The ECTS system and the grade distribution
The European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) was instituted in 1989, within the Erasmus programme, as a way of transferring credits that students earned during their studies abroad into credits that counted towards their degree, on their return to studying in their home institution. It facilitates the mobility of students between different countries, by making studies and courses more transparent and easing the process of recognising learning outcomes, qualifications and periods of study. It is a central instrument in the Bologna process, aiming at increasing compatibility of national systems.
The University of Cagliari has adopted ECTS as the credit accumulation system:
1 Italian Credit (CFU) = 25 working hours = 1 ECTS Credit
ECTS credits express the volume of learning based on the defined learning outcomes and their associated workload. 60 ECTS credits correspond to the workload of a full-time academic year or its equivalent, which normally comprises a number of educational components to which credits are allocated.
First cycle qualifications typically include 180 ECTS credits. Second cycle qualifications (Master programmes) typically include 120 ECTS credits
Grade distribution tables
Due to different cultural and academic traditions, European educational systems have developed not only different national grading scales but also different ways of using them within the same country, in different subject areas or institutions.
Since mobile students have the right to fair treatment and to transparency of their grades when credits are transferred from one institution to another, to ensure transparent and coherent information on the performance of the individual student, each HEI should provide a statistical distribution table of the passing grades awarded in the programme or field of study attended by the student (grade distribution table) showing how the grading scale is actually used in that programme.
The grade distribution tables should replace the previous ECTS grading scales (A, B, C, D, E), which are still used by some institutions.
In the Italian system the pass mark for examinations is 18 out of 30. The highest mark for examinations is 30 out of 30 (30 cum laude is also possible). An excellent performance is usually graded above 28.
The following grade distribution tables have been developed with data of passing grades of the last 3 academic years. They include the absolute number of passing grades awarded to each reference group identified, the percentages of the passing grades awarded to the reference group and the cumulative percentages (to be used for grade conversion). The tables also include the “old” ECTS grading scales (A, B, C, D, E), to be used in case of HEI still using them.
For each Faculty, it is first reported the grade distribution table for the whole Faculty followed by those of each Degree Programme.