Appeal against an academic decision

Informal appeal
Faculty appeal
Appeal to the Student Appeals Body (SAB)
Additional services and support


Student appeals against academic decisions are governed by the University of Sydney (Student Appeals against Academic Decisions) Rule 2006, which can be found on the University Policy Register.

An academic decision is a decision that affects the academic assessment or progress of a person within his or her award course. An appeal against an academic decision can include:

Due academic process means the making of academic decisions according to published University, Academic Board and Faculty rules, policy, procedure and local provisions which were in place when the academic decision was made.

Relevant policies include:

The steps to follow when appealing against against an academic decision are as follows:

Informal Appeal with Teacher of Unit of Study Coordinator

A student who believes there are genuine grounds for contesting an academic decision should first discuss their concerns with their teacher or unit of study coordinator.

This must occur within:
a) 15 working days of the student being advised of the academic decision
b) within 15 days of the result being posted by the University
c) extended time as the Dean may reasonably authorise

The student must be able to demonstrate how due process was not observed. For instance:

  • The procedures used by the department for determining the grade or academic decison do not conform to the
    Assessment Procedures 2011

The teacher or unit of study coordinator will promptly address the student's concerns and provide a full explanation of the academic decision.

If the student's concerns are not resolved, the teacher or unit of study coordinator will explain to the student they may submit an appeal to the Faculty

Appeals to Faculty or Administrative Unit

Normally, the informal appeal process is productive and the student is satisfied with the outcome achieved.

However, if the student is not satisfied, and genuinely believes that due academic process has not been followed in deciding of the informal appeal, the student may submit an appeal to the Faculty or relevant administrative unit.

Appeals regarding special consideration or credit must be submitted to the relevant administrative unit.

Faculty Appeals should be submitted to the within 20 working days of the outcome of informal appeal

Appeals can be submitted via email to

Faculty Appeals must include:

  • A written statement from the unit of study coordinator explaining the reasons for their decision and the outcome of the appeal.
  • An appeal letter outlining the reasons for appeal. This letter should explain in detail how due academic process was not observed.
  • The relevant assessment task if appealing against a mark or grade
  • Any additional supporting documentation

The student will receive acknowledgement of receipt of the appeal by email within three working days, and the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences will attempt to resolve the matter within 10 working days of receipt of the letter of appeal.

Students will be sent a letter via University of Sydney email notifying them of the outcome of their Faculty Appeal. This letter will explain the reasons for the decision and notify the student of any further right of appeal.

Appeal to the Student Appeals Body (SAB)

If the student does not agree with the decision of the faculty regarding their appeal, the student has the right to appeal to the Student Appeals Body. Information about appealing to the Student Appeals Body is available on the Student Affairs website.

A written appeal must normally be lodged with the Registrar (on behalf of the Student Appeals Body) within 20 working days of being notified of the outcome of the Faculty Appeal.

Additional information for international students: If an international student is not satisfied with the result or conduct of the internal grievance and appeals processes set out above, they will be advised of their right to complain to the NSW Ombudsman.

Additional services and support

For help preparing your appeal, contact a caseworker at the Student Representative Council (SRC): (02) 9660 5222 or email .

For help preparing your postgraduate appeal, contact a caseworker at Sydney University Postgraduate Representative Association (SUPRA): (02) 9351 3715 or email .

Contact a counsellor at the Counselling Service: (02) 8627 8433 or email .

Contact a counsellor at the International Student Support Unit: (02) 8627 8437 or email .

For visa compliance issues contact the International Office: 02 8627 8300 or email .