Student Appeals of Evaluation, Grading and Academic StandingCategory: Student Affairs and Activities
Responsibility: University Secretary
Date: Approved January 2012 to be effective May 9, 2012
To provide a means by which students who feel they have been disadvantaged in their academic standing, either by an unfair substantive academic judgement of their work, or by a factor not involving substantive academic judgement, may appeal the outcome of the assessment.
The University of Saskatchewan Act, 1995 (“the Act”) provides Council with the responsibility for overseeing and directing the university’s academic affairs. Council’s powers under the Act include prescribing methods and rules for evaluating student performance, and hearing appeals by students or former students concerning academic decisions affecting them (Section 61(1)).
By Council delegation (through the Academic Courses Policy on Course Delivery, Examinations, and Assessment of Student Learning), the assessment of academic work by students is a responsibility of the instructor(s) who has been assigned to the course, under the oversight of the department head (or dean of a non-departmentalized college, or executive director of a school) who approves the grades. The assessment of academic standing in programs is a responsibility delegated by Council to the faculty council of the college or school that offers the program in accordance with the clause governing Duties and Responsibilities of Faculty Councils, in Part Three of Council’s Regulations.
- Learning as a shared responsibility: As described in the University’s Learning Charter, learning requires the active commitment of students, instructors, and the institution, and depends on each party fulfilling its role in the learning partnership.
- Justice and Fairness: All rules, regulations and procedures regarding student and assessment must embody the principles of procedural fairness. Instructors must communicate and uphold clear academic expectations and standards, and must ensure that assessments of student learning are transparent, applied consistently, and congruent with course objectives. Processes involving student appeals will be pursued fairly, responsibly and in a timely manner.
- Mutual Respect and Diversity: The University of Saskatchewan values diversity and is committed to promoting a culture of mutual respect and inclusiveness on campus. The university will uphold the rights and freedoms of all members of the university community to work and study free from discrimination and harassment, regardless of race, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation or sexual identity, gender identification, disability, religion or nationality.
This policy applies to all students who are registered or in attendance at the University of Saskatchewan in a program under the oversight of Council, and who are appealing their academic standing in a course component, in a course, or in a program.
This policy is not intended to address complaints against individuals or academic units, other than to resolve and where necessary remedy the academic standing of the appellant. It is also not intended to address complaints by students concerning the pedagogy or method of evaluation used by an instructor(s).
All students have a right to fair and equitable procedures for the lodging and hearing of complaints arising from university regulations, policies or actions that directly affect their academic standing.
Grievances arising from the substantive assessment of academic performance in course work are initially addressed by the instructor(s) and may be appealed to the department head (or dean in a non-departmentalized college, or executive director of a school or of the centre for continuing and distance education). Grievances arising from factors other than substantive assessment are addressed by the dean responsible for the activity and with sufficient grounds, as provided for in the procedures, may be the subject of a hearing at the university level.
Council delegates to college faculty councils responsibility for developing and approving procedures by which a student may appeal decisions concerning his or her overall standing, including decisions around progression in the program, probationary status, and graduation, on compassionate, medical or other grounds. These decisions may be further delegated by the faculty council to a committee established for this purpose, or to a college dean, executive director of a school or of the centre for continuing and distance education, or associate or assistant dean. Such decisions are subject to university-level appeal on limited grounds as provided for in the procedures.
Procedures for addressing appeals by students in academic matters have been approved by Council and are available here:
Student conduct and appeals webpage: http://www.usask.ca/university_secretary/honesty/index.php
Contact:University Secretary, 966-4632 or email@example.com