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3.11.4 Student Grade Appeals

The procedure for student grade appeals will be as follows: 

  1. The course syllabus is considered an agreement between the instructor and student. If classroom procedures outlined on the syllabus conflict with institutional policies, institutional policies shall supersede the syllabus. A student who believes a grade violates classroom and/or institutional policy should first, within the first 30 calendar days of the start of the subsequent semester, attempt to resolve a grade appeal directly with the instructor. 
  2. If this attempt fails, the student must, within the first 30 calendar days of the start of the subsequent semester, submit via college email a written appeal to the instructor's campus-based administrator, copying the instructor as well as the associate dean of the college, requesting mediation in his/her grade appeal. The campus-based administrator will facilitate a dialogue between the student and the instructor within 14 working days of receipt of the written complaint. If the complaint cannot be resolved at the campus level, the associate dean will review the complaint and render a decision. 
  3. In instances that cannot be resolved at the departmental/campus or college level, within 30 calendar days of the decision reached in step 2 above, the student will complete and submit a Grade Appeal form, including supporting documentation, to the associate provost for Academic administration or campus-based designee. Academic Affairs will, within 14 working days, schedule the hearing as well as elicit additional information from all parties involved (i.e., student, instructor, department chair, campus administrator, dean) necessary for the Student Grade Appeals Committee to conduct the hearing.
  4. The faculty pool for the Student Grade Appeal Committee will be chosen in the following manner: 
    1. Each year, the Faculty Senate/Leadership Appointments committee will select a pool of faculty members with representation from each college. When a student grade appeal is submitted to the associate provost for academic administration or campus-based designee, three faculty members will be selected to serve as a Student Grade Appeal Committee for that particular appeal. A committee chair and a recording secretary will be designated. 
    2. Faculty from the same degree program as the instructor(s) involved in the appeal will not serve on the committee. Faculty from the same degree program of the student’s academic major will not serve on the committee. 
    3. Faculty who are potentially biased against or in favor of the student or the involved instructor(s) will not serve on the committee.
    4. The aggrieved student and each involved instructor may strike one member from the panel without prejudice. 
  5. The committee functions in the following manner: 
    1. The committee investigates the circumstances of the appeal, allowing both the student and the involved instructor(s) to present their cases. The student and the instructor have the option of addressing the committee in person or providing the committee with a written statement of appeal in lieu of appearing in person. Both the student and the instructor(s) may name other individuals with relevant, first-hand information to address the panel in person or in writing. If the student chooses to address the committee in person, he/she has the privilege of bringing one advisor, selected from the faculty, staff, or student body, to the meeting. The advisor is not allowed to address the committee or to ask questions of committee members during the meeting. The student is allowed, during the meeting, to confer privately with the advisor. The student and the instructor(s) have the right to remain in the room while testimony is being given. All oral testimony will be recorded. If the student chooses to provide the committee with a written statement of appeal in lieu of appearing in person, the student will be required to submit a signed statement indicating that he/she has chosen not to meet with the committee. If there are follow-up questions from the committee, they will be mailed to the student, along with a request that they be answered in writing. 
    2. After considering all information relating to the appeal, the committee will formulate recommendations based on the decision of the majority.
    3. The committee will forward a record of the hearing and a recommendation to the Office of the Provost. 
  6. The associate provost for academic administration will review the recommendation. It will be the responsibility of the associate provost to render a decision in the case, whereupon the student, the department head and the faculty member shall be advised in writing. If circumstances warrant, the provost shall have the authority to change a student’s grade upon recommendation of the committee. 
  7. In the event the student wishes to appeal the decision of the associate provost, he/she may direct his/her appeal in writing to the provost within five business days from the receipt of the letter sent by the associate provost. The decision of the provost shall be final and binding.

Approved 13-FEB-2013

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