Grade Appeal Policy
The University recognizes that the instructor has the right to determine course evaluation policies that are consistent with departmental and University policies. The instructor's policy will be designated in the course syllabus distributed at the beginning of the semester. It is the instructor's responsibility to grade student work in a manner consistent with those procedures published in the syllabus.
The following procedure is employed in the event that students wish to appeal a final grade based on a mechanical error in calculation or if there is reason to believe that the grade was calculated in a manner inconsistent with the policies of the instructor, the department, and the University. Appeals based on other criteria can be pursued through affirmative action procedures.
Level I: Informal
Within the first month of the semester following the semester of the course in which the final grade is questioned, students will pursue their concerns on the informal level, as designated below. Every effort will be made to resolve the students' concerns informally at Level I.
A. Instructor/Faculty: Students make an appointment with faculty to discuss their concerns about the final grade in question. The instructor is the authority in evaluating the quality of student coursework. The basis for a possible appeal is inconsistency with grading procedures specified in the course syllabus. In many cases this meeting with the instructor can be a learning experience that provides an understanding of the way that the grade was derived.
B. Chair of Department Offering the Course: If the students' concerns are not resolved in the meeting with the instructor, students may proceed to part B of Step One, discussion with the chair, who will seek a resolution. Step Two-Administrative If the students' concerns are not resolved at the departmental level, students may make an appointment with the Dean of Students or designee for an informal discussion of the basis of the appeal.
Level II: Formal - The Written Appeal Process
If the concerns are not met through informal discussion students who wish to pursue the formal grade appeal process initiate Step One prior to the end of the second week in October for courses taken the prior spring semester or the end of the sixth week in the spring semester for courses taken the prior fall semester.
Step One - Initiating the Formal Appeal Process
A. Students who wish to go beyond the "informal" process make a request to the Dean of Students or designee to begin the formal grade appeal process and file the appropriate forms.
B. In a timely fashion, the Dean of Students attaches all forms to any other pertinent materials or information and forwards the appeal to the chair of the All-College Committee in a sealed envelope identified only by the academic year filed, the grade appeal number, the administrator transmitting the form, and the date. The Dean of Students or designee notifies the Vice President of Academic Affairs of the appeal.
C. The Chair of the All-University Committee (ACC) logs the appeal and forwards the unopened envelope to the Chair of the Academic Policies Committee (APC). 30 Academic Regulations Framingham State College Undergraduate Catalog 2007-2008
Step Two - Formation of the Ad Hoc Grade Appeal Committee and the Appeal Procedure
A. After consultation with the administrator transmitting the appeal, the Chair of the Academic Policies Committee (APC) appoints an ad hoc grade appeal committee consisting of three (3) faculty members/librarians serving on the APC. No member of the committee may be from the department offering the course whose grade is being appealed, nor from the department of the instructor involved.
B. As part of the process, the Ad Hoc Grade Appeal Committee may consult with the student, the instructor, and the chair of the instructor's department. If the Ad Hoc Grade Appeal Committee determines that a change in grade may be warranted, the committee will inform the chair and will consult with the instructor prior to making its recommendation to the Vice President. (Note: the instructor will provide the course syllabus and grading procedures. If grading criteria are not stated clearly or are complicated, the instructor should submit the method for calculating the final grade.)
C. The Ad Hoc Grade Appeal Committee must submit a written recommendation (either that "the Committee supports the grade as originally recorded" or that "the instructor should review the grade in question") in a sealed envelope along with the appeal documentation for the Vice President of Academic Affairs within one month of receipt of the committee charge. The Chair of the Academic Policies Committee receives the sealed envelope from the Ad Hoc Grade Appeal Committee, logs it, and forwards it unopened to the Chair of the All College Committee, who, in turn, forwards it unopened to the Vice President. For administrative reasons, the Ad Hoc Grade Appeal Committee's recommendation must be forwarded to the Vice President of Academic Affairs at least three weeks prior to the end of the academic year.
D. The Vice President will convey the Ad Hoc Grade Appeal Committee's recommendation to the instructor and the student. If the committee recommends that "the instructor should review the grade in question," the Vice President will ask the instructor to review the grade and to inform the Vice-President of the outcome. If the review results in an unchanged grade, the Vice President has the authority to change the grade in such cases where there has been a mechanical error in calculation or if there is reason to believe that the grade has been calculated in a manner inconsistent with the stated grading criteria of the faculty, the department, and the University. The appeal ends at this point.
Dean of Students Office Location and Hours
Fifth Floor, Suite 504
Hours - 9:00 am to 5:00 pm