Appeals and Requests for Waivers or Exceptions

An appeal may be filed by a student to request an exception or waiver to a University academic requirement, policy, procedure, or deadline. There are several different levels and types of appeals. All academic appeals should be submitted within six months of the close of the academic semester of the appeal.

Academic Appeals

The student must make a reasonable effort to contact the instructor, the department head, and the academic dean in an effort to resolve differences before filing an appeal. Listed below are the various types of academic appeals.

Department Level Appeal (Academic Department)

Department-level academic appeals include requirements for program admission, substitutions or waivers for department requirements, course prerequisites, and other department-level decisions. Students should contact their academic advisor and department chairperson for information on the appeal process. The final decision is determined by the college dean.

College Level Appeal (Academic College)

College-level academic appeals include decisions on probation and suspension actions, waivers or substitutions of college core courses, etc. Students should contact their academic advisor and the college dean for information on this process and required documents.

University Level Appeal (Graduate Dean/University Registrar)

Most academic appeals fall under this category as this applies to those policies that are at the university level or apply to all students regardless of program of study. Examples of University academic appeals include (but are not limited to):

  • Late withdrawals
  • Late registration appeals
  • GPA requirements
  • Graduation requirements

The Academic Appeals Committee (AAC) is established under the authority of the President of the University of West Florida to respond to and determine the outcome of appeals related to university-level academic requirements.

The AAC provides a university-wide forum for the review of university-level requirements.  Appeals must be in writing on the appropriate forms and signed by the academic advisor, department chairperson, and college dean. For more information, see the Starting an Academic Appeal instructions. Appeals should include any and all appropriate documentation to support the appeal. When all documentation is received, the Committee will consider the appeal and issue a decision within fifteen (15) business days. 

Registration Appeals

The Office of the Registrar reviews appeals related to late registration and schedule adjustments (drop/add). Appeal forms and Instructions for Starting an Appeal are available through the Office of the Registrar.

Grade Appeal

Students should consult University Policy AC-16.02 for information regarding a grade appeal process. Grade appeals for courses cross-listed with another department within another college will be heard through the college that houses the department, regardless of the departmental affiliation of the faculty member teaching the course. Consult the Student Grievance process for information on appealing grades.

  1. A student wishing to contest a final course grade must first contact the course instructor to initiate a verbal or written appeal. The student must initiate contact within 30 calendar days of the grade being available for the student to view online. The student must present a rationale for the appeal and a preferred resolution.
  2. The course instructor receiving the verbal or written appeal shall respond in writing to the appeal within 10 calendar days. Should the course instructor agree with the appeal, the instructor will process an appropriate grade change in a timely fashion. In the event that the course instructor is not available (e.g., no longer employed, on sabbatical, or other long-term absence from the workplace) to receive and respond to the grade appeal, the student shall submit the written appeal to the Department Chair or School Director.
  3. The Department Chair or School Director shall review the appeal, discuss it with the course instructor and/or pertinent individuals, and respond within 10 calendar days of receiving the appeal. The Department Chair or School Director will provide the student and course instructor with a written response of their findings and decision.
    1. If the decision is in favor of the student, the course instructor will be provided with an opportunity to submit a written rebuttal within 10 days. If no rebuttal is submitted, a grade change will be issued. 
    2. If the decision is not in favor of the student, the student may accept the decision or appeal to the next level. 
      1. An appeal to the decision must be submitted within 10 calendar days to the Office of the Dean of the College in which the course is taught.
      2. The appeal must be in writing and state the grounds for the appeal.
      3. The Dean shall review the student's appeal and the course instructor's rebuttal and respond within 10 calendar days of receipt.


Appeal of Academic Suspension

A master's, specialist, or doctoral student may appeal an Academic Suspension in writing to the Provost (or designee). The following are the permitted bases for requesting an appeal:

  1. there was a death in the immediate family of the student (parent, spouse, child or sibling),
  2. the student suffered an illness or other event that was of such severity or duration that it actually precluded the student from being able to satisfactorily attend to their studies,
  3. a member of the student's immediate family suffered an illness that was of such severity or duration that it actually precluded the student from being able to satisfactorily attend to their studies, and
  4. the student was called to active military service, or National Guard troop service for such a duration that it precluded the student from being able to satisfactorily attend to their studies.

UWF Academic Misconduct Code

The University of West Florida is dedicated to the highest principles and standards of academic integrity. An academic violation by a student can negatively impact a class, program, and/or college in ways that are unique to each discipline. Therefore, the University believes that the severity of an academic infraction is best evaluated by the faculty of the institution. The University seeks to offer students an opportunity to respond to allegations of academic misconduct before a decision is rendered. This regulation seeks to provide faculty and students with a fair process for addressing allegations of academic misconduct.

Forms of Academic Misconduct

Violations by a student of any of the following actions that constitute an offense will result in disciplinary action. Fraudulent or deceptive action involving academic matters, including the following:

  1. Cheating: Using or attempting to use material or information where such use is not expressly permitted by the instructor. Some examples include but are not limited to:
    1. Exams or quizzes
    2. Homework/Assignments
    3. Discussion board posts
    4. Lab activities or reports
  2. Academic Theft: Obtaining examinations, quizzes, or other academic materials without authorization.
  3. Plagiarism: Representing the words, data, works, ideas, computer program or output, or anything not self-generated as one's own. Some examples of plagiarism include but are not limited to:
    1. Copying phrases, sentences, sections, paragraphs, or graphics from a source and not giving credit by properly quoting or citing the source.
    2. Having another person write an assignment (for pay or for free) and submitting it as one's own.
    3. Modifying or paraphrasing another's ideas or writings and submitting them as one's own.
  4. Resubmission of Work: Resubmitting a paper, assignment, or portion thereof that the student originally created for another assignment or course constitutes academic misconduct unless:
    1. Both instructors in concurrent courses expressly agree to accept the same work, or
    2. An instructor expressly agrees to accept previously submitted work.
  5. Fabrication: Presenting, as genuine, any invented, falsified, or inaccurate citation, data, or material.
  6. Bribery: The offering, giving, receiving, or soliciting of anything of value to influence a grade or other academic evaluation.
  7. Misrepresentation: Any act or omission taken with the intent to deceive an instructor or the University so as to affect a grade, a student’s academic performance or to gain admission to a program or course. Some examples of misrepresentation include but are not limited to:
    1. Submission of falsified documentation to justify absence or unsubmitted work.
    2. Circumventing or failing to utilize required online proctoring software.
  8. Facilitation:  Knowingly contributing to, assisting, or planning with others to engage in Academic Misconduct, or failing to inform the proper authorities when a violation has occurred regardless of one’s participation.
  9. Violation of professional standards or ethics as defined by the academic program.

Students should contact the Dean of Students Office for more information.

*UWF/REG 3.030


A grievance is defined as a complaint or dissatisfaction occurring when a student thinks that an action or decision by the University is unjust, inequitable, or creates unnecessary hardship. Such grievances include but are not limited to problems with university departments, processes, or other matters.

The Student Grievance Process provides students the opportunity to bring complaints to the attention of the University. The Student Grievance process may only be used to grieve a University action or decision when there is no appeal process associated with that particular University action or decision. This process is designed for student concerns for which there are no other avenues of redress.

Students may seek assistance from the Student Ombuds in navigating the grievance process. Please review SA-27 Student Grievance Process for the full process.

Students who believe they have been subject to unlawful discrimination, harassment, or retaliation should file a complaint form with the Equal Opportunity Office.

Students who believe they have been harmed by another student should submit an incident report with the Dean of Students Office.

Additional information may be found in UWF REG-3.011.