expand search

Office of the Registrar

Two students sitting at a table together at Trent Durham

Office of the Registrar

Academic Petitions

Students who are having difficulty completing course work, concerned about grades received, or experiencing undue hardship because of academic regulations or degree requirements have the option to submit a petition or appeal. Review the list of petitions and appeals along with their descriptions for the option that matches your circumstance.

Petition

  • Request for waiving of an academic regulation, degree requirement or academic deadline because a student is experiencing undue hardship or disadvantage.  Most petitions are reviewed by an Academic Advisor before they are submitted.

Appeal 

  • Request for reconsideration regarding grades in term work, final grades, penalties for academic dishonesty, or decisions made concerning recent petitions.

Academic petitions and appeals involve a student’s academic record, not financial transactions.  A successful academic petition does not automatically trigger a financial appeal or review of a student’s financial responsibilities to the University.  For further information regarding financial appeals, please visit Student Accounts.


Petition Procedure

The petitions procedure involves the Office of the Registrar, the Academic Advisor and the Committee on Undergraduate Petitions (CUP).  For Late Add or Course Overload petitions, the student completes the required form, attaches the necessary documentation and/or statement of grounds, and submits the petition package directly to the Office of the Registrar.  For all other petitions, the procedure is as below.

Procedure Outline

  1. The Academic Advisor and student discuss the situation and determine if a petition is the appropriate procedure.
  2. The student fills out the petition documentation and meets with the Academic Advisor to discuss the petition.
  3. The Academic Advisor reviews the documentation, ensures all supporting documentation is included, discusses the petition with the student and forwards to the Office of the Registrar.
  4. The Office of the Registrar will process the petition, either approving it administratively in accordance with established practice or referring to the Committee on Undergraduate Petitions.
  5. The Office of the Registrar will notify the student by email of the outcome of the petition.
  6. If the petition is denied, the student may consider appealing the decision to the Special Appeals Committee through the University Secretariat.  All decisions of the Special Appeals Committee are final.

Committee on Undergraduate Petitions (CUP)

The membership of CUP consists of the Chair, 3 faculty members, and 2 student members.  CUP meets regularly to consider petitions; however, students who submit a petition do not appear before the Committee.

Supporting Documentation

Documentation verifying the circumstances outlined in the petition letter must be provided at the time the petition is submitted. Failure to submit appropriate supporting documentation could result in the denial of the petition. Personal documentation submitted in relation to a petition will be held in confidence. Students may present different types of supporting documentation for their petition.

  • Medical Grounds
    • Petitions submitted on medical grounds must include at least one (1) of the following.
      • Attending physician’s statement.
      • Statement from the University or other health service.
      • Statement from the University or other counseling service.
    • Only original medical documentation is acceptable. The forms are to be completed and signed by the physician or counselor.
  • Non-medical Grounds
    • Examples of documentation include death certificates, obituary notices, automobile accident reports, airline/train/bus tickets or receipts for emergency travel, letters of explanation from employers, lawyers, etc.
  • Course Performance Summary
    • The student must ask the course instructor for each course in which special consideration is being requested to provide details of the student’s attendance in the course, work completed and grades assigned, if any. If the course instructor is not available, the Chair of the department or program should complete the form when acting on behalf of the course instructor. This information is only required for Late Withdrawal petitions.

Petition Submission

In most cases, students will submit the completed petition package to their Academic Advisor, who will review to ensure that the package is complete.  The Academic Advisor will forward the package to the Office of the Registrar.  Students are strongly advised to keep a copy of the entire package for their records.  Petitions for Late Adds or Course Overload may be submitted directly to the Office of the Registrar.