Comparison with European and US grades
In some instances, you may need to know how the grades you receive at UNSW compare with overseas grading systems - whether you are an international student studying here or a domestic student wanting to apply to overseas universities.
The European Credit Transfer System of letter grades (ECTS) was devised to deal with the large number of grading standards among universities in the European Union, and to enhance the portability of results. It is based on fixed percentiles, relative to the number of students who achieve a pass.
ECTS grades are defined below:
- A (percentage assigned 10%) = Excellent: outstanding performance with only minor errors
- B (25%) = Very Good: above the average standard with some errors
- C (30%) = Good: sound work with a number of notable errors
- D (25%) = Satisfactory: fair but with some significant shortcomings
- E (10%) = Sufficient: performance fulfils minimum criteria
In the United States, grading schemes usually have a higher proportion of As and Bs than in the ECTS. For example, even a conservative scheme in the US such as that recently adopted by Princeton University awards about 35% of students a grade of A- or higher.