How do I submit an appeal?
All appeals (except postgraduate research appeals) should be submitted via the online form here. If you cannot access the form for any reason, please email firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible. Difficulty accessing the online form will not be considered a valid reason for submitting an appeal late.
Postgraduate Research Appeals should be submitted on the appropriate form which is available here.
What are the different types of appeal? On what grounds can I appeal?
Exam Board Outcome Appeal
This will be relating to your formal Exam Board Outcome, which is available on the student portal and may also be sent to you via email after the Exam Board has met. It confirms your marks and tells you what you have passed or failed and if you need to submit any reassessment, resit any exams, or retake any modules. Any award and corresponding classification will also be in this outcome.
Appeals can be submitted on one or both of the below grounds:
1. Exceptional personal circumstances (which could not have been reported via Mitigating Circumstances procedure before the Exam Board)
2. Defects or irregularities relating to assessment instructions or processes
Committee of Enquiry (Unfair Practice) Appeal
If you have been subject to the Unfair Practice Procedures due to suspected plagiarism or other academic misconduct, your case may have been considered by a Committee of Enquiry. After your formal outcome from that committee, you may submit an appeal on one or both of the below grounds:
1. Irregularities in the conduct of the Unfair Practice procedure which may have affected the Committee’s decision-making
2. Exceptional personal circumstances relevant to the Unfair Practice which could not have been reported to the Committee before its meeting
Fitness to Practise Appeal
If you are on a programme for which there are professional standards and you have been subject to the Fitness to Practise procedures, your case may have been considered by a Fitness to Practise Committee. After your formal outcome from that committee, you may submit an appeal on one or both of the below grounds:
1. Irregularities in the conduct of the Fitness to Practise procedure which may have affected the Committee’s decision-making
2. Exceptional personal circumstances relevant to the Fitness to Practise which could not have been reported to the Committee before its meeting
Postgraduate Research Appeal
Please see information here.
What sort of evidence do I need to provide?
For an appeal based on exceptional personal circumstances:
Supporting evidence requirements will be the same as for a Mitigating Circumstances (MC) claim, except you will also have to explain/evidence why you could not submit a MC claim before the Exam Board. Acceptable evidence would usually include at least one of the below, however each appeal is different and considered on a case-by-case basis:
Letters should be dated, obtained at the time of illness and be on headed paper. As stated in the MC procedure, letters which say 'the student informs me that he/she was unwell during…' are generally not accepted.
Hospital discharge paperwork
If any medical evidence relates to a family member or other person, please ensure you have their consent to share it and explain in your appeal who the evidence relates to.
Copy of a death certificate or funeral Order of Service booklet
Copy of a birth certificate
Statement from Student Services
Signed and dated letter from the student's employer
Signed and dated letter from a coroner, legal practitioner, police officer, court official, minister of religion or other professional.
Statements from family or friends are not accepted as they are not considered independent.
For an appeal based on a procedural irregularity:
Supporting evidence would usually be one of the below, but appeals are considered on a case-by-case basis, please contact
email@example.com if you require further advice.
Excerpts from any programme documentation
Evidence of assessment instructions
Correspondence between student and tutor, Programme Director or other University staff
What if I cannot get evidence in time?
An appeal submitted without supporting evidence will not be eligible for consideration. An appeal submitted late because you were waiting for evidence is also not likely to be considered. If you want to submit an appeal but are having difficulty obtaining a particular piece evidence, we encourage you to submit your appeal form on time, but you must get in touch with us (firstname.lastname@example.org) to explain that your evidence is on the way. A decision on whether to accept late evidence is at the discretion of Registry Services.
What if I am told I have to pay for a doctor’s letter?
We understand that in some cases, GP practices will charge a fee for providing a letter. While this may be difficult for some students, unfortunately the University is not in a position to reimburse students for any costs incurred in obtaining evidence for a Mitigating Circumstances claim or an Appeal.
Why do I need to explain and evidence why I could not submit a Mitigating Circumstances claim before the Exam Board?
The Mitigating Circumstances procedure is in place for you to report any circumstances affecting your studies for consideration before the Exam Board. Students agree to follow this process when enrolling at the University, and have a responsibility to ensure they report such things in a timely way, as outlined in the Student Charter.
Where a student does not follow this process, without good reason, the circumstances outlined cannot be cited as grounds for appeal.
Why can’t I appeal academic judgement?
The University has robust assessment regulations which include moderation and double marking processes which are designed to maintain high academic standards. The Exam Board Outcome Appeals Procedure states that where an appeal is based on questioning the marks or grades awarded by examiners, duly agreed and approved by an Examination Board, such appeal will be turned down.
Should I tell anyone about my appeal? Who can help me with my appeal?
While you may choose to talk about the issues within your appeal with a tutor or Programme Director, they may not be the best person to advise you about actually submitting your appeal. Instead, we would encourage you to contact the Students’ Union (email@example.com) for help with submitting your appeal, as they have an experienced Academic Advisor who can help.
When will I know the outcome of my appeal?
For appeals against an Exam Board Outcome, Committee of Enquiry (Unfair Practice) or Fitness to Practise Committee, the relevant procedures state that an appeal outcome will be issued ‘normally within 8 working weeks’. Your outcome may not take that long, but the University cannot compromise its standards and quality assurance processes or procedures in any way.
Please be aware of the fact that there are peak times of year for appeal submission and this may affect how long it takes for your outcome to be issued. We appreciate you will be anxious to hear an outcome as soon as possible, and appreciate your patience – your appeal will be processed as soon as possible.
Please note, for Postgraduate Research Degree appeals (which are generally more complex), the outcome can take up to three months.
What should I do while my appeal is being considered?
Please remember, there is no guarantee your appeal will be upheld and you must continue to abide by the outcome you are appealing. There will be no change to your status as a student while your appeal is considered. This means:
- You are expected to meet any deadlines/requirements set out in your outcome.
- You are only permitted to attend lectures/seminars and access academic resources for the modules you are enrolled on.
- If you have been withdrawn, you are no longer enrolled as a student and cannot access University services.
What will happen next if my appeal is upheld/rejected?
If your appeal is disallowed (not upheld), the previous decision which you have been appealing against will stand, i.e. you will have to abide by that original outcome. Other people (e.g. your tutors) would not usually be notified that an appeal has been rejected (the only exception may be if we have had to contact University staff to investigate a matter raised in your appeal).
If your appeal has been upheld, your appeal outcome letter will contain details of what will happen next and who you may need to contact, and your Programme Director will be informed. Generally, queries about reassessment will need to be directed to your school. Your appeal outcome may not be exactly what you listed as your ‘desired outcome’ in the appeal form, because all outcomes must be a) within the University regulations and b) in the best interests of the student.
What can I do if I am unhappy with the outcome of my appeal?
Unless your appeal has already been considered by a full Appeal Board, you are entitled to request a Stage Two Review of your appeal. This will not mean your appeal is completely reconsidered from the beginning, but Registry Services will review how your appeal was handled to ensure that Cardiff Met procedures were properly followed and that the outcome was reasonable. You cannot cite new grounds or bring significant new evidence at this stage.
Information regarding Stage Two can be found in the Appeals procedure. If you have questions about Stage Two Review, you should contact the Appeals team who issued your Stage One outcome. There is a limited window of 14 days to request a review, after your Stage One outcome has been issued.
What is the difference between an appeal and a complaint?
If you wish to raise an issue directly related to your academic assessment, you will likely need to submit an appeal. The appeals procedures can only ever provide an academic outcome and must be invoked immediately after receiving your results or committee outcome.
If you wish to raise concerns about other aspects of University, i.e. facilities, course provision or delivery, accommodation etc. then you might want to explore submitting a complaint. Information about that can be found here: http://www.cardiffmet.ac.uk/registry/Pages/Complaints.aspx
What is the OIA?
The OIA (Office of the Independent Adjudicator) is an external ombudsman which considers appeals and complaints relating to the Higher Education sector in England and Wales: https://www.oiahe.org.uk/
Once a student has pursued an appeal or a complaint through their own University’s procedures, if they are still not happy, they have up to twelve months to make a complaint to the OIA who will investigate, if the complaint is eligible. In order to submit a complaint to the OIA, a student must have received a ‘Completion of Procedures letter’ which sets out how the matter(s) have been investigated by Cardiff Met.