Rutgers SHP - Policies


Category :
Responsible Executive : Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Responsible Office : Student Affairs
Adopted : 5/19/07 Amended : 6/2/08, 6/13, 6/14, 12/1, 2/207 Last Reviewed : 2/2020

I. Purpose

This policy establishes circumstances permitting review of academic decisions, grade assignments, final grades and procedures for the review.

II. Accountability

The Program Director in consultation with the Department Chair and/or the Department/Program's Committee on Academic Standing and the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs is responsible for compliance with this policy.

The Assistant Dean for Student Affairs with the Committee on Admissions and Academic Standing are responsible for the implementation of this policy.

III. Policy

While academic decisions, grade assignments, and final grades are not initially subject to formalized appeal procedures, students who wish to question an academic decision or grade will be granted an opportunity to informally discuss the matter with the faculty member who made the decision or assigned the grade. If the student and the faculty member, along with the department’s academic standing committee, fail to resolve the matter, the student may then request an official academic review (See Procedures below), provided the student produces evidence of one of the following elements:

  1. Grade miscalculation or other technical error affecting the academic decision, or
  2. The existence of extraordinary circumstances affecting the student's performance, which were outside the student's control, and which the student disclosed to the program or faculty member via email or other written communication prior to any of the following: an examination, clinical experience, assignment, or other grading encounter, which significantly impacted the final course grade or academic decision but was not considered or weighed when the academic decision was made.

Documentation of a circumstance outside of the student’s control does not necessarily indicate that a reversal of the academic decision, grade assignment, or final grade will be granted. Any information disclosed by the student after the academic decision, grade assignment or final grade was made, will not be considered in the review.

Aspects of the official academic review that involve or address the implementation of approvcd student accommodations, or lack thereof, also will be evaluated by the school’s Student Disabilities Coordinator before the review is heard by the academic review committee. The Student Disabilities Coordinator will determine whether the student had applied for and received approved, reasonable accommodations, and whether those accommodations were implemented as directed.

Deadline Extensions: At any point during the review, should a deadline need to be extended due to scheduling conflicts or should any party require additional time to meet an upcoming deadline, an email request must be sent to and received by the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs for consideration. Should the extension be granted, the Assistant Dean will alert all parties..

IV. Procedures

Procedural Steps:

  1. Informal Faculty Review

    A student may request, within five (5) business days from when the academic or grade decision becomes available to the student, to meet with the faculty member or members who taught the course to review informally an academic decision. Faculty should summarize the meeting in an email sent back to the student. Should the matter not be resolved informally, the student may then proceed to a formal academic review (See steps below).

  2. Program/Department Level Review

    If not satisfied with the outcome from the Informal Faculty Level Review, the student can submit a written request via email utilizing the “Request for Academic Decision & Grade Review” to the Program Director or Department Chair (copy to Assistant Dean for Student Affairs) seeking a Department Level Review. This request must be submitted within five business days following the informal faculty review. In the absence of a Department Academic Standing Committee and if the Program Director is not available or was originally involved at the Faculty Level Review, the Department Chair will decide the outcome of the review.

    The request for a Program /Department Level Review must include all the original documentation and requests, plus any notes or emails summarizing the Informal Faculty Level Review including dates of any in-person, zoom, or phone meetings. The request must state under which condition [(a) or (b)] the student is requesting a review as well as provide documentation supporting the request. Upon receiving a request for a Program /Department Level Review, the Department must meet with the student within 5 business days and have up to an additional 5 days to render a decision.

  3. School Level Review

    If not satisfied with the result of the program/department review, the student can submit a written request via email utilizing the “Request for Academic Decision & Grade Review” form for a School Level Review to the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs within five (5) business days from the date the decision was reviewed with the faculty.

    The request must provide written evidence supporting either condition III. (a) or (b) above. Only information directly related to these conditions will be allowed. If the review includes condition III. (b), the request must include a printed or electronic copy of the email or other form of communication originally sent by the student to the program or faculty member notifying them of the extraordinary circumstance(s), which memorializes the date, time, and manner that the program or faculty member was notified by the student. Any evidence that the student's request has been altered, edited or fabricated in any manner, including changes in the body, heading or time stamp of those emails, will result in the immediate termination of the review process and academic penalties up to and including dismissal from the school. The student must state under which condition [III. (a) or (b)] the review is requested. The Assistant Dean of Student Affairs and the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs together with the Chair of the Committee on Admissions and Academic Standing (CAAS) will collaboratively determine if the student’s request meets the criteria for an official school level academic review as outlined above, and inform the student in writing of the decision. Students not submitting their requests in writing per the deadline will not be considered for an academic review. If the request is allowed to move forward for review, the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs or designee will schedule the date (not necessarily hold the meeting) for the Academic Review Panel within five (5) business days from the day the request was received. The program’s official written response to the review must be received no later than 2 days prior to the hearing.

    The Academic Review Panel will consist of a minimum of three (3) Committee on Admissions and Academic Standing (CAAS) faculty members who are not affiliated with the student's Program/Department. Should members of the CAAS not be available, the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs, in consultation with the CAAS chair will select SHP faculty members to serve on the review panel. All pertinent documentation from the student’s department must be submitted, directly to the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs or designee, no later than two (2) business days prior to the scheduled hearing. The Academic Review Panel will review the evidence provided by the department and the student. The student and a department designee must be available for an interview by the panel in-person or through our audio-video conferencing system. Within five business days of the hearing, the panel will render a written decision, which will be transmitted to the student and the department. Should the committee require additional time to gather additional information, the student will be notified.

    Students may consult with private legal counsel at any time for advice. Students or legal counsel may submit to the Academic Review Panel any documents or other evidence relevant to the matter at any time prior to the conclusion of the hearing. Legal counsel shall not be permitted to appear at the proceedings of the Academic Review Panel, but may be present outside the hearing room to consult with the student at any time during the hearing or at the student’s request. Students may be accompanied by a non-attorney advocate during the hearing. No other participation by the advocate is permitted. The session can not be recorded.

    While awaiting the outcome of the review, the student will be allowed to resume didactic course work provided that the pre-requisite courses have been completed. However, continued participation in clinical experiences is prohibited, unless the Program Director determines that the student's participation is safe, and that the clinical experience cannot be easily rescheduled at the end of the review process. Students will not be allowed to continue in any coursework where the pre- requisite course has not been successfully completed.

  4. Dean’s Review

    Should a student disagree with the written decision of the Academic Review Panel, the student must submit a written request via email within five business days to the Dean of the School of Health Professions (copy Assistant Dean for Student Affairs). Should the Dean not be available, a designee will be assigned. Within five days of receipt of the request for review, the Dean or designee will render a written decision. The decision of the Dean is final and no further request will be permitted.

  5. Steps

    Academic Decision & Grade Review Flow Diagram

  6. Form

    Policy 3.1.1 Request Form

     Amended: 6/2/08, 6/13, 6/14, 12/1, 2/207