The Academic Appeals process is your way of challenging a decision taken by the Board of Examiners. Sometimes things happen that threaten your studies and if this happens suddenly or has a bigger impact that anticipated, then you may be able to have your circumstances taken into account.
The first thing to do if your studies have been affected by something that’s happened to you personally outside of University is to follow the Personal Circumstances Procedure. If you have missed the deadline for this and have a good reason for doing so or if you are still unhappy with the University’s decision, then you may be able to appeal. There are two stages of appeal: Faculty and Senate.
The Faculty Appeal’s process allows you to challenge a decision taken by the Board of Examiners. This could be, for example, a decision that you withdraw from your course, take a period of suspension or repeat a year, or transfer to a different degree, e.g. Masters to Diploma or Honours to General.
The appeals process does not permit you to challenge an individual grade or degree classification because you feel your grade should be higher – this is what’s called challenging academic judgement and is not a permitted appeal ground.
There are three grounds of appeal at Faculty and you must have circumstances that fall under one of them:
- That there were procedural irregularities in the assessment process;
- That there was inadequate assessment, prejudice or bias on the part of one or more of the examiners;
- That there were unknown medical, personal or other circumstances that affected your performance.
You will also need to consider evidence that supports your circumstances. The Advice Hub staff can advise on appropriate evidence for your situation.
If you are in your final year and are considering appealing it is important to note that you cannot graduate until the appeals process is over. So, for example, if you are due to graduate in June and decide to appeal, your graduation will be delayed until November and vice versa.
You should also make note of your appeal deadline which will be given along with your results. It’s important to meet this deadline.
There is a form to complete in order to appeal. This is available to download here.
While the appeals process is quite simple in itself we realise that having to appeal – especially if you have already had a pretty rubbish time of it – isn’t always easy so contact us, so we can give you support and advice through the process.
Senate is the second, higher level of appeal within the University and you can only appeal to Senate if you have already gone through the Faculty Appeals stage first.
You can only make a Senate Appeal if you have been unsuccessful in a Faculty Appeal or only partially successful in a Faculty Appeal. You must have grounds that fall under one of the following three categories:
- You have substantial new information which was not available, for good reason, at the Faculty Appeal stage;
- You believe there was bias or prejudice on the part of those who dealt with the appeal at the Faculty stage;
- There was a breach of the Academic Appeals Procedure.
Senate does not automatically have to hear your appeal; if at the first reading they feel that you have not met one of the above ground then they have the right to reject the appeal at that stage.
It’s important to closely consider the outcome you received from the Faculty and the reasons why it was not upheld. Is there more information you could give or more evidence you could gather that will add anything substantial to your appeal?
Don't submit exactly the same appeal to Senate as you did at Faculty - this will simply not be accepted; your appeal has to be under one of the grounds above.
The Senate Appeal form is available here.
For advice and support with Senate Appeals, contact the Advice Hub who will be happy to support you through this process.
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