How does a student appeal a grade?
Grades represent the professional judgment of faculty in their assigned areas of expertise.
Guided by the standards established in the course syllabus or other document (e.g., independent study form). Assigned grades will not be changed unless there is compelling evidence of inequitable treatment, discrimination, or procedural irregularity. Once the final deadline for recording grades has passed, grades may only be changed when there has been a documented error in grade calculation or in those situations of a successful grade appeal.
When to Appeal a Grade
Students may only appeal the final grade for a course if:
- You can demonstrate that inequitable treatment, discrimination, or procedural irregularity occurred.
- You wish to challenge the reduction of a grade for alleged scholastic dishonesty.
Please keep in mind that with any Grade Appeal, except for in cases of academic dishonesty, the student must provide proper reasoning and solid support to prove their case. Students who wish to appeal their assigned grade must provide compelling evidence of inequitable treatment, discrimination, or procedural irregularity.
Process of Filing a Grade Appeal
These must be completed in the following order:
- Informal Attempt
Contact your instructor. Outline the concern and request a grade change based on one of the above criteria.
- Formal Attempt (if step 1 fails to resolve the issue)
The student must prepare and submit a written appeal, within 3 months of the posting of the grade. The appeal is addressed to the dean of the school in which the course originates.
With very few exceptions, the student must discuss their course grade with the instructor responsible for assigning the grade before filing a formal grade appeal. Grade appeals require documentation.
If satisfactory resolution cannot be reached with the instructor, the student should submit their concerns in writing or via electronic correspondence to the Dean of the school to whom the instructor reports. Please refer to this resource (click the “deans and directors” tab) for a complete list of the current deans and their designated schools.
Students should clearly state any evidence and facts that support your grade appeal. If you have negative comments about the instructor or the class, this is not the appropriate place to share those thoughts.
Attach copies of any documentation that you have, which may include: personal grade records, copies of graded work, email communication with the instructor, comparisons to the work of other students and statements of support from other students. Not all of these items will apply to you depending on the basis of your appeal. Additionally, you may not be in possession of these documents if they are part of the instructor's class records. If that is the case, the dean's office will request this documentation from the instructor.
If the dean's office is unable to resolve the matter, the student may appeal to the Office of the Provost, provided the student has compelling evidence of inequitable treatment, discrimination, or procedural irregularity. The appeal letter, documentation, and the dean’s response should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. The documentation must include justification and compelling evidence that support a grade appeal, as described in the paragraph above.
Deadline for grade appeals: The appeal process must begin within three months of the grade being posted to the student’s account. The process begins with a written appeal to the dean.
Written appeals will be reviewed by the Provost or their designee and in those cases where appropriate, will be assigned to the Advisory Board on Grades and Standing. For more information about the Advisory Board on Grades and Standing review Procedure 2006 for additional information. The Advisory Board on Grades and Standing will make a recommendation to the Provost, whose decision is final.