Marking dispute process
From time to time students receive a grade/mark and/or feedback on an assessment piece which either they don't fully understand or which doesn't seem to be fair. Don't panic! - Ideally this wouldn't happen, but markers make mistakes too.
In such situations, it is recommended that you read over the feedback provided, take a bit of time to cool off, and then if you are still unclear or have concerns, seek clarification and request further explanation. This is best done by drawing attention to a list of specific concerns in writing.
The steps below offer a guide to a suggested process. Based on past experience, most issues that tend to come up with marking and feedback can be resolved quickly, simply, and satisfactorily via this suggested process.
Step 1: Email your case
- Email the unit convener the list of questions or comments you have. Very important: be as specific as possible. Some hints:
- The more precise and specific your comments, the greater the likelihood of you presenting evidence/argument that may lead to a different decision on review.
- The closer the correspondence between your comments, the marking criteria, and feedback that was already provided, the more likely it is that you will present evidence/argument that may lead to a different decision on review.
- The more honest you are, the more likely it is that a fair and accurate assessment can be made on review.
- Claims such as "I put in a lot of effort, therefore I deserve at least an X grade" or "I don't usually get a mark like this!" or "I am really keen to get into 4th year" or "I really want to get an HD" are very unlikely to support your case. Instead, explain your view about how the submitted work met the requirements listed in the guidelines and marking criteria.
- Each of the points raised will be reviewed and you will receive a response with additional feedback and a decision (if needed) which could be any of:
- Disagree and provide further explanation/feedback
- Agree and possibly make a corresponding adjustment to the marks
- Other proposal - e.g., request for more information
Step 2: A face to face meeting
- If Step 1 does not lead to a satisfactory outcome, then a face-to-face meeting with the unit convener may be suggested to discuss and resolve points of difference.
Step 3: Going to a second marker
- If resolution is not achieved via Step 1 and 2, which is rare, then a second marker may be suggested.
- A second marker would mark a clean copy of the assessment against the marking criteria. The remarked score then would stand (whether higher or lower).
Step 4: Informal appeal
- If, after Steps 1, 2, and 3, a student is still not satisfied with the assessment and grading, the next step is to appeal the decision in writing to the course convener(s) or head of discipline.
Step 5: Formal appeal
- If, after Steps 1, 2, 3, and 4, a student is still not satisfied with the assessment and grading, the next step is to lodge a formal appeal with the Associate Dean of Education for the Faculty. Students are encouraged (but not required) to try to resolve matters informally (via Steps 1, 2, 3 and 4) before writing to lodge a formal appeal. For more information, see University of Canberra's student grievance policy and procedure.
- A student can appeal any grade if there is some breach of appropriate policy or procedure. However, a student cannot, as a general rule, appeal academic judgement (there would have to have been some breach of policy that led to impaired academic judgement). The student needs to be clear about what the grounds for appeal.
- If a student would like to discuss the matter with someone else at UC, contact Student Support and/or the University of Canberra Students' Association (UCSA).