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Appeals

The Graduate School considers a variety of appeals from graduate students and/or applicants in different ways.

Appeals to the Graduate Council Appeals Standing Committee

The Appeals Committee considers appeals from (1) applicants who have been denied admission to Graduate School, (2) graduate students who have become ineligible to continue (or re-enter) as a result of earning C, D, or F grades, falling below a 3.0 cumulative GPA, or failing to meet other requirements in their course of study, (3) current graduate students who wish to transfer credit from a non-U.S. institution, and (4) graduate degree programs that want to offer an assistantship to a graduate student who is not in regular status. The Appeals Committee also considers requests for (5) academic amnesty. 

The Appeals Committee meets only once per semester—Spring, Summer, and Fall—on the Friday prior to the start of classes. To ensure consideration, all appeal materials must be received by the Graduate School well in advance of this meeting. Students/prospective students are encouraged to contact the Graduate School for deadlines to submit appeal materials. Appeals submitted after the committee has met may not be heard until the following semester.

Graduate-Student-Initiated Appeals

1. For graduate students/prospective students who are denied admission or declared ineligible to re-enter/continue, an appeal to this committee is the only way to gain entry or reentry into the Graduate School. According to the Graduate Catalog, a graduate student/prospective graduate student who wishes to appeal:

  • must present a letter of petition outlining the reasons for appealing to the graduate coordinator in the graduate degree program to which he/she has applied, seeks re-entry, or wishes to continue
  • a copy of this letter of petition also must be provided to the Graduate School (send via email to megan.trahan@louisiana.edu)
  • receipt of this letter of petition serves as official notification to the Graduate School that an appeal has been initiated
  • must receive “a letter of recommendation” from the graduate coordinator and/or graduate program appeals committee for the program where the student was or wishes to be; if there is no written recommendation from this committee, the appeal will not be heard by the Appeals Committee
  • please note that (1) the Graduate Catalog states that each graduate degree program “must have an appeals committee,” (2) this letter may recommend support, support with conditions, or denial of support, (3) this letter, should this appeal involve a continuing student who held an assistantship, should address whether the department requests (or not) the student retaining the assistantship, and (4) this letter is usually transmitted directly to the Graduate School
  • may present additional letters of recommendation regarding academic ability and maturity from faculty members who have recently taught him or her, as well as from employers

2. Similarly, a graduate student who wishes to transfer credits earned at a non-U.S. institution:

  • must present a letter of petition to the graduate coordinator in the graduate degree program in which he/she is enrolled that makes request and provides the necessary information regarding the courses in question
  • a copy of this letter of petition also must be provided to the Graduate School (send via email to megan.trahan@louisiana.edu)
  • receipt of this letter of petition serves as official notification to the Graduate School that an appeal has been initiated
  • must provide support from the graduate coordinator and/or graduate program appeals committee for transfer of the credits in question; if there is no written recommendation from the graduate coordinator, the appeal will not be heard by the Appeals Committee
  • must complete the “Application for Use of Transfer Graduate Credits” form

3. And, finally, a graduate student/prospective student seeking academic amnesty must provide:

  • a letter of application that sets forth reason and justification for the amnesty request
  • a letter of support, with any conditions deemed necessary, from the graduate coordinator for the program to which the applicant is seeking admission, endorsed by the Department Head and Dean of the College
  • all other materials required for graduate admission

Please take care to review the Amnesty Policy online at http://gradschool.louisiana.edu/node/36 for additional important guidelines governing academic amnesty.

Graduate-Program-Initiated Assistantship Appeals

The University Catalog states: “To qualify for an assistantship, a student must be admitted in regular admission status to a master’s or doctoral graduate degree program. Students who are admitted to a degree program in conditional status are not considered to be in academic good standing. Exceptions may be granted by the Graduate Student Appeals Committee.” Only graduate degree programs (through the graduate coordinator), the Permanent Investigator of a research grant, or other hiring authority may appeal to offer an assistantship to a graduate student who is not in regular status. Contact the Graduate School for deadlines and required materials for these requests.

Old Transfer Credit Appeals

A graduate student who wishes to transfer credits older than six year must submit a request in writing for a time extension to his or her graduate coordinator. If the graduate coordinator approves the transfer appeal, a notation of approval is submitted to the Graduate School for action by the Dean.

Time Extension Appeals

A graduate student who does not complete a degree within the specified time (six years for a master’s degree or seven years for a doctorate) must submit a request in writing for a time extension to his or her graduate coordinator. If the graduate coordinator approves the time extension appeal, a notation of approval is submitted to the Graduate School for action by the Dean.

Other Appeals

There are instances that the Graduate School is not directly involved in an appeal involving a graduate student. These instances are governed by University policies/committees and include:

Grade Appeals

When a graduate student who feels that he/she has received an unfair and/or capricious final grade in a course initiates an grade appeal, the Graduate School is not immediately involved. Rather, the Grade Appeals Committee hears these appeals and the University’s “Guidelines for Appealing Unfair and/or Capricious Final Grades” govern this appeal process.

Violation of the Student Code of Conduct Appeals

When a graduate student is accused of or has been disciplined for violating any rule or regulation of the Board of Supervisors, the University, or its various divisions, the Graduate School is not involved (though notification is now sent to the Graduate School). Rather, this process is handled by the Dean of Students and the Student Discipline Committee. Graduate students have the right to appeal any sanction or probation or suspension, dismissal, or expulsion. Information on this process can be found in the University’s “Code of Student Conduct and Appeal Procedures.”

Tuition and Fee Appeals

When a graduate student initiates a tuition and fee appeal to request that the tuition/fee charges for a particular semester be removed from his/her account, again the Graduate School is not directly involved. Rather, the Registrar’s Office manages this process and the appeal is considered by the University’s Fee Committee. These kinds of appeals may be filed for situations beyond the student’s control (e.g., medical emergencies, military obligations, transferring to another institution, or personal hardships). The policy and procedures governing this appeal process can be found online on the Office of the Registrar’s website at http://registrar.louisiana.edu/content/services/tuition-fee-appeals-procedure.