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University of California Santa Barbara

Procedures for Grade Appeal

  1. If after speaking to the faculty member in charge of the course and department chair, a student wishes to contest a grade on grounds specified in Divisional Regulation 25, the student must present a written appeal to an official designated by the Faculty Executive Committee, usually the Dean of Undergraduate Education (or equivalent) of the appropriate school(s) or college(s) offering the undergraduate course, or the Graduate Dean in the case of a graduate course (hereinafter, "the dean(s)"). This appeal must be submitted before the end of the term following the term in which the grade was assigned. Upon receipt of this appeal, the dean(s) shall promptly seek to resolve the issue by consulting the parties involved and the chair of the instructor's department. If the Chair was the instructor involved he/she shall not participate in these deliberations in any way except as one of the parties. In such cases, the dean shall proceed independently. If the dean was the instructor involved, he/she shall not participate in these deliberations except as one of the parties. In such cases, the immediate supervisor of the dean(s) shall recommend to the Faculty Executive Committee or Graduate Council an appropriate alternate for the dean.

    Where applicable the dean(s) may consult with the Faculty Executive Committee/Graduate Council and also may request reports or results of investigations made by other cognizant agencies on campus that bear on the credibility of the student’s complaint. If the written grievance alleges discrimination, the dean(s) will forward that portion of the grievance containing the discrimination allegation to the Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs (or designee) and shall notify the student in writing of such action. The vice chancellor (or designee) shall communicate to the dean(s) any decision or determination related to the discrimination allegation including any appropriate remedies determined to address the discrimination. This shall be communicated in a timely manner. The vice chancellor (or designee) and the dean(s) shall confer with one another regarding any remedy that affects a grade before rendering their final decisions to the student complainant. It is understood that the vice chancellor has full authority to render the final decision regarding whether discrimination took place; the final decision over grades remains within the purview of the Faculty Executive Committee/Graduate Council (or their respective designees).
  2. If the dean(s) resolve or otherwise make a determination on the grade appeal, the dean(s) shall provide a letter describing the resolution to the student(s), instructor(s), and chair(s) involved, with a copy to the Faculty Executive Committee/Graduate Council.
  3. If these efforts are unavailing within 30 days following receipt of the student's initial written complaint by the dean(s), the student may within the next 15 days present a final written appeal to the Faculty Executive Committee(s) of the respective college(s) or the Graduate Council, a copy of which shall also be given to the dean(s). If a member of the Faculty Executive Committee or Graduate Council was the instructor involved, that person shall not participate in the case in any way except as one of the parties. As soon as is feasible, the dean(s) will prepare a report for the Faculty Executive Committee or Graduate Council providing the details of (i) the prior investigations, including information as to the allegations and the evidence produced by the student to establish the case; (ii) the instructor's response to the student's allegations; (iii) all other information the dean may have gathered in the course of the investigation that bears on the credibility of the student's complaint. Copies of the dean's report shall be sent to the instructor and the student, both of whom should submit written comments to the Faculty Executive Committee/Graduate Council within 30 days of receipt of the dean's report. Having granted both parties a reasonable opportunity, the Faculty Executive Committee/Graduate Council shall make a final determination within 60 days after the Committee/Council’s receipt of the complaint.
  4. If the Faculty Executive Committee/Graduate Council or its designee decides that the grade (or units) assigned is (are) not reflective of the student's course performance, it shall authorize one of the actions stated below.

    The Committee/Council may act only as follows:

    1. authorize retroactive withdrawal from the course;
    2. authorize a change of contested grade;
    3. for courses offered in the College of Creative Studies, the Faculty Executive Committee will determine the number of units to be assigned.

    The Committee/Council will report its decision to the Registrar for recording.

  5. Should the dean's investigation tend to demonstrate a pattern of faculty misconduct extending beyond the particular case, the dean will inform the Faculty Executive Committee/Graduate Council which is then responsible for assuring that appropriate corrective actions are taken including but not limited to grade changes as specified in (D) above and referral of the case to other appropriate committees and agencies.

    (Am 6 Mar 97; Am 2 Nov 00; Am 21 Mar 19)