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MASTERS IN GEOGRAPHY COURSE HANDBOOK 2014-2015
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Contents Dates To Note Academic Calendar 2014-2015 Contact Details Introduction to the Department of Geography Facilities and Support SSiD, English Language… Departmental Facilities, Email and Post… Telephone, IT Help and Support, Library Facilities, MUSE, MOLE… Equipment… Assessment, Marking and Submission of Work E-Marking, Extension Requests… Marking Scales, Late Submission… Turn-It-In Submission… Penalties for Over Length Work, Assessment Feedback… Assessment Criteria… Submission of (re)Assessment, Examination Boards… Criteria for Degree Awards… Ethics… The Use of Unfair Means Academic and Personal Welfare Appeals, Reporting Special Circumstances… Leave of Absence, Confidentiality… Equal Opportunities, Making a Complaint, Student Welfare… Disabled and Dyslexic Students… Teaching and Learning Safety Notice Departmental Safety Information… First Aid… Accident Reporting, Out of Hours… Field Classes and Fieldwork Field Classes Abroad… Alcohol, Fieldwork Safety Guidelines… Laboratory Safety Guidelines… Postgraduate Community Beyond a Masters PhD Study…
V V V V V V V V V V V IW 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52
Semester Week Timetable Week
JUN 25 26 27 28 29 30 31
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15 16 17 18 19 20 21
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29 30 1 2 3 4 5
E 1 2 3 4 5 6 V V V 7 8 9 10 11 12 E E E V V V 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40
MON TUE WED THUR FRI SAT SUN
MON TUE WED THUR FRI SAT SUN Semester Week Timetable Week
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30 31 1
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9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 1 2 3 4 5 6
MON TUE WED THUR FRI SAT SUN Semester Week Timetable Week
Timetabling Support & Room Bookings 29060 SEP 2014 to NOV 2015 Key
1 Bank Holidays in England and Wales
Contact Details Departmental Office: Department of Geography University of Sheffield Sheffield S10 2TN [email protected] : 0114 222 7900 Room C15a Head of Department: Professor Andy Hodson : [email protected] : 0114 222 7942 Room C7 Masters Director: Dr Deborah Sporton : [email protected] : 0114 222 7953 Room E16 Masters Course Convenors: MA International Development MPH International Development MSc Environmental Change & International Development Dr Chasca Twyman : [email protected] : 0114 222 7963 Room E4
Introduction to the Department of Geography As one of the largest Geography departments in the UK, the Department of Geography at the University of Sheffield has a vibrant community of undergraduates, postgraduates, and post-doctoral researchers. As one of the top ten Geography Departments in the country you will be taught by academic staff who are international research leaders in their field, and as such, your course will introduce you to cutting-edge research and encourage you to engage with the latest developments in the discipline. You will be taught through a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials and will be assessed through a variety of methods including project work, essays, practical reports and presentations. All our Masters courses include a core Field Class which enables you to apply your knowledge and skills to real world field settings. By the end of your degree you will be able to critically engage with complex problems in your field, develop and learn new research skills, and be able to apply theory to practice. We are committed to ensuring that you maximise your potential and make the very most of your time as a student with us. Our postgraduate taught programmes team, involving both academic and professional support staff, will provide you with learning and teaching support as well as help you adjust to life at the University. The Department is housed in an award-winning, purpose-built six-floor building on the edge of Weston Park, lying close to the University Library, the Union of Students and central lecture theatres. The University of Sheffield's Students' Union has also been voted the best in the UK for the third year running in the National Student Survey (NSS) 2014. You will have access to dedicated desk space as well as computing and printing resources. The Department also has a state of the art social media suite, a new GIS and Remote Sensing Lab equipped with the latest specialist software as well as laboratories for environmental and geochemical research and teaching. Through regular meetings, your personal academic tutor will provide you with course feedback and help to support your professional development planning. There are four taught postgraduate courses led by the Department of Geography: the MA International Development; the Masters Public Health and International Development; the MSc Environmental Change and International Development and the MSc Polar and Alpine Change. In addition, we contribute substantially to the MSc in Applied GIS and the Undergraduate Masters in Environmental Science. Throughout your course we will equip you with the academic, professional and personal skills so that you can make the most of opportunities you encounter in the Page | 5
future. Whether you wish to embark on a future research career, return to your employment or enter a particular profession, we aim to provide you with the best possible training and support throughout your course. We organise postgraduate research events, advertise internship and job opportunities and through our Careers Officer, ensure that you are best placed to make the most of opportunities that arise. Our relationship with you does not end when you graduate but continues through our alumni networks that extend across the globe! Welcome to the Department!
Professor Andy Hodson Head of Department
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Facilities and Support Staff Office Hours During the teaching semesters, the Department of Geography operates an ‘office hours’ system. This is designed to:
Guarantee students reasonable access to all teaching staff Protect staff time for research and other activities
Contact with the Masters Director, Course Convenor, your Personal Tutor Dissertation Supervisors, or the Head of Department is usually during office hours but may be arranged for a time outside these hours in advance. All teaching staff are available in their offices for three one hour periods within normal working hours on at least two days each week. These times are posted on staff doors (and are available on MOLE) and as far as possible they are fixed for a semester at a time. Please note that Geography staff are frequently required to attend urgent meetings at short notice; whilst every effort is made to be available, this is not always possible. If the person you need to see is not around at a designated time, please leave a note or email them and they will get back to you. You should always adhere to the office hours of staff when seeking to consult them. If a student has classes that clash with all 3 office hours of a particular member of staff, that staff member will be available by appointment at some other time. Personal Tutors The Department of Geography operates a Personal Tutor scheme for all students. As soon as you arrive in Sheffield you will be allocated a member of the teaching staff who will be your personal tutor throughout your time in Sheffield. In the case of students studying MSc Polar and Alpine Change, your personal tutor will be your Course Convenor. Students studying on the MA International Development, the MPH Public Health and International Development, and the MSc Environmental Change and International Development will be allocated a personal tutor at the beginning of Autumn semester. Your personal tutor will also meet with you at the beginning of each Semester to plan your personal and professional development, help with module choice and feedback on Module results. Your tutor will also play a key role in dealing with any personal or medical circumstances which may adversely affect your health or your ability to study. Please feel free to contact them if you encounter any personal or medical Page | 7
problems. It is always in your best interest to keep the department informed of anything which might be adversely affecting your health or your ability to study. We can direct you to the appropriate support services which exist in the University (and which are described under Support and Welfare). The department can also make some allowance for situations in which you are unable to study or to submit work. All personal tutors have office hours, but are willing to see students outside these times to deal with serious matters. It is usually easiest to email your tutor first to arrange a suitable time to meet. Student Services Information Desk (SSiD) This is located in the Students Union Building and provides a central point for general information on many University services and online access to the University database for updating your own personal records. You can access much of the material by visiting the SSiD web pages. In addition to letting you access your record, SSiD’s web pages contain virtually all the information you are likely to need as you progress through your studies. It is well worth spending an hour exploring their pages so that you are aware at first-hand what is there and how to find it. SSiD can deal with queries such as replacing lost UCards, changing module registration, changing degree school, examinations timetables and regulations. Further information: http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/ssid Got Questions? Ask Sheffield! Find answers to the most commonly asked questions about student related issues using the Ask Sheffield FAQ database: http://ask.sheffield.ac.uk. English Language The Department has a dedicated member of the University’s English Language Teaching Centre staff, Nick Northall ([email protected]) who runs academic reading and writing sessions every Monday 2-4pm for our international students for whom English is not their first language. If you are taking one of our 3 International Development Masters courses you will gain credits for taking the course as part of the GEO6803 Professional Skills module. In addition the English Language Teaching Centre offers a range of additional language-related services for students and these include: - One to One tutorial advice (by appointment) - Online language support materials
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For more information please consult their website: http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/eltc/languagesupport Departmental Facilities The Departmental Office (room C15a) is normally open Monday-Friday 9am-5pm. Any question or query should be directed to the Learning and Teaching team in this office, who will be happy to assist and advise you. We have a dedicated Postgraduate Administrator, Laura Wright who can be contacted via email [email protected] or telephone on 0114 222 7922. Within the Geography Building students have access to the Ron Johnston Research Room (RJRR) and its adjoining Wi-Fi enabled café area. The building also houses a lecture theatre with a capacity of 65 and a computer room with a capacity of 45. All rooms are available to book by contacting the Departmental Office. The allocated Postgraduate office space within the Geography and Planning building is currently undergoing refurbishment; this is due for completion in September / October 2014. Further information regarding desk space and rooms for will be made available to you on arrival in your Welcome Talk. The department has a computer laboratory (room GB-B4) equipped with a large number of IBM PC compatible computers, and laser printers. When not in use for teaching, this room is available for Masters and postgraduate research students to use for their own computing work. Students have access to black and white as well as a colour printer. We also have a new Social Media suite on A Floor which can be booked by students through the Departmental Office. Email When you register with the university, you will be assigned a computer username and password and an email address for use throughout your time as a student at Sheffield. It is important that you check your email regularly as we use email to communicate important information about your course. The Sheffield University email address should be used in all correspondence that relates to your course. Please note that the sending of offensive email messages is not permitted. They can be easily traced by CiCS and may lead to disciplinary action. Post Postage for research purposes is paid for by the department. Unstamped envelopes should be placed in the outgoing mail trays in the cupboard by the door and the staff Page | 9
pigeon holes. All mail is sent second class. If you intend to post survey material (e.g. questionnaires), this must be agreed in your dissertation proposal and you must give the office at least one month’s notice before the despatch date (this is necessary to ensure sufficient postage funds are released). Telephone If you need to make a work related telephone call you will need to ask permission from your Module Convenor to use their telephone. Telephone based dissertation projects must have been agreed in your research proposal. International calls or extensive use of the telephones must be paid for by you or cleared beforehand by your dissertation supervisor, specifying who is paying for the call. If you are using skype for your research, we have a dedicated social media room which you can book from the departmental office. IT Help and Support If there is a problem with a University computer in the Geography building, please contact Steven Norburn ([email protected]) or Peter Bragg ([email protected]), our departmental IT officers or come to the departmental office. If you have any problems using any other University computers or your personal computer, contact the CiCS Helpdesk:
Tel: 0114 222 111 (Available Monday - Friday 8am - 6pm) Email: [email protected] Use the self-service helpdesk in MUSE Visit the drop-in service at the Information Commons, or at the Residences IT Centres. Bring your laptop or desktop computer and CiCS staff will repair software faults and diagnose hardware faults. Further information: http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/cics/students
Computing Facilities CiCS provide a full range of documentation on all aspects of computing at Sheffield. The best source of up to date information about computer facilities, documents and courses is the CiCS website: http://www.shef.ac.uk/cics/index. As a University of Sheffield student you will be able to access copies of licensed software from the CICS help desk, available to students on Level 1 in the Information Commons Library during staffed hours.
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Library Facilities The University Library has four sites: the Information Commons; Western Bank Library; St George’s Library; and the Health Sciences Library. The Information Commons holds the majority of core texts found on reading lists. This 24-hour facility has 1,300 seats, 550 PCs, complete wireless networking, flexible spaces to enable group study, a café and access to all the Library’s electronic resources. If you have problems locating material in the Library, accessing electronic resources, or need help with your Library account, Library staff are on hand to offer advice and assistance. Alternatively, you can email [email protected] Our Faculty Librarians offer subject-specific guidance (see http://www.shef.ac.uk/library/libstaff/sllist.html for a full list) and specialist staff can advise with disability and additional support requirements. The Library web pages (http://www.shef.ac.uk/library) offer extensive information about making the best use of resources and services. MUSE All our departmental information, course information and teaching materials are uploaded on the University’s intranet system called MUSE (My University of Sheffield Environment). MUSE will allow you to:
Look at the timetable for modules Look at your marks from modules you have taken Update your personal information using ‘myRecord’. You should ensure your address and phone numbers are kept up to date in case we need to contact you urgently
You can update your details using ‘myRecord’ in MUSE. MOLE (My Online Learning Environment) MOLE is an online learning environment which allows you to access course materials from anywhere in the world. Developed with different learning and teaching styles in mind, MOLE has over 25 tools, ranging from chat rooms to grading forms, discussion forums to surveys. You can access MOLE by logging into MUSE. You will find a link in your course list to ‘Geography Postgraduates 2014-15’ where you will find useful information such as timetables, assessment guidelines, and forms. There will also be a link within each module page to TURNITIN, which is where you should submit the digital copy of your assessed work (see Submission of Work) Page | 11
The Academic Skills Hub (TASH) provides additional guidance and learning resources to support you in developing many of these skills. Further information: http://www.shef.ac.uk/tash/tash_intro
Maths and Statistics Help (MASH) provides face to face support and online learning resources for developing your skills in maths or statistics. Further information: http://www.shef.ac.uk/mash/
Equipment Fieldwork equipment, including digital recorders and transcribers, as well as video cameras and digital still cameras can be borrowed from the department. Laptop computers are available for two types of use: (1) for fieldwork where frequent data entry or analysis is necessary and there is no alternative access to computing facilities; (2) for periods of up to 48 hours for other departmental work (e.g. word processing, data analysis). In order to borrow equipment, you should contact Alan Smalley ([email protected]) to check availability. The Geography Field Store is open and staffed by a technician 10am-12pm on Monday, Wednesday and Friday in term time. Viewing Past Dissertations A sample of previous Masters Dissertations that achieved a grade of 65 or above can be viewed by students. These will be made available electronically on MOLE.
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Assessment, Marking, and Submission of Work Assessment Geography modules will be assessed by the submission of coursework, or by formal examination. The particular requirements for coursework vary across modules. You will find that submission deadlines cluster towards the end of each teaching semester. One of your key tasks is to manage your workload across each semester to accommodate these requirements. Marking Procedures The Department carries out quality control of marking procedures in line with Social Science Faculty policies. In particular
Assessed coursework should be identified using your University registration number only (the number can be found on your UCard). This means your work will be marked anonymously. In all formal examinations you will be asked to identify yourself on the examination script solely by means of your university registration number. A sample of the marking on all modules is checked by a second member of staff to ensure consistency of marking standards. All dissertations are independently marked by two members of staff. Marking standards in all modules are subject to a system of independent checks carried out by staff from other universities who are appointed as External Examiners.
Submission of Work An assessment outline for each module will be available on the module MOLE page or within the module handbook. Students will usually be issued a written description of the material they are expected to prepare for the module assessment either on the relevant module MOLE page or during the first lecture, and will include:
Details of the nature of the work, length, and the proportion it forms of the module assessment Deadline for submission
For modules taken within the Department of Geography, students are required to submit assessed coursework to the Departmental Office. One paper copy needs to Page | 13
be submitted to the office by 4pm. One electronic copy needs to be submitted to Turnitin on MOLE by 11.59pm. Please ensure that you submit both copies by the deadline as failure to do this will result in penalties (as detailed on page 14). When handing in paper copy assignments, you should complete the blue assignment cover sheet (available from the department office) and attach this to their assignment. Please ensure that your registration number is on all pieces of work. The registration number can be found on the student UCard (please do not mistake this for the UCard number). If you are taking a module in another department, the hand in procedure may be different; the relevant department should be consulted for procedural details. Students are reminded that they must submit all assessed work. The staff coordinator of each module will return information to the Department concerning students who have not completed coursework (without satisfactory explanation). Unsatisfactory performance will be indicated by a warning letter from the department indicating the penalties of failing to complete work to a satisfactory standard within the specific deadlines. Details may be passed on to Taught Programmes Office if these deadlines are exceeded (unless a reasonable case can be made by the student for an explanation) and penalties will be recorded. E-Marking The Department is currently piloting an e-marking scheme which means some modules only require an electronic copy to be submitted. All marking will be take place online, and all feedback and grades will be returned online. You will be notified when feedback and grades are ready to view. Please note that e-marking only applies to some modules; the module handbook and the course convenor will outline the modules that this applies to. If E-Marking is not mentioned, you should submit a paper copy and an electronic version through Turnitin as stated in the previous section. Requesting an Extension to a Submission Deadline If medical problems or unforeseen family or personal problems mean that you are unable to submit work by the submission date, you may apply for an extension to the deadline. Extensions will not normally be granted for reasons beyond health and unforeseen family or personal problems. An extension application must be made before the submission deadline.
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Students seeking an extension to the deadline for any assignment should complete the Assignment Extension Form (available on the Geography Postgraduates page on MOLE or from the Departmental Office). Applications on medical grounds must be supported by documentation (see pages 23-27). The completed form should be emailed to [email protected] or submitted in person to the Departmental Office. Your extension request will be considered and you will be informed of the outcome by email. If you would like to speak with someone in person about arranging an extension please contact Miss Catherine Humphreys ([email protected]); Learning and Teaching Team Leader. Note that when working to deadlines you should always allow time for printing your work and ensure that you maintain backup copies. Last-minute computer-related problems are not acceptable grounds for an extension. Marking Scales At the University of Sheffield, all assessments are marked on a scale of 0-100. The pass mark at Masters Level is 50 (not 40, which is the pass mark at undergraduate level). Distinction 70-100 Merit 60-69 Pass 50-59 Fail 1-49 A mark of 0 is returned for work which is felt to be of no academic merit. Any work not submitted will be deemed Not Completed (NC). A detailed outline of assessment criteria can be found on MOLE. Late Submissions A scale of penalties will be imposed for the late submission of coursework as follows: Day (s) late
Multiply Mark by
1 2 3 4 5
0.95 0.9 0.85 0.8 0.75
Mark Awarded After Penalty Original Mark 60 Original Mark 50 57 48 54 45 51 43 48 40 45 38 Page | 15
Penalties apply to late submission of both electronic and paper versions of the assessment: Copies submitted EITHER one copy is submitted on time and the other late (but within five working days) OR both copies are submitted late (and both within five working days). One copy is submitted on time or within five working days AND the other is submitted after five working days or not at all.
The standard penalty is applied, based on the later of the two submissions.
Strict application of the rules would mean a mark of 0 for the assessment. However, since one copy has been submitted, a 25% penalty is applied.
Both copies are submitted after five working days.
A mark of 0 is awarded.
Neither copy of work submitted at all.
Module deemed Not Completed (NC).
For paper copies, ‘working days’ do not include weekends, but do include days within vacation periods. For example, if a submission day falls on the last Friday before the Easter vacation, penalties for late submission of the paper copy would be applied from the first Monday of the vacation period. For electronic copies, every day counts as a working day, including weekends and vacations. Late work MUST be submitted to the Department Office (C Floor) and NOT directly to any staff member. Proof of Turnitin Submission You must keep your Turnitin email receipt as proof of electronic submission for each piece of non-invigilated coursework. The receipt will confirm that you have successfully submitted your work. If the electronic copy of your work is not submitted onto Turnitin, and you cannot provide a receipt to evidence that you made a submission, late penalties will be applied. Note that the system can sometimes take a couple of hours to generate a receipt, so do not leave it until the last minute to submit the electronic copy of your work. In case of any problem with Turnitin, you should contact the departmental office immediately ([email protected]). If a problem occurs after 5pm on the day of submission, you should email the departmental office the electronic copy of your work. To avoid any late penalty, the work must be received by email by the electronic copy deadline. Page | 16
Penalties for Over-Length Work The length limit for each piece of non-invigilated assessment work associated with a particular module will be issued to each student at the start of the module. The length limit varies between modules. There is normally an allowance for the main body of the document, and an additional allowance for pages of diagrams, tables, references, etc. It is your responsibility to check what is required for each module. Length limits will be specified by word limits. The table below shows the penalties that will be imposed on over-length work.
Words Over Limit
Multiply Mark By
0.1 - 10% over 10.1 - 20% over 20.1 - 30% over 30.1 - 40% over 40.1 - 50% over > 50% over
0.95 0.90 0.85 0.80 0.75 0
Mark Awarded After Penalty Original Mark 60 Original Mark 50 57 48 54 45 51 43 48 40 45 38 0 0
In order to standardise the number of words on a page, the material should normally be formatted as follows (unless otherwise stated):
A4 paper 12-point Times New Roman font 1.5 line-spacing
2.5cm top and bottom margins 2cm side margins
Assessment Feedback Students will be emailed when feedback on marked assignments becomes available to collect from the Departmental Office. Please note that if students fail to submit both paper and electronic copies, no feedback will be available until both copies of the work are received in the Departmental Office and penalties have been applied.
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CLASS OR GRADE
86 and above
EXAMINATION (ESSAY) An outstanding piece of work that demonstrates independence of thought originality and critical insight; shows evidence of extensive and critical reading, is extremely well written and presented, often with some flair and originality.
An outstanding piece of work that is worthy of retaining for future reference and application to teaching or research. Comprises excellent work based on a critical appraisal of a high volume of material that makes an original contribution to the subject.
Work demonstrating an excellent level of understanding of complex issues and methodologies at the forefront of the subject; the work displays independent critical thought, and a strong and well organised argument; using a wide range of sources including key primary sources and recent research.
Work of high quality which shows clear evidence of a deep understanding of and insight into the full range of ideas, principles, themes and/or techniques in question and independence of thought. It demonstrates a full and systematic understanding of knowledge, and a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights, at or informed by the forefront of the discipline, field of study, or area of professional practice.
Goes beyond simply answering the question. Provides a perceptive argument and focus, which is backed up with reference to good body of material. Evidence of originality, good structure of argument and independent critical evaluation of a well referenced literature. Evaluates relevant examples where appropriate.
Demonstrates evidence of deep understanding of and insight into the range of ideas, principles, themes and/or techniques in question and independence of thought. It demonstrates a full and systematic understanding, and a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights, at or informed by the forefront of the discipline or field of study,
A well argued piece of work that is logical, well structured and demonstrates understanding of the key concepts, theories, and literature; includes evidence of critical reading and uses this material or examples to support the student's own arguments; shows some critical abilities and originality, though lacks the level of originality or insight of distinction level work; is written in good English and neatly presented.
Demonstrates very good understanding of the main ideas, principles, themes and/or techniques in question coupled with some insight and the expression of some independent thought. It demonstrates a systematic understanding, and a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights, much of which is at, or informed by, the forefront of the discipline or field of study,
A reasonable piece of work that reveals a limited awareness of the literature; little or no critical insight; provides a reasonably
Demonstrates some evidence of appropriate study, presented clearly and adequately marshalled to
DISSERTATION An outstanding piece of work that may be publishable as a journal paper with minor editing and/or revision, and certainly worthy of retaining for future reference. A dissertation gaining this mark will unambiguously demonstrate the ability to pursue research at doctoral level. Excellent work that demonstrates originality in conceptual understanding; critical insight; hypotheses; use of methodology, or application of knowledge. Includes evidence of attainment in some or most of the following areas: (1) subtlety of interpretation, (2) power of critical analysis, (3) critical evaluation of current research, (4) understanding of research methodology and its implications, and (5) mastery of a significant body of data. Such work will be written and presented to high academic standards. A dissertation gaining this mark indicates very strong potential for pursuing research at doctoral level Demonstrates a professional research approach, and full completion of task as well as achievement of stated objectives and awareness of shortcomings. Includes evidence of attainment in one or more of the following areas: (1) subtlety of interpretation, (2) power of critical analysis, (3) critical evaluation of current research, (4) understanding of research methodology and its implications, and (5) mastery of a significant body of data. A dissertation gaining this mark indicates potential for pursuing research at doctoral level Demonstrates a clear programme of study supported by evidence of hard work in pursuit of worthwhile objectives. A highly satisfactory piece of work, but with identifiable unfulfilled potential. Includes evidence of attainment in one of the following areas: (1) subtlety of interpretation, (2) power of critical analysis, (3) critical evaluation of current research, (4) understanding of research methodology and its implications, and (5) mastery of a significant body of data. A dissertation gaining this mark suggests at least some possibility of pursuing research at doctoral level Diligent execution and sound outcome but modest intellectual framework and lacking critical insight.
ORAL PRESENTATION An outstanding presentation. Very wellproduced slides/overheads. Timing good. Questions answered clearly and well. Comparable to a good research or subject-specific presentation given by an early-stage doctoral student at an academic conference.
An excellent presentation All component parts presented and explained with an exceptional degree of clarity. Very wellproduced slides/overheads. Timing good. Clear engagement with the audience. Questions answered clearly and well. Indicates clear potential for presentation of research material to an academic audience.
A very good presentation with clear background and rationale; showing a thorough understanding of the wider context of the work. Methods are explained very clearly and results interpreted fully and succinctly. Discussion approached with some flair. Very well-produced slides/overheads. Timing good. Questions answered clearly and well; perhaps suggesting wider knowledge. Indicates potential for presentation of research material to an academic audience. Good presentation. Background and rationale well explained within the immediate context of the work. Methods explained well. Results presented clearly. Discussion covers main aspects of study clearly. Slides/overheads well produced .Timing is most likely to be good. Questions answered well and clearly.
Reasonable presentation. Background and rationale presented in an understandable manner.
structured account but shows some signs of confusion or a lack of understanding of key concepts/theories/literatures; possibly contains errors of fact or interpretation; weak writing style and/or presentation.
Does not address the task set; is short and irrelevant; shows little or no sign of reading; shows signs of a lack of understanding of concepts/theory/ literature; contains errors; is un- or-poorly structured; has bad spelling and grammar.
This is a clear fail. This is for work which fails to meet or in significant ways does not approach the criteria described for a pass. There may be some attempt to answer the question, but with little grasp of material or appropriate skills awareness of the subject and with major errors, omissions, or misconceptions.
illustrate the most significant of the main ideas, principles, themes and/or techniques in question and to demonstrate a sound grasp of them. It demonstrates a good understanding, and a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights, some of which is at, or informed by, the forefront of the discipline, field of study. Work that is lacking in some respects or contains flaws (in argument, approach, use of literature and critical thinking) which are noticeable and serious enough to undermine the project/essay.
Objectives may not have been fully achieved. Programme of work relatively unambitious, of limited scope and not innovative.
Methods and Results explained adequately and presented reasonably. Discussion limited. Slides/overheads adequate. Timing reasonable. Questions answered adequately.
Deficient in effort or arguments/discussion poorly resourced. Over reliance on an existing literature. Little depth or grasp of analytical technique. Programme of work unclear, incomplete or absent. Objectives inadequately framed.
Weak presentation. Some aspects of presentation missing or inadequate. Background and rationale not clearly explained. Methods and Results not presented well and may be unclear. Discussion very limited. Overheads/slides inadequate. Timing and answers to questions weak.
This work displays obvious omission or an error in the choice material used and is either incomplete or obviously unbalanced in judgement. A weak structure, limited argument and conclusions are likely. Often scrappily presented with inadequate citation of sources.
This work displays minimal knowledge of the subject. It shows major errors or omissions, or substantially irrelevant material. It lacks overall structure, and is characterized by unsupported assertion. It lacks critical appraisal of material, and does not acknowledge its sources,
A very poor presentation. Inadequate argument, structure content and delivery. Little or no discursive or critical content apparent. Poor use of visual aids. Extremely short or over-long in duration.
Re-Submission of Failed Work If you receive an overall mark of a fail (less than 50) on a module this will be classed as a FAIL. Within the regulations, you are allowed to resubmit the piece of work once only to achieve a PASS. If you do not pass the re-assessment, you will carry a FAIL through to the final exam Board. If you pass the re-assessment, you will carry a mark of 50 forward. If you fail a module, you will be contacted by the Postgraduate Programmes Officer with instructions on how to re-submit your assessment for that module. You should expect to receive these instructions after the internal examination boards have met, (usually around March and July). More information regarding Postgraduate re-examination and re-assessment, including the fees to be paid for this can be found here: http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/ssid/exams/reassessment_pg Examination Board An external examination board will take place at the end of the Graduate Year (usually October) where final marks will be approved and degree recommendations sent to Faculty for approval. Final Statements of Results are posted out to students in late November on completion of the degree. Please note that all assessment marks remain provisional until you receive your statement of results. After this, you may also request a formal copy of your transcripts from the following web link: http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/ssid/transcript Criteria for Degree Award… Students are only awarded credits in those modules where they have achieved a pass (50 or above). A candidate who is awarded 180 credits shall thereby pass the Examination for a Master’s Degree. A candidate who is awarded 120 credits shall be eligible for the award of Postgraduate Diploma, and a candidate who is awarded 60 credits shall be eligible for the award of the Postgraduate Certificate.* *Please note that Polar and Alpine Change students will be awarded the Postgraduate Certificate and not the Postgraduate Diploma upon successful completion.
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The University offers three categories of degree: Distinction, Merit, and Pass. The Examiners may in their discretion recommend the award of a mark of distinction or merit to a candidate for a Master’s degree, such that: a) a candidate who obtains a weighted mean grade of not less than 69.5 in the Examination as a whole and a grade of not less than 70 in units to the value of not less than 90 credits, including the dissertation, may be recommended for the award of the Degree with distinction; and b) a candidate who obtains a weighted mean grade of not less than 59.5 in the Examination as a whole and a grade of not less than 60 in units to the value of not less than 90 credits, including the dissertation, may be recommended for the award of the Degree with merit. Dissertation research takes place over the summer and the deadline for the submission of dissertations is in September. Students will be notified of their dissertation mark and overall degree result in late October when the final examination board has met. Ethics… All research involving human subjects must be carried out under ethical principles and is subject to ethics review. For further information please see the University Ethics Policy at: http://www.shef.ac.uk/geography/research/ethics.html. Dissertation supervisors will also discuss this with students. The ethics form is available for download on MOLE.
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The Use of Unfair Means Assessment, whatever form it takes, is the means by which the University tests whether a student has achieved the objectives of a course and the standards of an award. It is fundamentally important that students are assessed fairly, and on equal terms with each other for the same award. Any attempt by a student to use unfair means to gain advantage over another student in the completion of an assessment, or to assist someone else to gain an unfair advantage, is cheating. Cheating undermines the standards of the University’s awards and disadvantages those students who have attempted to complete assessments honestly and fairly. It is an offence against the values of the academic community of which students and staff are both part. The basic principle underlying the preparation of any piece of academic work is that the work submitted must be your own original work. Plagiarism, collusion, double submission (or self-plagiarism), submitting bought or commissioned work, and fabrication of results are not allowed because they go against this principle. Rules about these forms of cheating apply to all assessed and non-assessed work, including essays, experimental results and computer code. Cutting and pasting from web sites would also be considered unacceptable. What constitutes unfair means…? 1. Plagiarism (either intentional or unintentional) is the stealing of ideas or work of another person (including experts and fellow or former students) and is considered dishonest and unprofessional. Plagiarism may take the form of cutting and pasting, taking or closely paraphrasing ideas, passages, sections, sentences, paragraphs, drawings, graphs and other graphical material from books, articles, internet sites or any other source and submitting them for assessment without appropriate acknowledgement. 2. Submitting bought or commissioned work (for example from internet sites, essay “banks” or “mills”) is an extremely serious form of plagiarism. This may take the form of buying or commissioning either the whole assignment or part of it and implies a clear intention to deceive the examiners. The University also takes an extremely serious view of any student who sells, offers to sell or passes on their own assignments to other students. 3. Double submission (or self-plagiarism) is resubmitting previously submitted work on one or more occasions (without proper acknowledgement). This may take Page | 20
the form of copying either the whole assignment or part of it. Normally credit will already have been given for this work. 4. Collusion is where two or more people work together to produce a piece of work, all or part of which is then submitted by each of them as their own individual work. This includes passing on work in any format to another student. Collusion does not occur where students involved in group work are encouraged to work together to produce a single piece of work as part of the assessment process. 5. Fabrication is submitting work (for example, practical or laboratory work) any part of which is untrue, made up, falsified or fabricated in any way. This is regarded as fraudulent and dishonest. How Can I Avoid the Use of Unfair Means…? To avoid using unfair means, any work submitted must be your own and must not include the work of any other person, unless it is properly acknowledged and referenced. Turnitin allows you to check your piece of work for plagiarism before you submit it. It is the responsibility of all students to check their work through Turnitin before submitting a final version. As part of your programme of studies you will learn how to reference sources appropriately in order to avoid plagiarism. This is an essential skill that you will need throughout your University career and beyond. You should follow any guidance on the preparation of assessed work given by the academic department setting the assignment. If you have any concerned about appropriate academic practices or if you are experiencing any personal difficulties which are affecting your work, you should consult the Module Convenor or Course Convenor. The Library provides online information literacy skills tutorials: http://www.shef.ac.uk/library/services/infoskills The Library also has information on reference management software: http://www.shef.ac.uk/library/refmant/refmant The English Language Teaching Centre (ELTC) operates a Writing Advisory Service through which students can make individual appointments to discuss a piece of writing. This is available for all students, both native and non-native speakers of English. http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/eltc/services
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The department runs English language courses once a week throughout each semester in conjunction with the ELTC. Students will be informed of the arrangements for these seminars at the beginning of the Autumn semester. What happens if I use unfair means…? Any form of unfair means is treated as a serious academic offence and action may be taken under the Disciplinary Regulations. Where unfair means is found to have been used, the University may impose penalties ranging from awarding a grade of zero for the assignment through to expulsion from the University in extremely serious cases. Detection of Unfair Means and Penalties… The University subscribes to a national plagiarism detection service which helps academic staff identify the original source of material submitted by students. Academic staff have access to specialist software that searches a database of reference material gathered from professional publications, student essay websites and other work submitted by students. It is also a resource which can help tutors to advise students on ways of improving their referencing techniques. Your work is likely to be submitted to this service. Cheating in examinations… During closed book examinations, candidates are expressly forbidden to copy from another candidate or from notes. They are also forbidden to communicate with anyone other than the invigilators. During open book examinations, students are allowed to use reference material such as notes but they must not communicate with anyone other than the invigilators. Use of Material from the World Wide Web… The World Wide Web represents an extremely useful source of information for your studies. It is a useful source of online data and of reports from major organisations, such as the European Union and the United Nations. It is also a useful tool in undertaking initial research into a new topic, which will be necessary for some pieces of coursework. However, there are two dangers associated with the use of webbased material: 1
It is easy to be tempted to cut-and-paste text from web pages into your own work. If this is done without proper attribution of the source, it represents plagiarism, which is viewed very seriously (see above). Even when the source is properly attributed, it is not good practice to use large sections of text taken Page | 22
directly from other people’s work and if you do this too much you will lose marks. 2
Information on the web is not always reliable. The quality controls which exist for printed material, such as peer review and editing, do not always exist on the web. It is best to regard web-based research as a useful first step to obtaining an overview of a subject and pointers to other reading in books and journals. The department expects that the majority of reading on which the final work is based (and which is therefore cited within the work itself) should come from reliable, academic sources. Typically this will mean academic books and articles in peer-reviewed journals. Citations to web-based material within the final piece of work should only be used when this is the only or the most appropriate source of the information being referenced.
For example it is appropriate to use web references in the following situations;
When the web is the simplest way of obtaining a copy of something which is also available in printed form. For example, much of the material produced by central and local government and various NGOs is made available this way. To refer to material from newspapers. When the information on the webpage is itself the focus of the discussion e.g. when considering the views expressed by pressure groups via their web pages.
Examples of inappropriate use of web-based sources include:
The use of material from sites with no control on the quality of the information. The best current example is Wikipedia, which can be freely edited by anyone. Such sites are useful to obtain background information, but this should always be verified from a more reliable source. To refer to research work from people’s homepages. Seek out a publication on the work in a refereed journal.
The inappropriate use of web-based material is likely to lead to a loss of marks.
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Academic and Personal Welfare Student Representatives… The University places great value on the opinions of its students and there are various opportunities to get involved, both to have your say and also to represent the views of other students. Being a student representative is rewarding work; it can help you develop useful skills, give you a greater understanding of how the University works; and enable you to play a role in decision making in the Department and Faculty. The Department of Geography Masters Committee is made up of student representatives and a number of academic staff. The Department usually appoints three Masters Reps to attend the Masters Committee and to be a point of contact for other students. Getting involved means you will be able to take part in discussions and decision making about a range of issues, such as teaching, departmental services, and communication with students. Masters representatives from each course will be elected during intro week. Appeals… Appeals will not be considered against the academic judgement of the examiners or in respect of the quality of teaching or supervision prior to the examination unless the student could not reasonably have been expected to have made this a subject of a complaint before the examination. Students must be able to show that either there has been a procedural error or that there is new evidence concerning mitigating circumstances that was not made available to the examiners and that it could not have been produced at an earlier stage. A student who wishes to make an academic appeal, should write, in the first instance, to the Head of the Geography Department indicating the grounds for the appeal. Reporting Special Circumstances… During your studies, you may experience difficulties which could affect your academic performance. Such difficulties are known as ‘special circumstances’.
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Special circumstances could include:
Medical circumstances, including long-term circumstances (e.g. anxiety) or short spells of illness (e.g. flu). Personal circumstances (e.g. bereavement).
It is important that you report any special circumstances to the department as soon as you can. If you are ill for a period of less than seven days during the semester (excluding the examination periods), you need to complete a Special Circumstances Form available from SSiD, the SSiD website (www.sheffield.ac.uk/ssid/forms/special) and the Geography Hub. The form should be completed and emailed to [email protected] or submit to the Departmental Office. No medical evidence is required in such instances. If your illness has lasted for longer than seven days, you will need to provide documented medical evidence to go with your form. Any special circumstances which you report by the last day of the examination period (February and June respectively) will be considered by the examination board and may be taken into account when calculating your results and determining your final degree classification. Any information you submit will be treated as confidential. Leave of Absence… If you wish to apply for a leave of absence at any time, you will need to first discuss your intentions with your Course Convenor. To apply for leave you will need to obtain a Change of Status Form from the SSID webpage, which can be found here: www.sheffield.ac.uk/ssid/record/status. Once the form has been completed and signed off by your Course Convenor, please return it to the Departmental Office. Students will be notified of the outcome of their application in due course. Taking leave of absence can have significant financial and immigration implications. International students’ leave of absence applications must be signed by an immigration adviser in Student Services. We may have to inform immigration authorities that you are not attending University. For more information you can email: [email protected] Confidentiality of Personal Circumstances… All information given by you to a member of staff in strict confidence is covered by a Code of Practice and will not be divulged to any third party without your permission except where there is a legal obligation to do so or where issues of personal safety arise.
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Equal Opportunities… The Department endorses the University’s commitment to equal opportunities for all staff and students. A full version of the University’s Equal Opportunities Policy is available on the SSID webpages: http://www.shef.ac.uk/ssid/admin/equal. Making a Complaint… Where possible, students should try to resolve matters informally, for example, by talking with their Personal Tutor, Course Convenor, or the Director of Masters programmes, who will aim to discuss and respond to any complaint within seven working days. If no resolution is achieved, a student can make use of the University complaints procedure which is described here: http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/ssd/sca/complaints. At this stage, the complaint is considered first by the Head of Department (unless the complaint relates to that individual). If it is not resolved at that point, a student can then submit a further second stage Complaints Form which will be referred by a nominee of the Registrar and Secretary to the appropriate Faculty Officer or other person. Further information on the complaints procedure can be found here: http://www.shef.ac.uk/polopoly_fs/1.156811!/file/Flowchart_of_Formal_Procedures.p df Student Welfare… The University provides a very wide range of supportive welfare services. A separate directory of such services is available from the Students Union and should be consulted for further details. Counselling Service Fully-trained counsellors are available for confidential individual sessions to help students and others in the university deal with all kinds of problems. This service also offers group sessions and workshops (e.g. on stress reduction). Further information: http://www.shef.ac.uk/counselling/ Careers Services The Careers Service supports students’ career and employability skills in the form of talks and workshops, as well as offering advice sessions, CV clinics, and an email enquiry service. The University Careers Service has an advisor with special responsibility for Geography students. The advisor is available for consultation at the Page | 26
Careers Advisory Centre. Within the Department, Dr Julie Jones ([email protected]) acts as Liaison Officer to ensure that all students are made aware of relevant careers events and that vacancy information and publicity material is disseminated effectively. Further information: http://www.shef.ac.uk/careers/index.html Health Service The University Health Service is an NHS, PMS General Practice (10 Doctors working in partnership), which offers full GP services to all students at the University of Sheffield if they choose to register, and, in some cases, their dependents. The University Health Service is a modern, friendly practice, situated on the corner of Gell Street and Glossop Road (Tel: 0114 2222100). Further information: http://www.shef.ac.uk/health/uhshomepage.html Student Advice Centre The Students Union operates an active Advice Centre, staffed by a team of professional advisors, to deal with student welfare issues such as finance, housing, legal matters, and international student issues. The Centre is housed in 285 Glossop Road. Further information: http://www.shef.ac.uk/union/advice/ Facilities for Children The Students Union and the University jointly provide a number of childcare facilities for students. Further information: http://www.shef.ac.uk/ssid/contacts/child Information for Disabled and Dyslexic Students… If you have a disability, medical condition, or specific learning difficulty, we strongly encourage you to contact the Disability and Dyslexia Support Service (DDSS). The DDSS is a confidential and friendly service which offers a range of support, including: Liaising with academic staff and central services about disabled students’ support needs. Helping students to apply for Disabled Students’ Allowances. Organising support workers, e.g. note takers, readers, library support, scribes, interpreters. Advising on specialist equipment and technology. Referring dyslexic students for study skills support, at the English Language Teaching Centre. Referring students who think that they might be dyslexic for diagnostic assessments with an Educational Psychologist.
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Putting students in contact with local and national external agencies who offer support and advice to disabled people on specific issues. Formalising alternative arrangements for examinations and assessments, e.g. extra time in examinations; reasonable adjustments to assessment tasks; or alternative assessment formats.
The Geography Department’s Disability Liaison Officer (DLO) is Catherine Humphreys is you wish to speak with someone regarding disability please email her at the following address: [email protected] If you require alternative exam arrangements, please make sure that you contact the DDSS at the earliest opportunity. Further information is available at the following address: http://www.shef.ac.uk/disability/
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Teaching and Learning Workload Guide… Contact time per week will vary throughout the year and depend upon the modules that you are studying. Taught sessions can be between 2 and 80 hours per semester, but it is anticipated that you will undertake a substantial amount of independent study. The total workload for a 15 credit module is approximately 150 hours. There is no teaching outside of the two semesters, apart from the courses wherein field work takes place, and you will have individual sessions with your dissertation supervisor as appropriate in the summer. The Masters programmes run for the full calendar year, with dissertations submitted in September. Overall, the department provides a range of taught learning opportunities, but what you achieve is in your hands, as your personal input, outside of formal contact times, is a critical part of your workload. Student Attendance Monitoring… It is expected that you will attend all term time classes except in event of illness or for other good reasons (if this is the case, please notify the module convenor concerned). It is important that you regularly attend all the scheduled classes and meetings that are listed in your timetable or that are communicated to you as the semester proceeds. It is only by attending all of the scheduled sessions you will be able to learn effectively, and it is for this reason that the Student Charter notes that students are expected "to attend throughout each semester, including the full examination period. This means turning up on time to all designated teaching sessions, tutorials, laboratory sessions and all assessment". To help ensure that you make full use of the learning opportunities that are available, the department will be monitoring the attendance of students at twelve or more sessions throughout the year. The monitoring will be carried out using systems that have been developed by the University specifically to help departments identify and support students who are having difficulty with their study programme. It is important that students regularly check their emails. Discipline… The department regards students as mature and responsible individuals, aware of the self-discipline necessary for good relations in a community; therefore there is no published disciplinary code other than that relating to examinations and assessment (see pages 11-17). The Head of Department can and does take action if individuals cause serious annoyance or danger to others and there are procedures in place to deal with behaviour that is liable to bring the University into disrepute. Page | 29
Student Module and Programme Evaluations The department constantly evaluates the quality of its teaching programmes and modules. You may be asked to complete a questionnaire or attend a feedback session about each module that you take, as well as your degree programme. Your feedback lets us know what is going well and if there are things that should be changed. In this way we can ensure that we continue to offer a high quality programme. If you have any immediate feedback, you should contact either your course convenor, personal tutor, or your student representative.
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SAFETY NOTICE The Departmental Safety Officer is Rob Ashurst, Senior Lab Technician, Room B11c. Rob is responsible for ensuring that details of appropriate health and safety requirements are made known to students. Should you have any health and safety related queries please see Rob in the first instance. All University premises, property and vehicles are no smoking. If you must smoke, do so well outside the building – not next to the front or side doors. DEPARTMENTAL SAFETY INFORMATION Fire Procedure… The blue notices located around the building give clear instructions of what to do in the event of fire. Any person discovering a fire should:
Sound the alarm at one of the break glass points Dial 4444 on internal telephone State location and nature of fire State special hazards if any State casualties if any Any disabled people? Tackle fire with appliance IF YOU FEEL SAFE AND ABLE TO DO SO Close the doors if the fire is to be left
Evacuation Procedure… The evacuation alarm consists of a continuous sounder. On hearing it you should:
Shut down services, close all doors and windows if safe to do so Leave the building by the nearest safe available exit (not necessarily the main entrance). Do not use the lift Assemble at the Department of Geography evacuation assembly point: Lower Ground Floor in the Arts Tower Do not congregate around the building and cause obstruction Do not re-enter the building until you are authorised to do so.
The alarm can be activated by one of the red break glass call points located all around the Geography/TRP Building. The emergency telephone number, which is used to contact Emergency Services is: 4444 Page | 31
The Fire Alarm is tested at regular intervals – there will be notifications on the plasma display screens and at the Porters Lodge at the entrance to the building giving details of the day and time for such tests. The emergency exits in the Department of Geography are listed below. The main entrance isn't the only way out - so on your travels around the department have a look and remember where all the exits are. At the same time it's also a good idea to note the location of any fire extinguishers: A Floor Main entrance and side door B Floor Main entrance, side door, down short corridor through door B7 into park C Floor Main entrance, rear staircase to back yard, through Ron Johnston Research Room (C3) into park D Floor Main staircase, rear staircase to back yard and access roof via short corridor through door D4 (between doors D3 and D5) down steps and out into back yard E Floor Main staircase and back staircase to back yard F Floor Main staircase and back staircase to back yard First Aid Box Locations: A Floor
Accident Reporting… All accidents within the Department must be reported to a member of staff. The Policy within the University of Sheffield is that all accidents, incidents, dangerous occurrences and near misses arising out of, or in connection with work shall be reported via the University’s online reporting system within 24 hours of occurrence. http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/hs/accident Safety Services must be informed by telephone immediately (26198) if a person requires any form of hospital treatment. Out of Hours… Out of hours is before 08.30 and after 17.30 weekdays and all day Saturday and Sunday. Masters students are not normally allowed to work out of hours in the Geography building. Late working can normally be accommodated in the Libraries, particularly in the Information Commons (which is open 24 hours, 7 days a week). If you absolutely need to work in the building out of hours (evenings and weekends) you must have gained an Out of Hours Certificate and attended a General Fire Training Session. Please contact Steven Norburn, C5, Ext: 27934 if you have any questions regarding Out of Hours training.
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Field Classes and Fieldwork Each student must behave responsibly when attending a field class or completing independent fieldwork, in order to reduce the risk of accidents and other harmful incidents. This includes behaving responsibly toward staff, your fellow students, and others you encounter, including staff and other guests in field class accommodation. Each individual is responsible for their own safety and all students are required to comply with the University’s Health and Safety Codes of Practice, which provide a general framework for safe working in the University.
Report any disability or inability before attending a field class. Report any injury or illness to the field class leader. Stay with the main party. If you are taking any medication, please inform the field class leader and ensure that you take sufficient medication with you at all times. Observe all instructions from the field class leader. Anyone acting contrary to safety requirements may be dismissed from the course. Special instructions may be given for particular environments. Please read carefully the relevant module handbook or field class hand-out. A declaration form must be completed prior to each field class to confirm that you have read and understood the relevant safety instructions and risk assessments. A written risk assessment must be completed and approved before any independent fieldwork is undertaken.
The University asks for your commitment to behaving responsibly while you are a student, taking account of the diversity of the University community and the values of truth, toleration and justice. This requirement extends beyond the University campus to the field classes and fieldwork you undertake as part of your course, and includes engaging positively with the individuals and local communities that you encounter. The University takes a very serious view of inappropriate behaviour and the Student Discipline Regulations explain the action that might be taken in cases of misconduct. Field Classes Abroad… All students will be required to complete a medical and dietary form before leaving on a fieldtrip. It is essential that you make the module convenor or the Postgraduate Officer aware if you have any pre-existing medical conditions (i.e. asthma, diabetes, epilepsy), have taken / are taking any prescribed medication and / or have undergone any surgical procedure within the last 12 months. Page | 34
ALL STUDENTS WILL BE REQUIRED TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY OF ORGANISING THEIR OWN VACCINATIONS AND ANTI-MALARIAL DRUGS (where needed) FOR OVERSEAS FIELDTRIPS. You should speak with your module convenor about required vaccinations and seek out medical advice from your local doctor or through the University Health Service. A copy of your passport may also be required as well as emergency contacts (name, address, email and telephone number) of your nominate person/s. Alcohol… Alcohol must not be consumed during field class activities and at all other times students are expected to behave responsibly and exercise moderation. Irresponsible or inappropriate behaviour, including being under the influence of alcohol during field class activities, will be reported to the University and disciplinary action may ensue. Each individual is responsible for their own safety where alcohol is consumed away from approved field centre/accommodation or special instructions to students regarding alcohol consumption are broken. FURTHER INFORMATION:
Safety Services (www.sheffield.ac.uk/hs) Security Services (www.sheffield.ac.uk/security) University’s Health and Safety Code of Practice (www.sheffield.ac.uk/hs/policies)
FIELDWORK SAFETY GUIDELINES… Each student must behave responsibly during field work in order to reduce the risk of accidents. Each individual is responsible for their own safety.
A written risk assessment for dissertations (Form FS1) must be completed and approved before any fieldwork is undertaken. Report any disability or inability before starting a course and report any injury or illness to the member of staff in charge. Stay with the main party. If you are taking any medication, please ensure that you take it with you on the field trip. Observe all instructions from the field course leader. Anyone acting contrary to safety requirements may be dismissed from the course. Special instructions may be given for particular environments.
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A CLOTHING, PROTECTION, EQUIPMENT AND INSURANCE… A1 CLOTHING
Wear and carry clothing and footwear as appropriate to the fieldwork situation. Waterproof outer garments, e.g. anorak, over- trousers, warm pullover or fleece/jacket and stout boots are basic essentials. A woollen hat is desirable as considerable heat loss occurs via the head. Wellington boots are only suitable for shallow wading. Walking boots should have mountaineering soles. Sports shoes and jeans are unsuitable. Thigh waders can be used for fluvial work. Chest waders in particular require care if they take in water. In hot climates wear a protective hat.
Safety helmets must be worn, by law, when visiting quarries, mines, building sites, cliffs and screes wherever there is a risk of falling objects. Safety goggles should be worn when hammering.
Never hit one geological hammer with another as they may splinter. Always carry a whistle, map, compass, watch, torch, first aid, mobile phone, emergency supplies (e.g. water, chocolate, glucose), survival bag (e.g. large polythene bag) or commercially available survival bag. In hot weather use an appropriate factored sun lotion, and carry adequate drink and salt tablets.
Individual personal insurance should be considered for accident or illness, especially when abroad. Ensure there is adequate equipment insurance.
B HAZARDS… B1 GENERAL
Do not climb cliffs, rock faces or crags unless this has been approved as an essential part of the work. Avoid the edges of cliffs and quarries and other steep or sheer faces. Ensure that rocks above are safe before venturing below. Quarries with rock faces loosened by explosives are especially dangerous.
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Never work: a. under an overhang b. in deep cuttings c. in trenches - unless adequate shoring is in place in deep pits Avoid loosening rocks on steep slopes. Never roll rocks down slopes or over cliffs for amusement. Do not run down steep slopes. Take great care when walking or climbing over slippery rocks below high water mark on rocky shores. Do not work directly above another person. Beware of landslides. Beware of adders in heathland. In hot climates take care to avoid prolonged direct sunshine, thorny vegetation and poisonous plants and animals. Be aware of indigenous plants and animals. PERSONAL SAFETY MUST TAKE PRIORITY, but as fieldwork equipment is often expensive attempt to ensure its survival where it is safe to do so.
B2 VEHICLES AND ROADS
Beware of traffic when examining road cuttings. Avoid hammering and do not leave rock debris on the roadway or verges. Take special care of traffic at all times.
B3 QUARRIES, MINES, CAVES, ETC
Do not enter old mineworks or cave systems unless it has been approved as an essential part of the work. Only do so by arrangement with the group leader with proper lighting and headgear. NEVER GO ALONE. When entering old mineworks ensure that someone on the surface knows your location and expected time of return. Always report to the group leader after returning to the surface. Comply with safety rules, blast warning procedures and any instructions given by officials. Avoid touching any machinery or equipment in quarries, mines, building sites or fields. Never pick up any unexploded explosives, wires or detonators from rock piles. If found, inform the group leader immediately. Keep a sharp lookout for moving vehicles. Beware of sludge lagoons. Avoid mires and bright green patches of moss.
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If in a mire and starting to sink, lie on your back, shout for help, and if no help comes attempt to back stroke across the surface. You may sink irretrievably if you flounder about.
Work out a plan in advance for situations which could be encountered e.g. illness, accident, bad weather. Check weather forecasts and keep a constant look out for changes. Attend to anyone injured and withdraw remaining members of the group to a safe location. Send for help – two people where possible – and give information of exact location of party and nature of injuries. Take steps to warn others of hazard. Limit any discussion to a factual report. When working in a group do not stray off or return without informing the group or field course leader.
D COMMUNICATION… Always: inform someone of your departure, route, activity and return time (friend, parent, post, office, police, youth hostel, park warden etc). inform the same person(s) of your return. It is essential that the person(s) you have informed of your whereabouts and likely return time knows exactly what procedure to follow in the event of your non-return. The emergency signals are: - Six signals within one minute (whistle blast, torch flashes, shouts, waves of cloth) - One minute pause - Repeat six signals Reply is: - Three signals - One minute pause Use a mobile telephone (check the battery is fully charged before setting out) when and where available, remembering to give mobile telephone number to enable return contact. Make sure the mobile is switched on. Don’t rely on it as it may be in an area without signal.
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E GENERAL INFORMATION…
Be polite when interviewing the public. Do not damage property. Leave gates as found. Do not trample crops. Do not worry livestock. Do not collect specimens from nature reserves without a permit, and only elsewhere for serious scientific study. Do not leave litter. Respect wildlife.
F INDEPENDENT FIELDWORK…
Working alone is undesirable but independent fieldwork may be required for project or dissertation work. ALWAYS WORK WITH SOMEONE wherever possible e.g. take a brother, sister, friend when working on a field project. This also applies to urban interviews and questionnaires as well as to moorland and other “natural” sites. In foreign environments, ensure a basic competence in the relevant language for emergency use. In household interviews DO NOT enter the premises – interview only in the doorway. Always obtain permission before entering private land/property. Ensure that you have adequate survival gear and supplies to spend a night in the open in case you have an accident. If this occurs, lay out your position with a brightly coloured object. Discuss your project and any risk with your supervisor/project organiser. No project that has an undue safety risk will be sanctioned.
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LABORATORY SAFETY GUIDELINES A risk assessment must be completed before any work is undertaken. All dissertation and project laboratory work must have the prior approval of the dissertation or laboratory class supervisor and the timing of such work should be arranged with the Laboratory Technician before commencing.
You should not use the laboratory facilities, apparatus or chemicals without the prior approval of a member of staff or technician. Use is normally limited to taught practicals as arranged as part of the course which you are undertaking. Use of laboratory facilities, apparatus and chemicals outside these courses, such as dissertation or project work, requires the prior approval of a member of staff. Undergraduate work is confined to the Teaching Laboratory (B6). The Research Laboratory (B11) is heavily used by research postgraduates;
You should only use the techniques described in the handouts which you will receive, and you should follow the methods carefully. Failure to do so may result in an accident. If you need to use any other technique you must obtain permission and it may be necessary for you to work under direct supervision. You should not proceed with any technique unless you are fully conversant with it and any potential hazard. Read the instructions and listen carefully to instructions before commencing work. You should not work alone (ie without the presence of someone within shouting distance). You should not work outside normal hours which are 0900 – 1700 Monday-Friday.
Laboratory coats should be worn at all times in the laboratory and removed when leaving.
Eating, drinking and the use of mobile phones is not allowed in the laboratory.
Many of the reagents and some of the equipment which you use in the laboratory are potentially dangerous. For this reason it is essential to become acquainted with these materials before you use them. Read the instructions relating to any item of equipment which you use. Read the labels on the reagent bottles before use, making sure that you have got the correct reagent (many of their names are very similar), and that you are aware of its hazards. With dangerous reagents acquaint yourself with the procedures in the event of an accident; a chart explaining the necessary precautions and safety measures is displayed on the wall of the B6 laboratory.
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Always use a pipette filler when pipetting. The use of the mouth to suck any solutions up a pipette is expressly forbidden.
Do not pour any solutions at or above eye level.
Do not pour any solutions down the sink without first asking whether it is safe to do so.
NEVER dispose of sediment down the sinks; use the buckets provided.
In the event of an accident, contact any member of the teaching or technical staff or a porter. If no one can be found ring 4444 (Internal).
Note that eyewashes and first aid kits are available in both laboratories.
Report any spillages or accidents, however minor.
Wash hands when finished to avoid chemical contamination and maintain good hygiene.
Students are not allowed to work in the laboratory if no member of staff is present.
Anyone found contravening these safety regulations will be asked to leave the practical class or to cease work in the Laboratory.
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Postgraduate Community PROGRESS PROGRESS is the University of Sheffield’s postgraduate society, run by postgraduate students for postgraduate students. The primary mandate is to organise and run social events, thereby creating a casual environment where postgraduates can make new friends, meet peers and colleagues from other disciplines, and enrich their University experience. PROGRESS hosts a variety of regular events every month, including after-work socials, pub quizzes, and meals out. The monthly special event, selected by membership vote, has included bowling, African drumming, laser quest, walking in the Peak District, visiting Lincoln Christmas Market, and picnics in the Botanical Garden. As the only postgraduate society at the University, PROGRESS also represents postgraduates within the greater academic community. PROGRESS has close links with the Students Union and the Academic Secretary serves as a voice on issues affecting postgraduates. Further information: https://sites.google.com/a/sheffield.ac.uk/progress/home PG Café Forum The PG Café Forum is a student-led initiative, which creates an informal space in which postgraduate students can share their work, socialize and network. It is designed to support postgraduates from all disciplines and backgrounds to improve their presentation skills and gain confidence in communicating their topic to a nonspecialist audience. Three talks of approximately 15 minutes each are featured per session and cover various disciplines balancing the arts and sciences. The casual and inquisitive environment encourages cross-pollination of ideas and lateral thinking. Following each talk, the speaker will entertain a period of questions and answers, and receive peer-review from the audience. For information on dates and venues: Email: [email protected] Visit: http://www.pgcafeforum.co.uk/ Facebook: www.facebook.com/PGCafeForum
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Beyond a Masters Career Opportunities A Masters degree provides training in generic skills and techniques that are transferable to a wide range of employment opportunities. The University of Sheffield has a dedicated postgraduate careers advisor who can support you through the job application process. Please see the Careers Service website for more details: http://www.shef.ac.uk/careers/ PhD Study in the Department The Department of Geography is a leading international centre of excellence in research, renowned for the quality of its PhD degrees, which are supported through world-class supervision. We attract high-level students from across the world who go on to successful careers spanning academia and the public and private sectors. Our students benefit from participation in a large and active graduate school, and an individually tailored training program, focused on developing the skills set and knowledge base, required for each research topic. Whilst the availability of PhD funding is an important issue for our students, it should also be remembered that there are other important implications of undertaking a PhD. PhD research, whilst largely pleasurable, is not without its problems. There can be frustrations with the research process and the ‘writing up’ stage can be challenging if you are not organised and self-motivated. At the same time, the PhD degree, whilst providing you with excellent career prospects, tends to lead you to research and lecturing jobs in Higher or Further Education. This is still the dominant career destination for our PhD students, and whilst it can be hugely rewarding, working in Higher or Further Education is not for everyone. Applying for a PhD Before applying you should visit the Departmental website for details and advice on your application: http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/geography/phd/applications We ask all applicants to contact a potential supervisor before submitting an application. Details of current opportunities in the Department can be found here: http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/geography/phd/opportunities
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Should you choose to apply for PhD funding, or seek general advice on careers after the Masters, then please contact any member of academic staff or the relevant Postgraduate Tutor: Postgraduate Tutor in Physical Geography Dr Andrew McGonigle : 0114 222 7961 : [email protected] Room F4 Postgraduate Tutor in Human Geography Dr Adam Whitworth : 0114 222 7955 : [email protected] Room E18