Grade Appeals


The Faculty of Arts believes that the instructors are incontestably in the best possible position to assess the performance of their students and that Departments (through the Chair) are the custodians of acceptable standards of grading practices within the Departmentt. Therefore, the determination of the final grades in a course is the initial responsibility of the instructor(s), or the persons expressly authorized by the Department Chair to determine the final grade. 


Every course syllabus will explain how that course will be graded including what each assignment and exam is worth toward determining your final grade. More information on the grading system can be viewed here


As mentioned your instructor will know the most about your performance in class and how your final grade was calculated, so they are your first point of contact for any questions. 

While a student is entitled to an explanation of why a Grade was awarded, the following do not constitute grounds for an Appeal:

  • disliking the instructor’s marking scheme;
  • coming close to (but failing to meet) the instructor’s cut-off point for a higher grade;
  • disagreeing with the instructor’s judgment about the quality of submitted work.

Only the following may constitute grounds for an appeal:

  • errors in calculation;
  • procedural errors;
  • failure to consider all relevant factors;
  • bias and/or discrimination.


Appeal situations are usually avoidable and the Faculty of Arts advocates early and informal resolution of concerns. Most students do not move forward with an appeal after a discussion with their instructor. However, if you wish to appeal you will first initiate an informal appeal.

Informal appeals will be heard (in order) by: 

  1. Your Instructor
  2. Department/Unit Chair (or Chair's delegate)
  3. Associate Dean Undergraduate

Students must initiate Grade Appeals with the instructor by the following deadlines:

  1. no later than February 1 for courses taught during the immediately preceding Fall Term;
  2. no later than June 25 for Winter-term or full-year courses taught during the immediately preceding Fall/Winter term;
  3. no later than thirty Calendar Days after the posting of final Grades on Bear Tracks for courses taught in Spring/Summer terms (e.g., 30 days after grades are posted on Bear Tracks).

If the situation is not resolved after the decision of the Associate Dean,  then students may make a formal appeal. A Formal Appeal involving a final grade may be heard if the Informal Appeal failed to resolve the problem and if the grounds for Appeal include one or more of the following:

  1. errors in calculation
  2. a procedural error;
  3. failure to consider all factors relevant to the decision being appealed;
  4. bias and/or discrimination.

Formal Appeals are heard by: 

  1. Academic and Grade Appeals Committee


  1. Grading System Explained

  2. Grade Results and Statements

  3. Faculty of Arts Grade Appeal Procedures 


The Faculty recommends that students consult with the Student Ombuds for advice in formulating appeals and to act as advisors at Appeal Hearings.