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To document the processes relating to the Academic Progress of students enrolled in the University’s higher education award courses, other than higher degrees by research.

Responsible Officer: Pro Vice-Chancellor (Planning and Integrity)
Implementation Officer: Pro Vice-Chancellor (Planning and Integrity)

First approved by:
Academic Board on 14 May 2013
effective from the end of Trimester 1, 2013
(developed as part of the Policy Review Project to
replace the Assessment (Higher Education Courses)
operational policy, and to include appropriate content
from the Assessment and Academic Progress enabling policy).

Amended on 12 August 2015
(Legislation document link change to Unisol website)




Academic Progress Procedure


This procedure was approved by Academic Board on 14 May 2013, effective from the end of Trimester 1, 2013.
This document is pursuant to the Assessment (Higher Education Courses) Policy
PURPOSE

To document the processes relating to the Academic Progress of students enrolled in the University’s higher education award courses, other than higher degrees by research.

SCOPE

This procedure applies to students enrolled in the University’s higher education award courses, other than higher degrees by research.

DEFINITIONS

Academic Progress: as defined in Regulation 5.3(1)—Assessment and Academic Progress in Higher Education Award Courses.

Exclusion: as defined in Regulation 5.3(1).

Faculty Committee: is the relevant committee appointed by each Faculty Board to deal with assessment and Academic Progress matters as specified in Regulation 5.3(1) (sometimes named ‘Faculty Academic Progress and Discipline Committee’, or ‘Faculty Academic Progress Committee’, or ‘Academic Progress Subcommittee).

Maximum Period of Study: the maximum period of time that may be taken by a student to complete a course of study. The maximum period of study is determined according to the following formula; however, Faculty Boards may increase the maximum period of study for a course. Faculty Boards may also vary this period for an individual student. Students will be notified in writing as soon as possible, and any variations require approval by the Academic Board:

    Maximum Period of Study = 2n + 1u (not including period of intermission)
    where
    ‘n’ is the number of years or trimesters taken to complete the course when undertaking a full-time load (a full-time load is normally 8 credit points per year)
    and
    ‘u’ is the length of time taken to complete one unit of study (usually a trimester or a year).

University Appeals Committee: a standing committee of Academic Board to hear and determine student academic appeals as specified in Regulation 5.3(1).

Unsatisfactory Academic Progress: Students are considered to be at risk of unsatisfactory Academic Progress when:

a)they have failed one or more units in a trimester, or
b)they are unlikely to complete their course within the maximum period of study.
Students are considered to have made unsatisfactory Academic Progress, when:
a)they have failed at least 50 per cent of credit points in each of the preceding two (2) trimesters, or
b)they have failed a unit twice, or
c)they have failed a compulsory practicum or placement, or
d)they will not complete their course within the maximum period of study.
PROCEDURE
1Faculty committees review the Academic Progress of students after each trimester to identify students who are at risk of unsatisfactory Academic Progress and students who have made unsatisfactory Academic Progress.
Proposed actions
2When the faculty committee has identified a student as being at risk of unsatisfactory Academic Progress, the Committee:
a)notifies the student in writing; and
b)implements a strategy to assist the student to improve his or her academic performance.
3When a student has made unsatisfactory Academic Progress, the faculty committee notifies the student in writing and may propose one or more of the actions specified in Schedule A.
Responding to proposed actions
4Students are responsible for ensuring that the University has their correct contact details and for checking their mail and email for University correspondence. International students are required to notify the University within seven working days of a change of address.
5All enrolled students who receive notification from a faculty committee regarding unsatisfactory Academic Progress, irrespective of whether they withdraw or transfer from their course are required to respond to the faculty committee’s proposed actions.
6Students who receive a warning are advised to seek assistance from their School to improve their academic performance.
7Students who receive notice of a proposed action, made pursuant to clause 8.2(a)–(e) of Regulation 5.3(1) may either:
a)accept the proposal by notifying the faculty committee in writing, or
b)make a written submission to the faculty committee, within 10 working days of the date of notification of a proposed action, to show cause as to why the proposed action should not be implemented.
8When a student notifies the faculty committee that he or she accepts the proposed action, the faculty committee confirms the action in writing and implements it.
9When a student does not respond, within the specified timeframe, he or she will be deemed to have accepted the proposed action. The faculty committee will confirm the action in writing and implement it as soon as practicable.
Late submission of show cause applications
10An enrolled student may make a written application to the faculty committee to submit a late show cause application on the grounds that exceptional circumstances prevented the student applying to show cause within the timeframe. The student must provide evidence supporting the exceptional circumstances. Failure to collect or check correspondence or advise the University of a change of address are not exceptional circumstances. For international students, faculty chairs will review the application in consultation with Deakin International.
11If the faculty committee considers a request for a late submission and determines that there were no exceptional circumstances, the student and, where relevant, Deakin International, is informed:
a)in writing within five working days of the decision and the reasons for the decision, and
b)of the right of appeal to the University Appeals Committee (UAC) within 20 working days of the date on which the notice of the decision could reasonably have been received.
12If the faculty committee determines that there were exceptional circumstances, the faculty committee must then determine the substantive Academic Progress matter, in accordance with this procedure.
13If an appeal to the UAC regarding a faculty committee decision not to accept a late submission on the grounds of exceptional circumstances is successful, the matter is referred back to the faculty committee for hearing of the substantive Academic Progress matter, in accordance with this procedure.
Show cause proceedings
14All staff involved in a faculty committee or UAC hearing shall comply with and are bound by the provisions of the Information Privacy Act 2000 (Vic), the Health Records Act 2001 (Vic) and must also comply with the University’s Code of Conduct, and the Equity and Diversity and Conflict of Interest policies and procedures.
15The faculty committee considers written submissions from students to show cause as to why a proposed action should not be implemented, and may decide to:
a)take no further action, other than to issue a warning, or
b)vary the proposed action, or
c)continue with the proposed action.
16When a student notifies the faculty committee that they will attend a show cause hearing, the faculty committee will notify the student of the date, time and place of the hearing. The student may be accompanied by a person of their choice, who is not a practicing lawyer. The University will not be legally represented.
17If the student does not attend the hearing, the faculty committee considers the student’s written submission, relevant Faculty documentation and any other evidence, and makes a decision in accordance with Regulation 5.3(1).
18If the student does attend the hearing, the faculty committee firstly considers the student’s written submission and any other available evidence. The student and his or her accompanying person are then invited into the hearing and the student is given the opportunity to explain (show cause) why the faculty committee’s proposed decision should not be made.
19The members of the faculty committee may question the student. The faculty committee should permit the accompanying person to speak on behalf of the student if the need arises.
20The faculty committee may adjourn a hearing at any time, but the same faculty committee must continue to hear and consider the case at a later time. If it is not possible for the panel to reconvene in person, the matter will be determined by circulation.
21The faculty committee is not bound to make a decision at the time of a hearing and may take any additional reasonable time it requires to consider its decision.
Show cause decisions
22A decision of the faculty committee is reached in private, by simple majority with the Chair having the casting vote. The faculty committee may decide to:
a)confirm and implement its proposed decision, or
b)vary its proposed decision and implement a lesser measure, or
c)withdraw its proposed decision, and
d)impose restrictions or conditions on the student as part of its decision, in accordance with Regulation 5.3(1)
23The faculty committee must notify the student and, where relevant, Deakin International of:
a)the decision and reasons for decision; and
b)the right of appeal to the UAC within 20 working days of the date on which the notice of the decision could reasonably have been received.
Automatic exclusion
24Students who receive notice of a proposed action made pursuant to clause 8.2(c) and (e) of Regulation 5.3(1) may be automatically excluded unless they can demonstrate exceptional circumstances beyond their control that prevented them from complying with a prescription or restriction, or condition, imposed by a faculty committee or the UAC.
25In cases of automatic exclusion, a student may show cause on the grounds that there were exceptional circumstances beyond their control that prevented compliance with the previously imposed restriction or prescription.
26The student seeking a hearing must lodge a written submission outlining the grounds of exceptional circumstances to the Secretary of the faculty committee within 10 working days of the date the notice of decision could reasonably have been received.
27A hearing is then held and decision communicated in accordance with this procedure.
Appeals
28A student may appeal to the UAC against a decision of a faculty committee, other than decisions of automatic exclusion and non-acceptance of late show cause applications, on the following grounds:
a)there is new mitigating evidence which the student was not reasonably able to present at the show cause hearing that may have affected the faculty committee’s decision had it been available at the time
b)there was a misapplication of procedures resulting in some disadvantage to the student
c)having regard to the evidence before the faculty committee, the penalty imposed was too severe.
29In the case of a decision to automatically exclude a student, a student may appeal on the grounds that there were exceptional circumstances beyond the control of the student that prevented compliance with the previously imposed condition or restriction.
30A student lodges an appeal by completing the Notice of Appeal form (Academic Progress, Automatic Exclusion or Late Appeal) and submitting it to the UAC within 20 working days of having received notice of the faculty committee’s decision. The notice of appeal must state the grounds for appeal and must be accompanied by a written submission that addresses the grounds for appeal and includes any relevant documentary or other evidence.
Late appeal applications
31A student may make a written application to the UAC to submit a late appeal application on the ground that exceptional circumstances prevented the student from appealing within the timeframe. The student must provide evidence supporting the exceptional circumstances. Failure to collect or check correspondence, or advise the University of a change of address, are not exceptional circumstances.
32If the late appeal application is accepted and if at the hearing the UAC determines that exceptional circumstances did not exist, the UAC must notify the student, the relevant faculty committee and Deakin International, where appropriate, in writing within five working days of the decision being made that the late appeal application was not successful and provide reasons for that decision.
33If the late appeal application is accepted and if at the hearing the UAC determines that exceptional circumstances did exist, the student’s substantive appeal will be heard by the UAC and the decision communicated to the student in accordance with this procedure.
Appeal proceedings
34The Chair of the UAC reviews the appeal applications to determine whether the student has grounds for an appeal. The Chair may decide to dismiss the appeal without going to hearing if he or she determines:
a)an appeal application is incomplete or provides insufficient information for the Committee to make a determination, or
b)grounds for appeal do not exist or have not been addressed in the application.
35Any such decision is reported to the student within five working days.
36If the Chair determines that there are grounds for an appeal, the appeal is heard as soon as practicable after receipt of notice of appeal.
37The Secretary of the UAC must provide a copy of the written notice of appeal and the student’s written submission to the relevant faculty committee.
38The UAC provides the student and the Chair (or nominee) of the relevant faculty committee with at least five working days’ notice of the date, time and place of the hearing.
39A student may appear in person before the UAC. The student may be accompanied by a person of his or her choice, who may be a practising lawyer. The University may also have legal representation.
40A student who wishes to be represented by a practising lawyer must notify the Secretary of the UAC without delay, and at least two working days prior to the hearing.
41If the student does not attend the hearing, the UAC hears the appeal in the student’s absence by considering the student’s submission and any other available evidence.
42The UAC must limit the evidence it hears to matters relevant to the grounds of appeal.
43The student must be heard first. The UAC should permit an accompanying person to speak on behalf of the student if the need arises. This person may be a practicing lawyer.
44The Chair (or nominee) of the relevant faculty committee shall be given the opportunity to be heard after the student has concluded. The student will be given the opportunity to be present during this time.
45Both parties may call witnesses. Witnesses must not be present at a hearing except when giving evidence.
46The student and the Chair (or nominee) of the relevant faculty committee may ask questions of each other and any witness called before the UAC. The members of the UAC may also question the parties and the witnesses.
47The UAC may adjourn a hearing at any time, but the same UAC must continue to hear and consider the case at a later time if at all possible. If it is not possible for the panel to reconvene in person, the matter will be determined by circulation.
48The UAC is not bound to make a decision at the time of a hearing and may take any additional reasonable time it requires to consider its decision.
Appeal decisions
49A decision of the UAC is reached, in private, by simple majority with the Chair having the casting vote. The UAC may:
a)uphold the decision of the faculty committee, in which case the original decision will be implemented
b)vary the decision of the faculty committee
c)set aside the decision of the faculty committee.
d)refer the matter back to the faculty committee for hearing of the substantive Academic Progress matter, in cases of successful appeals against faculty committee decisions not to accept a late show cause submission
e)hear the substantive Academic Progress matter, in cases of successful late appeals to the UAC.
50If the UAC varies a decision of the faculty committee, it may impose a restricted enrolment on the student or prescribe that the student enrol in, and successfully complete, a specific unit or units.
51The UAC may also make recommendations and require students to access support services.
52In imposing a prescription or restriction, or other condition, the UAC may also advise that failure to comply with the prescription or restriction, or condition, will result in the student being excluded. Such exclusion will be automatic unless there are exceptional circumstances beyond the control of the student which have prevented the student from satisfactorily complying with the prescription or restriction.
53The Secretary of the UAC notifies the relevant faculty committee of any decision made by the UAC. The faculty committee shall ensure that the student’s academic record and enrolment are amended accordingly.
54The UAC must notify the student, the Chair and Secretary of the relevant faculty committee and, where relevant, Deakin International of the decisions and reasons for decision, in writing, within five (5) working days of making a decision. For international students, Deakin International will ensure that all legislative requirements are complied with and are communicated to the faculty committee. The faculty committee shall ensure that the student’s academic record and enrolment are amended accordingly.
55Students may lodge complaints about administrative actions and decisions of the University with the Victorian Ombudsman, or other appropriate external organisation. Nothing in this procedure is intended to preclude a student from exercising any legal right they may have to external review of a decision.
56If an external review is initiated, a student’s ‘confirmation of enrolment’ is maintained pending the outcome of any external review, but the student’s actual enrolment will be inactive until the outcome of the external review has been determined.
Re-admission after exclusion
57A student who has been excluded may, during the period of exclusion, apply to the faculty committee to be re-admitted to his or her course after the period of exclusion.
58The faculty committee advises students in writing of the processes and timeframes for re-admission after exclusion.
59The faculty committee normally only approves re-admission of a student after exclusion if there is evidence that the student is able to achieve satisfactory Academic Progress. The faculty committee will advise students in writing of their decision.
Records and reporting
60As soon as practicable after the faculty committee or UAC has reached its decision, the Secretary provides the Records Unit with a full copy of the proceedings and all material considered by the Committee, and provides a report on the outcome of a hearing to:
a)the relevant Faculty Board, in the case of a faculty committee
b)the Academic Board, in the case of the UAC.
61All reporting must be anonymous and confidential.
62All documentation associated with proceedings, except the documentation provided to the Records Unit, shall be collected by the Secretary at the end of a hearing and disposed of securely.
ASSOCIATED INFORMATION

Schedule A: Unsatisfactory Academic Progress—Proposed actions
Statute 2.2—The Academic Board
Statute 5.3—Assessment and Academic Progress
Regulation 5.3(1)—Assessment and Academic Progress in Higher Education Award Courses
Academic Progress website
Assessment (Higher Education Courses) Policy
Code of Conduct
Conflict of Interest Procedure
Deakin University Current Students website
Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 (Cth)
Equity and Diversity Policy
Health Records Act 2001 (Vic)
Information Privacy Act 2000 (Vic)
National Code of Practice for Registration Authorities and Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2007
University Handbook
Victorian Ombudsman



Printed copies of this document may not be current. Please refer to The Guide for the most recent version.
Deakin University 2015