IT is expected that the UCD Assessment Appeals Office will receive significantly less formal appeals this year following a revised policy approved on the 5th of May 2016. The new policy places more emphasis on local resolution of assessment appeals.

In the last few years the office, which is currently staffed by only one person, has received about 125 formal appeals per academic year. The majority of these claims are filed after the second semester results. Students must submit an appeal to the within 20 working days of receiving the final result of an assessment.

Appeals are only allowed where there is evidence of substantive procedural irregularity in the conduct of the assessment process, including inappropriate grade assessment, and specific cases where a student has submitted an application for extenuating circumstances.

Examples of former appeals on the basis of a procedural irregularity include unclear assessment criteria or not conforming with the module descriptor, using a marking scheme that does not conform to UCD guidelines, or changing the assessment criteria or component weighting mid semester.

The updated policy was developed with input from staff and students and approved by the Academic Council. It clarifies the scope, grounds and outcomes of an assessment appeal as well as placing emphasis in managing the assessment appeals in a prompt and student-friendly manner.

The assessment appeals process requires input from both students and staff. All formal submissions are decided by the Assessment Appeals Committee, which is drawn from a panel approved by Academic Council.

The UCD Assessment Appeals Office was originally established in 1994 as the Examinations Appeals Office in order to enable students to appeal the results of an examination.

Appeals are decided by the Assessment Appeals Committee who determine whether or not fair procedures were followed in the assessment process and whether or not a fair outcome was reached in the circumstances pertaining to a student. The committee do not reassess the student’s work.

The University encourages students, faculty and staff to resolve matters as close as possible to the level they arise and only when such channels have been exhausted will formal appeals procedures apply. Therefore, in the first instance students should contact the School responsible for the assessment.