Changes to the Education and Studies Law that came into power on the last day of summer are to have a large impact on Lithuania's higher education system. Changes are expected in the way education is financed, how students are rotated and their achievements marked.
© DELFI / Andrius Ufartas

A notable change being discussed is the abolishment of the 10-point grading scale, instead adapting a system of achievement levels. According to Minister of Education and Science Audronė Pitrėnienė, the grading scale system could be comprised of three levels, starting from “Threshold” going up to “Typical”, finally reaching “Excellent”.

According to the minister, the levels would help to identify good students for the purpose of assigning grants. The “Excellent” level would require a working knowledge of up to date theories and principles, “Typical” would require working knowledge of key theories and principles while “Threshold” would require a basic grasp of key theories and principles.

“Excellent”, “Typical” and “Threshold” would respectively be the equivalent of 9 to 10, 7 to 8 and 5 to 6 in the 10-point grading scale.

While the details on how the updated law will be applied are still being discussed, changes are likely to start appearing already this year with full implementation expected in autumn 2017. Both student and university representatives believe in the feasibility of replacing the 10-point grading scale, even though a transitional shock is expected.

“It is unclear how long the cultural transition will take. Most likely it will still take some time for an internal transformation within the system. Everything depends on agreement and resolution to tread this path,” said the President of the Lithuanian Student Union (LSS) Paulius Baltokas.

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