IN THIS SECTION

back to top »



Examination Procedures

The Registrar’s Office administers examinations according to the published examination schedule. The examination schedule is organized to create as few examination conflicts as possible according to out-of-sequence rules (see section below, “Examination Changes and Out-of-Sequence Examination Rules”). A tentative final examination schedule with tentative exam days will be published early in each semester. At the end of the semester, during or just before reading week, after details are received from professors, the finalized examination schedule will be published. Students must remain in residence during the period in which they have scheduled exams. Students must arrange their work and personal schedules in order to attend their scheduled exams.

No Early Examinations.
No student can take an examination before the official time scheduled for the examination. This is a policy created by the faculty and administration at the Sturm College of Law. Individual professors do not have discretion to override the policy.

  • In-Class Examinations with Hand-Written Responses
    To the extent some professors still require hand-written responses on their in-class examinations, students must use blue books and scratch paper provided by the Sturm College of Law Registrar’s Office. Students must provide their own writing utensils and/or other equipment required for the examination. If the professor has indicated that students can bring various materials to the examination with them, students have the responsibility to ensure that they have these materials with them before the start of the examination. At the end of the examination, students must return examination questions, and submit all of the blue books distributed to them, as well as answer sheets, to the proctor in the examination room. Students may take examinations only in designated rooms as determined by the Registrar’s Office.

  • In-Class Examinations Taken on Laptop Computers
  • Before an In-Class Laptop Examination

    Students must download a copy of the approved software for both the midterm and final examination periods each semester. The Registrar’s Office will send an email to all students via the Law School email account when the software is available for download. It is the responsibility of the student to ensure he/she has downloaded the software PRIOR to the start of any examination for which the use of laptop software is permitted. Registrar’s Office staff will not be able to assist students in downloading in the classroom at the beginning of an examination.

    After a student downloads the current version of the examination software, the student must perform a practice test. During the practice test, the software checks the computer for security and compatibility issues. Students should immediately send information to the software support staff via the software website if they encounter any issues. The staff will either provide a solution or direct the students to the Sturm College of Law Help Desk. Students have the responsibility to resolve any laptop hardware or software problems before taking exams on a laptop.

    Student laptops must have the capacity to access the internet in order to download the examination software and to submit answers at the completion of an exam. Students have the responsibility to ensure that they bring a power cord, a fully charged battery and a network [Ethernet] cable to the examination [i.e., no wireless access will be allowed due to unstable transmissions]. Students must mute computer speakers during the examination period.

    Examination software can have compatibility problems with new operating systems or older software. The Registrar’s Office will notify students of known compatibility issues and will make loaner laptops available to affected students. Affected students must email their entire examination schedule to the Registrar’s Office to reserve a loaner laptop. A student who reserves a loaner laptop (1) must report to the Registrar’s Office thirty minutes before the start of each examination to obtain the loaner laptop and (2) must return the laptop and all peripheral equipment immediately after the examination. Under no condition will the Registrar’s Office provide a loaner laptop for use outside the law building. Moreover, the Registrar’s Office does not furnish loaner laptops for take-home or on-line examinations.
  • During an In-Class Laptop Examination

    Students who take an in-class exam on a laptop have the same amount of space and/or pages as students who write the exam. However, individual professors may issue their own policies with respect to space and page limitations.

    Students may use Registrar-approved noise reduction headphones or earplugs during exams but may not bring electronic media devices such as mp3 players to the exam. Students should bring their headphones to the Registrar’s Office for approval prior to the start of any exam. Students must also mute their cellphones during examinations.

    During laptop examinations, the software automatically saves the exam answer to the laptop hard drive every few minutes. The Registrar staff can assist with recovery of the encrypted examination answers in the event of computer failure. If a student’s laptop fails during an examination, the student must immediately notify the proctor and proceed to the Registrar’s Office with his/her laptop and examination materials. If possible, the Registrar’s Office will print the answers the student has already typed and provide the student with a loaner laptop. The Registrar’s Office will then place the student in a “triage” classroom or study room for the remainder of the examination. It is the responsibility of the student to address any laptop issues prior to the start of the next examination period.

    At the end of the exam, students must submit exam answers electronically. The Registrar’s Office will not confirm receipt of individual exams unless the student receives an error message while submitting an exam answer. If the laptop does not connect to the network during submission, an error message will appear. If a student receives such an error message, the student must immediately notify the proctor and bring the laptop to the Registrar’s Office where the staff will retrieve the exam via a USB drive. Students are responsible for ensuring exam answers are submitted at the conclusion of each exam.
  • After the In-Class Laptop Examination
    Students MUST return exam questions to the proctor. The Registrar will print laptop exam answers within 2 business days. If the Registrar encounters any difficulty printing an examination answer, the Registrar will notify the student and retrieve a back-up copy of the answers from the encrypted copy on the student’s computer.

  • Take-Home Exams
    Some professors use take-home examinations. The requirements for take-home examinations vary and depend upon the specific instructions of the particular professor which the professor provides to students and to the Registrar prior to the examination.

    Under no circumstances should professors schedule any portion of a take-home examination during the examination reading period.

    Professors maintain the exclusive responsibility to distribute take-home examinations. Students cannot FAX answers to take-home examinations to the Registrar, and under no circumstances will the Registrar’s Office accept take-home examination answers submitted by FAX.

    Unless specifically directed otherwise, students should not communicate with each other after the start of the exam. Students should not communicate directly with professors after the exam starts. Students should NEVER communicate exam numbers to professors. Questions regarding exam format specifics can be routed through the Registrar’s Office. If students experience problems – technical or otherwise – that they feel may have affected the examination answer or the time allotted for an exam, students must contact the Registrar as soon as possible so that the issue may be documented.

    Professors may require students to submit take-home examination answers to the Registrar by email at registrar@law.du.edu. If professors require an email submission of examination answers to the Registrar, students have the responsibility to assure that they comply with this requirement. The Registrar has no responsibility to assure that any particular student has properly submitted a take-home examination answer via email.

    Unless instructed otherwise, students also must submit all copies of the take-home examination questions to the Registrar’s Office. If students are required to return exam questions to the Registrar’s Office, failure to submit all copies of the examination may result in a delayed grade or in failure of the course.

    Students should retain copies of their examination answers to protect against an electronic submission failure.
  • Online Exams
    Links to all take-home exams identified as “online” on the registrar’s exam schedule can be found in one location http://www.law.du.edu/forms/registrar/online-exams/.

    On this page links are organized by professor and course. Clicking a link will lead to an index page for that exam which will contain links to the pages to pick up and submit the exam as well as a short form to check the time your exam is due.

    If general computer problems arise on the computer to be used for exams, students experiencing these problems should consult with the law school help desk ahead of time to resolve those problems.

    Unless specifically directed otherwise, students should not communicate with each other after the start of the exam. Students should not communicate directly with professors after the exam starts. Students should NEVER communicate exam numbers to professors. Questions regarding exam format specifics can be routed through the Registrar’s Office. If students experience problems – technical or otherwise – that they feel may have affected the examination answer or the time allotted for an exam, students must contact the Registrar as soon as possible so that the issue may be documented.

    Be vigilant about backing up examination answer documents during the exam. Students may use a CD, a USB drive or other storage device to make a copy of the examination answer frequently. This will serve as a backup in case of a system failure.

    Students concerned about possible difficulties with the online examination process should plan to take their examinations during the Registrar’s Offices business hours. During those hours, Registrar’s Office staff will be available to assist them.

    Students must use word processing software header or footer options to make sure that their exam number appears on EVERY page of the actual exam answer. If the Registrar’s Office receives an examination answer without the exam number on every page, the staff may request that the student edit the document to provide the exam number on each page of the answer.

    Students should upload only MSWord documents. If absolutely necessary WordPerfect documents may be uploaded. If students use any other software they must save the file as an Adobe pdf file. Students using Word on a Mac should save their document as a pdf file as well. Students seeking assistance on how to save documents as pdf files may contact the Help Desk (303.871.6464) for assistance.
  • Contact Information

back to top »



Exam Irregularities

If a student encounters any irregularity or extenuating circumstances during an examination that interferes with the examination process, the student must immediately report the circumstances to the exam proctor or Registrar’s Office. Such circumstances include, without limitation, an illness or a disruptive incident in the examination room. If a student fails to immediately bring such circumstances to the attention of the Registrar’s Office, the student cannot later appeal the examination result based on the unreported circumstances.

Once a student, who has begun an exam, leaves that exam for any reason (including illness) before the end of the exam administration, the student will not be allowed to resume taking the exam.

back to top »



Examination Changes and Out-of-Sequence Rules

All students must take their examinations on the officially designated date and time at the officially designated place. Students should consult the examination schedule on the exams page each semester for examination times and rooms. Examination times and rooms are not necessarily the same as the time and room of the class during the regular semester.

Students must also arrange their work and personal schedules so that they can attend their scheduled examinations. If an examination must be rescheduled due to an emergency (weather, technology, etc.) the Registrar’s Office will make every effort to schedule the make-up examination during the normal examination period. For this reason, students must plan to remain in residence during the entire period in which they have scheduled examinations.

No student may take an examination before the examination’s officially scheduled date and/or time. This policy may not be overridden by individual professors. A student, however, may request permission to take an examination out-of-sequence after the date and time of the original exam for the following reasons:

  1. The student has two (2) in-class or 24-hour take-home examinations scheduled on the same calendar day, or
  2. The student has three (3) in-class examinations or 24-hour take-home examinations scheduled on three (3) consecutive calendar days, or
  3. The student has serious medical reasons verified in writing by appropriate medical personnel, or
  4. The student has a personal emergency supported by documentation.

For exam scheduling purposes, “calendar day” is defined as 12:01 AM to 11:59 PM on a single calendar day. For example, if a student has two in-class, two 24-hour take-home or one in-class and one 24-hour take-home that are both on Monday, the student could petition to reschedule one of the exams. If a student has one exam on Monday and one exam on Tuesday, the exams would not qualify for rescheduling as they are not on the same calendar day. Papers, projects and take-home or online exams with multiple-day availability do not qualify for rescheduling.

Examinations Rescheduled for Reasons One (1) and Two (2):
Students who seek to change an examination time for reasons one (1) and two (2) above must seek permission via the out-of-sequence petition form available here. If a student requests an out-of-sequence examination based on an in-class and 24-hour timed take-home exam, the Registrar’s Office will reschedule the in-class examination.

Examinations Rescheduled for Reasons Three (3) and Four (4) Above:
Students who seek to change an examination time for reason three (3) or four (4) above must seek permission from the Associate Dean for Student Affairs. Personal emergencies do not include work-related responsibilities, but rather contemplate such events as a death in the family, or emergency medical situations that involve the student or family dependents. A student who seeks a rescheduled examination for reasons three (3) or four (4) must file an Out of Sequence Exam Request with the Associate Dean as soon as the medical situation arises or as soon as the student discovers the personal emergency. Students can find such forms here. Students may be asked to provide additional information or forms to document the request.

Students who receive permission to reschedule an examination for reasons three (3) or four (4) must complete the examination as soon as possible and preferably within the normal examination period for the particular semester. In no event may a student reschedule an examination after the beginning of the next semester.

A general petition must be filed with the Associate Dean for Student Affairs for any reason other than those listed above.

back to top »



Disabled Student Accommodations and Additional Time for ESL International Students

  • ADA Accomodations
    A student with documented disabilities who requests examination accommodations should meet with the Associate Director of Student Affairs at the beginning of the academic year, or upon discovery of the disability, to discuss needed accommodations. University Disability Services (UDS) reviews and approves all documentation and accommodations. Students can find the UDS handbook and forms at http://www.du.edu/disability/. A student must implement and finalize accommodations through completion and submission of an Exam Accommodations Form to the Student Affairs Office at least one week a student’s midterm exams or during the last month of scheduled classes for the particular semester. Students can find the form online here. The Student Affairs Office then submits this form to the Registrar’s Office. A student must complete and submit this form to the Student Affairs Office during each semester in which the student requests an accommodation.

  • Additional Time for ESL Students
    Students for whom English is a recently learned second language may also receive additional time with proper documentation. Students should request additional time for their midterm and final examinations via the Additional Time for ESL International Students here on the Registrar’s website. Students should note that the Registrar’s Office does not provide dictionaries in their native language. They may request the use of an English language dictionary by checking the appropriate box on the request form.


Students receiving additional time for ADA or ESL accommodations will be notified via DU Law e-mail of the time and date they should report to the Registrar’s Office for each midterm or final examination. Unless students have specific ADA accommodations for a separate room, study rooms and designated classrooms are considered limited distraction environments. The Registrar’s Office may place more than one student in a suitably sized room. Students must bring their own timing device such as a watch or clock. Students will not be permitted to use cell phones to time themselves.

back to top »



Retention and Storage of Exams

The Registrar’s Office will retain all materials upon which the professor bases a student’s grade for one year following the completion of the course. Faculty members have the option to retain these materials for one year, as well. If materials are not available from the professor, the Registrar’s Office will assist in obtaining those materials for student review. Students may review each exam once for no more than 30 minutes and must follow the rules for review set forth by the professor. The Registrar’s Office will publish a list of which exams have been received for review on the grading page at: http://www.law.du.edu/index.php/registrar/grade-information

back to top »



Grading System

The Sturm College of Law employs a letter grade system of A-F. The grades issued in all required courses must have a median of 3.0 and a mean between 2.85 and 3.15. The grades issued in all non-required courses with an enrollment of more than ten students must substantially conform to this mandatory curve. Substantial conformity means that grades cannot deviate more than 0.1 from the mandatory median and mean. If the grades issued in a course of more than 10 students substantially deviate from the mandatory curve the professor must provide the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs (“Associate Dean”) with adequate justification for the deviation. The Associate Dean shall make the final determination of whether an adequate justification exists for the substantial deviation. If the Associate Dean determines that adequate justification does not exist, the professor, the Associate Dean, or the Registrar shall reconfigure the grades.

The law school uses letter grades to calculate grade point averages in a four-point numerical system. Letter grades have the following numerical values:

A 4.0
A- 3.7
B+ 3.3
B 3.0
B- 2.7
C+ 2.3
C 2.0
C- 1.7
D+ 1.3
D 1.0
D- 0.7
F 0.0

A limited number of courses (including externships and journal work) receive pass/fail grades. Pass/fail grades do not factor into the student’s cumulative law school grade point average. When the student receives a passing grade, P, the student has performed at a standard consistent with a grade of C or better. A failing grade, F, indicates unacceptable performance, and will not count toward the graduation credit hour requirement.

back to top »



Grade Normalization

The normalized grade range for required classes will be a median of 3.0 and a mean between 2.85 and 3.15. The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs will conduct normalization procedures after notification to the professor involved that the median and mean fall outside of the required range. The professor shall have two working days from the date of notification by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs to make adjustments and to resubmit final grades.

If no agreement can be reached in which the median is 3.0 and the mean falls between 2.85 and 3.15, then normalization will occur in the following manner:

  1. The Associate Dean will add the same number of points to, or subtract the same number of points from, each submitted grade to ensure that the median reaches 3.0 and the mean falls between 2.85 and 3.15;
  2. No student who originally received a passing grade will receive a failing grade after normalization;
  3. If, statistically and technically, the median cannot reach 3.0 and the mean cannot fall between 2.85 to 3.15, the Examinations, Standing, and Readmission Committee will take immediate jurisdiction over the matter and submit a final non-appealable decision after an expedited review.
  4. For classes with ten or fewer students, the faculty policy strongly encourages that all grades fall within the established median of 3.0 and the mandatory mean of 2.85 to 3.15.

back to top »



Academic Probation, Dismissal and Readmission Policy

  • Academic Probation and Dismissal Policies for Students Who Entered the Sturm College of Law in the Fall of 2007 and All Subsequent Semesters
    • Graduation
      A student must achieve at least a 2.3 cumulative grade point average to graduate from the Sturm College of Law. The Sturm College of Law will not graduate, and will dismiss, students who have satisfied the course requirements for graduation but have not maintained the required minimum 2.3 cumulative grade point average.
    • Academic Probation
      All students who enter the Sturm College of Law in the Fall 2007, or any subsequent semester, must maintain a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.3 to remain in good standing. The Sturm College of Law will place on probation any student whose cumulative GPA falls below 2.3 in any semester.
    • Dismissal
      All students who enter the Sturm College of Law in the Fall 2007, or any subsequent semester, must maintain a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0, including the first semester of their first year. The Sturm College of Law will dismiss any student whose cumulative GPA falls below 2.0 at the end of any semester, including the first semester of law school. Ordinarily the SCOL will not readmit dismissed students.

      Students on probation can continue in law school provided they make satisfactory progress toward good standing as described below in paragraph 5. Any student readmitted to law school after dismissal remains on academic probation pursuant to the academic probation rules above.
      • Conditions of Academic Probation
        The following restrictions apply to all students on academic probation:
        • The student may not participate as an elected officer or devote substantial work to any student activity or faculty committee without the written approval of the Associate Dean for Student Affairs.
        • The student must register for and complete a normal academic credit load each subsequent semester while on probation, which requires 12 credit hours per semester for full-time day students and 8 credit hours per semester for part-time evening students.
        • The student may not enroll in seminars, directed research projects, clinics, externships, courses offered outside the Sturm College of Law curriculum, or courses graded by a different method than the usual letter grade system. Simulation courses and clinics consist of educational experiences in which students perform lawyering skills and faculty base all or part of the grade on observation and assessment of student skill performances.
        • To maintain eligibility to continue in law school while on probation, the student must actively participate in the Academic Achievement Program. Any student with a GPA of 2.6 or lower at the end of the first two semesters of law school must take a three hour course that stresses legal analysis in the first subsequent semester. Successful completion of this course is a requirement of graduation. The student also must meet with, and secure approval from, the Associate Dean for Student Affairs with respect to the student’s proposed academic schedule each semester.
        • A student placed on probation during any semester has two subsequent consecutive semesters in which to achieve a good standing GPA of 2.3. During the first of these two semesters, however, a student on probation must make satisfactory progress toward good standing as follows: the student must raise his or her cumulative GPA by one-half the difference between the student’s cumulative GPA and a 2.3 cumulative GPA.

          During the second of these two consecutive semesters, the student who remains on probation must raise his or her cumulative GPA to 2.3 or above. Failure of the probationary student to secure the required progress in either of the two consecutive semesters described above results in dismissal from law school. Summer terms are not considered “semesters” for purposes of satisfactory progress toward good standing. As a consequence the SCOL does not include summer grades in a student’s cumulative GPA for probation purposes until the end of the subsequent Fall semester.

back to top »



Bar Passage Program

The SCOL has implemented a Bar Passage Program to help students improve academic performance and achieve success on the bar exam. As identified below, the particular requirements are based on academic performance at three markers: (1) cumulative grades at the completion of the first semester of law school; (2) cumulative grades at the completion of the first two semesters of law school; and, (3) cumulative grades at the completion of the fourth semester of law school.

  1. Bar Passage Requirements Based on GPA at Completion of First Semester
    • Any student with a GPA of 2.6 or below at the end of the first (1) semester of law school must meet with the Director of the Academic Achievement Program (or the dean’s designee) in the spring semester of the first year of law school. At this meeting the student and the Director of the Academic Achievement Program (or the dean’s designee) will perform a diagnostic review to determine reasons for the student’s GPA and develop an individualized program designed to address issues identified.
  2. Bar Passage Requirements Based on GPA at Completion of First Two Semesters
    • Any student with a GPA of 2.6 or lower at the end of the first two (2) semesters of law school must take Intermediate Legal Analysis (2L legal analysis course) in the first subsequent semester. Successful completion of this course is a requirement for graduation.
    • Furthermore, any student with a GPA of 2.6 or lower at the end of the first two (2) semesters of law school must take, in addition to normal course requirements, at least one (1) course out of each of following list of four (4) bar exam subject matter areas prior to graduation. These course requirements – comprising four (4) additional required courses – remain in place regardless of academic performance in subsequent semesters.
    • The subject matter areas identified below are selected to provide bar passage students with familiarity in several areas of the law that are often tested on the Uniform Bar Exam. The Director of the Bar Passage Program (or the dean’s designee) may waive course requirements based on exceptional circumstances. The following list identifies the four (4) subject areas and particular courses available to satisfy graduation requirements based on academic performance after the first two law school semesters:
      • Commercial Law Survey (preferred) or Secured Transactions or Commercial Paper
      • Constitutional Law II: Individual Rights or Criminal Procedure or Conflict of Laws
      • Corporations or Agency, Partnership & LLC
      • Family Law or Trusts & Estates
  3. Bar Passage Requirements Based on GPA at Completion of First Four Semesters
    • Any student with a GPA of 2.6 or below at the end of four (4) semesters of law school must meet with the Director of the Bar Passage Program (or the dean’s designee). At this meeting the student and the Director of the Bar Passage Program (or the dean’s designee) will perform a diagnostic review to determine reasons for the student’s GPA and develop an individualized program designed to address issues identified.
      Furthermore, any student with a GPA of 2.6 or below at the end of the first four (4) semesters of law school must take Legal Analysis Strategies (3L/4L bar preparation course) in the final semester prior to graduation.
    • In addition, any student with a GPA of 2.6 or lower at the end of the first four (4) semesters of law school must take, in addition to normal course requirements, at least one (1) course out of each of the following list of four (4) bar exam subject areas prior to graduation, which are often tested on the Uniform Bar Exam. These course requirements – comprising an additional four (4) required courses – remain in place regardless of academic performance in subsequent semesters. If a student has previously taken any of the courses listed below for a particular subject matter area, then the student has satisfied the requirement for that bar exam subject matter area.
    • The subject matter areas identified below are selected to provide bar passage students with familiarity in several areas of the law that are often tested on the Uniform Bar Exam. The Director of the Bar Passage Program (or the dean’s designee) may waive course requirements based on exceptional circumstances. The following list identifies the subject areas and particular courses available to satisfy graduation requirements based on academic performance after the first four law school semesters:
      • Commercial Law Survey (preferred) or Secured Transactions or Commercial Paper
      • Constitutional Law II: Individual Rights or Criminal Procedure or Conflict of Laws
      • Corporations or Agency, Partnership & LLC
      • Family Law or Trusts & Estates

back to top »



Class Attendance and Examinations

Adequate student learning requires consistent class attendance. The SCOL requires all professors and adjunct professors to set a firm attendance policy. Each faculty member must make their attendance policy known to their students at or before the first day of class. A professor may refuse to allow a student to take a final examination or submit a final paper if that student has failed to attend 20% or more of the total class meetings for the semester. If the professor imposes this rule and does not allow the student to take a final exam or submit a final paper, the student receives a grade of “F” in the course.
back to top »



Incompletes

The Sturm College of Law does not recognize a grade designation of “Incomplete.” A student who drops a course without official permission, fails to take an examination, or fails to timely complete the required course work, receives a grade of “F” for that class.

back to top »



Repetition of Failed Classes

A student must repeat any required course in which the student obtained a grade of “F.” Students may elect to repeat any non-required course in which they received a grade of “F.” Students may not repeat a course for which they received a passing grade. Whenever a student repeats a course, the Registrar must record both grades on the student’s transcript and will use both grades to compute a student’s grade point average. A readmitted student who repeats the entire first year represents an exception to this policy. [See Appendix D on Readmission]

back to top »



Anonymous Grading Policy

The Sturm College of Law employs an anonymous grading system. The SCOL requires anonymous grading whenever the grade for the entire course, seminar, or exercise rests on a written examination. However, in other situations, such as faculty supervised student research, writing seminars, classroom participation credit, writing exercises, skills training, and performance courses, professors have no obligation to anonymously evaluate a student.

Whenever a professor anonymously grades any part of the course, the professor must maintain anonymity with respect to that part of the grade until the Registrar records final grades. Students who seek to discuss their performance on an examination should not contact the professor until the Registrar records the professor’s final grades.

The Registrar shall issue a final examination number to each student each semester. A student must use that number for all final examinations. The Registrar’s Office also will issue a different examination number for all scheduled mid-term examinations. The Registrar keeps all examination numbers confidential. Students have the responsibility to keep their examination numbers confidential and know their numbers at all examinations.

back to top »



Receipt of Grades

The Registrar’s Office cannot release information with respect to grades. The Registrar will post grades to MyWeb as soon as possible after their receipt. Professors are required to submit their grades within thirty (30) days after the end of the final examination period.

back to top »



Class Rank Information

The Registrar’s Office begins calculating ranking after the receipt of the last classroom grades for spring semester each year. Collecting information and the process for computing ranking may take a week or more. Please note that the honorary society, the Order of St. Ives, recognizes students whose cumulative grade point average are within the top 10% of all students who graduate within each academic year, but the Order of St. Ives does not constitute an official class ranking.

back to top »



Finality of Grades and Grade Grievance Policy

  • Grade Appeals to Professor
    Once a faculty member submits a final grade to the Registrar, the professor cannot change that grade unless the professor determines:
    • The professor has made a mistake that does not involve an issue of judgment, such as a mathematical mistake or a mistake in the conversion of a numerical score to letter grade; or
    • The professor has made an incorrect evaluation of a student’s work, provided that:
      • the professor did not know the identity of the student during the reevaluation process, and
      • the professor informs all students in the course about the opportunity for reevaluation.

If a student wishes a full-time professor to review his/her examination to confirm the numerical accuracy of a grade, the student must maintain anonymity with the professor and make such a request through the Office of the Registrar or through the staff assistant assigned to the professor. The student must make this request within three months after the Registrar posts the final grade. Professors will not review exams for or make a determination regarding another professor’s grading methodology with regard to a class.

If a student wishes an adjunct professor to review his/her examination to confirm the numerical accuracy of a grade, the student must maintain anonymity and file a Grade Review Request Form with the Office of the Registrar. Students can find the form here or in the Registrar’s Office. The student must make this request within three months after the Registrar posts the final grade. Professors will not review exams for or make a determination regarding another professor’s grading methodology with regard to a class.

  • Grade Appeals to the Examinations and Standing Committee
    Once a professor has entered a final grade or after the completion of a grade appeal to the professor, a student may file a grade appeal with the Examinations, Standing, and Readmission Committee whenever a student believes that the professor has unfairly assigned a grade. The student initiates this process by filing a petition with Examinations, Standing, and Readmission Committee by hand delivery and email to the Registrar’s Office.
    • Statute of Limitations for Grade Appeals to the Examinations, Standing, and Readmission Committee
      The student must file such a petition within three months after the Registrar has posted the final grade. The Committee shall consider a mailed petition as filed on the date of the postmark. The Committee shall consider a hand-delivered petition as filed upon the date of receipt. If “for good cause” a student cannot comply with the three month statute of limitations, the student must submit a written request to the Committee before the expiration of the three month period. The request must contain the good cause reasons why the student cannot comply with the three month statute of limitations and a request for a time extension. The Committee may extend the statute of limitations for good cause shown.
    • Form of the Petition to the Examinations, Standing, and Readmission Committee
      A student shall address the petition to the Chair of the Examinations, Standing, and Readmission Committee, and the petition shall state:
      • The student’s name and the student’s examination number
      • The name of the course in which the student received the appealed grade
      • The year, semester, and division of the course in which the student received the appealed grade
      • The name of the professor who taught the course
      • The date on which the Registrar posted the appealed grade
      • A short and concise explanation why the student believes the requirements articulated provide a basis for relief and, at the student’s option, a statement of the specific relief requested.
    • The Criteria Required to State a Claim to the Examinations, Standing, and Readmission Committee
      A petition states a claim if it asserts the following:
      Either
      • The petitioner consulted with the professor and requested relief and the professor declined to grant relief which was acceptable to the student, or
      • The petitioner attempted to consult with the professor and the professor refused to meet with the student, or was not conveniently available within a period of two months after the Registrar posted the final grade,
      • And, that the student received an unfair, or substantially inappropriate, grade for one or more of the following reasons:
        • The professor made a numerical error in the calculation of the grade; or
        • The grade received resulted from the bias or prejudice of the professor against the student. If the student received the grade in a course graded, anonymously, in whole or in part, and the claim of bias or prejudice relates to the anonymously graded portion of the class, the student also must allege a breach of anonymity in the anonymously graded portion of the class; or
        • The conditions or circumstances under which the student took the examination effectively prevented the student from communication of his/her answers. Such conditions or circumstances may include, without limitation, unreasonable noise in or around the classroom, problematic temperature or lighting conditions, or the occurrence of an illness during the exam which the student immediately reported to the Registrar; or
        • The student clearly and unequivocally establishes that the grade bears no reasonable relationship to accepted and reasonable grading standards; or
        • The student clearly and unequivocally establishes that the work graded bears no reasonable relationship to the material covered or assigned in the course.

          The Committee shall not apply the above standards in a manner that substitutes the Committee’s judgment for the good faith professional judgment of the professor.
    • Examinations, Standing, and Readmission Committee Review of the Petition
      • Review Period
        The Committee shall make every reasonable effort to review and issue a written response within three months after the student files the petition. If, for any reason, the Committee cannot make a timely recommendation to a timely filed petition, the Committee shall send a letter to the petitioner within three months from the filing of the petition that sets forth the reasons why the Committee has taken no action. If the Committee does not submit a timely response or a timely letter that explains the delay, within six months after the student timely files the petition, the student may assume that the Committee has denied the petition. At such time and under such circumstances, the student may appeal directly to the Dean of the SCOL.
      • Initial Action by the Examinations, Standing, and Readmission Committee
        In response to a petition, the Committee may do one or more of the following:
        • Decide, after due deliberation, that the petition fails to state a claim, in which case the Committee shall send their written decision and any dissent to the student and to the Professor. The student may appeal such a decision to the Dean of Sturm College of Law.
        • Decide, upon approval by the student and the professor, to mediate the differences between the student and the professor.
        • Decide by majority vote, after due deliberation, that the facts stated in the petition if true, state a claim based on the criteria noted above. In such case the Committee shall notify, in writing, the professor whose grade the student has challenged and shall invite the professor to submit a written response to the petition within a reasonable period of time set by the Committee. If the professor submits a written response, the Committee shall include that response in the record. The Committee cannot require the professor to submit a response. The Committee then shall make a decision based on the available evidence.

          After the Committee receives the professor’s response or the professor’s time for response has expired, the Committee may request the petitioner or any other person to provide any documents or information that the Committee considers useful to determine the merits of the petition. The Committee cannot require the student or any other person to produce the requested documents or information. Ordinarily the Committee shall make a decision based upon written submissions. In an unusual case the Committee may decide that special circumstances require a hearing. If the Committee schedules such a hearing, both the professor and the student shall have the right to attend and present oral testimony. The Committee cannot require any person to attend an oral hearing.

          The parties may offer whatever evidence they consider relevant and may produce evidence that the Committee deems necessary to assist in a decision. The Committee shall judge the relevance and materiality of all evidence and the Committee need not conform to the Colorado or federal rules. The Committee may reasonably limit the time for oral presentations.
      • Final Action by the Examinations, Standing, and Readmission Committee
        If the Committee finds that no action is appropriate, the Committee shall notify the student and the professor, and the student may appeal to the Dean of Sturm College of Law.

        If the Committee makes any recommendation, the Committee first shall inform the professor in a written communication that states the recommendations and the reasons for them. If the professor declines to accept the Committee’s recommendations within three days, the Committee shall send the recommendations to the student and refer the matter to the Dean of Sturm College of Law. The student may appeal any recommendation to the Dean. The student or the professor must appeal any decision or recommendation of the Committee to the Dean within ten days after the student receives written notice of the Committee’s decision or recommendation.

        The student or the professor, or both, may appeal to the Dean any matter related to the petition. The Dean shall then determine what action, if any, the Sturm College of Law should take and implement that action. The student or professor may appeal the Dean’s decision only in accordance with University Procedures.

        The Chair of the Committee shall retain custody of all final recommendations, including dissents, and the record of the case, and the Committee shall consider such final recommendations as precedent for future cases. Students and faculty may request a copy of any decision rendered by the Committee, but the Committee first shall delete the names of all parties. When the number of the written decisions makes it unreasonably difficult for the Committee to locate a particular decision, the Chair of the Committee shall devise an index system.

back to top »



Subcommittees

The Committee may delegate to a subcommittee of at least three members all duties and responsibilities under these rules. In such cases, the decision of the subcommittee shall be the decision of the Committee.

back to top »



Liberal Construction

The Committee and the Dean shall liberally construe these rules to serve the just, speedy, and fair resolution of every petition.

back to top »