Academic Calendar - 2019

Western University Academic Calendar. - 2019

Policy Categories

Academic Rights and Responsibilities
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Academic Rights and Responsibilities

ACADEMIC ACCOMMODATION FOR STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES

Policy Statement

1. Purpose of Policy

The purpose of this Policy is to ensure that students with disabilities have a reasonable opportunity to engage in academic activities at the University and to fulfill essential course and program requirements, and to ensure that all members of the University understand their rights and obligations to reach this goal.

2. Application of Policy

This Policy and the associated Procedures apply to both graduate and undergraduate students at Western and the affiliates while engaged in academic activities related to their program of study, and includes students registered in courses or programs with Western Continuing Studies.

In the case of graduate students, reference to courses and programs throughout this Policy and associated procedures shall include milestones and requirements associated with progression in graduate programs.

3. Statement of Principles

The University recognizes the inherent dignity and equality of all students and is committed to ensuring students with disabilities have the opportunity to fully participate in the academic life of the institution.

The University also recognizes that it is subject to the Ontario Human Rights Code and that it is required to provide reasonable academic accommodation to students with disabilities where those disabilities create limitations that interfere with the students’ participation in academic activities.

Reasonable academic accommodation is a cooperative process between the University, the student and academic staff. All participants in the process must fulfil their respective obligations set out in this Policy and the associated Procedures if it is to succeed.

The University is committed to providing reasonable academic accommodations to students with disabilities, up to the point of undue hardship, to enable students to successfully meet the essential requirements of their course or program of study.

All requests for accommodation and related communications will be maintained in confidence in accordance with the University’s obligations under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, the Personal Health Information Privacy Act and any other applicable laws. Personal information of students will be shared only to the extent necessary to consider requests for accommodation, to arrange for reasonable academic accommodations or to process any appeals, all in accordance with this Policy and associated Procedures and all applicable law.

4. Accountability

All members of the University are required to comply with the terms of this Policy and its associated Procedures.  This Policy is administered by Student Accessibility Services.  Student Accessibility Services is responsible for reviewing this Policy in accordance with its terms.

5. Review

This Policy shall be reviewed every five (5) years from the date it comes into effect.  The Policy may be reviewed prior to the five-year term where it is determined that an earlier review is necessary because of:

(a) a change in the law respecting accommodation of students with disabilities;
(b) a change in University practices or procedures; or
(c) any other reason that would call into question the applicability of the Policy in its current form.

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Purpose of Academic Accommodation Procedures

Academic Accommodation Procedures

1. Purpose of Academic Accommodation Procedures

The purpose of the Academic Accommodation Procedures is to set out the process by which students may request reasonable academic accommodations and to establish the responsibilities of all participants in the accommodation process.

All interested persons –students, academic staff and the University– have vital roles to play in the accommodation process. The University has designated Student Accessibility Services, or SAS – to oversee the development of reasonable academic accommodations and to implement the Policy (References to SAS in these procedures shall include Accessibility, Counselling and Student Development at King's University College as utilized by King's students for Academic Accommodation).

Accommodations developed under this Policy are to be guided by principles of respect for dignity, individualization, integration and full participation, while preserving the essential requirements of a course or program of study.

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Definitions

2. Definitions

Academic Accommodation is a means of adjusting the academic activities associated with a course or program of study in order to permit students with disabilities to participate in those activities at the University and to fulfill the essential requirements of a course or program.  Academic accommodations take into account the individual’s limitations and what is reasonable in the context of the particular course or program and the essential requirements of the course or program.  Examples of academic accommodations include, but are not limited to:

•    access to alternative format textbooks or accessible versions of materials on course websites
•    use of sign-language interpreters
•    permission to audio record lectures
•    writing exams in an alternative location or being provided extra time or rest breaks to complete an exam
•    use of assistive technology when writing exams (e.g., a computer equipped with specialized software)
•    use of an assistant in labs.

Essential Requirements refer to the bona fide academic requirements of a course or program of study, which cannot be altered without compromising the fundamental nature of the course or program.  Essential Requirements will vary from course to course and from milestone to milestone, depending on the nature of the subject matter, the teaching methods employed and the knowledge and skills that are to be learned and/or demonstrated. While it may be an essential requirement that a student master core aspects of a course curriculum, it is less likely that the means in which a student demonstrates the mastery will be essential, unless mastery of that format (e.g. oral communication) is also a vital requirement of the program.

Academic Staff refers to the individuals who are responsible for the development of course content, for teaching the course or who deliver an element of a course, and for supervising or evaluating completion of milestones.  It includes professors (including associate and assistant professors), adjunct faculty, teaching assistants, lab instructors, etc.

Disability means

(a) any degree of physical disability, infirmity, malformation or disfigurement that is caused by bodily injury, birth defect or illness and, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, includes diabetes mellitus, epilepsy, a brain injury, any degree of paralysis, amputation, lack of physical co-ordination, blindness or visual impediment, deafness or hearing impediment, muteness or speech impediment, or physical reliance on a guide dog or other animal or on a wheelchair or other remedial appliance or device,
(b) a condition of mental impairment or a developmental disability,
(c) a learning disability, or a dysfunction in one or more of the processes involved in understanding or using symbols or spoken language,
(d) a mental disorder, or
(e) an injury or disability for which benefits were claimed or received under the insurance plan established under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997.

Disabilities that fall within this Policy may be permanent or temporary. Limitations caused by disabilities may be constant or may be more sporadic in nature.

Reasonable Academic Accommodation means a form of academic accommodation that addresses the limitations experienced by a student with disabilities in a manner that allows them to meet the essential requirements of a course or program of study, without resulting in undue hardship to the University.  There will often be a range of reasonable academic accommodations available, and a student might not be entitled to their preferred accommodation. Because of the differences between the academic environments, students may not be entitled to the same form of accommodation that they received at a prior time in their education history (e.g. while in high school or college).

Undue Hardship is the outer limit of the University’s accommodation obligation, and may refer to activities, impacts or effects that would result in undue or excessive costs for the University (considering sources of outside funding available) or unreasonably interfere with the health and safety or other rights of other members of the University community. Undue hardship is considered individually, within the full context of a particular request for reasonable academic accommodation.

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Responsibilities

3.  Responsibilities

Students with disabilities who are seeking academic accommodation have the responsibility to:

• register with and/or seek accommodation through SAS and Accommodated Exams Services in a timely fashion;
• provide supporting medical documentation from a qualified professional;
• identify the courses that they are registered in, including any course changes that occur during the school year;
• promptly notify Academic Staff and SAS if they need accommodation for any exchange or experiential learning opportunities during the school year;
• cooperate with SAS in the identification and implementation of reasonable academic accommodations;
• accept reasonable academic accommodations identified by the SAS that  meet their identified limitations;
• communicate with academic staff to the extent necessary to give effect to their academic accommodations; and
• notify the SAS immediately if there are any changes in their disability status, identified limitations or the continued appropriateness of the academic accommodations that have been implemented.

Academic staff members have the responsibility to:

• identify the essential requirements of their courses or milestones that cannot be altered without undue hardship (i.e. compromising the fundamental nature of their courses or milestones);
• cooperate with the SAS to determine reasonable academic accommodations for students with disabilities in their courses or milestones;
• cooperate with Accommodated Exams, Office of the Registrar to facilitate delivery of evaluations;
• assist students and SAS in arranging accommodations related to exchange or experiential learning opportunities;
• maintain confidentiality with respect to any personal information of students that is shared with the staff member to facilitate the academic accommodation;
• not seek any medical or other personal information directly from a student who has requested an academic accommodation; and
• where students request academic accommodations outside this Policy, refer the students to the SAS so that the request may be properly considered and appropriate accommodations implemented.

The SAS has the responsibility to:

• register students with disabilities who request to use its services;
• gather the necessary medical information to determine whether a student has a disability, and the nature and extent of any limitations associated with the disability;
• review the course or milestone requirements for those courses or milestones for which the student is seeking academic accommodation;
• determine a reasonable accommodation (or range of accommodations) that meets the student’s limitations while respecting the essential requirements of the course, milestone or program of study;
• consult with the academic staff member responsible for the course, milestone or program of study as necessary to ensure that any recommended accommodations do not compromise the essential requirements of the course or program;
• assist students and Academic Staff in arranging accommodation in relation to exchange or experiential learning opportunities;
• assist students to identify any sources of funding or other supports that may help the students with their accommodation needs;
• assess any changed circumstances in a student’s accommodation needs to determine whether existing academic accommodations remain reasonable and appropriate;
• recognize that accommodations for academic evaluations that are facilitated through The Office of the Registrar should be appropriate to the duties and responsibilities maintained within this unit; and
• make accommodation information available to academic deans and counsellors in students’ faculties of registration.

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Establishing Reasonable Academic Accommodations

4. Establishing Reasonable Academic Accommodations

(a)  Accommodation Process

1. Students with disabilities seeking an academic accommodation are required to register with the SAS in the Student Development Centre and arrange for an initial consultation with a counsellor.

Students are encouraged to register at the earliest opportunity, and ideally before classes begin in a given academic term.  The SAS will consider all requests for academic accommodation whenever they are made.  However, the SAS may not be able to arrange for timely accommodations for students who register after a term has commenced.

Students must provide documentation supporting their request for accommodation. Detailed documentation requirements may be found on the website of the SAS, along with medical forms to be completed by the student’s attending health professional. Examples of required information may include, but are not limited to

(a) the nature of the disability [a diagnosis is not generally required];
(b) its expected duration;
(c) any functional limitations that may interfere with the student’s academic activities; and
(d) whether any medications will cause side effects that should be taken into consideration by the SAS [specific medications will not need to be identified].

Requests for academic accommodation will not generally be processed until sufficient medical documentation is provided to SAS. SAS will consider requests for interim accommodation while awaiting receipt of medical documentation where circumstances beyond the control of the student prevent timely compliance with these requirements.

A student must register with SAS in order for Accommodated Exams Services to facilitate an accommodated evaluation for the student.

2. The SAS will review all information provided by the student to determine whether the student requires accommodation, and the range of reasonable accommodations that will meet the student’s identified limitations. Where SAS determines that the information provided by the student does not support the request for academic accommodation, SAS shall inform the student in writing that it has not approved the request.

3. In determining reasonable academic accommodations for a course, SAS will consider the nature of the course or milestone and the requirements outlined in the applicable course syllabus. SAS may consult with the academic staff who will be teaching the course or will be responsible for any element within the course in order to determine whether an accommodation is reasonable. SAS may share information about the student’s identified limitations, but only where such disclosure is necessary to determine the appropriateness of an accommodation being considered.

4. Academic staff who are contacted by SAS shall reply promptly to any requests for information, including requests for information about the essential requirements of a course.

5. Based on the information provided to SAS by the student and the academic staff, SAS shall recommend a reasonable accommodation that, in the opinion of SAS, addresses the student’s identified restrictions and does not compromise the essential requirements of the course, milestone or program of study.  The accommodation shall be communicated to the student and to the appropriate academic staff.

6. If SAS determines that there are no reasonable academic accommodations that can be provided short of undue hardship, it shall inform the student of this decision and shall provide brief reasons for its decision.

7. Students who are granted an academic accommodation shall follow any instructions provided by SAS, including making any necessary communications with Accommodated Exam Services or program staff.


(b)  Reconsideration of Initial SAS Decision

1. Students may ask their SAS counsellor to reconsider their decision where the student:

(a) has had a request for accommodation denied,
(b) believes that the recommended academic accommodation does not reasonably meet their identified restrictions, or
(c) believes that they have been treated unfairly in the process of assessing their request for accommodation.

2. Academic staff who disagree with the academic accommodation recommended by the SAS counsellor may ask the counsellor to reconsider their decision, but only on the ground that the recommended accommodation compromises the essential requirements of the course or program of study.

3. The SAS counsellor shall seek to resolve any requests for reconsideration with the student and academic staff.  If a satisfactory resolution cannot be reached, the student or academic staff may appeal the decision of SAS in accordance with the Appeal Procedures of this Policy.

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Implementation of an Accommodation within a Classroom or Similar Context

5. Implementation of an Accommodation within a Classroom or Similar Context

1. Where an academic accommodation is granted to a student under this Policy and Procedure, SAS will communicate the accommodation to the academic staff members responsible for the student’s identified courses or milestones.

2. The responsible academic staff members are required to implement the accommodation that has been granted with respect to their courses or milestones, and shall do so in a manner that is consistent with the principles underlying this Policy.

3. Where a student who has been granted an accommodation is not satisfied with the manner in which the accommodation is being implemented in a course, the student shall discuss the matter with the academic staff responsible for that course. The student and academic staff member(s) shall attempt to resolve the dispute in a manner that provides reasonable academic accommodation to the student while respecting the essential requirements of the course or milestone.

4. If the student and academic staff member(s) are not able to resolve the dispute over the implementation of the accommodation that has been granted by SAS, the matter must be referred back to the SAS counsellor who granted the original accommodation for consideration of an appropriate manner of implementing the accommodation. The SAS counsellor shall consult both the student and academic staff and shall attempt to resolve the dispute. If the dispute cannot be resolved to the satisfaction of the student and academic staff, the SAS counsellor shall determine how the accommodation is to be granted, and shall communicate this determination in writing to all interested parties.

5. If either the student or academic staff is not satisfied with the determination of the SAS counsellor, they may appeal the determination in accordance with the Appeal Procedures of this Policy.

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Appeal Procedures

1. Purpose of Academic Accommodation Appeal Procedures

The purpose of the Appeal Procedures is to provide an expeditious process by which either students or academic staff may appeal decisions made by the SAS, or in the case of King’s University College, its Accessibility, Counselling and Student Development Office (ACSD)), in respect of academic accommodations in relation to the student or the course or program of study for which the academic staff is responsible.

Throughout these Appeal Procedures, reference to Vice-Provost shall mean, in the case of undergraduate students, the Vice-Provost (Academic Programs) or designate, or, in the case of graduate students, the Vice-Provost (School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies) or designate.

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Appeal of a Decision Establishing Academic Accommodations

2. Appeal of a Decision Establishing Academic Accommodations

This section applies to appeals by students or academic staff members in relation to a decision of the SAS or ACSD made under Part 4 of the Academic Accommodation Procedures – i.e. the initial decision to grant or deny an accommodation request.

(a) Interim Accommodation Pending Appeal

Where the SAS or ACSD has recommended an accommodation that is the subject of an appeal under this section by either the student or the academic staff, the accommodation shall be implemented on an interim basis as of the date of the final decision of the SAS or ACSD counsellor made under Section 4 of the Academic Accommodation Procedures. The interim accommodation will remain in effect until the appeal process under this section is complete.

(b) Reconsideration by the SAS

Before a formal appeal can be made under this section, the affected party must request a reconsideration of the decision of the SAS or ACSD counsellor by the director of SAS or designate.
Students may request a reconsideration by the director of SAS or designate if the student:

(a) has had a request for academic accommodation denied for any reason;
(b) believes that they have been treated unfairly during the accommodation process;
(c) believes that the recommended accommodation does not reasonably meet their identified restrictions; or
(d) has new information relevant to the request for academic accommodation that was not reasonably available to the SAS or ACSD counsellor at the time of the original decision.

Academic staff may request a reconsideration by the director of SAS or designate only on the ground that the recommended accommodation compromises the essential requirements of the course or program of study.

Requests for reconsideration shall be made in writing, and shall identify the ground or grounds upon which the request is being made and the reasons why the student or academic staff member, as the case may be, disagrees with the recommendation of the SAS or ACSD counsellor on those grounds.

Academic staff who request a reconsideration of the recommendation of the SAS or ACSD counsellor shall identify the essential requirements of the course, milestone or program of study, why they are essential, and how the recommended accommodation compromises such essential requirements of the course, milestone or program.

The director of SAS or designate shall review all requests for reconsideration, including all material submitted in support of the request and all material upon which the original recommendation was based.  The director of SAS or designate may consult with the academic staff or the Chair of their department or designate in order to better understand and assess the essential requirements of the course or program in question.

Where a request for reconsideration is filed, the director of SAS or designate shall provide notice to the other party involved and shall give them an opportunity to participate in the reconsideration.  For example, if an academic staff member requests a reconsideration, the director of SAS or designate shall notify the student with a disability of the request and shall seek their input on it.

In the case of a King’s University College student, the Director of SAS shall consult with the Manager of Student Wellness at ACSD before making a decision.  
The director of SAS or designate shall make a decision on the request for review expeditiously, and in the ordinary course, within five (5) days (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, statutory holidays and other University closures) of receiving the request.  The decision shall be communicated in writing to the student with a disability, the academic staff member and, where appropriate, the Chair of the relevant department.

(c) Appeal to the Vice-Provost

Either of the student with a disability or the academic staff may appeal the decision of the director of SAS or designate to the Vice-Provost or designate.
Students may file an appeal with the Vice-Provost or designate if the student:

(a) has had a request for academic accommodation denied for any reason;
(b) believes that they have been treated unfairly during the accommodation process or the reconsideration process;
(c) believes that the recommended accommodation does not reasonably meet their identified restrictions; or
(d) has new information relevant to the request for academic accommodation that was not reasonably available to the SAS counsellor at the time of the original decision or to the director of SAS or designate during the reconsideration process.

Academic staff may file an appeal with the Vice-Provost or designate only on the ground that the recommended accommodation compromises the essential requirements of the course or program of study.

Appeals shall be made in writing, and shall identify the ground or grounds upon which the appeal is based and the reasons why the student or academic staff member, as the case may be, disagrees with the reconsideration decision of the director of SAS or designate on those grounds.

Academic staff who appeal the reconsideration decision of the director of SAS or designate shall identify the essential requirements of the course or program of study, why they are essential, and how the recommended accommodation compromises such essential requirements of the course or program.

The Vice-Provost or designate shall review all appeals, including all material submitted in support of the appeal, all material upon which the original recommendation was based and all material considered by the director of SAS or designate during the reconsideration process.

Before determining the appeal, the Vice-Provost or Designate may consult with the Director of Equity and Human Rights Services or designate to ensure that appropriate human rights and accommodation principles are applied to the matter under appeal. The Vice-Provost or designate may consult with the academic staff, the Chair of their department or designate or Associate Dean or any other appropriate individual in order to better understand and assess the essential requirements of the course or program in question. In the case of a student of an affiliate college, the Vice-Provost or Designate shall seek recommendations from the Academic Dean of the affiliate college before making a decision.  

Where an appeal is filed, the Vice-Provost or designate shall provide notice to the other party involved and shall give them an opportunity to respond to the grounds raised in the appeal. Any response to an appeal shall be made in writing, and shall be provided to the party who filed the appeal who shall be given an opportunity to reply in writing to the response. For example, if the student with the disability files an appeal, the Vice-Provost or designate shall notify the academic staff member responsible for the course in question, and shall provide the staff member the opportunity to provide a written response. If the staff member provides a written response, it will be shared with the student who shall have a further opportunity to reply in writing to matters raised by the staff member in the response.

The Vice-Provost or designate shall make a decision on the appeal expeditiously, and in the ordinary course, within five (5) days (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, statutory holidays and other University closures) of receiving the appeal. Where interim accommodations have been implemented pending the appeal pursuant to paragraph 2(a), the Vice-Provost or designate shall determine whether the result of the appeal requires reassessment of any grades achieved during the application of the interim accommodations and shall provide such direction as to such grades as he or she deems appropriate.  The decision shall be communicated in writing to the student with a disability, the academic staff member, SAS, and, where appropriate, the Chair of the relevant department or Associate Dean.

The decision of the Vice-Provost is final, and may not be appealed under any other University policy or procedure.

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Appeal of a Dispute regarding the Implementation of an Accommodation

3. Appeal of a Dispute regarding the Implementation of an Accommodation

This section applies to appeals by students or staff members in relation to a decision of the SAS or ACSD made under Part 5 of the Academic Accommodation Procedures – i.e. the determination of the implementation of an accommodation within the context of a classroom or similar context.

Either the student or the academic staff member may appeal the determination of the SAS or ACSD counsellor as to how the accommodation that has been granted is to be implemented in the course in question.  Appeals shall be made directly to the Vice Provost or designate.

Students may file an appeal with the Vice-Provost or designate if the student:

(a) believes that they have been treated unfairly during the accommodation process;
(b) believes that the determination of how the accommodation is to be implemented does not reasonably meet their identified restrictions; or
(c) has new information relevant to the request for academic accommodation that was not reasonably available to the SAS or ACSD counsellor at the time of the determination.

Academic staff may file an appeal with the Vice-Provost or designate only on the ground that the determination of how the accommodation is to be implemented compromises the essential requirements of the course or program of study.

Where an appeal is filed under this section, the process outlined in section 2(c) of these Procedures shall apply with necessary modifications.

The decision of the Vice-Provost or designate shall be final, and may not be appealed under any other University policy or procedure.

Academic Handbook, Rights and Responsibilities, Accommodation for Students with Diabilities

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ACADEMIC ACCOMMODATION OF STUDENTS IN THE RESERVE FORCES

To accommodate student participation in the Reserve Forces, Western will consider requests by student reservists seeking academic accommodation to meet their military service obligations.

Accommodations
The following are some of the academic accommodations that may be considered through the Deans’ offices:

1. Deferral of scheduled exams that conflict with military activities in which the student reservists participate during the academic term.

2. Postponement of scheduled assignments that conflict with military activities in which the student reservists participate during the academic term.

3. Short-term leaves of absence (two weeks or less) from their academic studies to perform military service.

4. Extended leaves of absence (one or more semesters) from their academic studies to perform military service with no effect on their existing admission status or course  accreditation.

5. Exemptions from financial and other penalties associated with leaves of absence, exam deferrals or assignment postponements noted above.


Conditions

1. Requests from student reservists for academic accommodations normally should be submitted in writing in the form of a petition to the Dean’s office, and should be provided in sufficient time to allow proper review and consideration prior to the commencement of military activities.

2. The Dean’s Office will require confirmation from the student reservist’s Commanding Officer to substantiate a request for academic accommodation.


Procedures

1. Student reservists are to submit requests for academic accommodation in writing to the appropriate Dean’s Office.

2. The Dean’s Office should inform the student reservists as soon as practical of their decision either to grant or refuse the request.

 


Academic Handbook, Rights and Responsibilities, Reserve Forces

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ACADEMIC CONSIDERATION FOR STUDENT ABSENCES – UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS IN FIRST ENTRY PROGRAMS

Purpose and Application of the Policy

1. Purpose of the Policy:

The purpose of this Policy is to provide guidance to undergraduate students, instructors, and administrators in situations where students are unable to complete academic responsibilities as the result of extenuating circumstances, including short-term illness or injury.

2. Application of the Policy: 

This Policy and the associated Procedures apply only to students who have been admitted to first entry programs on Western University. Students who are in second entry programs, including Education, Law, Medicine, and the Ivey School of Business, or graduate programs, should consult their Faculty of registration for information about Academic Consideration and how it is handled in their Faculty.

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Statement of Principles

3.    Statement of Principles:

The University recognizes that a student’s ability to meet their academic responsibilities may, on occasion, be impaired by extenuating circumstances, including short term illness or injury.

Reasonable academic consideration is a cooperative process between the University, the student and academic staff.  All participants in the process must act in good faith and fulfil their respective obligations set out in this Policy and the associated Procedures if it is to succeed.

The University is committed to providing reasonable academic consideration to a student in extenuating circumstances, while taking into account:

• a need to ensure fairness and consistency for all students seeking academic consideration;
• a desire to empower students to take responsibility for their decisions about absences and missed work due to extenuating circumstances;
• an anticipation that students, faculty, staff, and administrators will approach requests for academic consideration as being undertaken in good faith, recognizing that evidence to the contrary (including false statements or altered forms or documents) may be liable to investigation as either a Scholastic Offense (Clause 4) or a violation of the Student Code of Conduct (Section E, clauses 4a and 4b).
• a desire to provide a mechanism for facilitating student well-being and academic fairness while at the same time acknowledging the integrity of relationships and interactions that students have with individuals and services on campus. These may include faculty members, academic counsellors and advisors, Student Accessibility Services, Student Success Centre, Student Health Services and community healthcare professionals.
• a recognition that there is no expectation that a student must be in optimum physical or mental condition to carry out their academic responsibilities.

All requests for consideration and related communications will be maintained in confidence in accordance with the University’s Official Student Record Information Privacy Policy and the University’s obligations under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, the Personal Health Information Privacy Act and any other applicable laws.  Personal information of students will be shared only to the extent necessary to consider requests for consideration, to arrange for reasonable academic relief or to process any appeals, all in accordance with this Policy and associated Procedures and all applicable law.

Academic Consideration provides students with consistent, fair, and pedagogically appropriate consideration, without compromising the academic integrity of the course or program, when they have been unable to complete some component of a course due to extenuating circumstances.

Students who have long-term or chronic medical conditions (physical or mental) which may impede their ability to complete academic responsibilities are directed to seek Academic Accommodation through Student Accessibility Services (Academic Accommodation for Students with Disability).

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Policy Review

4.     Policy review

This Policy is a pilot version and will be reviewed after 2 years by SCAPA. It may be reviewed prior to the two-year term where it is determined that an earlier review is necessary because of:

(a)    a change in University practices or procedures; or
(b)    any other reason that would call into question the applicability of the Policy in its current form.

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Purpose of Academic Consideration Procedures

PROCEDURES FOR STUDENT ABSENCES – UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS IN FIRST ENTRY PROGRAMS

1. Purpose of Academic Consideration Procedures

The purpose of the Academic Consideration Procedures is to set out the process by which students may request reasonable academic consideration for extenuating circumstances resulting in missed academic requirements and to establish the responsibilities of all participants in the consideration process.

All interested persons – students, academic staff and the University – have vital roles to play in the process.

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Requesting Academic Consideration

2.    Requesting Academic Consideration

Students who experience an extenuating circumstance (illness, injury, or other extenuating circumstance) sufficiently significant to temporarily render them unable to meet academic requirements may submit a request for academic consideration through the following routes:

(i)  Submitting a Self-Reported Absence form provided that the conditions for submission are met;
(ii) For medical absences, submitting a Student Medical Certificate (SMC) signed by a licensed medical or mental health practitioner in order to be eligible for Academic Consideration; or
(iii) For non-medical absences, submitting appropriate documentation (e.g., obituary, police report, accident report, court order, etc.) to Academic Counselling in their Faculty of registration in order to be eligible for academic consideration. Students are encouraged to contact their Academic Counselling unit to clarify what documentation is appropriate.

Students seeking academic consideration:

• are advised to consider carefully the implications of postponing tests or midterm exams or delaying handing in work;  
• are encouraged to make appropriate decisions based on their specific circumstances, recognizing that minor ailments (upset stomach) or upsets (argument with a friend) are not normally an appropriate basis for a self-reported absence;
must communicate with their instructors no later than 24 hours after the end of the period covered by either the self-reported absence or SMC, or immediately upon their return following a documented absence.

Academic consideration is not normally intended for the following circumstances:

Students who require academic accommodation based on an ongoing physical or mental illness (recurring or chronic) or an existing disability.  Students with an ongoing physical illness or mental disorder (recurring or chronic) or an existing disability are responsible, in consultation with their doctors or other health professionals, to determine if they are capable of pursuing their studies and, if so, with what accommodations.  Students are expected to seek and arrange reasonable accommodations with Student Accessibility Services (SAS) as soon as possible in accordance with the Policy on Academic Accommodation for Students with Disability. Students with pre-existing accessibility plans arranged through SAS may not need to provide additional documentation when seeking academic consideration where such request for consideration relates to their disability and where their accessibility plans allow for coursework deferral or deadline extensions.  
Students who experience high levels of stress related to academic performance (including completing assignments, taking part in presentations, or writing tests or examinations). Students with academic or exam stress should access supports through Student Health and Wellness and Learning Skills Services in order to deal with this stress in a proactive and constructive manner.

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Requests for Academic Consideration Using the Self-Reported Absence Form

3. Requests for Academic Consideration Using the Self-Reported Absence Form

Students who experience an unexpected illness or injury or an extenuating circumstance (48 hours or less) that is sufficiently severe to temporarily render them unable to meet academic requirements (e.g., attending lectures or labs, writing tests or midterm exams, completing and submitting assignments, participating in presentations) should self-declare using the online Self-Reported Absence portal.  This option should be used in situations where the student expects to resume academic responsibilities within 48 hours or less.  

The following conditions are in place for self-reporting of medical or extenuating circumstances:

a. students will be allowed a maximum of two self-reported absences between September and April and one self-reported absence between May and August;
b. any absences in excess of the number designated in clause a above, regardless of duration, will require students to present a Student Medical Certificate (SMC), signed by a licensed medical or mental health practitioner, detailing the duration and severity of illness, or appropriate documentation supporting extenuating circumstances to the Academic Counselling unit in their Faculty of registration no later than two business days after the date specified for resuming responsibilities. Please see section 4 below for more details.
c. The duration of the excused absence will be for a maximum of 48 hours. Students will select the allowable 48 hour period via an online portal. Students can request that the period covered include Yesterday and Today, or Today and Tomorrow. Absences are deemed to start at midnight (12:00 am) on the first requested day and end on 11:59 pm the following day;
d. The duration of the excused absence will terminate prior to the end of the 48 hour period should the student undertake significant academic responsibilities (write a test, submit a paper) during that time;
e. The duration of an excused absence will terminate at 8:30 am on the day following the last day of classes each semester regardless of how many days of absence have elapsed;
f. Self-reported absences will not be allowed for scheduled final examinations; for midterm examinations scheduled during the December examination period; or for final lab examinations scheduled during the final week of term;
g. Self-reporting may not be used for assessments (e.g. midterm exams, tests, reports, presentations, or essays) worth more than 30% of any given course.
h. Students must be in touch with their instructors no later than 24 hours after the end of the period covered by the Self-Reported Absence form, to clarify how they will be expected to fulfill the academic expectations they may have missed during the absence unless other instructions are indicated on the course syllabus.

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Request for Academic Consideration for a Medical Absence

4. Request for Academic Consideration for a Medical Absence

Students seeking academic consideration for a medical absence not covered by existing Student Accessibility Services (SAS) accommodation, will be required to provide documentation in person in the form of a completed, signed Student Medical Certificate (SMC) where the conditions for a Self-Reported Absence have not been met, including where the student has exceeded the maximum number of permissible Self-Reported Absences.

The following conditions are in place for students seeking academic consideration for a medical absence:

a. Students must submit their documentation along with a request for academic consideration specifying the nature of the relief being requested. This documentation, in the form of a Student Medical Certificate (SMC), shall be submitted to the Academic Counselling or Undergraduate Office of the student’s Faculty of registration indicating the period of illness, severity, and when the student should be able to resume academic responsibilities. Forms must be submitted no later than two business days after the date specified for resuming responsibilities.
b. Students who require academic consideration must, where possible, seek medical attention in advance of due dates, examinations, etc.
c. If the Academic Counselling/Dean’s Office determines that academic consideration is warranted, the period of academic consideration will normally be that specified on the medical documentation. Once the request for academic consideration and supporting documents have been received and approved, the student’s instructors will be notified of this by the Academic Counselling or Undergraduate Office in the student’s home faculty. Absences are deemed to start at midnight (12:00 am) on the first approved day and end on 11:59 pm the final day of approval.
d. Academic consideration shall be granted only where the documentation indicates that the onset, duration and severity of the illness are such that the student could not reasonably be expected to complete their academic responsibilities, and only when the licensed practitioner providing the documentation is able to make a reasonable assessment of the student’s physical or mental state during the period for which relief is sought. The expectation is that the practitioner’s assessment of the student’s condition will be made in person.
e. The duration of the excused absence will terminate prior to the end of the period indicated on the SMC should the student undertake significant academic responsibilities (write a test, submit a paper) during that time.
f. Students must communicate with their instructors no later than 24 hours after the end of the period covered by the SMC, to clarify how they will be expected to fulfill the academic expectations they may have missed during the absence unless other instructions are indicated on the course syllabus.
g. In cases where a student may be experiencing long-term or recurring absences, students should consult their Academic Counsellors for advice about which of the options available to them (academic consideration, pursuing Academic Accommodation, withdrawal from the course) are most appropriate.

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Request for Academic Consideration for a Non-Medical Absence

5. Request for Academic Consideration for a Non-Medical Absence

Students seeking academic consideration for a non-medical absence will be required to provide appropriate documentation where the conditions for a Self-Reported Absence have not been met, including where the student has exceeded the maximum number of permissible Self-Reported Absences.

The following conditions are in place for students seeking academic consideration for a non-medical absence:

a. Students must submit the appropriate documentation  along with a request for academic consideration specifying the reason for the absence and the nature of the relief being requested. This documentation shall be submitted to the Academic Counselling or Undergraduate Office in the student’s Faculty of registration. Documentation must be submitted no later than two business days after the student resumes academic responsibilities.
b. Academic consideration shall be granted only where the documentation indicates that the student could not reasonably be expected to complete their academic responsibilities as a result of an extenuating circumstance.
c. Students must communicate with their instructors no later than 24 hours after the end of the period covered by the documentation, to clarify how they will be expected to fulfill the academic expectations they may have missed during the absence unless other instructions are indicated on the course syllabus.
d. In cases where a student might be absent for periods greater than 3 weeks, students should consult their Academic Counsellors for advice about which of the options available to them (academic consideration, pursuing Academic Accommodation, withdrawal from the course) are most appropriate.

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Appeal

6.    Appeal

A student who has been denied academic consideration by an Academic Counselling Unit may appeal the decision to the Dean of their Faculty of registration (or the Dean’s designate).

Academic Handbook, Rights and Responsibilities, Consideration for Student Absences

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ACADEMIC SANCTIONS

Registration in the University and the right to access the library, residences, specialized equipment and other University facilities implies a commitment on the part of a student to use such facilities in accordance with established rules.

In instances of misuse of University facilities and non-payment of prescribed tuition and other fees or fines, or of delinquency in the return or replacement of University property on loan, the University shall seal the academic record. When an academic record is sealed, the student will not be able to:

  • View grades
  • Register in future courses
  • Receive transcripts or a degree diploma
  • Obtain admission or readmission

The above prohibitions shall be in force until such time as indebtedness to the University, including payment of fee for removal of the seal, has been cleared to the satisfaction of the University.

 

Academic Handbook, Rights and Responsibilities, Academic Sanctions

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ACCOMMODATION FOR RELIGIOUS HOLIDAYS

When scheduling unavoidably conflicts with religious holidays, which (a) require an absence from the University or (b) prohibit or require certain activities (i.e., activities that would make it impossible for the student to satisfy the academic requirements scheduled on the day(s) involved), no student will be penalized for absence because of religious reasons, and alternative means will be sought for satisfying the academic requirements involved. If a suitable arrangement cannot be worked out between the student and instructor involved, they should consult the appropriate Department Chair and, if necessary, the student's Dean.

It is the responsibility of such students to inform themselves concerning the work done in classes from which they are absent and to take appropriate action.

A student who, for either situation (a) or (b) outlined in paragraph one above, is unable to write examinations and term tests on a Sabbath or Holy Day in a particular term shall give notice of this fact in writing to his or her course instructor and Dean as early as possible but not later than two weeks prior to the writing of the examination. In the case of mid-term tests, such notification is to be given in writing to the instructor as early as possible, but not later than one week prior to the writing of the test. If a Special Examination is offered as an alternative means to satisfy the academic requirements, the instructor(s) in the case of mid-term tests and the Dean in the case of mid-year and Spring final examinations will arrange for special examination(s) to be written at another time. In the case of mid-year and Spring final examinations, the accommodation must occur no later than one month after the end of the examination period involved. It is mandatory that students seeking accommodations under this policy give notification before the deadlines, and that the Faculty accommodate these requests.

For purposes of this policy the University has approved a list of dates which are recognized religious holidays which require members of those religions to be absent from the University; this list is updated annually and is available at departmental, Deans' and Faculty advising Offices.

 

Academic Handbook, Rights and Responsibilities, Accommodation for Religious Holidays

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ACCOMODATION FOR POLITICAL CANDIDACY OF STUDENTS

The policy on political candidacy for students campaigning for election to public office is available from the University Secretariat in the Manual of Administrative Policies and Procedures at www.uwo.ca/univsec/mapp/section1/mapp13.pdf

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INSTRUCTOR-STUDENT CONFLICT OF INTEREST

In order to avoid conflict of interest, instructors are expected to refrain from entering into any relationship with a student which may compromise, or which may reasonably appear to compromise, the instructor's exercise of professional responsibility. It is the responsibility of instructors to notify their Department Chair (or Dean where no department structure exists) of any potential conflict of interest which may arise.

In order to avoid conflict of interest, the University normally will not permit students to enrol in courses that are taught by members of their immediate family. It is the responsibility of instructors, in such instances, to notify their Department Chair (or Dean where no department structure exists) of this or any other potential conflict of interest that may arise.

  • Immediate family is defined as spouse, parent, in-law, brother, sister, son, daughter or stepchild of a member of faculty.
  • An example of a potential conflict of interest is where the student is the client or patient of the instructor.

Exceptions to this policy may be granted only by the Dean of the Faculty in which the course is taught (including the Affiliated University Colleges); and when the course is a mandatory part of the student's program, as specified in the academic calendar; and when no alternative is available.

When exceptions are granted, the Dean will make the necessary arrangements for independent evaluation of student’s work.

 

Academic Handbook, Rights and Responsibilities, Conflict of Interest

 

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OFFICIAL STUDENT RECORD INFORMATION PRIVACY POLICY

Definitions and General Principles

1. Purpose
This document sets out the University’s policy on the collection, use and disclosure of the personal information that forms part of the Official Student Record and the personal information collected on prospective applicants and applicants who do not become students. It applies to the Office of the Registrar, the Faculty of Graduate Studies, and all other academic and administrative units that are the primary and secondary custodians of specified data collected and stored about prospective applicants, applicants, students, alumni/ae and former students of the University.

2. Definitions and General Principles
For the purposes of this policy:

(a) prospective applicant means a person who has indicated an interest in applying for admission to the University and/or who has been identified by the University as a person who will be considered for recruitment (e.g. major scholarship winners);

(b) applicant means any person who has formally applied for admission to the University and whose application is still active;

(c) current student means any person who is active in the current term and/or active in any program at the University [A student is considered to be active in the current term if he or she has taken some action, such as completing registration, paying a tuition deposit or a portion of term tuition fees, or completing an add/drop. A student is considered active in a program within a period of 2 years of being active in a term];

(d) alumnus or alumna means any person who has received a degree, diploma or certificate from the University and is not active in a program [For the purposes of this policy a Western graduate who is also a current student is considered a current student.]; and

(e) former student means any person who has attended the University but has not received a degree, diploma or certificate and is not active in a program.
During the University recruitment process, information will be collected and used to identify prospective applicants who will be encouraged to apply for admission to the University.

During the admission process, information will be collected and used to establish a record and assess an applicant’s qualification for admission to the University.

During the registration process and the student’s subsequent academic career, specific information that constitutes the Official Student Record will be collected, maintained and used by the University to:

  • record performance in programs and courses;
  • record decisions of academic appeals/petitions and scholastic and non-academic offence decisions and sanctions;
  • provide the basis for financial aid, awards and government funding; and,
  • assist the University in the academic and financial administration of its affairs which, for example, can range from the day-to-day administration of academic programs to long-range financial or capital planning.

All documentation submitted to the University in support of an application for admission, residence accommodation, or financial award, or as part of any investigation, appeal/petition or request, becomes the property of the University.

Other than disclosure of information specified in Section 4(a) below, the University is committed to taking every reasonable step to protect the confidentiality and privacy of the information contained in the Official Student Record or collected on prospective applicants and applicants who do not become students. Such information must not be disclosed to any individual or institution outside the University, its Affiliated Colleges, or organizations offering joint programs, placements, internships, etc., as part of a course or program at the University, except in the following circumstances:

  • with the student’s consent (written preferred);
  • under compulsion of law;
  • in accordance with the requirements of professional licensing or certification bodies;
  • pursuant to an investigation of possible misrepresentation concerning an individual’s references, attendance, performance, status within, or completion of an academic program at the University or at another academic institution;
  • in compassionate or emergency situations, as determined by the custodian of the information; and
  • in other circumstances set out in the University’s Guidelines on Access to Information and Protection of Privacy [hereafter Guidelines on Access] or as permitted under applicable federal or provincial legislation.

The University will maintain a record of all occasions on which Official Student Record information, other than information specified in Section 4(a), is provided to a third party in the absence of the consent of the student. The contents of this record will be available to the student upon request unless disclosure of the information would compromise an ongoing University or criminal investigation, or is otherwise prohibited by law.

General statistical material drawn from academic records that does not disclose the identities of prospective applicants, applicants, students, alumni/ae or former students may be released for research and information purposes authorized by the University.

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Information Contained in Official Student Records


3. Information Contained in Official Student Records
Official Student Records, in electronic or paper form, contain the following information relating to a student’s application, admission, and performance at the University:

(a) personal information (name, address, e-mail address, telephone, date of birth, citizenship, social insurance number, student number, photograph, etc.);

(b) basis of admission information (application, record of previous studies, letters of recommendation, test results, etc.);

(c) registration and enrollment information (programs of study, dates of attendance, academic load, courses taken, credits transferred, etc.);

(d) performance information (grades, averages and ranks, narrative evaluations, clinical evaluations, distinctions/awards, special permissions, academic counselling information, degrees obtained, requirements to withdraw, scholastic offence decisions1, etc.);

(e) decisions relating to academic appeals/petitions;

(f) decisions against a student, including appeal decisions, under the Code of Student Conduct;

(g) medical information given to a Faculty related to a student’s performance that is provided by or collected with the consent of the student; and

(h) financial information (tuition fees and other charges, payments, awards, debts, etc.).


The following information is not considered to form part of the Official Student Record and is not covered by the provisions of this policy:

  • medical information provided to Student Health Services;
  • information relating to the employment by the University of current students, alumni/ae or former students; and
  • information other than basic demographic data that is maintained by or on behalf of Alumni Affairs and Development and which is deemed to constitute the Official Alumni Record.

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Access to and Disclosure of Information

4. Access to and Disclosure of Information

(a) “Public” Personal Information
It is the practice of the University to consider the following information to be publicly available and to provide it to third parties in response to requests (e.g., confirmation of information for a potential employer) without first seeking the consent of the individual each and every time a request is received:

  • Full name
  • Degree(s) awarded by Western and date(s) conferred, if applicable
    Faculty(ies)/Schools in which student is/was enrolled, with major field of study
  • Academic or other University honors or distinctions


However, at any time an individual may request that this information cease to be made publicly available by contacting the Office of the Registrar or the Faculty of Graduate Studies, as appropriate, in writing.

(b) Prospective Applicants and Applicants
Prospective Applicants and Applicants may, upon written request, be granted limited access to records containing their personal information in accordance with the Access Procedure set out in Section 6 of the Guidelines on Access. Access will not be provided to records that have been submitted to the University in confidence either implicitly or explicitly (e.g., letters of reference), that document deliberative processes, or are otherwise exempt under the Guidelines on Access. Outdated records for prospective applicants, records for unsuccessful applicants, and records for those who do not accept an offer of admission, are not retained indefinitely. They will be destroyed in accordance with approved retention and disposal schedules.

(c) Current Students
Current students normally have access to their Official Student Record, except material submitted to the University in confidence (e.g., letters of reference) or otherwise exempt from access under the Guidelines on Access, by making an informal request to the appropriate University office. However, students may also request access in accordance with the Access Procedure set out in Section 6 of the Guidelines on Access. If a student has outstanding debts to the University, access may be restricted and certain academic documents (e.g., transcripts, graduation diplomas) may be withheld until payment is received.

(d) Next of Kin
Next of kin will not be given access to information in the Official Student Record except as provided for in Section 2 above, the most common circumstance being with the prior consent of the student. This provision applies regardless of the age of the student (i.e., whether or not they are under the age of 18) as it is the student’s ability to consent, rather than their age, that is the determining factor in their right to exercise control over their own personal information.

(e) Faculty and Staff
Within the University, access to the Official Student Record is restricted to faculty and staff who have a legitimate need for the information in order to carry out the responsibilities of their position or office as it relates to the administration of student affairs and services. For example, access to information contained in the Official Student Record of current students, former students or alumni/ae who are also employees of the University will not be provided for employment related purposes without the prior consent of the individual. Similarly, details of medical information supplied to Faculty offices will not be released without the prior consent of the individual.

Access to financial assistance information of the Ontario Student Assistance Program, to other forms of assistance based on financial need, or to individual earnings is restricted to financial aid staff in the Office of the Registrar, and to a limited number of authorized staff in the Faculty of Graduate Studies, Housing and Ancillary Services, Deans’ and other administrative offices. Relevant information is routinely provided to government agencies with a legitimate need to know, such as those involved in the administration of scholarship or financial aid programs.

The Department of Advancement Services and the Department of Alumni Relations and Development will be permitted access to personal information relating to the identity and location of prospective applicants, applicants and students in order to maintain contact with the individuals and inform them of events, programs and services.

Ensuring the security and privacy of personal information is a collective responsibility of the Office of the Registrar and Faculty of Graduate Studies, and the Deans, Chairs, Directors and managers of academic and administrative units. All full-time and part-time faculty and staff who receive this information must be formally notified of the contents of the Policy, the requirement to adhere to its provisions, and the implications of non-compliance.

E-mail often provides the most efficient and timely medium for communicating with students, prospective applicants, applicants, former students and alumni/ae. However, personal information should not normally be communicated electronically. Where such communication is necessary, a reasonable effort will be made to correctly identify the requester and/or recipient prior to sending personal information.

(f) Alumni/ae and Former Students
An alumnus, alumna or a former student may request access to his or her Official Student Record in accordance with the Access Procedure set out in Section 6 of the Guidelines on Access.

(g) University Student Organizations
Student organizations recognized by the Board of Governors (i.e., the University Students’ Council, Society of Graduate Students, and MBA Association) shall have access to basic student information referred to in Sections 3(a) and (c), for the legitimate internal use of that organization. The disclosure of such information will be subject to agreements with the organizations that they will not disclose any information to a third party, or use the information for any commercial purpose, without the prior agreement of the University.

The USC, SOGS, and the MBAA shall be entitled to publish and distribute within the University community a University-wide directory of students except where students have restricted the disclosure of information. Students wishing to restrict the disclosure of information may do so by contacting the organization.
Student information will not be released to student clubs or organizations not recognized by the Board of Governors without the consent of the students. However, the University will make reasonable efforts to facilitate communication between these groups and individual students. For example, under certain circumstances an information package prepared by a club could be distributed directly to students by the University on behalf of the club, in lieu of giving the club access to student addresses.

(h) Affiliated Colleges and Other Institutions
The University will disclose information in an Official Student Record to its Affiliated Colleges on a need to know basis and in accordance with the terms of the Affiliation Agreement between the University and its Affiliated Colleges. In addition, the University will disclose information in an Official Student Record to other institutions to the extent required for a particular course or program (e.g. off-campus placements, internships, joint programs).

(i) Agents of the University
The University may contract with external agents for the provision of goods or services. These agents may range in size from nation-wide companies to individuals providing volunteer support. As part of the arrangements between the University and the agent, there may be a requirement to disclose certain student information to the agent. However, any such disclosure will be governed by a confidentiality agreement between the University and the agent that specifies the purpose(s) of the disclosure and the University’s expectations with respect to confidentiality.

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Storage and Retention of Official Student Records

5. Custody, Storage and Retention of Official Student Records
The University maintains Official Student Records in electronic or paper form. Electronic records contain information required to monitor the progress and performance of students, produce periodic performance reports, and provide attestations of achievement and official transcripts of academic records. They also form the basis of management information needed for the operation of the University and for enrollment reports and statistical information required by government agencies. All portions of the electronic student academic record needed to produce official transcripts are maintained indefinitely. As these records are retained on a permanent basis they will be reviewed periodically, especially at times of an upgrade of the electronic records system or migration to a new system. Metadata pertaining to the system itself will be maintained in hard copy form in the University Archives. Other information in electronic and paper form is retained or disposed of according to the Disposition and Retention Schedules prepared in consultation with the University Archives.

 

Academic Handbook, General Policy, Student Record Information Privacy Policy

 

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SCHOLASTIC DISCIPLINE FOR UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS

Scholastic Offences

Preamble
Members of the University Community accept a commitment to maintain and uphold the purposes of the University and, in particular, its standards of scholarship. It follows, therefore, that acts of a nature which prejudice the academic standards of the University are offences subject to discipline. Any form of academic dishonesty that undermines the evaluation process, also undermines the integrity of the University’s degrees. The University will take all appropriate measures to promote academic integrity and deal appropriately with scholastic offences.
 
Scholastic Offences
Scholastic Offences include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. Plagiarism, which may be defined as “The act or an instance of copying or stealing another’s words or ideas and attributing them as one’s own.” Excerpted from Black’s Law Dictionary, West Group, 1999, 7th ed., p. 1170.

This concept applies with equal force to all assignments, including laboratory reports, diagrams, and computer projects.

Students wishing more detailed information should consult their instructor, Department Chair, or Dean’s Office. In addition, they may seek guidance from a variety of current style manuals available in the University’s libraries. Information about these resources can be found at www.lib.uwo.ca/services/styleguides.html

2. Cheating on an examination or falsifying material subject to academic evaluation.

3. Submitting false or fraudulent assignments or credentials; or falsifying records, transcripts or other academic documents.

4. Submitting a false medical or other such certificate under false pretences.

5. a) Improperly obtaining, through theft, bribery, collusion or otherwise, an examination paper prior to the date and time for writing such an examination.

    b) Unauthorized possession of an examination paper, however obtained, prior to the date and time for writing such an examination, unless the student reports the matter to the instructor, the relevant Department, or the Registrar as soon as possible after receiving the paper in question.

6. Impersonating a candidate at an examination or availing oneself of the results of such an impersonation.

7. Intentionally interfering in any way with any person's scholastic work.

8. Submitting for credit in any course or program of study, without the knowledge and written approval of the instructor to whom it is submitted, any academic work for which credit has been obtained previously or is being sought in another course or program of study in the University or elsewhere.

9. Aiding or abetting any such offence.

In addition to any proceedings within the University, evidence of wrongdoing may result in criminal prosecution.
 
Procedures For Handling Scholastic Offences
If a student is suspected of cheating, plagiarism or other scholastic offence, the University will investigate and if it is satisfied that the student has committed a scholastic offence it may impose sanctions, up to and including expulsion from the University. The procedures that the University will follow are set out in this section.

Note: Throughout this section, reference to "Dean" is to be interpreted "Dean or his/her designate" (who is usually an Associate Dean) and reference to "Department Chair" is to be interpreted "Department Chair or his/her designate". If the matter has been designated by the Dean or Chair to another person, that person is authorized to make the Faculty or Department’s final decision on the matter.

Undergraduate Students


Part 1: Scholastic Offences: Courses
In most cases, evidence of a possible scholastic offence in a course will have been discovered by, or brought to the attention of, the course instructor. In these situations the instructor will meet with the student if practicable and appropriate. In all other cases the allegation will be reviewed by the appropriate University official.

The instructor (or other University official) will notify the Department Chair (“Chair”) (or, in Faculties without department structure, the Dean of the Faculty) if he/she decides that there is evidence of a scholastic offence. If the Chair or Dean of the Faculty agrees that there is evidence to support the allegation, he/she shall proceed as follows:

Courses in Student’s Faculty of Registration (“Home Faculty”)

1. Faculty with department structure (including the Faculty of Health Sciences):

(a) The Chair will advise the student of the allegation and the information supporting the allegation, normally within one week after the matter has been forwarded to him/her. The student will be given a reasonable opportunity to respond and submit evidence, and a reasonable opportunity to meet with the Chair before a decision is made. If the Chair decides that the student has committed a scholastic offence, he/she will determine the appropriate penalties in consultation with the instructor. The Chair’s decision and the penalties imposed by him/her will be communicated to the student in writing with a copy to the Dean, normally within three weeks after the Chair advised the student of the allegation. The letter will advise the student of his/her right to file a request for relief from this decision to the Dean, the time period by which a request for relief must be filed, and will refer the student to the regulations governing Student Academic Appeals and Scholastic Offences in the Academic Calendar.

(b)

(i) If the student files a request for relief (see “Requests for Relief” below), the Dean will review the evidence provided by both the department and the student and may investigate further. The Dean will give the student a reasonable opportunity to meet with him/her before making a decision. If the Dean is satisfied that the Chair’s decision was correct, or in the case of an appeal of a penalty that the penalty was appropriate, he/she will deny the request for relief. If the Dean is satisfied that the Chair’s decision was incorrect, or that the penalty was not appropriate, he/she will grant the request for relief and will overturn or vary the previous decision. Unless the Dean overturns the finding of a scholastic offence, he/she will review the penalties imposed by the Chair and may affirm, increase, or reduce those penalties. If the Dean is considering additional penalties, he/she shall first notify the student and give the student a reasonable opportunity to make written submissions on the issue of penalty. The Dean’s decision will be communicated to the student in writing with a copy to the Chair, normally within three weeks after receiving the request for relief. In cases where the Dean does not overturn the scholastic offence decision, the letter also will inform the student if there will be a notation on the academic record, and of his/her right to appeal the decision to the Senate Review Board Academic within six weeks of the date of the decision. (See APPEALS TO SRBA.)

(ii) If the student does not file a request for relief, the Dean will review the evidence presented and the penalties imposed by the Chair and may investigate further. The Dean may increase or reduce those penalties. If the Dean is considering additional penalties, he/she shall first notify the student and give the student a reasonable opportunity to make written submissions on the issue of penalty. If the Dean decides to vary the penalties, his/her decision will be communicated to the student in writing with a copy to the Chair, normally within three weeks after the deadline for filing a request for relief. The letter also will inform the student if there will be a notation on the academic record and of his/her right to appeal the decision to vary the penalty to the Senate Review Board Academic within six weeks of the date of the decision. (See APPEALS TO SRBA.)

2. Faculty without department structure:
The Dean will advise the student of the allegation and the information supporting the allegation, normally within one week after the matter has been forwarded to him/her. The student will be given a reasonable opportunity to respond and submit evidence, and a reasonable opportunity to meet with the Dean before a decision is made. If the Dean decides that the student has committed a scholastic offence, he/she will determine the appropriate penalties in consultation with the instructor. The Dean’s decision and the penalties imposed by him/her will be communicated to the student in writing, normally within three weeks after the Dean advised the student of the allegation. The letter also will inform the student if there will be a notation on the academic record and of his/her right to appeal the decision to the Senate Review Board Academic within six weeks of the date of the decision. (See APPEALS TO SRBA.)

Courses in a Faculty Other than Faculty of Registration (“Course Faculty”)

3. Faculty with department structure (including the Faculty of Health Sciences):

(a) The Chair will advise the student of the allegation and the information supporting the allegation, normally within one week after the matter has been forwarded to him/her. The student will be given a reasonable opportunity to respond and submit evidence, and a reasonable opportunity to meet with the Chair before a decision is made. If the Chair decides that the student has committed a scholastic offence, he/she will determine the appropriate penalties in consultation with the instructor. The Chair’s decision and the penalties imposed by him/her will be communicated to the student in writing with a copy to the Dean of the Course Faculty (“Course Dean”), normally within three weeks after the Chair advised the student of the allegation. The letter will advise the student of his/her right to file a request for relief from this decision to the Course Dean, the time period by which a request for relief must be filed, and will refer the student to the regulations governing Student Academic Appeals and Scholastic Offences in the Academic Calendar.

(b)

(i) If the student files a request for relief (see “Requests for Relief” below), the Course Dean will review the evidence provided by both the department and the student and may investigate further. The Course Dean will give the student a reasonable opportunity to meet with him/her before making a decision. If the Course Dean is satisfied that the Chair’s decision was correct, or in the case of an appeal of a penalty that the penalty was appropriate, he/she will deny the request for relief. If the Course Dean is satisfied that the Chair’s decision was incorrect, or that the penalty was not appropriate, he/she will grant the request for relief and will overturn or vary the previous decision. Unless the Course Dean overturns the finding of a scholastic offence, he/she will review the penalties imposed by the Chair and may affirm, increase or reduce those penalties. If the Course Dean is considering additional penalties, he/she shall first notify the student and give the student a reasonable opportunity to make written submissions on the issue of penalty. The Course Dean’s decision will be communicated to the student in writing with a copy to the Chair, normally within three weeks after receiving the request for relief.

In cases where the Dean does not overturn the scholastic offence decision, the letter also will inform the student if there will be a notation on the academic record, that this decision and the decision of the Chair are being referred to the Dean of the Home Faculty (“Home Dean”) who may impose additional penalties, and of his/her right to appeal the Course Dean’s decision to the Senate Review Board Academic within six weeks of the date of the Home Dean’s decision. (See APPEALS TO SRBA.) The Course Dean then will forward all documentation relating to the offence, including copies of the decisions of the Chair and Course Dean, to the Home Dean.

(ii) If the student does not file a request for relief, the Course Dean will review the evidence presented and the penalties imposed by the Chair and may investigate further. The Course Dean may increase or reduce those penalties. If the Course Dean decides not to vary the penalties, he/she then will forward all documentation relating to the offence, including a copy of the Chair’s decision, to the Home Dean. If the Course Dean is considering additional penalties, he/she shall first notify the student and give the student a reasonable opportunity to make written submissions on the issue of penalty. If the Course Dean decides to vary the penalties, his/her decision will be communicated to the student in writing with a copy to the Chair, normally within three weeks after the deadline for filing a request for relief. The letter also will inform the student if there will be a notation on the academic record, that this decision and the decision of the Chair are being referred to the Home Dean who may impose additional penalties, and of his/her right to appeal the Course Dean’s decision to vary the penalties to the Senate Review Board Academic within six weeks of the date of the Home Dean’s decision. (See APPEALS TO SRBA.) The Course Dean then will forward all  documentation relating to the offence, including copies of the decisions of the Chair and Course Dean, to the Home Dean.


(c) Upon receipt of the decisions of the Chair and Course Dean, the Home Dean will decide if additional penalties are warranted (see “Penalties” below). The Home Dean will review the evidence and may investigate further. If the Home Dean is considering additional penalties, he/she shall first notify the student and give the student a reasonable opportunity to make written submissions on the issue of penalty. The Home Dean’s decision will be communicated to the student in writing with a copy to the Course Dean, normally within three weeks after receipt of the decisions from the Course Faculty. If the Home Dean imposes additional penalties, the letter also will inform the student if there will be a notation on the academic record, and of his/her right to appeal the Home Dean’s decision to the Senate Review Board Academic within six weeks of the date of the decision. (See APPEALS TO SRBA.)


4. Faculty without department structure:

(a) The Course Dean will advise the student of the allegation and the information supporting the allegation, normally within one week after the matter has been forwarded to him/her. The student will be given a reasonable opportunity to respond and submit evidence, and a reasonable opportunity to meet with the Dean before a decision is made.

If the Course Dean decides that the student has committed a scholastic offence, he/she will determine the appropriate penalties in consultation with the instructor. The Course Dean’s decision and the penalties imposed by him/her will be communicated to the student in writing, normally within three weeks after the Dean advised the student of the allegation. The letter will inform the student if there will be a notation on the academic record, that the decision is being referred to the Home Dean who may impose additional penalties, and of his/her right to appeal the Course Dean’s decision to the Senate Review Board Academic within six weeks of the date of the Home Dean’s decision. (See APPEALS TO SRBA.) The Course Dean then will forward all documentation relating to the offence, including a copy of his/her decision, to the Home Dean.

(b) Upon receipt of the Course Dean’s decision, the Home Dean will proceed in accordance with #3 (c).


Requests for Relief
Requests for relief to a Dean must be submitted in writing within the deadline set out below. The written request need not be lengthy but should state clearly the detailed reasons for the request and the relief requested, and include all supporting documentation. A student may request that the Chair’s finding that a scholastic offence occurred, and/or the penalties imposed, be set aside or adjusted.

Deadlines: Normally requests for relief must be made in writing within three weeks of a decision being issued although some Faculties have longer deadlines. The letter from the Chair to the student will set out the applicable deadline.

Certificate And Diploma-Credit Courses
An allegation of misconduct in a certificate-credit or diploma-credit course offered within a department, or in a Faculty without department structure, will be handled in accordance with the same procedures set out above for degree-credit courses. Otherwise, where the course is not offered by a particular department in a Faculty with department structure, the allegation will be dealt with by the Dean of the Faculty (Part I, #2 above).

An allegation of misconduct in a certificate-credit or diploma-credit course offered by the Western Centre for Continuing Studies will be handled in accordance with the procedures set out in Part I, #1 above (“Faculty with department structure”). References to “Chair” shall be interpreted as “Director of the Western Centre for Continuing Studies” and references to the “Dean” shall be interpreted as “Dean of the partnering Faculty”.

Women’s Studies Courses
An allegation of misconduct in a course offered by the Department of Women’s Studies & Feminist Research will be handled in accordance with the procedures set out in Part I, #1 above (“Faculty with department structure”). References to “Dean” shall be interpreted as “Dean of the student’s Faculty of registration”.

Part 2: Scholastic Offences: Other
Where an allegation does not relate to a course, the matter will be referred to the Dean of the student’s Home Faculty. If the Dean decides that there is evidence to support the allegation, the Dean will advise the student of the allegation and the information supporting the allegation, normally within one week after the matter has been forwarded to him/her. The student will be given a reasonable opportunity to respond and submit evidence, and a reasonable opportunity to meet with the Dean before a decision is made. If the Dean decides that the student has committed a scholastic offence, the Dean will determine the appropriate penalties. The Dean’s decision and the penalties imposed will be communicated to the student in writing, normally within three weeks after the Dean advised the student of the allegation. The letter will inform the student if there will be a notation on the academic record and of his/her right to appeal the decision to the Senate Review Board Academic within six weeks of the date of the decision. (See APPEALS TO SRBA.)

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Offence Record

Offence Record
The offence record will be held in the Dean's Office of the student's home faculty and will be kept separate from the student's academic counselling file. It will contain evidence collected in the investigation of the offence, together with copies of any correspondence with the student. If a student is subsequently found not to have committed the offence in question, the record of that charge will be destroyed in accordance with Western’s Records Retention and Disposal Schedules. The Student Affairs records retention and disposal schedule is at the following Web site:
http://www.lib.uwo.ca/archives/retention_schedules/05_student_affairs.shtml

Apart from the student, no one outside the Dean's Office shall have access to an offence record, except in the event of an appeal by the student to SRBA against the decision or the penalty (or penalties) imposed.

Release of Information Concerning Scholastic Offences
The letters informing a student that he or she has been found to have committed a scholastic offence, and the penalty or penalties imposed are confidential documents. Copies will be sent only to involved parties as set out above.

In the event that the penalties imposed are to be reflected in the student's academic record, either on the official transcript or the internal electronic record, a copy will be sent to the Registrar. If a student transfers to another Faculty, or to an Affiliated University College of this University, the offence record will be transferred to the Dean's Office of that Faculty or College. Otherwise, information may be released with the written permission of the student or if required by a court order. Under all other circumstances, the information contained in a student's offence record shall be considered confidential and, unless the offence is to be recorded on the student's transcript, no information about the student's offence record shall be provided to any person or institution outside the University.

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Report to Senate

Report to Senate
Each Faculty shall submit to the Vice-Provost (Academic Programs and Students) [Registrar] an annual summary of scholastic offences committed by students registered in the Faculty. The summary will set out the nature of the offence and the penalties, with students’ names removed. The Vice-Provost (Academic Programs and Students) [Registrar] will compile the information, by Faculty, and report annually to the Senate Committee on Academic Policy and Awards which will forward the report to Senate for information.

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Penalties

Penalties
The University will not treat lightly any incident of academic dishonesty and students should expect significant consequences for their actions. A serious incident or repeated offences may result in suspension or expulsion from the University.

A student guilty of a scholastic offence may be subject to the imposition of one or more penalties, of which those listed below are examples:

a) Reprimand.
b) Requirement that the student repeat and resubmit the assignment.
c) A failing grade in the assignment.
d) A failing grade in the course in which the offence was committed.
e) Prohibition of further registration in a course or courses in the department or Faculty in which the offence occurred.
f) Failure of the year (applies in certain professional programs).
g) Suspension from the University for up to, but not more than, three academic years or for a portion of one academic year including the academic session in which the student is currently registered.
h) Expulsion from the University.


Notes:
• In determining what penalties are warranted in a given case, previous offences within the Faculty, the gravity of the offence, and the need to ensure consistency in standards of discipline across a Faculty will be relevant considerations for a Dean. A Home Dean also will take into account an existing Offence Record.

• A notation of the scholastic offence (e.g., “Scholastic Offence recorded in...”) may be placed on a student's internal, electronic record for the penalties d), e) and f) at the discretion of the Dean of the Faculty imposing the penalty. Upon successful completion of the student’s program, the student may request that the notation be removed. The Dean, after consulting with the relevant Chair in the case of a departmentalized Faculty, will decide whether to grant the request. A notation on the official transcript is recorded for penalties g) and h)*.

• Penalties imposed at the level of the department may range from a reprimand to a failing grade for the course in which the offence was committed.

• Penalties f), g) and h) are program decisions that can be imposed only by the Dean of the Home Faculty.

• Appeals against the imposition of any penalty will be dealt with in accordance with regulations governing appeals. (See STUDENT ACADEMIC APPEALS and SCHOLASTIC OFFENCES.)

• Students who have been suspended by the University as a result of a scholastic offence must apply for readmission subject to the same conditions that operate for students applying for "Readmission Following Unsatisfactory Performance".

* For the Senate regulation on removal of suspension and expulsion notations from academic transcripts, see “Transcript Notations” under “Academic Records and StudentTranscripts,”see: www.uwo.ca/univsec/pdf/academic_policies/general/records.pdf.

 

Academic Handbook, Appeals, Scholastic Discipline for Undergraduate Students

RELATED:

SCHOLASTIC DISCIPLINE PROCESS (CHART)

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Transcript Notations

Transcript Notations
That transcript notations for suspension and expulsion differentiate between Scholastic Discipline and Code of Student Conduct offences.

That the notation for suspensions be removed from the transcript when the student graduates or five years after the last registration.

That the notation for expulsions be permanent unless a petition to the President for its removal is approved. The petition to remove an expulsion notation from the transcript may be made no sooner than five years after the offence. Removal of the expulsion notation from the transcript would not overturn the expulsion decision; the expulsion from the University would remain in effect.

 

 

Taken from: Academic Handbook, General, Records and Transcripts

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SOCIAL CONDUCT: CODE OF STUDENT CONDUCT

Social conduct is governed by the Code of Student Conduct, approved by the Board of Governors.

Every Student is expected to comply with the provisions of the Code of Student Conduct. Sanctions for non-compliance range from a warning or reprimand to expulsion from University. It is the responsibility of every student to read the Code and familiarize him or herself with its contents. The Code is available at www.uwo.ca/univsec/pdf/academic_policies/appeals/code_of_conduct.pdf  Copies can also be obtained from the Office of the Registrar, from Deans' Offices, and from Residences.

 

Academic Handbook, Appeals, Code of Student Conduct

 

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STUDENT ACADEMIC APPEALS - GRADUATE

Graduate Student Appeals of Academic Decisions
Students may appeal an academic decision or ruling in accordance with the appeal procedures set out below. Students have a right to appeal to their graduate programs and, if unsuccessful, to the Vice-Provost (Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies). Some decisions may be appealed further to the Senate Review Board Academic. The Vice-Provost’s rulings in academic matters are final unless overturned or modified on appeal to the Senate Review Board Academic (SRBA).

A decision or ruling remains in effect unless overturned or modified by the individual or body hearing an appeal of that decision or ruling.

Throughout this document, the word “Vice-Provost” means “Vice-Provost (Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies) or designate.”

Note: Appeals of Scholastic Offence decisions are not covered under this policy. For the appeal procedure for scholastic offence decisions see “Scholastic Discipline for Graduate Students”
www.uwo.ca/univsec/pdf/academic_policies/appeals/scholastic_discipline_grad.pdf.

Subject Matter of an Appeal
Students may appeal:

  • a mark on an examination or on a particular piece of work, or final standing in a course
  • a ruling of an instructor, program, or administrator in an academic matter


Grounds of Appeal
An appeal must be based on one or more of the following grounds:

  • medical or compassionate circumstances
  • extenuating circumstances beyond the student’s control
  • bias
  • inaccuracy
  • unfairness

Ignorance of Senate regulations and policies, program requirements, and policies as set out in the University's Academic Calendars does not constitute grounds for an appeal.

Appeal Procedure
It is incumbent on students to initiate each step at the earliest opportunity, and on the University officers concerned to act as expeditiously as possible. Note: Legal counsel is not permitted at any stage of the appeal process prior to the level of the Senate Review Board Academic.

A. Appeals at the Course/Program Level
1. If the appeal relates to a specific course, a student must first attempt to resolve the matter informally with the course instructor. If the instructor is not available or if the matter is not resolved to the student’s satisfaction, the student has a right of appeal to the individual(s) or body designated to hear appeals at the graduate-program level. Students should contact their graduate program to obtain information on the program’s appeal process. An appeal must be filed within four weeks of the issuance of the mark or ruling.

2. For all other appeals, a student must initiate the appeal with the individual(s) or body designated to hear appeals at the graduate-program level. Students should contact their graduate program to obtain information on the program’s appeal process. An appeal must be filed within four weeks of the issuance of the mark or ruling.

3. In no circumstances shall the original decision maker(s) whose decision or ruling is under appeal hear an appeal of that decision or ruling at the program level.

4. Deadlines for filing appeals may be extended at the discretion of the individual or body hearing student appeals.

5. In addition to any other information required by individual graduate programs, appeals submitted by students should include the following information:

  • the matter being appealed
  • the grounds of appeal
  • a clear and detailed explanation of the facts supporting the grounds of appeal
  • all supporting documentation
  • the desired outcome or remedy

6. The designated decision maker shall issue a written decision (“program decision”), normally within 3 weeks of receipt of the appeal.

B. Appeals at the SGPS level
7. A student may appeal the program decision to the Vice-Provost. An appeal application together with all required documentation, including a copy of the previous decision, must be filed with the Office of the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies within three weeks of the issuance of the program decision. Students should contact the Office of the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies for more information. The required application form can be found online at: http://grad.uwo.ca/doc/academic_services/appeal/appeal_SGPS_form.pdf. The deadline for filing an appeal may be extended at the discretion of the Vice-Provost.

8. In considering an appeal, the Vice-Provost shall review the materials submitted by the student and the program and may obtain such further information as the Vice-Provost deems relevant to the appeal. The Vice-Provost shall give the student a reasonable opportunity to meet with her or him and may meet with such other individuals as she or he deems necessary.

9. The Vice-Provost shall issue a written decision, with reasons, normally within four weeks of receipt of the appeal.

10. A student may have a further right of appeal to the Senate Review Board Academic (SRBA) if the decision falls within the jurisdiction of SRBA. Appeals to SRBA must be made within six weeks of the date of the Vice-Provost’s decision. The decision of the Vice-Provost or designate remains in full force and effect unless and until overturned or modified by SRBA.

11. Additional information and SRBA appeal applications are available on the Web at:
www.uwo.ca/univsec/pdf/academic_policies/appeals/appealsgrad.pdf
www.uwo.ca/univsec/pdf/academic_policies/appeals/SRBA_Application.pdf

Academic Handbook, Rights and Responsibilities, Graduate Student Academic Appeals

 

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STUDENT ACADEMIC APPEALS - UNDERGRADUATE

Requests for Relief

Undergraduate Student Academic Appeals
The University Senate has delegated to Deans the right to waive any academic regulation. The Deans' rulings in academic matters are final unless overturned or modified on appeal to the Senate Review Board Academic (SRBA). SRBA is the final body to which students may appeal certain rulings of Deans in academic matters, and its decisions are final.

Requests to Instructor, Department Chair, and Faculty Dean
Note: Throughout this document, reference to "Dean" is to be interpreted "Dean or his/her designate or equivalent" and reference to "Department Chair" is to be interpreted "Department Chair or his/her designate or equivalent".

Requests for relief for undergraduate students ordinarily proceed in this order:

  1. Course instructor (informal consultation)*
  2. Department Chair (submission of written request)
  3. Faculty Dean (submission of written request)

* A request for relief relating to a specific course (e.g., with respect to a mark, grade, appropriateness of assignments or examinations, or grading practices) must be initiated with the appropriate course instructor. Requests for relief on other matters should be initiated in the office having immediate jurisdiction for the particular requirement or regulation in question. Students in doubt as to the appropriate level at which to initiate such requests should consult their Dean. Scholastic offences will be handled in accordance with the Policy on Scholastic Discipline.

Normally, a request for relief in a Certificate-credit or Diploma-credit course will proceed as set out above. Except as otherwise noted, in cases where a certificate-credit or diploma-credit course is offered by a Faculty with department structure, but is not offered by a particular department, a request for relief will proceed directly from the instructor to the Dean of the Faculty.

In a course offered by Continuing Studies at Western, "Department Chair" shall be interpreted as "Director of Continuing Studies at Western" and "Faculty Dean" shall be interpreted as "Dean of the partnering Faculty".


Requests for Relief
A student may request that a grade on a particular piece of work or a final standing in a course or program be changed; OR a student may request an exemption from a Senate academic regulation.

The subject of a request for relief can range from waiver of progression requirements to accuracy of grades on examinations or assignments, to appropriateness of sanctions imposed for scholastic offences. Such a request can include questions of fairness or appropriateness of general grading practices, and can be launched regardless of whether a record of the student's work exists.

Examples of relief that can be considered by a Dean:

  1. Waiver of a Senate regulation or requirement.
  2. Allowing the opportunity for reexamination or reassessment.
  3. Directing the adjustment of a grade on a particular piece of work following the report of an independent assessor.
    [It is possible that a grade may be lowered as a result of reassessment.]
  4. Directing the adjustment of grades in the case of a request for relief against general marking or grading practices.
    [This form of relief does not extend to the reevaluation of the work submitted.]
  5. Setting aside or adjusting a ruling at a previous level that a scholastic offence occurred or adjusting the severity of a sanction imposed for a scholastic offence.

Not all types of relief are suitable for any given request. For example, in the absence of an adequate permanent record of the student's work, the only form of relief that might be appropriate would be allowing the opportunity for reassessment.

Grounds
The grounds for a request for relief may be one or more of: medical or compassionate circumstances, extenuating circumstances beyond the appellant's control, bias, inaccuracy or unfairness. All grounds advanced in a request for relief must be supported by a clear and detailed explanation of the reasons for the request together with all supporting documentation.

Ignorance of Senate regulations and policies and particular program requirements and policies as set out in the Academic Calendar does not constitute grounds for a request for relief.

 

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Deadlines for Requests for Relief (Appeals)


Marks: A request for relief against a mark or grade must be initiated with the instructor as soon as possible after the mark is issued. In the event that the instructor is not available to the student, or fails to act, or if the matter is not resolved satisfactorily with the instructor, a written request for relief must be submitted to the Chair of the department within three weeks from the date that the mark was issued. In the case of a final grade in a course, the written request for relief must be submitted to the Chair of the department by the following dates:

January Marks: January 31st
April/May Marks: June 30th
Intersession: July 31st
May/June Dentistry Marks: July 31st
Summer Evening: August 31st
Summer Day: September 15th
Spring/Summer Distance Studies Courses: October 15th

A request for relief against a decision of the Chair must be made to the Dean in writing not later than three weeks after the Chair's decision is issued. All relevant information and documentation must be provided to the Dean with the request for relief.

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Program Eligibility and Progression

Program eligibility and progression: A request for relief against a decision concerning program eligibility must be made to the Chair of the department in writing by June 30th. A request against a decision of the Chair must be made to the Dean in writing within three weeks of the Chair's decision being issued. Students requesting a Dean’s Waiver of Progression Requirements must do so in writing to the Dean of their Faculty by June 30th (if required to withdraw at the end of April), or within 30 days of the grades becoming available through their Student Center as posted by the Office of the Registrar (if required to withdraw following any other session).

Other requests for relief: Requests for relief regarding Scholastic Offences and other matters not related to the normal completion of a course during a regular academic session (including requests for relief against grades in a Special Examination, satisfaction of "Incomplete" requirements, etc.), must be made in writing within three weeks of the date of a decision being issued.

Notes:

  1. In the Medical Program, a request for relief against a mark must be initiated with the instructor within four weeks of the mark being approved by the appropriate administrative committee. All other requests for relief must be made within four weeks of the date of the decision giving rise to the request for relief. A request for relief to each successive level of appeal must be made within four weeks of the date of the decision at the prior level.
  2. In the Faculty of Law, a request for relief against a final grade in a course must be submitted to the Dean by March 1st for First Term Marks; by April 1st for January Term Marks; and, by June 30th for Spring Term Marks. All other applicable deadlines are as set out above.
  3. In the Richard Ivey School of Business, a request for relief against a mark must be initiated with the instructor within six weeks of the mark being issued. All other requests for relief must be made within six weeks of the date of the decision giving rise to the request for relief. A request for relief to each successive level of appeal must be made within six weeks of the date of the decision at the prior level.
  4. The deadline for an appeal to SRBA remains at six weeks after a decision has been issued by a student's Dean.

 

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Procedure

It is incumbent on the student to initiate each step at the earliest opportunity and on the university officer concerned to act upon that request as expeditiously as possible. In the case of a request for relief relating to a specific course, a resolution of the problem should first be attempted through informal consultation with the instructor. If the student is dissatisfied with the decision of the instructor, or if the instructor fails to act, or cannot or will not be physically available within a reasonable time period, a written request for relief may be submitted directly to the department Chair or to the Dean in faculties without departmental structure.

Following a request for relief by an undergraduate student to a department Chair, the student, if not satisfied with the decision of the Chair, may then submit a written request to the Dean of the faculty in which the course or program was taken. In the case of requests for relief relating to: (a) the grade on a piece of work or final standing in a course or a regulation relating to a specific course, the relevant Dean will be the Dean of the faculty offering that course; and (b) enrollment in a specific program, the relevant Dean will be the Dean of the faculty offering that program.

A written request need not be lengthy, but should indicate clearly the detailed reasons for the request and the relief requested. All relevant supporting documentation must be attached.

In the case of a scholastic offence, the procedures for a request for relief are set out in the Policy on Scholastic Discipline.

A student may appeal the decision of a Dean to the Senate Review Board Academic only if the decision falls within the jurisdiction of SRBA as set out below under APPEALS TO SRBA. A Dean's decision which is appealed to SRBA remains in full force and effect unless overturned or modified by SRBA.

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Appeals to SRBA


Jurisdiction
In addition to jurisdiction conferred upon SRBA by any other Senate regulation or policy, SRBA has jurisdiction to hear appeals from certain academic decisions of Deans, other than those relating to admission and advanced standing, provided that the appellant has followed the procedures set out above for requesting relief at the earlier levels and provided that SRBA otherwise has jurisdiction to consider the appeal as set out below.

  1. For scholastic offence appeals, a student has the right to an oral hearing before SRBA if the appeal is against a finding that the student's conduct amounted to a "scholastic offence" and/or for relief against the penalty imposed by the Dean as a result of a "scholastic offence".
  2. For other appeals, a student may apply for an oral hearing before SRBA in the following circumstances:
            a. the student alleges that there has been a failure to follow, or to properly apply, a Senate regulation; or
            b. the Dean's decision requires the student to withdraw from a program, from the University or from an Affiliated University College; or
            c. the appeal is against general marking or grading practices 
    A panel of SRBA, upon considering only the written application of the student (see Application for Hearing, below), may in its discretion order that an oral hearing be scheduled, or deny the appeal. In making its decision, SRBA will consider the grounds and evidence provided in the Application for Hearing. In the case of 2.a, the student must set out in the Details of the Appeal both the Senate regulation and the alleged error, as well as explain how this error affected the student’s academic performance.
  3. In exceptional circumstances, SRBA may agree to an oral hearing of an appeal against a Dean's decision that does not fall within #1 or #2 above, if a student alleges in the Application for Hearing that there was a failure to observe a procedural requirement at the decanal level or bias at the decanal level. Such allegations must be supported by evidence. A detailed description of the evidence supporting the allegation (including any supporting documentation) must be presented, in writing, as part of the Application for Hearing. SRBA will request a written response from the Dean before making a decision. The student will be provided with a copy of the Dean's response and will be given the opportunity to reply to it in writing. If SRBA is satisfied on the basis of the written documentation that there was a failure to observe a procedural requirement at the decanal level it may instruct the Dean to reconsider the matter. If the SRBA panel agrees to an oral hearing of an appeal alleging a failure to observe a procedural requirement at the decanal level or bias at the decanal level, the standard onus requirements set out below will apply.

    Note: A denial of transfer into a Faculty, School, Affiliated University College or program following a requirement to withdraw from another Faculty, School, Affiliated University College or program at the University may not be appealed to SRBA. The denial of transfer is an admission decision and is therefore outside SRBA's jurisdiction.

If a party wishes to challenge the jurisdiction of SRBA to hear a particular matter, the party must give written notice with reasons to the Chair of SRBA prior to the date of the hearing. The Chair, upon receipt of such notice, or in any other circumstances where it appears to the Chair that there is a question as to whether the SRBA has jurisdiction to hear a matter, may in his/her discretion convene a panel to consider such written arguments as it deems appropriate and decide the issue of jurisdiction. The decision of any such panel shall be binding on any subsequent panel hearing the merits of the appeal.

Onus

  1. The onus is on the student to satisfy SRBA that the ruling of the Dean was unreasonable or unsupportable on the evidence before the Dean; or, with respect to a sanction imposed for a "scholastic offence," that the penalty was unreasonable.
  2. Notwithstanding #1 above, in cases where a Dean made a finding that a student's conduct amounted to a "scholastic offence" and where the student denies either that the acts were committed or that the acts amounted to a "scholastic offence," the onus is on the Dean to satisfy SRBA that the student committed the alleged acts and that the acts amounted to a "scholastic offence."
  3. The onus requirements set out in #1 and #2 for an appeal against a finding that a student's conduct amounted to a "scholastic offence" or against the sanction imposed for a scholastic offence, apply mutatis mutandis to an appeal against a finding that there has been a breach of other University policies such as the Policy and Procedures for the Conduct of Research, or an appeal against the sanction imposed for such breach.

Evidence
SRBA will consider only that evidence that was before the Dean whose decision is being appealed. Evidence that was not before the Dean will not be considered unless SRBA determines that it is relevant, significant and could not have been available at an earlier stage through reasonable efforts. If additional documentary evidence is submitted it must be accompanied by a written explanation as to why the evidence is relevant and significant and why it was not previously available. Similarly, if either party intends to call a witness whose evidence was not before the Dean, the party must file with the University Secretariat prior to the hearing a written explanation as to why such evidence is relevant and significant and why it was not previously available.

Copies of all documentation that the parties intend to present at the hearing, together with a copy of the appellant's official transcript of academic record (obtained by the University Secretariat from the Office of the Registrar), will be distributed to both parties (appellant and Dean) and to the members of SRBA serving on the hearing panel by the University Secretariat prior to the date of the hearing.

Relief
In granting an appeal, SRBA will grant such relief as it deems appropriate.

Application for Hearing
Appeals to the SRBA must be made on an Application for Hearing which must be filed with the University Secretariat within six weeks* of the date of the Dean's decision. Exceptions to the six week time limit for filing an appeal with the SRBA are at the discretion of the Chair of SRBA upon written application by the student.

An Application for Hearing will not be accepted by the University Secretariat unless the application is complete. A complete application will include the following: details of the appeal, including a description of the matter under appeal and the reasons for challenging the Dean's decision; the requested relief; a copy of the Dean's decision; a copy of the student's letter to the Dean requesting relief, if applicable; and all relevant supporting documentation. Applications for a hearing by the SRBA and further details on hearing procedures may be obtained from the University Secretariat, Room 4101, Stevenson Hall.

A request from a party to postpone a scheduled hearing, or to delay scheduling a hearing after an Application has been filed, will be at the discretion of the Chair of SRBA and will be granted only in exceptional circumstances. Such postponement or delay shall not exceed six months. The parties will then be contacted to arrange a hearing date. (If the appellant cannot be contacted to arrange a hearing date, he/she will be notified of the hearing date by registered mail at the address set out in the Application.) SRBA will proceed in the absence of one or more parties if it is satisfied that the parties were notified of the hearing date.

If, following receipt of an Application for Hearing, the University Secretariat is unable to contact the appellant within a reasonable time to schedule a hearing, the appellant will be notified by registered mail at the address on the Application for Hearing of the deadline by which he/she must contact the University Secretariat (six months from the date the Application for Hearing was filed) to arrange a hearing. If the appellant has not contacted the University Secretariat by the specified deadline, the Application and documentation will be returned to the appellant and may not be resubmitted.

The Application for Hearing can be printed from:
www.uwo.ca/univsec/pdf/academic_policies/appeals/SRBA_Application.pdf

Further Appeals
SRBA is the final level of academic appeal in the University; its decisions in substantive matters, and decisions as to jurisdiction and whether it will hear an appeal, are final. The Chair of Senate (i.e., the President & Vice-Chancellor) will entertain appeals against decisions of SRBA only when a party alleges a serious procedural error by SRBA. An appeal to the Chair of Senate must be filed in writing within two weeks of the date of the Notice of Decision of SRBA. After inviting written arguments from the parties, the Chair of Senate may order that the matter be re-heard by SRBA if the Chair of Senate is satisfied that, as a result of a serious procedural error by SRBA, the parties did not have an opportunity to present their case in accordance with the PROCEDURE AT HEARINGS and it could not be said that the parties had been accorded a fair hearing.

Decisions which are appealed to the Chair of Senate remain in full force and effect until the appeal is disposed of by the Chair of Senate.

Procedure at Hearings
SRBA will review its jurisdiction to hear the appeal in closed session prior to the commencement of the hearing.

    Note: If a party disputes the jurisdiction of SRBA to hear the appeal, the Chair must receive written notice and reasons prior to the date of the hearing. See Jurisdiction above.

A. ORDER OF PROCEEDINGS

  1. Introduction of SRBA members and review of documentation.
  2. Opening Statement by appellant (brief description of the grounds for the appeal and the relief requested).
  3. Presentation of evidence by appellant.
  4. Cross-examination of appellant by Faculty representative, followed by questions from SRBA members.
  5. Re-examination of appellant, if desired, on any new matters brought out in cross-examination. (The procedure in 3, 4 and 5 is followed for the appellant and witnesses. The order of presentation is at the appellant's discretion.)
  6. Opening statement by Faculty representative.
  7. Presentation of evidence by Faculty representative.
  8. Cross-examination of Faculty representative by appellant, followed by questions from SRBA members.
  9. Re-examination of Faculty representative, if desired, on any new matters brought out in cross-examination. (The procedure in 7, 8 and 9 is followed for the Faculty representative and witnesses. The order of presentation is at the Faculty's discretion.)
  10. Reply evidence by appellant, if desired, on any new matters raised by the Faculty.
  11. Cross-examination of reply witness, followed by questions from SRBA members.
  12. Summary remarks by Faculty representative.
  13. Summary remarks by appellant.


B. ORDER OF PROCEEDINGS - Scholastic Offence Appeals*
Where the appeal concerns allegations of a scholastic offence which are contested by the appellant, the order of proceedings shall be:

  1. Introduction of SRBA members and review of documentation.
  2. Opening statement by Faculty representative.
  3. Presentation of evidence by Faculty representative.
  4. Cross-examination of Faculty representative by appellant, followed by questions from SRBA members.
  5. Re-examination of Faculty representative, if desired, on any new matters brought out in cross-examination. (The procedure in 3, 4 and 5 is followed for the Faculty representative and witnesses. The order of presentation is at the Faculty's discretion.)
  6. Opening Statement by appellant.
  7. Presentation of evidence by appellant.
  8. Cross-examination of appellant by Faculty representative, followed by questions from SRBA members.
  9. Re-examination of appellant, if desired, on any new matters brought out in cross-examination. (The procedure in 7, 8 and 9 is followed for the appellant and witnesses. The order of presentation is at the appellant's discretion.)
  10. Reply evidence by Faculty, if desired, on any new matters raised by the appellant.
  11. Cross-examination of reply witness, followed by questions from SRBA members.
  12. Summary remarks by appellant.
  13. Summary remarks by Faculty representative.

* Where the student does not contest the allegations of a scholastic offence, but appeals against the sanction(s) imposed, the order of proceedings will be those set out in section "A" above.

Scholastic offences are set out in Senate policy (see Scholastic Discipline in the "Academic Rights and Responsibilities" section of the Calendar). The Faculty is required, in cases of this type, to present its case first, in order to ensure that SRBA has a full understanding of the nature and extent of the allegations against the student prior to the student presenting his or her case.

C. ADJOURNMENTS
An adjournment of the hearing may be ordered by the Chair when necessary. Convenience to the parties and to the members of SRBA will be considered by the Chair in ordering an adjournment or setting a date for resumption of the hearing, but the paramount consideration will be the provision of a fair hearing. In successive sessions, the original SRBA members must constitute a quorum.

D. EXPEDIENCE
An effort should be made to limit the presentation of non-contentious facts and arguments to the SRBA. Time will be saved if the parties are able to agree in advance on as many as possible of the facts relevant to the case. The appellant is encouraged to contact the Dean in this regard prior to the hearing to determine what facts can be agreed upon.

E. RETENTION OF LEGAL COUNSEL
In matters of academic appeal, the right to be represented by legal counsel will be accorded only at the level of SRBA. The Senate Review Board Academic also reserves the right to retain counsel.

F. WITNESSES
The parties may call witnesses to support their case. Witnesses will be invited into the hearing room when called upon to give evidence. (See also the section on Evidence above.)

G. COSTS
The parties must bear all their own legal expenses, if any. SRBA will not order the Faculty to pay all or part of the appellant's costs, nor will it order the appellant to pay all or part of the Faculty's costs.

H. PREVIOUS DECISIONS
Each appeal is decided on its merits. A decision of SRBA does not set a precedent.

I. NOTICE OF DECISION
At the conclusion of the hearing, SRBA will deliberate in closed session for the purpose of arriving at a decision. The Notice of Decision will be sent to the parties as soon as possible after a decision is made. A brief written statement of reasons will follow within a reasonable time.

J. OFFICIAL RECORD OF THE APPEAL
The official record of the appeal hearing will consist of all documentation submitted by the parties, the Notice of Decision, and the statement of reasons of SRBA. This record will be retained by the University Secretariat for at least one year following the hearing.

SRBA JURISDICTION UNDER MAPP POLICY 7.0 – ACADEMIC INTEGRITY IN RESEARCH ACTIVITIES

For appeals under MAPP Policy 7.0 – Academic Integrity in Research Activities, SRBA regulations are as follows:

(a) Jurisdiction: In matters pertaining to the Academic Integrity in Research Activities, SRBA has jurisdiction to hear appeals of decanal rulings regarding allegations made against student respondents when the Dean has decided the allegation will be dealt with under a Scholastic Discipline Policy.
(b) Confidentiality: Any proceedings pertaining to the Academic Integrity in Research Activities shall be confidential unless one of the parties to the proceedings requests that the proceeding be open to the public. If such a request is made, the proceeding shall be open to the public unless there are compelling reasons that the proceeding remain closed for reasons of public safety, privacy of personal information, confidential third party information, or undue prejudice to the proceeding, some other proceeding or a party or member of the public.
(c) Procedure: Any proceedings pertaining to the Academic Integrity in Research Activities under the jurisdiction of SRBA shall proceed in accordance with this Undergraduate Student Academic Appeals policy.

 

Academic Handbook, Rights and Responsibilities, Undergraduate Student Appeals

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