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  2. What is ECTS?

What is ECTS?

ECTS stands for European Credit Transfer System. It is a system which allows universities in Europe to understand and compare the courses and results that students achieve while studying at different institutions.

In the UK the credit system is CATS (Credit Accumulation Transfer System) and at Sheffield Hallam University we have also adopted ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) to help EU students transfer their credit back to the home country.

Students are expected to obtain the following credits during their time at Sheffield Hallam University:

Undergraduate study Postgraduate study
Full year – 120 CATS/60 ECTS Full course - 180 CATS/90 ECTS
One semester – 60 CATS/30 ECTS
One term – 40 CATS/20 ECTS

Credits are only awarded when a course has been completed and all coursework and examinations have been passed.

Under the Bologna agreement, Sheffield Hallam's undergraduate Bachelors degrees and postgraduate Masters degrees are fully recognised as equivalent to those same qualifications taught at universities across Europe. 

Here is an explanation of the Sheffield Hallam University grading system which has also been translated into the ECTS system to facilitate the comparisons of grades across Europe.

ECTS Grades


ECTS Grade
Description of Sheffield Hallam grading system for ECTS purposes ECTS Definition
A Achieves a final average mark of 70% or above Excellent – outstanding performance with only minor errors
B Achieves a final average mark of 60–69% Very good – above the average standard but with some errors
C Achieves a final average mark of 50–59% Good – generally sound work with a number of notable errors
D Achieves a final average mark of 45–49% Satisfactory – fair but with significant shortcomings
E Achieves a final average mark of 40–44% Sufficient – performance meets the minimum criteria
FX Achieves a final average mark of 39% or less – therefore the module has been failed and the student may have an opportunity to complete further work in the assessment component in order to pass the module Fail – some more work required before the credit can be awarded

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