Grade Appeals Board
Procedures for a Grade Appeal
Established in 1970, the Grade Appeals Board (GAB) functions primarily to mediate between student and instructor without creating an air of judicial inequity. The intent is not to embarrass students or instructors or to assess penalty or retribution when mistakes on either side are discovered, but to provide a forum in which honest differences of opinion can be discussed rationally and peacefully.
Appeal of a Final Grade - The deadline for filing a grade appeal is no later than four (4) months after the date grades are officially due in the Registrar’s Office, or six (6) weeks after the student begins a new semester, whichever comes first. The appeal form requires a concise, but complete written statement outlining the particulars of the appeal. The GAB is authorized to hear those cases where a student believes an instructor’s grading practices and procedures were not consistently and accurately followed when determining a final grade. The GAB bases its decisions solely upon whether the grade was assigned fairly within the grading system adopted by the faculty member.
It is very important to note that the GAB does not engage in any of the following activities:
- Grading papers or examinations or challenging the instructor’s evaluation of oral participation in class
- Reviewing cases involving graduate oral or qualifying examinations or theses/dissertations
- Making decisions on the basis of the academic soundness of the instructor’s teaching methods or grading systems
- Basing decisions on a general consideration of “good” or “bad” instruction
The GAB does not have the academic competency in the various fields that are involved to evaluate field specific instruction; nor can the GAB overcome the differences of opinion over the soundness of teaching methods. Recourse against generally “bad” instruction must be handled at the department or college level; therefore, these cases will be referred back to the departmental and college levels for resolution.
1. Student obtains and completes an appeal form
Appeal forms are available in the Office of Academic Affairs, 101 Whitehurst Hall, the day after final grades are due. In completing the form, the student must discuss the action with their academic advisor, the instructor, the instructor’s department head and the instructor’s dean or associate dean and thereby informs each official of the pending action. The procedure may encourage any dispute to be solved by the instructor, the department head and the instructor's dean or associate dean before it is heard by the Grade Appeals Board. If during these discussions it becomes clear that a grade change is necessary, the instructor, the department head, or the dean or associate dean can submit a change of grade form to the Office of the Registrar.
2. Student submits the form to the Coordinator of the Appeals Board
The student submits the completed form and his/her written statement to 101 Whitehurst Hall or firstname.lastname@example.org. Staff in the Office of Academic Affairs will ensure all necessary parties are contacted and all required documents are received, including a copy of the instructor's redacted grade book. Staff may request to meet with the student and instructor before the hearing is scheduled to obtain additional information regarding the case. Prior to the hearing, the student will receive a copy of the instructor's verification form and the instructor will receive a copy of the student's form and written statement.
3. Appeals Board schedules hearing for both student and instructor
Appointments for hearings are confirmed by email using the student and instructor's OSU email addresses. Both hearings are held on the same day but never simultaneously, so there will be no confrontation between student and instructor. Only persons specifically invited by the GAB may be present at a hearing.
4. Appeals Board makes decision
Written notice of the majority decision is sent within ten business days by email to the student, the student’s academic advisor, the instructor, the instructor’s department head and the instructor’s dean or associate dean. When the Board votes to alter a grade, the decision is also sent to the Office of the Registrar; and the grade is changed.
Oklahoma State University, in compliance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Higher Education Act), does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, qualified handicap or disability in any of its policies, practices or procedures. This provision includes, but is not limited to, admissions, employment, financial aid and educational services.