Grading and Treatment in Courses
The information provided here refers to grading and treatment within courses.
A. Disputes about Fairness of Grading
1. Informal Student and Instructor Meeting. It is the responsibility of the student and instructor, including both the section and course instructor where applicable, to first attempt to resolve any grievance. If a student has a question regarding a grade or his/her performance in a course s/he must first communicate with the instructor(s) in that course to resolve the question.
2. Written Appeal and Meet with the Associate Chair of Undergraduate Studies. If the student and instructor are not able to resolve the question regarding the student’s performance in the course, the student’s grade in the course, or the grading policy, the student shall have the option of making a formal written appeal to the Associate Chair of Undergraduate Studies. The appeal needs to specify the problem, the reasons for the grievance, and the remedy desired by the student, and it must be submitted within 60 days of the end of the academic term in which the course was taken. In filing a grievance, the student is expected to provide:
- The name of the person against whom the grievance is made.
- The specific charges, including the date and time of the event(s) precipitating the charge.
- A statement of the student right(s) that was (were) violated.
- A detailed statement of the circumstances and available evidence.
- The names and addresses of witnesses, if any.
- The resolution sought.
After reviewing relevant materials (e.g., grades, grading policy information) the Associate Chair of Undergraduate Studies will meet separately with the student and the instructor and will make a recommendation to the faculty member about his/her grading action. The recommended actions will be communicated to both parties in writing.
3. Appeal to the Department Chair. If a student is dissatisfied with the Associate Chair’s decision or a faculty member does not follow the recommendation made by the Associate Chair, written materials will be forwarded to the department chair. The Chair will convey his/her recommendation to both parties in writing.
4. Appeal to the College of Arts and Sciences. If a student is dissatisfied with a Chair’s decision or a faculty member does not follow the recommendation made by the Chair, all written materials will be forwarded to the College of Arts and Sciences and will follow the grievance procedures established in the College.
B. Issues about Faculty Conduct, Academic Advising, or Course Content
If it is reasonable, students should begin with the individual faculty person or advisor to discuss and resolve the problem together. If this fails, a student should contact the Associate Chair of Undergraduate Studies. Should the problem not be resolved at this level, the grievance would be referred to the department Chair. If the decision the Chair makes is judged by the student as not acceptable, the student should contact the Dean’s Office in Arts and Sciences and follow the college appeal procedures.
C. Issues Related to Civil Rights Violations, Sexual Harassment, Disability-Linked Discrimination, or Other Kinds of Complaints
The university provides detailed information about how to pursue appeals, complaints, and grievances of a variety of types. For many of these issues, there are campus offices available to assist a person with a concern. Students can find out about this information at: