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Grade Appeal Process


Students are responsible for maintaining standards of academic progress and following procedures established and made known by their college instructors. The purpose of the grade appeal is to protect each student against prejudiced, arbitrary or capricious academic evaluation.

Appeal Expectations & Conditions

A grade appeal only applies to the final course grade. The assignment of a grade is the right and responsibility of the instructor. It is the right and responsibility of the student to appeal a grade he/she deems arbitrary or capricious. In a grade appeal, the Instruction Division Dean will meet only with the student or instructor, and no other advocate may be present. The student is responsible for knowing and initiating the grade appeal procedure.


A student must first review his or her grade with the instructor who assigned the grade. The burden of proof shall rest with the student to demonstrate arbitrary or capricious assignment of the final course grade.

If a student wishes to further pursue the formal grade appeal, it must be done in writing to the instructor's Dean, with a copy to the instructor, within the first three instructional weeks of the subsequent quarter, including Summer Session. Because many faculty are not on campus during Summer Session, some Spring Quarter grade appeals may not be resolved until Fall Quarter. The student should have documentation such as graded assignments and test results to support the written grade appeal. Within two weeks of receiving a written grade appeal, the Dean will review the documentation presented by the student, discuss the matter with the instructor and the student, and provide a written response to the student, with a copy to the instructor.

The student may appeal the Dean’s written response by delivering a written justification for further review to the Dean within ten days of the date the Dean’s decision was mailed. The Dean will then appoint a review team of three faculty members from related disciplines who will review documentation and provide a written recommendation to the Dean. The Dean will submit the faculty review team's recommendation to the student and instructor within 15 instructional days. The recommendation of the faculty review team is the last step in the process.

The evaluation of the extent of course mastery is exclusively within the province of the instructor for a particular course, and only that instructor may initiate adjustments or grade changes.