Sac State University Policy Manual
Grade Appeal Policy
Policy Administrator: Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs
Authority: AS 83-06, EO 320, AS 88-67, EO 792, EO 1037, FS 10-48; FS 15/16-39; FS 16/17-138
Effective Date: June 21, 2016
Updated: 7/30/2010, May 2012, June 2016, June 2017
Index Cross-References:
Policy File Number: ACA-0110

Grade Appeal Policy

Executive Order #1037 governs the assignment of grades by faculty and requires an appeal procedure to ensure that the rights and responsibilities of faculty and students are properly recognized and protected. Occasionally, a circumstance will prevent assignment of an earned grade or will cause an assigned grade to be questioned by a student.

The following policy provides the mechanism to deal with such unusual occurrences:

  • Faculty has the sole right and responsibility to provide careful evaluation and timely assignment of appropriate grades. 
  • There is a presumption that grades assigned are correct.  It is the responsibility of anyone appealing an assigned grade to demonstrate otherwise.
  • In the absence of compelling reasons, such as instructor or clerical error, or one of the grounds for a grade appeal, the grade assigned by the instructor of record is to be considered final.
  • Students who believe that an appropriate grade has not been assigned should first seek to resolve the matter informally with the instructor of record and then the Department Chair.  If the matter cannot be resolved informally, the student may present his/her case to the appropriate campus entity, have it reviewed and, where justified, receive a grade correction.
  • If the instructor of record does not assign a grade, or if he/she does not change an assigned grade when the necessity to do so has been established by appropriate campus procedures, it is the responsibility of other qualified faculty to do so.
  •  “Qualified faculty” means one or more persons with academic training comparable to the instructor of record who are presently on the faculty at that campus.
  • Each campus faculty senate has authority and responsibility for providing policy and procedures for the proper implementation of the foregoing principles.
  • Each campus president is responsible for ensuring that the policies and procedures developed by the faculty senate are in conformance with the principles and provisions of E.O. 1037 and for ensuring that such established policies and procedures are carried out.

Sacramento State has implemented procedures covering grade appeals with the provisions outlined in E.O. 1037.   They can be accessed by clicking on the hyperlink below.

Students are often not sure whether to appeal a grade, the kinds of grades to be appealed and the processes and timelines for grade appeals. With this policy students, faculty, and staff are provided with official guidelines under which to pursue resolution of grades in dispute consistent with Executive Order 1037, Section D of August 1, 2009 entitled “Grading Symbols, Assignment of Grades and Grade Appeals.”

The student with a claim of irregular grading in a course who alleges that the instructor assigned the disputed grade arbitrarily, capriciously, in violation of the systemwide policy prohibiting discrimination, harassment and retaliation, sexual misconduct, dating and domestic violence, and stalking, and/or in violation of a University policy; an instructor whose grade assigned to a student is being appealed; department chairs and staff responsible for managing the department’s part in a grade appeal and to ensure accurate advising and judicious enforcement; the Provost’s designee for managing the formal grade appeal process; University Grade Appeal Panels, and the Procedural Appeals Board. 

Primary responsibility to implement the policy rests with the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. Students, faculty and staff are also responsible to meet prescribed implementation processes and procedures.

Procedures to carry out the policy are included as part of the Policy. Click on link below to:

Student Grade Appeal Process

Approved by:

Robert Nelsen, President
June 21, 2017