This policy applies to a student who is enrolled in credit-class and believes that his or her final grade in a class was determined in an unfair, arbitrary or capricious manner.
A student is defined as any person enrolled full- or part-time in credit courses at the College. This policy is not applicable to grades on individual tests, examinations, reports and other assignments prior to the posting of the final course grade.
A student may appeal a final class grade for allegations that (1) the methods or criteria for evaluating academic performance as stated in the class syllabus or as communicated by the instructor by e-mail or Blackboard announcement were not adhered to in determining the final grade; (2) the instructor applied grading criteria unfairly or arbitrarily; and/ or (3) that the instructor so exceeded his or her discretion in evaluating academic performance in the class as to be found unreasonable by the instructor’s peers at John Tyler Community College.
A grade appeal should be raised and settled as quickly as possible. Within fifteen (15) business days following the posting of the grade in the Student Information System (SIS), the student must contact the instructor via e-mail and request an appointment to discuss his or her concerns regarding the final course grade. (A business day is defined as a Monday through Friday when the College is open.) An attempt should be made to resolve the concern informally. The faculty member must submit a report via e-mail to his or her dean and the student within 48 hours following the meeting with the student informing the dean of the outcome of the meeting.
If the faculty member is no longer employed by the College or is otherwise unavailable or unresponsive, the student may go directly to the division dean.
If the matter cannot be resolved at Level 1, the student may submit a written appeal to the faculty member’s academic dean within ten business days following the meeting with the faculty member. The appeal must contain a statement of the problem, a description of any attempts to resolve the problem, relevant information and documentation, and the redress sought. The only issues that can be reviewed on appeal are those asserted in the filing of the initial grievance. No new issues can be raised or heard during the appeal review process. (Should the dean also be the instructor, the student should submit the appeal to the vice president for learning and student success or designee.)
The dean or designee will confer with both the student and the instructor and seek to resolve the matter to the satisfaction of both parties. If a mutually satisfactory resolution is not obtained, the student must submit a written appeal to the vice president of learning and student success, who will convene the Grade Appeal Review Committee within ten business days.
Grade Appeal Review Committee
The Grade Appeal Review Committee is comprised of the vice president of learning and student success (or designee) and three full-time faculty members from each of the College’s three academic divisions (nine in total). Faculty members are elected annually by full-time faculty in each academic division and serve one-year terms. Faculty members may be re- elected, but may not serve more than two consecutive terms on the committee.
When an appeal reaches Level 3, the faculty members from the affected division will recuse themselves, and three faculty from the remaining six will be selected by lot to consider the appeal. The vice president of learning and student success or designee will preside over the review committee but will not participate (vote) in the committee’s final determination.
The Grade Appeal Review Committee will convene within ten (10) business days of being contacted by the vice president of learning and student success. The committee will examine all documentation and may, at its discretion, interview the student grievant, faculty member, and/or dean or designee. The committee also may interview other students and faculty members whom it believes may offer relevant information about the grade appeal under review. A determination will be reached by the committee by majority vote as follows:
- Affirm the appeal and recommend a change in the grade to the appropriate academic dean, or
- Deny the appeal and recommend the grade stands as originally assigned.
The vice president of learning and student success or designee will inform the student and faculty member in writing of the committee’s determination.
If the student and/or faculty member are not satisfied with the decision of the Grade Appeal Review Committee, either may appeal to the college president or designee in writing within ten business days after the reply from the vice president of learning and student success or designee (from Level 3).
The president or designee will first ensure that the College’s due process procedures as outlined above were followed. The president or designee will discuss the decision of the review committee with the student and/or faculty member as necessary and make a final decision regarding the issue within ten business days following receipt of the appeal. The decision of the president or designee is final.