A friend of mine is studying biology at a UK university and told me about this situation that happened last semester.
An assignment was set on one of her courses, and as the deadline date approached, the lecturer sent out an email stating that the first person to submit their assignment would be guaranteed an automatic first (the top mark available).
She felt this was unfair (what if the first person to submit rushed their work and completed the questions poorly, yet were rewarded for their haste?) but due to the intimidating nature of this particular lecturer, she did not say anything.
My questions are:
Is rewarding the first submission purely because it was the fastest common practice in UK universities (or elsewhere)?
What can be done by the student to prevent this situation happening again?