Academic Appeals

Questioning Grades Received on Assignments or Exams

Students may on occasion dispute grades on assignments or examinations. Procedures are outlined below:

STEP ONE: Informal discussion

  1. With instructor: The first step is always to discuss the issue with your instructor or the person whose ruling is in question. This must be done within two weeks of notification of your grade. It is usually a good idea to submit your request in writing and to keep a copy for yourself for future reference.
The course coordinator (if applicable) can be involved either by the student or the instructor at this point.
  2. With the Associate Dean, Academic: If the matter cannot be settled informally through discussions with the instructor and/or course coordinator, and the student believes that the grade received was unfair due to a procedural error or bias, the student may submit a written statement to the Associate Dean, Academic. This statement should clearly document the concerns and supporting evidence.

STEP TWO: Initiating a formal Appeal

If the matter cannot be settled through STEP 1 the student has the option of proceeding to the Faculty of Social Work Student Appeals Committee. (This must be done within 8 weeks of receiving the grade). Appeals by students in connection with the application of academic rules and regulations by members of the Faculty are subject to the policies and procedures established by the School of Graduate Studies of the University of Toronto.

The purpose of the Student Appeals Committee is to establish Appeal Panels to receive, hear, and decide on all student appeals in the Faculty.

The Practicum Manual describes the review process for students’ performance in the practicum and conduct in the practicum is guided by the University of Toronto (UT) Standards of Professional Practice Behaviour for all Health Professional Students and the UT Code of Student Conduct.

Quorum for the Committee is three members, including the Chair. The Committee will be composed of the following persons:

  • Chair: appointed by the Dean from amongst the faculty membership
  • 3 members of the teaching faculty (excluding the Dean or the Associate Dean, Academic)
  • If the issue relates to practicum, one of the three faculty members will be adjunct faculty involved in field education.
  • 1 graduate student
  • Alternate members: Alternate Committee members and an alternate Chair of the Committee shall be appointed by the Dean each academic year. The graduate students in the Faculty also normally should choose alternate student members. Once an alternate member is involved in an appeal, that alternate member shall continue to hear that same appeal until it is resolved.
  • Secretary: The Dean may assign a Secretary to the Appeals Committee, as required.


Students may file an Appeal with the School of Graduate Studies if they are not satisfied with the results of the above appeal. For further information, please refer to the SGS web site.