Oakland Community College 

ACADEMIC APPEALS POLICY

The Oakland Community College Academic Appeals Process is established to provide the student with a means of questioning employee academic behavior. Examples of expected appropriate academic behavior are set forth in the American Association of University Professors’ Code of Ethics:

"As teachers, professors encourage the free pursuit of learning in their students. They hold before them the best scholarly and ethical standards of their discipline. Professors demonstrate respect for students as individuals and adhere to their proper roles as intellectual guides and counselors. Professors make every possible effort to foster honest academic conduct and to assure that their evaluations of students reflect each student’s true merit. They respect the confidential nature of the relationship between professor and student. They avoid any exploitation, harassment and/or discriminatory treatment of students. They acknowledge significant academic or scholarly assistance from them. They protect their academic freedom.”

The Academic Appeals Process is available to a student who has an academic concern and wishes to seek resolution formally. All of the following proceedings will occur in a professional manner, and all efforts will be made to protect the rights of all parties involved:

  1. The student will discuss the academic concern with the faculty member. An appeal of an academic concern or grade must be made within six months from the date of the incident or issuance of grade.
  2. If the concern is not resolved in step 1, the student will contact the department chairperson. If there is no resolution, then the process becomes formalized.
  3. The student will present a written statement specifying the alleged problem and the proposed resolution to the dean/ director responsible for the academic discipline. The faculty member shall receive a copy of the written statement from the dean/director. The dean/director shall request, in writing, an explanation from the faculty member involved. If there is no resolution at this level, the student may request the formation of an Academic Appeals Board. The dean/director will explain the next steps in the process, including the availability of an academic appeals volunteer. This volunteer will be a faculty or staff member whose function is to assist the student through the academic appeal process.
  4. The dean/director will then notify the chair of the Campus Academic Senate to prepare a list of twelve randomly selected faculty members and twelve randomly selected student representatives. The Appeals Board will be composed of three faculty members and three student representatives randomly selected from these lists and will be chaired by the appropriate administrator or manager. These individuals may remain on the list of prospective Appeals Board members for a duration specified by each Campus Academic Senate. Each member of the board is expected to use good judgment to avoid any conflict of interest with regard to their eligibility to serve on the Appeals Board.
  5. The student will submit to the chair of the Appeals Board, at least seven working days prior to the convening of the board, the following materials:
    1. A written statement setting forth the formal complaint, the evidence and proposed resolution, as well as justification for the hearing of the appeal.
    2. Names of material witnesses, if appropriate, and brief summaries of their testimonies.
    The faculty member involved shall also submit pertinent written materials and the names of material witnesses, if appropriate, within two working days of the chair’s receipt of the formal complaint. These written materials will be made available to the involved faculty members and student at least 72 hours prior to the hearing date. Members of the Appeals Board will receive all materials at least 24 hours prior to the hearing. During the hearing, the student and the faculty member will each have thirty minutes to provide relevant information, to present witnesses and to entertain questions from the board. Each may be present to hear all testimony.
  6. The members of the board shall vote by secret ballot. In the event of a tie vote, the Appeals Board chairperson will cast the deciding vote. Upon reaching a decision, the board will consult with the faculty member. After this consultation and within 48 hours of the board’s decision, the student and the faculty member will be notified in writing of the board’s decision and the faculty member’s response. If the matter is not resolved by this action, the petitioning student may contact the campus president, whose decision in writing regarding this matter shall be final. All of the above proceedings will occur in a professional manner and all efforts will be made to protect the rights of all parties involved. These proceedings do not preclude student or faculty rights to seek other redress to the matter.

Academic Amnesty

The Academic Amnesty Program is designed for those students whose GPA from a prior period is significantly lower than the GPA of work completed in more recent semesters.

Amnesty is applied to a maximum of 24 semester hours of courses that have grade values below 2.00. No grades will be removed from the academic record. The courses accepted for amnesty will be annotated “AMNESTY GIVEN” on both the transcript and the academic record. These courses will then no longer be considered in the GPA computation.
Credit is not earned for courses for which amnesty has been granted. Amnesty may be granted only one time and is not revocable. Amnesty cannot be awarded for any courses completed prior to the effective date of any Oakland Community College degree or certificate.

Courses eligible for amnesty must have been completed at least five years prior to the submission of a petition. Students are eligible to petition for amnesty when their 16 most recently earned OCC credits are from courses that each have a grade equivalent of 2.00 or higher. A course within a semester with an “I” or a grade lower than required negates all courses in that semester from consideration in the determination of eligibility. All courses used in determining eligibility shall have been taken since, not in, the most recent semester containing a course being petitioned for amnesty.

Once granted, amnesty excuses courses from GPA computation and academic record summation. In situations where the GPA or earned credits are a factor or condition of OCC program admission or status, the GPA and record summary resulting from the granting of amnesty shall be recognized without prejudice. Students interested in this program should contact their campus counseling center for more information and materials.

Eligibility for financial aid may require a GPA computation that ignores the effects of amnesty as provided herein.