18.2 College-Level Academic Appeal: Procedure

College-Level Academic Appeals normally apply only to academic decisions relating to a Faculty-Level Academic Appeal.

18.2.a Filing a College-Level Academic Appeal

If a major academic decision is not satisfactorily resolved between the student and the Faculty through the Faculty-Level Academic Appeal process, the student may file a College-Level Academic Appeal through the Office of the Registrar. All appeals must be filed within ten (10) business days following the written decision of the Senior Dean or designate regarding a Faculty-Level Academic Appeal.

Decisions relating to a Grade Review cannot be appealed to a College Academic Appeal Panel except for reasons relating to breach of process in the handling of the Grade Review. Students must appeal the results of their decision and demonstrate one or more of the following grounds:

  • there is new evidence that is likely to change the outcome;
  • there is evidence of procedural error or bias in the process; and/or
  • the sanction imposed is not consistent with the nature of the offense.

College-Level Academic Appeals must be filed in writing to the Office of the Registrar on the Application for a College-Level Academic Appeal Hearing Form. The form is available from the Office of the Registrar or found on the Academic Regulations webpage.

Prior to filing a College-Level Academic Appeal, students are encouraged to consult with a student appeal advisor by contacting the Assistant to the Registrar in the Office of the Registrar. 

At the time of filing the appeal, a student must:

  1. state the grounds for the appeal and the resolution being sought;
  2. provide a copy of the written decision from the appropriate Dean (or designate) indicating the outcome of the Faculty-Level Academic Appeal or the decision confirming the charge of Academic Misconduct;
  3. include copies of all documentation supporting the reasons for the appeal;
  4. indicate if they will represent themselves at the Appeal Hearing or if they wish to have someone present the argument.  If being represented, the student must provide the name and role of the individual who will represent the student;
  5. indicate who, if anyone, will accompany them at the Academic Appeal Hearing (maximum of 2 people); and
  6. indicate the name of the student appeal advisor, or, indicate if they would like Humber to make available a student appeal advisor to assist them in preparing for the Hearing.
  7. Identify any witnesses or other individuals the student feels have knowledge of the situation and who therefore should be at the Appeal Hearing.

Once a formal appeal is filed, the Office of the Registrar shall:

  1. schedule the appeal date and time; and
  2. distribute the application and the supporting documentation according to the appropriate timelines.

The Faculty will, within a maximum of seven (7) business days of the time the Appeal was filed, provide the following to the Office of the Registrar:

  1. a written response to the student’s issue;
  2. all documentation to be presented at the College-Level Academic Appeal Hearing; and
  3. the name of the individual(s) who will be representing the Faculty at the hearing, and the name(s) of any witnesses the Faculty will be calling. The professor directly involved in the academic decision being appealed is expected to appear.  In the event that the professor is unable to attend the Academic Appeal Hearing, a signed statement, which explains the involvement in the situation and the reasons for the absence, shall be provided to the Office of the Registrar.

Upon receipt of the response from the Faculty, the Office of the Registrar shall distribute the complete package of documentation along with the names of all participants to the student, the Academic Appeal Panel and the Faculty. The student shall have a minimum of five (5) business days to review the Faculty's submission prior to the Academic Appeal Hearing. 

Extension(s) to the above time frames may be granted if extenuating circumstances can be shown.  Requests for extension(s) from the student and/or from the Faculty shall be made in writing through the Office of the Registrar to the Chair of the Academic Appeal Panel. The Chair shall respond to the request through the Office of the Registrar.

No new documentation from either the student or the Faculty may be submitted on the day of the scheduled hearing, unless otherwise directed by the Chair of the Academic Appeal Panel, following consultation with the Panel members.

18.2.b Role of the Office of the Registrar

The Office of the Registrar shall be responsible for coordinating all of the activities associated with an Academic Appeal, including but not necessarily limited to:

  • coordinating the Academic Appeal Hearing according to the Academic Regulations and distributing all documentation;
  • scheduling the Academic Appeal Hearing and notifying the participants;
  • distributing the decision; and
  • secure storage of appeal documentation for a period of seven (7) years.

18.2.c Role of the Student Appeal Advisor

A student appeal advisor shall be made available to advise the student throughout the process and during the Academic Appeal Hearing.  A student may contact an advisor by contacting the Office of the Registrar.

At the request of the student and with their express written permission, the advisor may, on behalf of the student, communicate with the Faculty prior to the scheduled hearing.  An advisor will provide guidance or advice but will not represent the student or the Faculty at the Academic Appeal Hearing.  An advisor may, with the student’s permission, accompany the student to meeting(s) with Faculty personnel and/or the Academic Appeal Hearing. 

Confidential information may at times be shared by the Faculty and/or student with the advisor. The advisor shall respect this confidentiality at all times.  It is understood that at no time during either the Grade Review or Academic Appeal stages will the advisor compromise Humber’s academic standards/regulations.

It is assumed that the student will disclose all relevant information to the advisor and that the student shall prepare and present all relevant material to the Academic Appeal Panel.  The advisor shall listen to ensure all material is presented fully and fairly.

If the student discloses to the advisor any issues, which, in the advisor’s opinion seem discriminatory or harassing in nature, the advisor is obligated to inform the student of Humber’s Human Rights policy and related procedures. 

Should the student elect a representative to present the case at the Appeal Hearing, the student appeal advisor’s role in the preparation for the Appeal shall cease.  The representative named by the student may request information regarding college policies and the appeal procedures by contacting the Office of the Registrar.

18.2.d Composition of the Appeal Panel

Humber shall ensure that an Academic Appeal Panel is comprised of five (5) individuals (including the Chair of the Appeal Panel) selected from Faculties other than the Faculty in which the student is registered, and the Faculty in which the academic decision being appealed originated, if the two are different.

Humber will designate a cross section of full-time administrators, faculty members, and students to serve on Academic Appeal Panels.  Humber provides an orientation to the Panel members to ensure the Academic Appeal Policy and corresponding procedures are correctly administered. 

Academic administrators and faculty volunteers shall serve for a three (3) year period.  Approved student volunteers shall serve for a period of three (3) years provided they maintain status as a student or have graduated from a program within the last 6 months.  Each Academic Appeal Panel will include at least one (1) student and one (1) faculty member.

To ensure consistency of process, each Academic Appeal Panel shall be chaired by the standing Chair(s) designated by Humber. 

When a student in a degree program files an academic appeal, the Academic Appeal Panel shall be comprised of individuals actively involved in that level of study.

If deemed relevant by the Academic Appeal Panel, the Chair may invite participation from a relevant professional regulatory body or professional association where the Panel recommends that such participation would provide information required to render an informed and fair decision. Such participation will be disclosed to the appellant prior to the Appeal Hearing.

18.2.e Dismissal of an Academic Appeal

An Academic Appeal may be dismissed if the student has previously submitted the same, or substantially the same complaint to any other formal College grievance procedure; if the appeal is not timely; if the student has improperly omitted a prior step(s) of the Faculty-Level Academic Appeal process (see Section 18.1.a and Section 18.1.b); or the student has commenced civil or other litigation against Humber on the decision in question.

If the Registrar feels any of these circumstances exist, the Registrar will refer the student’s written Application for a College-Level Academic Appeal and the student’s accompanying written documentation to the Chair of the Academic Appeal Panel for review.  If the Chair agrees that the Appeal is beyond the normal timelines or does not conform to the appeal policy, the Chair may dismiss the appeal and provide the reasons for the dismissal to the student in writing.

A student may withdraw his or her request for an Academic Appeal prior to the scheduled hearing date.

Humber Admission Requirements and Academic Regulations