Purpose and Goals
The Faculty of Arts is committed to supporting students in their academic pursuits through the application of academic concessions in the event that students experience unanticipated events or circumstances that interfere with their ability to accomplish academic work.
When considering requests for academic concessions, the Faculty of Arts applies principles of transparency, flexibility, and compassion, as outlined in UBC’s Academic Concession policy. Academic concession policies and procedures aim for fairness, recognizing that fair treatment is not necessarily equal treatment in all circumstances. Decision-makers have the flexibility to apply the reasonable exercise of discretion, sound judgement, and compassion in response to the unique circumstances of an individual student’s case. In responding to students’ requests for academic concessions, the Faculty of Arts upholds the academic standards of the curriculum and expects that the requirements of each course or academic program will be met.
Types of Academic Concession
The most appropriate type of concession is determined by the student’s unique situation and the academic requirements for the course. In-term concession for course work or attendance may be considered by instructors or Academic Advisors in Arts Academic Advising; students are advised to consult their course syllabus. Other forms of academic concession that may be granted by Academic Advisors, in consultation with instructors when it is not clear that the academic criteria for concession have been met, include Standing Deferrals for final exams or final coursework, and Late Withdrawals. Except in rare and exceptional circumstances, no concession will be provided for exams which have already been written.
Initiating Requests for Academic Concession
Bachelor of Arts students are expected to schedule their commitments so as to avoid conflicts with academic courses, including exams. Those who experience unanticipated events or circumstances that interfere with their ability to accomplish their academic coursework are advised to consult their course syllabus. Students unable to complete final course assessments, including final exams, for such reasons should notify Arts Academic Advising immediately. Students with disabilities eligible for academic accommodations under Joint Senate and Board Disability Accommodation Policy are required to work with the Centre for Accessibility in this regard.
The initiation of a request for academic concession does not ensure the granting of concession. Students should be aware of deadlines to initiate a request for academic concession, and know that they may be required to provide supplemental information. In some circumstances, Arts Academic Advising will require more detailed documentation, such as in the event of repeated academic concession requests for the same concern.
Resolving a Standing Deferred
Students granted a Standing Deferred are responsible for making satisfactory arrangements for completion of outstanding course requirements. If the outstanding work is a final examination, students have the opportunity to write a deferred exam through Enrolment Services during the Deferred Examination Period. In some exceptional cases, instructors may be able to provide an earlier exam sitting, but they are neither expected nor required to do so. Note that some departments permit students to write deferred exams with the next regularly scheduled final exam sitting for the course; some Science departments offer January sittings for first-year pre-requisite courses: in both cases, students should consult the relevant department. If the deferred work is something other than a final exam, students must consult their instructor. If a student fails to complete deferred requirements by the deadline for completing all Standing Deferred course work, the Standing Deferred will be replaced with a grade or standing that reflects requirements completed in the course.
Students whose eligibility to continue in studies cannot be determined because they have one or more deferred standings (SD) in their Winter Session courses may be granted tentative registration eligibility for the following Winter Session. Students in this circumstance are encouraged to resolve their SDs as soon as possible in order to determine if they can continue in studies in September. Students who do not meet continuation requirements may be de-registered from courses in the following Winter Session.
Inability to Resolve a Standing Deferred
Students unable to meet the deadline for completion of Standing Deferred course work because of additional extenuating circumstances must contact Arts Academic Advising as soon as possible. Extensions will not be granted for deferred requirements, but alternative academic concessions may be considered if new circumstances prevent completion of the course. See also Academic Concession and Grading Practices.
Academic Planning with Concession
Students with Standing Deferred credits should reduce their course load in the Session immediately following by the equivalent number of credits. For example, if a student has 3 credits deferred from the Winter Session, that student should not enrol in more than 9 credits in the following Summer Session, although the permitted maximum is 12.
Students who have been granted academic concession are encouraged to formulate and follow an academic plan which could include a reduction in course load; a commitment to an on-going program of medical care, counselling services, or support from the Centre for Accessibility; or other appropriate actions. This plan may be developed in consultation with Arts Academic Advising. If a student seeks repeated academic concessions without evidence that proactive steps have been taken to address their issue(s), further academic concessions may not be granted.