swedish-language skills after 1 August 2008 must take a competence demonstration examination to prove their oral and written skills in the Swedish language. After this, separate grades for oral and written language skills can be included on their certificate.
Students may prove their language skills by taking oral and written competence demonstration examinations, without the need to attend classroom training, if:
- they have completed their secondary education in Swedish
- Swedish is their native language
- their grade for Swedish in their matriculation examination is “laudatur”
- they have lived and worked in a Swedish-speaking area for a long time
- they have completed their maturity test in Swedish at a university or a university of applied sciences
- they have taken an examination in Swedish for public administration or have completed a Civil Service Language Proficiency Certificate under the supervision of an expert member of the State Board of Language Examinations in Swedish
- they have acquired language and communication skills non-formally or informally to an extent that meets the requirements of the curriculum of the degree programme
Assessment and other HOT-policies
A Thesis written for a prior degree cannot be accepted as the Thesis required for the current degree. However, a Thesis that is part of a prior degree can be used to compensate for other studies in the current degree in accordance with the learning objectives.
Study attainments assessed earlier at an institute of higher education will not be reassessed. If the grade given for an accredited course/study module corresponds with the numerical or verbal grading scale used at OUAS, it will be the grade given to the student. For justified reasons, it is possible to use the “pass” grade even though earlier study periods were graded numerically.
Example 1. If a student applies for crediting several numerically graded earlier study periods to compensate for one Oulu UAS study period, the grade given may be “pass” (H). Alternatively, the grade can be a numerical average that takes into account the extent of the earlier study periods.
Example 2. However, if the study period completed elsewhere is clearly more extensive than the study period at Oulu UAS to be credited, a numerical grade will always be given. If the student wishes, they may demonstrate their competence in some other way than a certificate, and receive a higher numerical grade.
If the course or study module has been graded using another scale than the one used at OUAS, the course will be graded as passed.
The accreditation of studies completed while studying as an exchange student or as a double degree student as well as for international training, is agreed upon in advance between the student, the home institution and the host institution/placement employer. The studies that incoming double degree students have completed at their home institution are accredited to the degree at OUAS according to the decision of the Head of the Degree Programme. If the PSP of an exchange student changes for reasons not due to the student, the matter is agreed upon during the exchange between the student, the home institution and the host institution. The student must apply for accreditation for the studies immediately after the exchange period has ended. For study attainments achieved in another country the ECTS grades are converted to correspond with the numerical scale according to the conversion table used in the ECTS system. A student provides a certificate of the international training and the training will be registered as international practical training.
The grade of the accredited course cannot be raised. The accreditation record will not be removed.
The grading scale determined by the curriculum is followed in demonstrating acquired skills. For justified reasons, it is possible to use the “pass” grade even when the curriculum states otherwise.
Example 3. If a student applies for crediting work experience or competence acquired from elsewhere than studies to compensate for a study period, it is possible to use the “pass” grade instead of the numerical grading used in the curriculum of Oulu UAS if numerical grading is not appropriate in the situation.
The registered courses will show in the national database permanently. If needed, the skills are being complemented according to the newest curriculum.
The development of students’ knowledge is assessed through Oulu UAS assessment frameworks and national skill level descriptions. Oulu UAS has developed assessment frameworks for the subject-specific knowledge and skills of a UAS Bachelor’s degree student as well as a Master’s degree student. Their objective is to recognise the development of student’s skills.
The assessment frameworks include the criteria for evaluation. The assessment frameworks have been developed to ensure students’ equal treatment and to facilitate teacher’s work. Assessment framework can be used to evaluate not only theoretical knowledge but also skills and competence.
Common assessment framework ensures graduate’s skill level for the professional life. Language skills are assessed using national skill level descriptions. Thesis is evaluated according to Oulu UAS guidelines.
Bachelor’s Degree (UAS) Student
The Bachelors Degree Programmes in universities of applied sciences are Higher Education studies strongly oriented towards the working life. Bachelors Degrees provide qualifications for such government offices and public service activities, which have a Higher Education degree or Bachelor’s Degree as qualification criteria.
The studies leading to a Bachelor’s degree from university of applied sciences have an overall aim to provide students with (A2005/423):
- comprehensive practical basic knowledge and skills as well as the theoretical knowledge base to work as an expert in the specific sector in question
- prerequisites to monitor and promote the development of the specific sector
- capacity for continuous training
- sufficient communication and language skills; as well as
- capacity for international activities in the specific sector
Assessment of Subject-Specific Competence
The competence related to the subject-specific studies of students in universities of applied sciences is assessed using a skills assessment framework common to all degree programmes. The assessment framework is used in all degree programmes, and it is used as one element of quality assurance. Assessment framework defines the level of granting a degree, using the level 6 definition of European Higher Education Qualifications Framework and National Qualifications and Other Knowledge Framework . The objective of the assessment framework is to ensure each graduate has achieved at least the level of competence defined in the framework.
The assessment framework facilitates the lecturer to plan the assessment of development and skills, evaluation of students’ knowledge, and supports the development of evaluation methods. The lecturer defines course specific assessment criteria using the assessment framework.
The assessment framework enables students to perceive the complexity levels of competence as well as to facilitate self-assessment and planning for individual development of their skills. A common assessment framework aims to ensure students’ equal treatment in the assessment of competence.
The assessment framework will be introduced for students starting in autumn 2011 and thereafter.
Assessment of Language Skills
The assessment of Swedish language skills applies nationwide proficiency level descriptions [.doc] and evaluation criteria.
Finnish as a Native Language
Finnish as a native language course applies national competency and skill descriptions [.doc].
The assessment of other language skills apply the proficiency level description and related evaluation criteria of the European framework Global Scale [.doc].
The Assessment of Practical Training
Practical training, which improves the professional skills of the student, is assessed using the framework for Bachelors Degree Programme (UAS) Undergraduate skills assessment .
Assessment of Bachelor’s Thesis
The Bachelor’s thesis of a UAS undergraduate is assessed using the Oulu UAS Thesis assessment criteria.
Oulu UAS common areas of expertise
Oulu UAS common areas of expertise
- Sustainable development
- Creativity, working life skills and entrepreneurship
- Communication and interaction.
The described expertise is the so-called degree attainment level. This means that each graduate must achieve the skill level set for the common areas of expertise in order to graduate. The achievement of the targets set for the common areas of expertise is assessed in the courses. The achievement of the set objectives for one particular area of expertise can be spread into courses in several different stages of studies.
Master’s Degree (UAS) Student
A Master’s degree (UAS) is designed for the needs of employers and development of the skills of personnel. The studies prepare one to acquire, process and apply research information in their own field of work, and develop it further. Master’s degrees give qualifications for public appointments where eligibility criteria include a Master’s level Higher Education degree from universities or universities of applied sciences. The general objective of UAS Master’s degree is to provide the student with (A 2005/423):
- broad and in-depth knowledge of the specific field of study as required to develop working life and the necessary theoretical knowledge on the specific field in order to be able to operate in demanding expert and management positions;
- in-depth view of the specific field of study, position in working life, and social significance as well as the ability to monitor and break down research information within the field and development of professional practices;
- capabilities for lifelong learning and continuous professional development;
- good communication and language skills required in working life; as well as capabilities required for international interaction and professional activities.
The Assessment of Professional Knowledge and Skills
The knowledge and skills related to the core studies of Master’s degree students in universities of applied sciences is assessed using a skills assessment framework common to all degree programmes. The assessment framework is used in all higher education Master’s degree programmes of universities of applied sciences, and it is used as one element of quality assurance. Assessment framework defines the level of granting a degree using the level 7 definition of European Higher Education Qualifications Framework and level 7 definition of National qualifications and other knowledge framework . The objective of the assessment framework is to ensure that each graduate has achieved at least the level of skills defined in the framework.
The assessment framework facilitates the lecturer to plan the assessment of development and skills, evaluation of students’ knowledge, and supports the development of evaluation methods. The lecturer defines course specific assessment criteria using the assessment framework.
The assessment framework facilitates the students’ self-assessment and planning for individual development of their skills. A common assessment framework aims to ensure students’ equal treatment in the assessment of competence.
Assessment of Master’s Thesis
The Master’s thesis in the university of applied sciences is assessed using the assessment criteria of Oulu UAS.
Oulu UAS Common Areas of Expertise
Oulu UAS common areas of expertise include
- Sustainable development
- Creativity, working life skills and entrepreneurship
- Communication and interaction.
The described expertise is the so-called degree attainment level. This means that each graduate must achieve the skill level set for the common areas of expertise in order to graduate. The achievement of the targets set for the common areas of expertise is assessed in the courses. The achievement of the set objectives for one particular area of expertise can be spread into courses in several different stages of studies.tiedostotaulun alkukooditiedostotaulun loppukoodi
1 Implementation of Assessment
Studies that lead to a Bachelor’s degree at the University of Applied Sciences include 1) basic and professional studies, 2) free-choice studies, 3) practical training aimed at furthering professional skills and 4) a Bachelor’s thesis. Studies that lead to a Master’s degree at the University of Applied Sciences include 1) advanced professional studies, 2) free-choice studies and 3) a Master’s thesis. Professional teacher education includes 1) basic pedagogical studies, 2) professional pedagogical studies, 3) teaching practice and 4) other courses. (Decree 1129/2014, section 2.) The rector confirms the objectives of the parts that are included in the degree and the professional teacher education (Degree Regulations 16 March 2015, rector of the University of Applied Sciences 2015).
Students must, either through their studies for a degree or another manner, demonstrate that they have attained: 1) the Finnish and Swedish language skills required by the Act on the Knowledge of Languages Required of Personnel in Public Bodies (424/2003) for an official post requiring an academic degree in a bilingual district and necessary for practising a profession and developing professionally; and 2) the written and spoken skills in one or two foreign languages necessary for practising a profession and developing professionally (Decree 1129/2014, section 7).
The knowledge assessment frameworks are confirmed by the vice rector. The course descriptions include proficiency objectives and information regarding the applied assessment. The students demonstrate their proficiency in accordance with the course description and the implementation plan that specifies it further.
Proficiency can be demonstrated in person, in pairs or as a group. The demonstration of proficiency can take place through several assignments (for example, weekly assignments) or a more extensive course work. Examples of assessment practices include exercises and projects, learning portfolios or diaries, supplied-reference exams, oral or supervised written exams, essays, videos, demonstrations of skill, posters, concept maps, mind maps, photos, reports, summaries and questions that are automatically reviewed. The above may include self-evaluation and peer evaluation.
Students are allowed to participate in the assessment of studies for which they have been admitted. Students studying for a degree must be enrolled as an attending student when they participate in the assessment. Students must be prepared to prove their identity when they demonstrate their proficiency. If the demonstration of proficiency is performed under supervision, the teacher will specify what tools and materials can be used.
The University of Applied Sciences has decided that when studying for a degree or taking specialised studies, students may receive recognition for studies completed at another Finnish or foreign institution of higher education or other educational establishment and compensate for studies included in the degree requirements or specialised studies with other equivalent studies. The University of Applied Sciences has also decided that students may receive recognition for skills and competencies demonstrated in some other way and substitute studies included in the degree requirements or specialised studies with them. (Act 1173/2014, section 37.) Students on the open study path and in the School of Professional Teacher Education may also propose the recognition of prior learning according to the principles mentioned above. The vice rector confirms the policy for the recognition and accreditation of learning outcomes.
Students have the right to receive feedback on their proficiency either orally or in writing. The assessment of proficiency measures the attainment of the learning outcomes determined for each course. The assessment is equal, reliable, instructive and encouraging.
An incomplete course is completed and assessed according to the latest curriculum. If the scope of the course has changed, the personal study plan will be updated so that the studies included in its scope and proficiency objectives are sufficient for the degree.
If the student has completed parts of a course which will no longer be held, the student’s partial studies are recorded as a course with a scope expressed as a whole number. The personal study plan will be updated so that the studies included in its scope and proficiency objectives are sufficient for the degree.
Students taking Open UAS studies or studying parts of a degree as separate studies must complete the course along with all the required tasks by the given deadline.
The licence of the University of Applied Sciences determines the language of tuition and degree as Finnish or Swedish. The University of Applied Sciences may decide that an additional language is used for tuition and degrees. (Act 932/2014, section 8.) The tuition and degree language of the Oulu University of Applied Sciences (Oulu UAS) is Finnish. The Finnish degree programmes may include courses or study modules implemented in English when it is appropriate from the point of view of the study field and supports the internationalisation of the student. Correspondingly, the English degree programmes may include courses or study modules in Finnish when they support the student’s integration into the Finnish working life. The rector decides on the language proficiency required of the students, exemptions from the language proficiency requirements and the maturity test (Degree Regulations 16 March 2015, rector of the University of Applied Sciences 2015). In the Finnish degree programmes the thesis is written in Finnish, and in the English degree programmes in English. Students who have completed their schooling in Finnish or Swedish write their maturity test in the language of their schooling. For them, the language of the degree programme does not affect the language of the maturity test. Students who have completed their schooling abroad or in a language other than Finnish or Swedish write their maturity test in English. If the student has grounds for any deviation from the above policy, the student must apply for a change to the language of the thesis or the maturity test. The decision will be made by the director of school for students of their school on the recommendation of the head of the degree programme. Otherwise, the director of school, on the recommendation of the head of the degree programme, makes any decisions regarding the students’ right to use a language that is not a tuition language at the University of Applied Sciences to demonstrate their proficiency for students of their school.
The implementation of the assessment may be further specified by instructions given by the vice rector.
Courses are graded on a numerical scale from 0 to 5:
- fail (0)
- sufficient (1)
- satisfactory (2)
- good (3)
- very good (4)
- excellent (5)
or verbally as either Pass or Fail. The verbal Pass level is at least equal to the numerical level Pass (1).
The course description defines the assessment scale to be used. The course can be evaluated as several parts. Each part must have the scope of at least one credit. However, a single grade is given for the course. The parts are assessed on the above numerical or verbal scale. If parts of a course have been assessed using both scales, the assessment scale applied to the course is determined based on which scale has been used for more than half of the scope of the course. The implementation plan defines the weight of the individual parts of the implementation. The numerical grade of a course is the weighted average of the grades given for the parts, rounded off to the nearest whole number (e.g. 2.4 -> 2 and 2.5 -> 3).
Example 1. The scope of the model course is 5 credits and the numerical scale of 0–5 is used. In the model course, the weighting of the parts is determined by their scope.
Part I, 1 credit, verbal grade Pass -> The existence of the Pass assessment is verified, but it is not taken into account when determining the numerical grade for the course.
Part II, 1 credit, numerical grade 5 -> weighting = 1 credit / (1 credit + 3 credits)
Part III, 3 credits, numerical grade 2 -> weighting = 3 credits / (1 credit + 3 credits)
¼ × 5 + ¾ × 2 = 2.75 -> The grade given for the course is 3.
In the Diploma Supplement appended to the diploma in English, the grades are indicated as follows:
- 0 = Fail
- 1 = Sufficient
- 2 = Satisfactory
- 3 = Good
- 4 = Very good
- 5 = Excellent
- P = Pass
The language skills mentioned in the relevant decree (Decree 1129/2014, section 7) are assessed on a numerical scale of 0–5 (see the rector’s decision on the language proficiency required of students according to the degree regulations).
The spoken and written language skills in the second national language (Swedish) required in the civil service are assessed as either Good or Satisfactory (Decree 481/2003, sections 16–17 and 19). The grade Good corresponds to the numerical grades 4 and 5, and Satisfactory to the numerical grades 1, 2 and 3. If the studies consist of several courses or parts and their weighting has not been defined, the grade for the studies will be the average of the courses or parts weighted according to their credits. The average is rounded off to the nearest whole number (e.g. 2.4 -> 2 and 2.5 -> 3). Attaining Excellent language proficiency requires that the student’s language of schooling and the language used in the maturity test is Swedish (Decree 481/2003, section 15).
The thesis is assessed on a numerical scale of 0–5 and the maturity test verbally as either Pass or Fail. The instructions for the thesis and the maturity test, which include the assessment criteria, are confirmed by the vice rector.
The results of the assessment of a course or part of a course are announced and registered within three working weeks of the assessment event or the designated return date of the study assignment. If a student fails to submit their study assignments by the designated due date, the results of the assessment are announced and registered within six working weeks. If the results of the assessment cannot be announced for a valid reason by the designated time, this, together with the new announcement date, will be announced before the time limit expires. Students may inform the Academic Affairs, Oulu UAS Service Team (study.oamk#oulu.fi (korvaa # -> @)) if they have not received the assessment or been informed of the new announcement date by the designated time. The procedure for announcing the results of the assessment takes into consideration the Act on the Openness of Government Activities (621/1999).
Students have the right to obtain information on the application of the assessment criteria to their study attainment (Act 932/2014, section 37). The teacher who performed the assessment will provide the information on the application of the assessment criteria. Students must have the opportunity to review the written or otherwise recorded assessed study attainment. They must be kept for at least six months from the date of announcing the results. (Act 932/2014, section 37.)
The assessor records the data regarding each student’s completed courses and parts of courses in the student administration program. The data to be recorded include the name of the course or part of a course, the scope, the grade, the date of completion and the name of the assessor.
If the course consists of several parts, their combined scope must correspond to the total scope of the course. The data will be recorded for each part of a course. The teacher responsible for the implementation of the course is responsible for the total grade for the course.
When granting the degree, studies completed at Oulu University of Applied Sciences will not be removed from the student administration program. A record for recognised studies may be removed from the student administration program if the student completes the course in question at a later stage of their studies. A numerical grade entered in the register cannot be converted into a verbal grade.
The student has the right to attempt to improve their grade for a failed course. The possibility to improve the grade is available during the next two terms from the first failed grade. If necessary, the head of the degree programme will update the personal study plan with the student if the student fails to get an approved grade within the deadline.
The student has the right to attempt to improve their grade for an approved course once. The possibility to improve the grade is available during the next two terms. The best of the grades will remain in force.
A student who is not satisfied with the assessment of their study attainment or the recognition of studies completed elsewhere or skills and competencies demonstrated in some other way may request rectification either verbally or in writing from the teacher who has carried out the assessment or from the person who made the decision regarding recognition of the studies or skills and competencies. A request for the rectification of study attainment assessment must be made within 14 days of the date when the results of the assessment and the information on the application of the assessment criteria in their case were made available to the student. A request for the rectification of the recognition of studies or skills and competencies must be made within 14 days of receiving the notification of the decision. A student who is not satisfied with the above-mentioned decision can submit a written rectification request to the Board of Examiners of the University of Applied Sciences within 14 days of receiving the notification of the decision. (See Act 257/2015, section 57 and the Rules of Procedure of 16 March 2015.) The activity of the Board of Examiners is governed by regulations (Board of the University of Applied Sciences on 9 February 2015, section 13).
Responsible students do not cheat or assist others in cheating; they act honestly and give themselves and their fellow students the opportunity to study well.
Cheating in studying includes any dishonest activity through which a student attempts to give a false impression of their own and/or another person’s knowledge in order to influence the approval and assessment of a course. Cheating in all its forms is forbidden at all stages of studies and in all courses.
Plagiarism, fabrication, the falsification of observations and misappropriation are considered cheating (see the Finnish National Board on Research Integrity TENK at tenk.fi). Plagiarism refers to, for example, the copying of the ideas, thoughts, text, video, software code or its part, visual expression, translation or inventions of another person without giving due credit to the original source and/or presenting them as one’s own. Plagiarism is an unethical and/or criminal act, in which good scientific practices are ignored.
Examples of cheating include:
- Using notes, source literature or other aids (e.g. a phone) during an exam when such use has not been agreed
- Copying another student’s answer in an exam
- Discussing or attempting to discuss with another student during an exam
- Copying another student’s essay or exercise and using it as one’s own for credit
- Purchasing of a course work from another student or some other party
- Completing a course, e.g. by taking part in an exam or preparing an exercise on behalf of another student
- Making one’s own exercise or equivalent available to another student knowing that they will present it as their own performance
2.1 Reporting a suspicion of cheating
It is the responsibility of the teacher or exam invigilator to intervene if cheating is detected. They have two options for action to consider, depending on the situation: 1) issuing an oral caution or 2) documenting the case of cheating and submitting it for investigation. An oral caution may be issued, for example:
- For attempting to discuss with another student during an exam. In this case, the student is told to end the discussion and is informed that the student must follow the rules for the exam.
- Omitting a source reference. In this case, the student is instructed to work in accordance with the principles of good scientific practice.
If the any obvious cheating or attempt at cheating is detected during an exam, the student’s exam is interrupted. Interruption of the exam and the reason for it are reported the lead specialist (Academic Affairs, Oulu UAS Service Team). Cheating detected after an exam or suspected cheating in any other demonstration of proficiency together with the grounds are reported to the lead specialist. The case of suspected cheating will be submitted for investigation within one week of receiving the information on the suspicion. The teacher or exam invigilator will not investigate the matter further with the student.
If a student notices or suspects that another student has cheated, they can report the matter within a week to the teacher responsible for the course, the exam invigilator or the lead specialist. Report anonymously is not possible, but the report is always handled confidentially. Anonymous reports will not be investigated. If necessary, the student is asked for a more detailed explanation of the cheating by another student they have noticed.
The suspicion of cheating raised by another person is directed to the lead specialist. The suspicion of cheating must be specified. For example, if plagiarism is suspected in an approved thesis, it must be shown which source was plagiarised, and the connections between the text of the thesis and the source must be indicated.
2.2 Investigating a suspicion of cheating
Suspicions of cheating are always investigated. The lead specialist immediately reports the suspicion of cheating to the director of the school. The investigation takes place in the school offering the education which the suspected cheating concerns.
The assessment of the student’s study attainment and the potential process of applying for a degree are suspended until the suspicion of cheating has been investigated. Investigation of cheating can also be initiated after a decision has already been made on the approval of a study attainment if the suspicion of cheating only arises at this stage.
In the case of a student who has graduated, any suspicions of cheating related to their thesis are investigated. Suspicions concerning theses for a Master’s degree at the University of Applied Sciences are investigated in accordance with the RCR procedure of the Finnish National Board on Research Integrity. Suspicions concerning theses for a Bachelor’s degree at the University of Applied Sciences are investigated in accordance with this decision.
Meeting of the Finnish National Board on Research Integrity on April 15, 2021: “The RCR 2012 guideline is intended to be applied to scientific research. … If the thesis [of master's degree] is part of a larger research project and / or a scientific article is published on the basis of it, the thesis can be considered scientific and therefore the matter can be considered to fall within the scope of the RCR guideline. If the thesis falls exclusively within the scope of studies, the suspicion of cheating may be treated as a cheating in the institution's own process.”
The lead specialist informs the student/graduate of the suspicion of cheating and asks them for a written response. The response will be discussed at a meeting to which the student/graduate, teacher and director of school are invited by the lead specialist. The meeting will take place within two weeks after the suspicion of cheating has been submitted for investigation. The time limit may be longer if necessary to investigate the suspicion of cheating, to reach the persons concerned, to take the leave of the teacher into account or to find the contact details of the graduated student. Invitations to the meeting will be sent in writing at least five working days before the meeting.
If during the investigation of a suspicion of cheating there is reason to suspect that several students have been involved in cheating together, for example, one student has used the work of another student as their own with the other student’s permission, or a personal study assignment has been performed as group work in violation of the instructions, the matter is investigated as suspected cheating by all the students.
2.3 Decision on a suspicion of cheating
The absence of a written response from the student and the non-attendance of the student at the meeting are considered an admission of cheating. After investigating the suspicion of fraud, the director of school makes a decision on established cheating or dropping the suspicion of cheating. The student has the right to request rectification of the above-mentioned decision from the Board of Examiners.
Consequences of the decision No assessment has been carried out Assessment has been carried out Established cheating The student demonstrates their proficiency again in whole or in part The earlier assessment decision is rectified The suspicion of cheating is dropped The original study attainment is assessed The original assessment remains valid
The origin and processing of the suspected cheating and statements made during the hearing are documented in the decision of the director of the school. The student’s written response, if it has been available, is attached to the decision. The decision is announced to the parties concerned. The decision of the director of the school is archived.
If the director of the school considers the cheating to be particularly serious, they will refer the matter to the rector.
2.4 Disciplinary action resulting from cheating
Before the matter is resolved, the act or neglect giving rise to the disciplinary action must be specified, the necessary account of the matter must be obtained and the student in question must be granted an opportunity to be heard on the matter (Act 932/2014, section 39).
The rector can give the student a written warning if the student acts deceitfully (Act 932/2014, sections 38–39).
If the act or omission is serious or if the student continues to behave inappropriately after receiving a written warning, the Board of the University of Applied Sciences may suspend them from the University of Applied Sciences for a fixed period, one year at maximum (Act 932/2014, sections 38–39).
A decision on a written warning or suspension for a fixed period can be appealed to the administrative court within whose jurisdiction the University of Applied Sciences has its main office as provided for in the Administrative Judicial Procedure Act, unless otherwise provided by law. The appeal is to be processed as a matter of urgency. (Act 932/2014, section 58.) The decision to suspend a student for a fixed period can be enforced regardless of an appeal lodged against it, unless the court of appeal decrees otherwise (Act 932/2014, section 59). A decision of the administrative court concerning disciplinary action cannot be appealed (Act 932/2014, section 60).
Board of Examiners
Requests for rectification related to study attainments are processed by the University of Applied Sciences’ Board of Examiners whose members are appointed by the Board of the University of Applied Sciences. The request for rectification is processed by the Board of Examiners if a student is unsatisfied with the response he or she has received from the Lecturer or the person, who made the accreditation decision. Rectification can be requested from the Board of Examiners to the grades of courses arranged in connection with bachelor’s degrees, master’s degrees, vocational teacher education, specialisation studies, continuing education, Open University studies or non-degree studies containing parts of degrees.
The rectification process
- The student who is not satisfied with the course grade or the accreditation learning acquired elsewhere or with other means has submitted an oral or written request for rectification to the Lecturer or to the person, who made the accreditation decision. The request for rectification must be submitted within 14 days after the grade and the grounds for the grade have been published. The request for rectification regarding the accreditation of learning must be submitted within 14 days after receiving the notification of the decision. The teacher or person who made the accreditation decision must respond to the request for rectification within 14 days of receipt of the request. The time limit does not run during leave of absence.
- If no agreement is reached, or if the student does not receive a response to the request for rectification by the deadline, the student can notify the head of the degree programme. The head of the degree programme serves as a mediator and if required, invites the supervisor of the teacher or the person who made the accreditation decision to participate in handling the matter. If the request for rectification concerns grading or an accreditation decision made by the head of the degree programme, the student communicates with the supervisor of the head of the degree programme.
- If this process does not lead to a result satisfactory to the student, the student can request rectification from the Board of Examiners within 14 days of receiving notice of the decision. The request for rectification must indicate how the decision should be rectified and on what grounds rectification is requested. The request for rectification and any request for its withdrawal must be submitted to the registry office of OAMK: kirjaamo#oamk.fi (korvaa # -> @).
- The Board of Examiners convenes within 30 days of receipt of the request for rectification, with the exception of requests received in June and July, the handling of which must be initiated at the latest in September. In its operations, the Board of Examiners follows the set regulations (see especially 2 §).
- The student will be informed of the decision of the Board of Examiners.
- The decision of the Board of Examiners decision cannot be appealed.
- Polytechnics Act 932/2014 § 15, § 19, § 57 and § 60
- Degree Regulations 16 March 2015
- Chairman of the Board of Examiners Raija Rajala
- Deputy Chairman of the Board of Examiners Markku Koivisto
Members of the Board of Examiners
(Board of the University of Applied Sciences, 14 December 2022)
The Board of Examiners for 2023 and 2024 is made up of the following members:
Chairman of the Board of Examiners, Senior Lecturer Raija Rajala
Deputy Chairman of the Board of Examiners and Lecturer Member, Senior Lecturer Markku Koivisto
Deputy Member, Principal Lecturer Ari Korhonen
Student Member Fanni Heikkinen
Deputy Member, Student Hanna Kilponen
Student Member Julia Isopahkala
Deputy Member, Student Tiia Ruotsalainen
Lecturer Member, Senior Lecturer Anssi Kirkonpelto
Deputy Member, Senior Lecturer Suvi Röytiö