Appeals - Informal (File Note) and Formal Faculty Appeals

Students are encouraged to provide general feedback or constructive criticism.

Introduction

A student may appeal against a mark or grade given for a single assessment task, the final mark for a unit of study, or any decision relating to their degree. The University's appeals process is comprehensive, allowing the student the opportunity first to attempt a resolution of the matter informally with the individual staff member concerned, then if necessary to take the matter through a series of formal stages at Business School and University level.

This policy does not apply to complaints of harassment and discrimination, which are handled under the University's Harassment and Discrimination Resolution Procedure

University policy

The University operates on the basis that academic decisions (eg. in relation to assessment, examining, etc.) are entrusted to members of the academic staff acting in accordance with proper procedures established by the Business School.

The University's procedures for student appeals against academic decisions are set out in the Resolutions of Senate relating to Student Appeals against Academic Decisions. The University's procedures for student appeals against exclusion from the University are set out in section 18 of the University of Sydney (Coursework) Rule 2000 (as amended)

The University requires that a student wishing to appeal an academic decision commences the appeals process within 15 working days of the decision, or, for unit of study results, within 15 working days of the release of results.

Business School Procedures

Appeals about marks, marking or other unit related issues: Students wishing to appeal a mark decision or other unit based decision should submit an informal appeal (File Note) to the relevant Discipline Administration Office. The Discipline Administration Office will forward the File Note to the appropriate Unit of Study Coordinator. Students should use the File Note to initiate the informal appeal. The UOS Coordinator will consider the appeal.

Special Consideration/Special Arrangements: Students wishing to appeal a Special Consideration or Special Arrangements decision should submit their informal appeal electronically via the same online form through which they submitted the initial application. The Special Consideration Panel will review the appeal.

Academic Dishonesty or Plagiarism decisions: Students wishing to appeal Academic Dishonesty or Plagiarism decisions should submit their appeal to the Appeals Office business.academicappeals@sydney.edu.au where it will be forwarded to the relevant Sub Dean as outlined in the letter informing them of the original decision made.

Show Cause or Exclusion Appeals pertaining to show cause or exclusion matters should be referred directly to the Student Administration Manager. Details are listed in the email correspondence sent advising a show cause or exclusion decision.

Group work appeals: An appeal against the mark granted for a group work assessment task are only considered if ALL group members submit/sign the appeal. As all students will be affected by the outcome of any re-mark, all must request that the mark be reviewed. An informal appeal (File Note) or a formal appeal will not be accepted without all students in the group signing the appeal request or providing written consent.

A single student or part of a group can discuss the assessment task or request an explanation for the mark from the marker. This request will not result in any alteration of the mark.

Steps to follow for informal (file note) and formal faculty appeals

Marks and other educational issues

Informal process (File Notes)

A student concerned about a mark or grade should first download and complete a File Note *and submit it to the relevant Discipline Administration Office** via email from their University email account. This needs to be done within 15 working days of the academic decision.

  1. File Notes must be completed on this form Please use Acrobat 7 or later. Earlier versions of Acrobat and other software will not support the form.
  2. All 3 pages and any relevant supporting documentation must be emailed to the relevant Discipline Administration Office listed below, not to the Unit of Study Coordinator or lecturer.

    Accounting business.accounting@sydney.edu.au including BUSS1030
    Business Analytics josephine.cartwright@sydney.edu.au including BUSS1020
    Business Education rachael.di-masi@sydney.edu.au
    Business Information Systems business.infosystems@sydney.edu.au
    Business Law business.law@sydney.edu.au
    Finance/Banking financeadmin@econ.usyd.edu.au
    International Business frank.schoenig@sydney.edu.au including ACCT6002
    ITLS business.itlsinfo@sydney.edu.au
    MBA Programs business.mba@sydney.edu.au
    Marketing bettina.leate@sydney.edu.au
    Work and Organisational Studies wos.admin@sydney.edu.au

  3. File Notes must be saved using the following naming convention: UOS Code_FirstName_LastName_SID_DD/MM/YYYY.pdf

    EXAMPLE: BUSS1001_Jane Citizen_430412345_01012014.pdf
    Failure to do so will delay processing of your informal appeal.

  4. You must only use your University email account i.e abcd1234@uni.sydney.edu.au to submit your File Note.File Notes received from any other email will be disregarded. Submission from your University email account constitutes your electronic signature and validates the File Note.

  5. If the File Note relates to an assessment please attach a copy of the marked assessment to the submission email.

  6. If the File Note pertains to a group assessment all members of the group must consent and be listed in the File Note. The File Note should only be submitted once; with remaining group members cc’d using their University email.
  1. The Discipline Administration Office will forward the File Note to the relevant academic staff member.

  2. The academic staff member will review the issues raised by the student and reach an initial decision. Details of the initial decision and the reasons for it will be recorded on the File Note.

  3. A copy of the File Note will be emailed to the student and the original will be filed securely in the Discipline Administration Office.

  4. If the student is satisfied with the initial decision detailed on the File Note, it shall stand as the final decision and no further action is required.

  5. If the student is not satisfied with the reasons for the initial decision, they should contact the academic to make an appointment to discuss the issue. It is essential that the student takes the opportunity to read the reasons for the initial decision before requesting a meeting and that they make an appointment to allow the academic to ensure that the relevant assessment materials are available during the discussion.

  6. After the meeting the academic will note their final decision on the File Note.

  7. A copy of the now-completed File Note will be emailed to the student and will be filed securely in the Discipline Administration Office.

  8. Many complaints should be resolved at this stage. If, however, the students concerns are not resolved at the end of the informal process, they have recourse to the formal appeals process detailed below.

* Starting the appeals process by lodging a File Note is important, because it allows students to clearly specify their concerns and allows staff to prepare for and properly investigate the issue.

** If a student wishes to appeal against an academic decision made by an officer of the Student Information Office (SIO), they should lodge the file note with the SIO, where it will forwardedto the relevant SIO Manager. The SIO Manager will then complete all the steps specified for the academic staff member in the process above.

Formal Faculty Appeals Process

Appeal to the Sub Dean

  1. If the appeal cannot be resolved informally the student should download and complete the Business School Formal Faculty Appeal Form and submit to the Director of Academic Appeals. Please use Acrobat 7 or later. Earlier versions of Acrobat and other software will not support the form. This needs to be done within 15 working days of the result of the informal process. All three pages must be submitted with supporting documentation to business.academicappeals@sydney.edu.au.

  2. Formal Faculty Appeals must be saved following the below naming convention: UOS Code_FirstName_LastName_SID_DD/MM/YYYY.pdf

    EXAMPLE: BUSS1001_Jane Citizen_430412345_01012014.pdf

    Failure to do so will delay processing of your formal appeal.

  3. If hard copies of documents need to be submitted with the Formal Faculty Appeals these can be submitted over the counter at the Student Information Office as soon as possible. A Formal Faculty Appeal cannot be acknowledged as received whilst supporting documents are outstanding. If the Sub Dean is the lecturer/Unit of Study Coordinator, the appeal will be forwarded to another delegated member of staff for action.
  1. The Appeals Office will acknowledge receipt of a Formal Academic Appeal by email within three working days and will attempt to resolve the matter within 10 working days.

  2. The Sub Dean will email a letter notifying the student of his/her decision by email. This letter will explain the reasons for the decision and notify the student of any further right of appeal.

Appeal to Student Appeals Body

If the appeal cannot be resolved by the Sub Dean, the student has the right to further appeal to the Student Appeals Body. Information about the Student Appeals Body is available on the Secretariat and Student Affairs website


Special Consideration/Special Arrangement decisions

Informal process for Special Consideration/Special Arrangement

  1. A student concerned about the outcome of a special consideration or special arrangements application should submit an appeal using the Special Consideration/Special Arrangements Form including any information relevant to the appeal.

  2. The appeal will be reviewed by the Special Consideration panel and the outcome will be communicated to by email.

If the student is not satisfied with the appeal decision, the student should appeal via the formal process.

Formal Faculty Appeals Process

Appeal to the Sub Dean

  1. If the appeal cannot be resolved informally, the student should download and complete the Business School Formal Faculty Appeal Form and submit to the Appeals Office. Please use Acrobat 7 or later. Earlier versions of Acrobat and other software will not support the form. This needs to be done within 15 working days of finishing the informal process. All three pages must be submitted with supporting documentation to business.academicappeals@sydney.edu.au.

  2. Formal Faculty Appeals must be saved using the following naming convention: UOS Code_FirstName_LastName_SID_DD/MM/YYYY.pdf

    EXAMPLE:BUSS1001_Jane Citizen_430412345_01012014.pdf

    Failure to do so will delay processing of your informal appeal.

  3. Any supporting documentation submitted as part of your Special Consideration application and informal appeal will automatically be considered when you submit a formal appeal. You do not need to provide duplicate copies. Any further documents not already considered can be submitted with your formal appeal.
  1. If hard copies of documents need to be submitted with the Formal Faculty Appeal these can be submitted over the counter at the Student Information Office as soon as possible. A Formal Faculty Appeal cannot be acknowledged as received whilst supporting documents are outstanding.

  2. If the Sub Dean is the lecturer/Unit of Study Co-ordinator, the appeal will be forwarded to another member of staff for action.

  3. The Appeals Office will acknowledge receipt of a Formal Academic Appeal by email within three working days and will attempt to resolve the matter within 10 working days.

  4. The Sub Dean will email a letter notifying the student of his/her decision by email. This letter will explain the reasons for the decision and notify the student of any further right of appeal.

Appeal to Student Appeals Body

If the appeal cannot be resolved by the Sub Dean, the student has the right to further appeal to the Student Appeals Body. Information about the Student Appeals Body is available on the Secretariat and Student Affairs website

Academic dishonesty or plagiarism decisions

Informal process

  1. A student concerned about a decision can email the Director of Academic Appeals. New information may be considered although an explanation of why it was not raised at the time will need to be given. Where no new information is raised the student will be directed to appeal formally.

  2. Where a student has missed meetings or has not responded to emails, the student can request that a meeting be rescheduled. Note, in this case you will need to explain why you did not attend the meeting or respond to emails. Requests for further meetings need to be sent within 5 working days of receiving the outcome.

Formal process

Appeal to the Sub Dean

  1. Following the meeting and or email correspondence, the student will have received a letter containing the decision made. If the student is dissatisfied with the decision, the student should download and complete the Business School Formal Faculty Appeal Form and submit to the Appeals Office. This needs to be done within 15 working days of finishing the informal process. Please use Acrobat 7 or later. Earlier versions of Acrobat and other software will not support the form. All three pages must be submitted with supporting documentation to business.academicappeals@sydney.edu.au.

  2. Formal Faculty Appeals must be saved following the below naming convention: UOS Code_FirstName_LastName_SID_DD/MM/YYYY.pdf

    EXAMPLE: BUSS1001_Jane Citizen_123456789_01012014.pdf

    Failure to do so will delay processing of your informal appeal.
  1. The Formal Faculty Appeal will be forwarded to the Sub Dean for consideration.

  2. If the Sub Dean is the lecturer/Unit of Study Co-ordinator, the appeal will be forwarded to an appropriate staff member for consideration.

  3. The Appeals Office will acknowledge receipt of a formal complaint in writing within three working days and the Sub Dean will attempt to resolve the matter within 10 working days.

  4. The Sub Dean will email a letter notifying the student of his/her decision to the students University email account. This letter will explain the reasons for the decision and notify the student of any further right of appeal.

Appeal to Student Appeals Body

  1. If the appeal cannot be resolved by the Sub Dean, the student has the right to further appeal to the Student Appeals Body. Information about the Student Appeals Body is available on the Secretariat and Student Affairs website

    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.

Non-academic appeals/grievances procedure

Introduction

A student who is concerned about a non-academic decision made, or action taken by the Business School may request that it be reviewed. A non-academic decision is a decision made by the Business School that is not directly related to a student's academic assessment or progress in their degree. It may relate, for example, to a scholarship or prize, an internship or activity of the Careers and Employability Office, a student club or society, alumni activities or a Business School fundraising event.

Steps to follow

  1. A student who is concerned about a non-academic decision should, in the first instance, discuss their grievance with the relevant University officer. This needs to be done within 15 working days of the decision.
  2. The relevant University officer will notify the student of any action taken or any decision made by them in relation to the grievance.
  3. If, following discussion with the relevant University officer, a student's grievance is not resolved to their satisfaction, the Student can address their grievance in writing to the Student Services Manager who will consider the appeal or refer it to the Student Administration Manager - Operations or Manager or Careers and Employability Office as appropriate. The written grievance can be submitted at the Student Information Office. This needs to be done within 15 working days of the response in point 2.
  4. The relevant Manager will acknowledge receipt of the grievance in writing within 10 working days and will subsequently notify the student of any action taken and the reasons for their decision.
  5. If the grievance has not been resolved through the process outlined above, the student can address their grievance in writing to the Associate Dean (Undergraduate) or the Associate Dean (Postgraduate). The Associate Deans act as the Dean's delegate on all matters pertaining to non-academic grievances. The written grievance can be submitted at the Student Information Office.
  6. The Associate Dean will acknowledge receipt of the grievance in writing within 10 working days and will subsequently notify the student of any action taken and reasons for their decision.

The Associate Dean is the final point of appeal within the University for non-academic appeals/grievances.

Appeals requesting review of Learning Entitlement and Fee-Help decisions

A student who has a Commonwealth Supported Place (formally a HECS place) or uses Fee-Help may request an internal review of a University decision relating to their Student Learning Entitlement or Fee-Help. More information and forms are available on the Student Centre website

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