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Academic Appeals

When your results come out, you will find out what the exam board has decided about your degree classification or progression. If you are unhappy with the decision that's been made, you may be able to appeal. You can appeal against things like your degree classification, progression to the next year of study, capped resits and being required to withdraw.

Please read through all the information on this page. If you then decide that you want to start preparing an appeal, please use our Appeal Wizard below to create a draft form. This will be sent to us, and we will then be able to advise you in more detail on your situation.

We aim to respond to all enquiries within 3 working days. Please note that all information you provide to us is maintained in accordance with our Confidentiality Policy and Bristol SU’s Privacy Policy.

 

 

Can I appeal?

Faculty decisions arrive either via eVision or as a letter attached to an email. If you’re not sure whether you have received a faculty decision or not, ask at your school office. You can’t appeal against provisional marks. More details about this can be found on the University's Exam Board outcomes webpage.

Most decisions are issued in July/August and then in late September after the second summer assessment period. But it is also possible for faculty decisions to be issued at other times of the year.

You have 15 working days to submit your appeal against your faculty decision. Weekends and University closure days don’t count. If you miss your appeal deadline it is possible to request a late appeal, but you will need to show a good reason. Please get in touch with Just Ask for more advice about this if this applies to you.  

Do I have a ground for appeal?

Your appeal will only succeed if it fits into one or more of the three possible grounds for appeal:  

  • There has been a material irregularity in the decision-making process. This could apply if the University hasn’t followed its own procedures properly, resulting in an unfair outcome for you. An example of this could be if you notified the University of extenuating circumstances but they haven’t been classified correctly or adjusted for appropriately.
  • Your performance in assessment has been affected by extenuating circumstances (ECs) that you were unable for good reason to disclose before the meeting of the board of examiners. You will need to show a good reason why you didn’t submit extenuating circumstances before the exam board met.
  • A penalty for plagiarism or exam cheating which is wrong or disproportionate. This ground doesn’t apply to late submission penalties, it’s only where an issue regarding academic integrity has arisen, been investigated, and a penalty applied. 

Faculty exam boards can’t increase marks, but they can disregard marks. For example, if you have a mark that was affected by extenuating circumstances it can be left out of the calculation of your overall degree classification. They can also allow further attempts at assessments if you have failed a unit. Repeat or supplementary years can also be offered.

How do I appeal?

To appeal, you need to fill in an appeal form. You can use our Appeal Wizard below to help you to create a draft form. On the form you will need to explain what has happened and how your situation fits into one or more of the grounds for appeal. If you prefer, you can find a blank appeal form here. Please email your draft form through to us on bristolsu-justask@bristol.ac.uk if you’d like some feedback on it before you submit it. Just Ask has a wealth of experience about academic appeals and we find that if students come to us for advice early on in the appeals process their appeal has a much greater chance of success. It can mean that the appeal is resolved quickly rather than having to go to the second stage of the appeals process.

When you are happy with your appeal form, you can email it to student-appeals@bristol.ac.uk. Don't forget to attach all your evidence too. 

What happens next?

Your appeal will be considered by your Faculty Education Director and you should receive a Local Stage decision letter within 25 working days of submitting the appeal, although it can sometimes take longer. The faculty exam board decision stands until your appeal is successful. This means that if you’re required to withdraw you will be considered to have left the University until such time as an appeal overturns that decision. If you have a degree classification that you’re appealing, the original decision stands until the appeal succeeds. You can graduate even if you are appealing – if your appeal succeeds you will be issued with a new degree certificate at a later date.

When you receive your Local Stage decision, please get in touch with Just Ask straight away. We’d like to hear if your appeal succeeds, and we can advise further if the appeal isn’t successful.

The Local Stage decision comes in the form of a letter from your Faculty Education Director explaining the reasoning behind the decision.

If you are not happy with the outcome at Local Stage, you may be able to progress your appeal to the next stage of the appeals procedure, the University Stage. If you would like advice or support with a University Stage appeal, please get in touch with Just Ask.