Study Organisation

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At RSU, the study process is organised in accordance with Rīga Stradiņš University's Regulations of Studies (approved at RSU Senate meeting on 17 May 2016). You can download a PDF version of the Academic Regulations here.

Terms used in the study process

Academic leave – a study break from active studies for a semester or academic year due to medical indications, social reasons, family reasons or the birth of a child maintaining the status of a student. Academic leave is granted only to the students in good academic standing and those who have paid their tuition fees.

Academic year – the study period in a higher education institution related to the calendar year (for example, academic year 2016/2017), which is divided into two semesters – the autumn semester (from September to January) and the spring semester (from February to June).

Academic failure – non-fulfilment of the student obligations imposed on the study course and/or failure in examinations. The academic failure may be an obstacle to the continuation of studies.

E-grade book – an electronic student achievement register available on the student portal “Universum”.

E-studies – electronic online study site where materials necessary for studies are available.

Expulsion – exclusion of a student from the list of students of the University in accordance with the Law on Institutions of Higher Education.

Matriculation – enrolment of a person who has fulfilled enrolment requirements in the list of students of the University.

Credit point – an accounting unit which corresponds to 40 academic hours (one week of studies). 40 credit points shall be collected during one academic year for full-time studies which corresponds to 60 ECTS.

Lecture – a form of organisation of studies in which a lecturer outlines the theoretical material of the study course. The lecture is a source of information, the means of increasing students’ cognitive ability. The lecture can be presented also as a video lecture.

Class – a form of organisation of studies, in which groups of students under the guidance of a lecturer strengthen their theoretical knowledge acquired during lectures and independently, as well as acquire appropriate skills and competence. Types of classes are:

Practical class – a form of organisation of studies, in which students under the guidance of a lecturer acquire appropriate skills relevant to the corresponding topic. Its goal is to develop complex professional skills and to improve independent work and assessment skills;

Laboratory work – a form of organisation of studies, in which groups of students under the guidance of a lecturer perform experiments relevant to the study course, analyse the obtained results and draw conclusions;

Seminar – a form of organisation of studies, in which students under the guidance of a lecturer listen to and discuss reports prepared independently. The goal of the seminar is to develop the student’s intellectual capacity for independent, creative thinking, ability to see and evaluate the most essential matters, to argue and analyse regularities under specific circumstances;

Oscillating study course is implemented during different semesters within one year of studies for all the groups of students.

Plagiarism – further expression of another person’s spoken or written ideas as one’s own without setting a specific reference to the respective author and source.

Placement – a part of the study programme aimed at strengthening the student’s theoretical knowledge obtained and acquisition of skills and competence in the chosen specialty.

Extension of the semester – additional time granted with authorisation of the Dean for taking semester examinations to the end of the examination period.

Examination period – time for final examinations after each semester.

Extension of the examination period – additional time granted with the authorisation of the Dean for taking final examinations for 5 weekdays after the end of the examination period.

Study group leader – an elected representative of the group representing interests of the group and tackling the issues topical to the group.

Student portal "Universum" – the portal where each student using a personalised user name and a password can obtain information about their grades, access their individualised timetable, access library databases, follow their own financial liabilities, read personalised news as well as access e-studies and e-mail.

Year leader/semester leader – provides a link between the Student Union and students as well as between the students and the Dean. The task of the year/semester leader is to inform their fellow students about the activities organised by the Student Union, the events taking place in the faculty, about current events and changes in timetable, to copy materials as well as other tasks agreed with the students of the study year.

Study system – the way in which studies are organised. Studies may be implemented corresponding to one or several study systems at the same time. Study systems:

Study system of regular classes – implementation of a study course for several weeks providing one or two lectures and classes per week. Duration of each study course is prescribed in the curriculum;

Study system of cycles – concentrated implementation of a study course within a set period of time, organising all the activities provided for in the programme of the study course consecutively (usually every day).

Study group leader – an elected representative of the group representing interests of the group and tackling the issues topical to the group.

Types of knowledge assessment

Learning outcomes are assessed by academic departments that organise semester examinations and final examinations at the end of the study course. Assessment of students’ knowledge and skills may be organized in different ways of control, depending on the specifics of the study subject.

Types of semester examinations and rules:

  • Test – a written assessment of the part of learning outcomes within the study course.
  • Report – a written account prepared by a student about a particular topic which contains an analysis of certain facts, issues and proposals, reveals the author’s conclusions on the topic and includes a list of sources and readings.
  • Colloquium – a type of assessment of knowledge, skills and competence upon completion of a certain part of the study course.
  • Semester test indicates whether a student has fulfilled all the requirements provided for in the programme of the study course. A successfully passed semester test gives the right to take the test or the exam, if these examinations are prescribed in the curriculum. The lecturer records the test evaluation “pass” or “fail” in the e-grade book.

Types of final examinations of the study course and rules:

  • Test – a type of assessment of knowledge, skills and competence; it is taken upon completion of the study course or a significant section of the study course. A test is organised similar to the exam; evaluation in it is “pass” or “fail”.
  • Exam – a type of assessment of knowledge, skills and competence of the study course or an essential part of it, in which the evaluation is given in grades using a 10-point grading system.
  • Final examinations can be carried out in different ways, i.e.
    • in written form,
    • orally,
    • by computers,
    • in a combined form (e.g., written and oral),
    • as an objectively structured clinical examination (OSCE).
  • Cumulative assessment may also be used during exams and tests in which the knowledge, skills and competence are assessed on the basis of the results shown in the coursework throughout the implementation of the study course.
  • State examinations – examinations which assess how a student has acquired the knowledge, skills and competence set for the study programme (defence of research projects, defence of qualification papers, Bachelor’s and Master’s theses, state examinations, etc.).

Learning outcomes assessment system

A 10-point scale is used for the assessment of learning outcomes achieved by students in compliance with the national standard of higher education. Evaluation is done according to the criteria as shown in the table below.

With distinction

10
  • Knowledge, skills and competence exceed the requirements of the study programme, study module or the study course and they testify to the ability to carry out independent research and deep understanding of problems

Excellent

9
  • Knowledge, skills and competence fully comply with the requirements set for the study programme, study module or the study course; they possess the ability to use independently the knowledge acquired

Very good

8
  • The requirements of the study programme, study module or the study course are completely met, though in certain issues they do not have understanding deep enough to use the knowledge independently for solving more complex problems

Good

7
  • In general the requirements of the study programme, study module or the study course are met but sometimes the inability to use the acquired knowledge independently is detected

Almost good

6
  • The requirements of the study programme, study module or the study course are met, but there is a lack of deep understanding of the problem and inability to use the acquired knowledge

Satisfactory

5
  • In total, the study programme, the study module or the study course is acquired but there is insufficient knowledge of certain issues and inability to use the acquired knowledge

Almost satisfactory

4
  • In total, the study programme, the study module or the study course is acquired, however, there is insufficient understanding of some basic concepts and there are considerable difficulties in practical application of the acquired knowledge

Weak

3
  • The knowledge is superficial and incomplete; the student is unable to use it in specific situations

Poor

2
  • There is superficial knowledge of only some issues; most of the study programme, study module and the study course is not acquired

Very poor 

1
  • There is no understanding of the fundamentals of the course and there is almost no knowledge of the study programme, study module or the study course

 

  • The student is successful if he/she has received the assessment “almost satisfactory” (4 points) or higher.
  • 10-point grading system is not used for assessment of the test and the semester test.
  • The semester test is passed and the student gets the assessment “pass” if the student has fulfilled the course requirements.
  • The test is passed and the student gets the assessment “pass” if their knowledge, skills and competence correspond to the assessment “almost satisfactory” (4 points) and above. If in the test the student’s knowledge, skills and competence do not correspond to such a level, they get the assessment “fail”.

Organisation of studies during the semester

In order to ensure the student participation and provide feedback between the students and the teaching staff and administration, between the students and the Student Council, each group of students elects (or re-elects) the group leader within five weekdays from the beginning of the academic year notifying the Dean’s Office about it in writing or electronically within one weekday thereof. If the students do not make their choice, the group leaders of the respective groups are appointed by the Dean’s Office.

Lecture and class timetable is published on RSU website and on the student portal “Universum” 10 calendar days prior to the beginning of the semester.

Starting implementation of each study course, the lecturer of the academic department shall introduce students to the description of the study course, including the requirements for the study course and the examinations determined therein.

A student has the right to use video and audio recordings of lectures and classes only for personal study purposes. The student does not have the right to publish video or audio of lectures.

Attendance of classes and taking the semester examinations are mandatory both in compulsory and elective study courses. The Head of the study course in cooperation with the Head of the academic department shall determine the way of accomplishing the assignment of the missed class.

It is prescribed that each semester examinations within the framework of the study programme acquisition may be taken not more than three times.

Examinations for the study course, their form and type shall be set in the description of the study course and the lecturer shall inform students about them when starting the course. Students shall be informed about additional teaching aids which may be used. It is forbidden to leave the examination room arbitrarily, to use any mobile communication means, laptops or other aids if the lecturer’s permission is not obtained.

If a student fails to comply with the rules of the examination, uses unauthorised aids or receives assistance from other people, the lecturer is entitled to expel the student from the examination and award the student an unsatisfactory grade - “very poor” (1 point).

If a student has violated the rules of the examination, has used unauthorised means or accepted help from the other people during the first time of taking the semester examination, the student is eligible to resit the semester examination one more time. If a student has violated the rules of the semester examination, has used unauthorised means or accepted help from the other people during the second time of taking the semester examination, the student is not eligible to resit the semester examination for the third time.

A student has the right to get acquainted with their work and to receive an explanation of the mistakes made after the notification of the examination results.

Assessments received for the examinations of the study course shall be recorded by the academic department in the e-grade book after the examination:

  • for oral examinations – within one weekday;
  • for written semester examinations – not later than within six weekdays (or by the beginning of the examination period, if the time period until the examination period is shorter in the study system of regular classes),
  • for written final examinations of the study course – not later than within six weekdays in the study system of regular classes.

Absence from the classes in which assessment of knowledge, skills and competence is carried out (a test, a colloquium, etc.) shall be equivalent to the first time of taking the respective semester examination.

If a student has not taken the semester examination for valid reasons (for example, events defending the honour of the University or the country, scientific conferences, exchange visits, amateur art activities, sports, etc.) or has not attended classes due to illness, the student retains the rights to take semester examinations three times, if he/she not later than two weeks prior to the planned absence has submitted an application to the Student Services adding the documents confirming the absence or in case of previously unplanned absence within five weekdays after returning to studies has submitted the document confirming incapacity for work due to illness. The Dean or the Head of the study programme shall examine the documents within five weekdays after their receipt. The Dean or the Head of the study programme shall be entitled to extend the five-weekday deadline, if it is necessary to require the student to provide additional written information, which the student is obliged to submit to the Dean’s Office. If the Dean or the Head of the study programme decides not to justify the absence, he provides information on not justifying the absence to the student and to the academic department which is affected by the student’s absence.

The amount of learning outcomes that are essential to be reached in order to participate further in the study course may be determined in the description of the study course. If a student fails to reach the mentioned amount, the academic department shall inform the Dean without delay during any period of the semester. The Dean shall evaluate the situation (reasons for absence, the amount and failure in examinations) and shall propose:

  • to interrupt studies in the respective study course (with the obligation to repeat it in the following academic year), continuing to study other study courses by the end of the respective semester, after which the student shall not be transferred to the next year of studies, or
  • to expel the student from the University.

It is allowed to take the semester examinations during the semester and during the semester extension period assigned by the Dean. The semester extension may be assigned to pregnant female students and to parents of both sexes within 5 months after the childbirth for up to four weeks during the following semester.

The study semester is successfully completed, if all the semester examinations prescribed for the study courses of the respective semester are passed.

Placement

Placement in study programmes shall be organised in compliance with the Placement Regulations, which is developed by the Head of the respective study programme and approved by the Faculty Council. The Head of the study programme shall ensure that the students are informed about the Placement Regulations and the placement procedure. Placement Regulations are available on the student portal “Universum”.