If you are unhappy with your exam / assessment results you have the right to appeal against that decision if you meet a ground for appeal.
In the first instance, we would advise you to consult your personal tutor, course leader or Head of Department to see if your concerns can be resolved informally. If this does not work you have the option of formally appealing under the University's Academic Appeal Regulations.
The regulations apply to the following:
An appeal must be made within 15 working days of publication of results.
If for valid reason you require more time to submit your appeal, you should email the Student Engagement and Progress Team on firstname.lastname@example.org before the deadline to ask for more time. Include your department and registration number in the subject field and explain why you need more time. If more than 15 working days have passed since the publication of results, you will need to use the Late Submission Form to request permission to have your academic appeal considered late. You should explain the reasons for this and provide any evidence you are referring to.
NB: For postgraduate research student academic appeals, please click here.
It is important to remember that you cannot appeal on the grounds of academic judgement, i.e. you think your work deserved a better result, for example if you disagree with the examiners opinions.
You have grounds for an appeal if:
Your appeal should be made in writing using the standard University Academic Appeals form.
The form should be submitted by email with the evidence to email@example.com within 15 working days of the formal publication of results.
Sometimes departments give provisional results earlier than the official publication date. You cannot officially appeal your results until they are formally published; this is usually the date they are published on MOLE. If you receive provisional results and are unhappy, it is worth going to speak to your department at this stage as they may be able to assist you. If you are unsure about when the results were formally published you can contact the relevant faculty representative at the Student Administration Service to clarify this.
It is advisable to use the Word version of the appeal form, and type your appeal, so that sections can be expanded and changes can be made easily.
Section A: Enter your Personal Details.
Section B: a) Tick the appeal ground you wish to appeal under.
b) In the ‘My Case’ section you will need to explain what result(s) you are appealing, under what grounds, and explain how your situation meets the appeal ground(s). Further guidance on specific appeal grounds is given in the next section below.
c) You need to state what outcome you are seeking from the academic appeal. Normally in the case of a failure of an assessment, you would request another attempt at the assessment, by requesting the failed assessment to be classed as ‘Not Assessed’. This would mean that it would be as though you never took that attempt, so you would not have to pay for the resit, and if this was your first fail the resit would not be capped. Similarly, if this fail meant that you had reached your maximum resit attempts, therefore been withdrawn from the course, that withdrawal would be also be overturned and you would receive another attempt at the assessment.
If you are seeking a different outcome, it may be helpful to speak to an academic adviser at the Student Advice Centre to discuss this, including whether it is reasonable and realistic.
d) You need to list the evidence you will be including with the appeal. You should include evidence to support your arguments wherever possible. This might include medical evidence, death certificates, evidence of financial difficulties, evidence of separation, letters, emails, records of supervision or annual progress reports, minutes of meetings, etc.
Where there is a lot of evidence such as emails, supervision notes, etc, it is advisable to group these into PDF documents and label them as appendices you can refer to in the ‘my case’ section’.
Section C: Here, you should give details of anyone you have spoken to about the issues to try and resolve it informally, eg your personal tutor, dissertation supervisor, course leader, head of department. You should have already made reference to this in the ‘My Case’ section above.
In the representative box, you write the details of any representative you are using or the Student Advice Centre staff member if we have helped you with your appeal. Once you have completed the appeal form as per these instructions the advice centre is able to offer feedback on one draft version before you submit it. Please note: you may only use the Student Advice Centre representatives name if we have seen and fed back on your appeal form before you submit it.
Section E: Declaration- You may use an electronic signature or just type your name and date it.
In addition to the above guidance we also have interactive Guidance Notes which you may find helpful. Please note: this requires Adobe PDF Reader and Firefox rather than Google Chrome.
Once you have completed the appeal form, if you would like feedback on it from an academic adviser at the Student Advice Centre please send your form and evidence to firstname.lastname@example.org. It will then get allocated to an adviser to look at. Please allow reasonable time for adequate feedback, which would usually be within 5 working days. Please note: at certain times of the year this may not be possible, so you may be referred back to online guidance due to the tight deadline.
1. Procedural error by the examiner or a mistake in the recording, transcription or reporting of your results. You need to explain what the procedural error was, and evidence of this; whether you discussed it with your department to try and resolve it, if not why not. Again you need to ensure that your basis for this ground is not questioning academic judgment; for example, if you disagree with the examiner / marker’s comments.
2. Extenuating circumstances which you could not, or felt unable to declare to the University earlier, for a valid reason;
If you are not sure what evidence to provide or whether your situation would count as extenuating circumstances, you can make an appointment to see an academic adviser at the Student Advice Centre to discuss it with them. It would be helpful if you can bring a draft copy of your appeal form and any evidence you have so far to the appointment.
3. Supervision problems that seriously affected your performance. This is usually in the case of dissertation supervision for taught programmes.
4. Disagreeing with the department action in where you have been found to have used unfair means in an assessment;
If you are not satisfied with the decision of your academic appeal, you have the right to request a Case Review (which comes under the University Complaints Procedure), if your case comes under at least one of the following grounds:
(i) There was a material procedural irregularity which rendered the process leading to the decision taken in respect of the academic appeal unfair;
(ii) Material which the student could not reasonably have been expected to produce at the time of the decision taken in respect of the academic appeal casts substantial doubt upon the appropriateness of that decision;
(iii) The decision taken in respect of the academic appeal was manifestly unreasonable.
The request for a Case Review must be made within 10 working days of the full written response provided in relation to the formal complaint. If you need longer than this you must contact the Student Contact and Appeals team (email@example.com) and request an extension detailing the reasons. This will then be passed to a Pro-Vice-Chancellor, or their representative, who can decide to extend this time limit.
Case Reviews requests should be submitted using the Case Review Request Form.
The request will be considered by a Pro-Vice-Chancellor, or their nominee, who can decide:
Usually where a department has responded and provided written comments in response to the request for a case review, a copy of those comments would be sent to the student at the time the decision is notified.
It is advisable to use the Word version of the Case Review Request form, and type your appeal, so that sections can be expanded and changes can be made easily.
Section A: Personal Details
Section B: You need to tick the ground you believe your case comes into.
You need to give an explanation of why you disagree with the decision of the formal complaint based on the case review ground you are applying under, and reasoning in the decision letter:
Grounds for case review
(i) There was a material procedural irregularity which rendered the process leading to the decision taken in respect of the academic appeal unfair; For this ground you would have to demonstrate that there was something incorrect in the academic appeals procedure which would have made the decision unfair, for example if a person closely linked to the academic appeal or from the department considered the academic appeal, or if it was clear from the decision letter that a significant piece of evidence submitted had not be considered because it seems to have been overlooked. These are just examples and are not to base your request on. If you are unsure whether your situation meets this grounds you can speak to an academic adviser at the Student Advice Centre to seek clarification.
(ii) Material which the student could not reasonably have been expected to produce at the time of the decision taken in respect of the academic appeal casts substantial doubt upon the appropriateness of that decision; This would have to be significant evidence that would have likely led to a different decision being made in the academic appeal, and you need explain why you were unable to provide it with the formal complaint.
(iii) The decision taken in respect of the academic appeal was manifestly unreasonable.
You need to set out the reasons why you believe the decision given in the academic appeal was extremely unreasonable. You should refer to points in the decision letter when explaining this.
Section C: You need to enclose a copy of your academic appeal and the evidence submitted, including any additional new evidence you wish to submit for your case review.
If a solicitor or adviser from the Student Advice Centre has assisted you, you may put their details in the representative box. Please note: you may only use the Student Advice Centre representative’s name if we have seen and fed back on your form before you submit.
Section D: Please detail the outcome that you would like, taking into consideration anything that has already been resolved at earlier stages.
Section E: You may type your name or enter an electronic signature.
Once you have completed the form, if you would like feedback on it from an academic adviser at the Student Advice Centre please send your form to firstname.lastname@example.org with your evidence. It will then get allocated to an adviser to look at. Please allow reasonable time for adequate feedback, which would usually be within 5 working days. Please note: at certain times of the year this may not be possible, so you may be referred back to online guidance due to the tight deadline.
Once the form and evidence are ready you need to submit it to email@example.com within 10 working days of the date of the academic appeal decision letter.
The Case Review stage is the last stage of the University’s internal appeals procedure.
The University’s Procedures for the Conduct of Academic Appeals stipulate that the University aims to deal with Academic Appeals including any subsequent Case Review Request within 90 days of receipt of the Academic Appeal. If this is not possible you should be kept informed on the progress of your case.
If you remain unsatisfied after completing the University’s internal appeals procedure, you may be able to make a complaint to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education (OIA). The OIA is an independent review scheme and forms no part of the University's review or appeal procedures. You have 12 months from the Case Review decision letter to make a complaint to the OIA.
Before you go to the OIA you must have concluded the university complaints procedure.
Further details on the OIA, their complaints process and how to apply can be found on their website at: http://www.oiahe.org.uk/
You may find the following direct links useful:
If you would like an adviser at the Student Advice Centre to look at and feedback on your complaint before you submit it you can send your compliant statement based on the OIA questions on the complaint form for an adviser to check at firstname.lastname@example.org. It will then get allocated to an adviser to look at. Please allow reasonable time for adequate feedback, which would usually be within 5 working days. Please note: at certain times of the year, the response times may be longer.
If you are appealing against your final degree classification, you will probably have to graduate with the original classification while the appeal is being considered. Don’t worry about this. If your appeal is upheld, a replacement degree certificate will then be issued.
Last Updated: January 2018