Accessibility statement

Academic Appeals


Academic appeals are appeals against academic decisions. The academic decisions most commonly appealed against are:

  1. Failure of academic programme
  2. Degree classification
  3. Exceptional Circumstances Committee decisions
  4. Academic misconduct decisions

Students may also appeal against other Board of Studies decisions but may not appeal against the academic judgement of their examiners. Disagreeing with the academic interpretation of the quality of an assessment, for example, is not a basis for submitting an appeal.

If a student is unhappy about the provision of a service, such as feedback quality, teaching quality, supervision, campus facilities or accommodation, this is handled via the Complaints process.

Update on coronavirus impact

The University Special Cases Committee is continuing to work on investigating and resolving academic appeals. These will continue to be managed as efficiently as we possibly can. Delays are likely, however, as colleagues in departments may be called upon to participate in contingency efforts. The Special Cases Team will continue to prioritise cases based on individual circumstances, and to inform appellants of the progress of their case.'  

When to appeal

Once an academic decision - eg failure or degree classification - has been ratified by the Board of Examiners, there is no further scope within an academic department to amend that decision. In such cases, students are advised of their right to appeal that decision within 28 days.

When an Exceptional Circumstances Committee has made a decision, it can review that decision (for example by reviewing further evidence) provided the affected assessment's mark has not yet been ratified by the Board of Examiners. Where the Board of Examiners has met, students may only contest the Exceptional Circumstances Committee's decision by submitting an academic appeal.

How to appeal

Appeals must be submitted within 28 days of the decision by submitting a Formal Stage appeal form to the Special Cases Committee. An online form is available : Formal Stage Appeal Form  (see right-hand column for all guidance documentation - also linked to from within the form. Please scroll down to the bottom of the right-hand column to see Covid-19 guidance applicable to appeals submitted from March 2020). Appeals can be submitted on the basis of a procedural irregularity and/or previously undisclosed exceptional circumstances (Covid-19 Appeal Guidance - Exceptional Circumstances (PDF , 116kb)), but students must have good reason for not using the exceptional circumstances procedures within 7 days of the affected assessment(s).

Appeals submitted after 1 July 2021 will be considered under the Academic Appeals Procedure updated on that date, unless they are submitted on the older appeal form. The old form may only be used by students who have been drafting appeals and who have then returned to previously-saved drafts.

Before submitting an academic appeal students are encouraged to read carefully the guidance attached to the appeal form and the appeals procedures. Where students wish to contact the Special Cases team, they are advised to read the  Policy on Communications in Relation to Academic Appeals and Formal Complaints (MS Word , 29kb). Any data students share as part of their academic appeals will be treated in accordance with the University statement on data protection, which can be viewed at:

Students who are dissatisfied with the outcome of their Formal Stage appeal have 10 calendar days from being formally notified of that outcome to submit a Review Stage appeal. Students should only complete this form if they have received a Formal Stage Appeal Outcome letter. An online form is available: Review Stage Appeal Form

Remedies and timescales

Students should be aware, before submitting an appeal, of the likely outcomes if their appeal is upheld. The appeals process aims to resolve appeals within 90 days of receipt, though there may be times when this target is exceeded if an appeal is particularly complex or at peak times of year. This 90 days does not include days when the case officers are waiting for students to provide evidence. Triaging, investigating and providing a considered response to appeals is a detailed and time-consuming process. In addition, the university requires several weeks of advance notice before the August resit period so there is time to set up resit exams. As a result, students submitting appeals in June or July should not expect to be offered resits in the August resit period. The most likely remedy in such cases is to be offered a leave of absence for the next academic year or to be offered repeat study.

Students cannot progress to the next academic year until they have passed the preceding year, e.g. students must pass year 2 before progressing to year 3. This means that any student appealing against failure in summer should not expect to progress to the next academic year in the same autumn - e.g. failure in summer 2021 will mean a student cannot progress to the next academic year in autumn 2021. Further information on remedies is available in this document: 09 - Appeal Remedies Guidance (PDF , 95kb)

Who to contact

For academic progress issues you should talk to your supervisor.

Alternatively, please contact:

  • Student Hub
    Student Hub, Market Square
  • Tel: 01904 324140
  • Office Hours: Term time: 9am - 5pm, Monday to Thursday, 10am - 5pm Friday
    Office hours: Vacation: 10am - 4pm, Monday to Friday

Who to contact for advice

YUSU Advice and Support Service -
GSA Advice and Support Centre -




Academic Appeal Formal and Review Stages - Guidance documents

Formal Stage guidance

00 - Appeal Form Map (PDF , 557kb)

01 - Guide to Using Appeal Form (PDF , 61kb)

02 - Appealing Against (PDF , 60kb)

03 - Exceptional Circumstances Appeal Guidance (PDF , 120kb) [inactive during Covid-19 period]

04 - Procedural Irregularity Appeal Guidance (PDF , 108kb) [inactive during Covid-19 period]

05 ECC Decisions Appeal Guidance (PDF , 74kb) [inactive during Covid-19 period]

06 - Academic Misconduct Appeal Guidance (PDF , 106kb)

07 - Late Submission of EC claim - Appeal Guidance (PDF , 96kb) [inactive during Covid-19 period]

08 -UCU Strike 2019 Appeal guidance (PDF , 97kb)

09 - Appeal Remedies Guidance (PDF , 95kb)

10 - Guidance on Late Appeals (PDF , 80kb)

Review Stage guidance

A simple guide to using the Review Stage academic appeal form (PDF , 79kb)

Guidance - I am appealing against (Review) (PDF , 57kb)

Procedural Irregularity guidance - Review (PDF , 135kb)

New Evidence guidance - Review (PDF , 118kb)

Reasonableness guidance - Review (PDF , 64kb)


Covid-19 special guidance

Covid-19 Appeal Guidance - Exceptional Circumstances (PDF , 116kb)

Covid-19 Appeal Guidance - Procedural Irregularity (PDF , 101kb)

Covid-19 Appeal Guidance - Reasons for late EC submission (PDF , 83kb)

Covid-19 Appeal Guidance - ECC (PDF , 61kb)