2020-2021 Graduate Catalog

Grade Appeal Procedure

Faculty members have a professional obligation to evaluate the progress and/or performance of students, and to assign each student a course grade which validly reflects the student’s progress and/or performance in that course. Student progress and/or performance should be evaluated solely on the academic objectives of the course.

Students are responsible for maintaining standards of academic performance established for each course in which they are enrolled. Lack of success in meeting the academic grading standards established by the instructor does not constitute a case for appeal.

A student who feels that the instructor has graded on the basis of personal opinions or other matters unrelated to the established academic standards is encouraged to consult with the instructor in the hope that a satisfactory solution can be achieved.

If the student still feels the instructor is biased or capricious in academic evaluation, the student has the right to make a written appeal of the grade within one calendar year from the last day of finals in the semester during which the grade in question was assigned. The written appeal shall be submitted to the appeal committee appointed by the department. Such a committee consists of at least one faculty member and one student, both of whom are not directly involved in the case.

The departmental-level appeal committee will convene within a reasonable time following the student’s request for a formal hearing. If the committee feels there is reasonable justification for the student’s appeal, then it will schedule a formal hearing in which testimony from both the student making the appeal and from the instructor concerned will be considered, along with any supporting evidence. At the conclusion of the hearing, the committee will make its recommendation for the resolution of the difference, and will notify in writing the student, the instructor, and the department chair or coordinator. The written decision and the signatures of the committee members will be filed in the department.

If the departmental-level appeal committee supports the student but the instructor refuses to accept the decision of the committee, the student may, as a last resort, appeal to the department chairperson or coordinator. Should the allegation concern the department chairperson or coordinator, the final appeal will be made to the Dean of the Graduate School, or other designee of the Provost.