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Academic appeals

The formal regulations concerning what you should do if you wish to appeal against a decision by an assessment board are contained in chapter eight of the General Regulations and Procedures Affecting Students.

For undergraduate and postgraduate taught, students should call the Academic Support Office on 0116 207 8309 or email: acasupportoffice@dmu.ac.uk

If you are a postgraduate research student only you are advised to consult the Graduate School Office on +44 (0)116 250 6309 or +44 (0)116 250 6206 before lodging an appeal.

Rights of appeal

You have the right to appeal, on specified grounds only, for reconsideration of the decision of any assessment board.

You have the right to remain on the programme and continue with your studies until the outcome of the appeal is known, provided this is permitted by other results not under appeal.

Grounds for appeal

You may appeal only on one or more of the grounds listed below:

  • That there were demonstrable errors in the conduct of the assessment process which are likely to have made a real difference to the outcome.
  • That there have been errors in the marking or in the consequent decisions of the assessment board.

Procedure

You must complete an academic appeal form and submit this to the Student Appeals and Conduct Officer within 21 calendar days of the publication of the result against which you are appealing. Student appeal forms can be obtained from faculty offices, Student Gateway and from the university website. You are advised to keep a copy of your appeal for your own records as the Academic Support Office will not photocopy your paperwork for you.

The university has the right to dismiss appeals submitted after the appropriate deadline.

You should:

  • Explain on which grounds you wish to make an appeal
  • Enclose any appropriate supporting documentary evidence (eight pages maximum)
  • State whether you wish the appeal to be referred directly for formal hearing by the Academic Appeals Panel, or whether you would like to attempt to resolve the issue through mediation first. Keep a copy for your own records

You will be sent an acknowledgement letter and the progress of your appeal will be managed by the Student Appeals and Conduct Officer.

Mediation

If you state that you would like to attempt to resolve the issue(s) through mediation, an independent mediator will arrange meetings involving you and a representative of the relevant department. You have the right to be accompanied to the meeting by a representative of the Students' Union or another member of the university or a member of your family. The mediation meeting will discuss your case with the aim of reaching an agreed outcome.

If an agreement is reached an explanation of the agreement will be written down and signed by all parties. You have the right to think about any proposed agreement for 24 hours and seek advice before signing. If an agreement is reached and signed by all parties the matter is closed and cannot proceed to an academic appeals panel for further consideration.

Academic appeals panel

If you decided not to go through the mediation process, or if the outcome of mediation has been failure to agree, a formal academic appeals panel will be established to consider your appeal.

The panel is chaired by a senior member of academic staff and consists of an independent member of Academic Board, the President of the Students' Union (or nominee) and the Student Appeals and Conduct Officer. If a mediation stage has taken place, the panel will begin by considering the mediator's papers but the mediator is not entitled to attend the panel meeting.

You have the right to appear and make your case, calling witnesses if appropriate, and to be accompanied by a representative of the students' union or another member of the university or a member of your family, but may not normally be a solicitor or barrister acting in a professional capacity.

Representatives of the department to which the assessment board belongs have the right to attend and make their case.

Panel recommendations

A panel can decide on one of the following outcomes:

  • There are no grounds for proceeding with the appeal and the original decision of the assessment board or the Higher Degrees Committee stands.
  • The appeal is upheld and the original decision is set aside. The student's assessed work is newly examined under conditions determined by the panel.
  • The appeal is upheld and the student has the opportunity to submit new work for assessment.

Right of appeal

A student has the right of appeal against the decision of the panel on the following grounds only:

  • New evidence, which, for the most exceptional reason, the student was unable to take before the panel.
  • Material procedural irregularity on the part of the panel.

Contact details

For further advice on the appeals process please email acasupportoffice@dmu.ac.uk

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