6.120 Procedures for Petitioning for a Waiver of Graduate School Policies
Applicants and students who do not meet the minimum requirements for admission/ readmission or wish to deviate from the normal Graduate School academic regulations and procedures may submit a petition (PDF) to the Graduate School requesting a waiver to a requirement or regulation. The petition forms are available in the Graduate School Office (E344 Student Union).
Petitions requesting a waiver to an academic policy should contain the recommendation of the student’s advisor. Petitions relating to courses, i.e., withdrawals, grades, etc., must also contain the instructor’s recommendation. Petitions requesting an extension to the seven year limit for completing degree requirements should contain the anticipated graduation date (advisors should stipulate on the petition which courses that will be more than seven years old will remain valid for the program requirements). Students should submit their petitions to the Graduate School. All petitions shall provide a rationale with supporting documentation for a waiver of any Graduate School policy or standard. Students who are in inactive status (have not completed at least one course in an academic year or have been dismissed from the Graduate School) or have not been admitted into a graduate status cannot petition an academic policy.
Before forwarding the petitions to the appropriate academic programs for a recommendation from chairs/ directors, the Graduate School will make a record of the petitions and review them for clarity. Petitions written illegibly, grammatically incorrect, or unclear will be returned to the petitioners for correction and/or clarification. After reviewing the petitions and making their recommendations, the program chairs/advisors will forward the petitions to their College/School Petitions Committee (or equivalent) or Program Admissions Committees to review the petitions and decide on their recommendations. The petitions are then forwarded back to the Graduate School for the Dean's review. The college or school to which the petition was sent must return the petition, with its recommendation(s), to the Graduate School within 20 business days of its being sent. Petitions that remain unreturned or unanswered for longer than this time frame may be considered by the Graduate School to be automatically denied. Upon concurrence of the Dean of the Graduate School with the college/school recommendations, and the notification of the student and the college/school by the Dean, the decision will become final. Unresolved differences between the students, the college/school, and/or the Dean of the Graduate School shall be referred to the Graduate Council Student Affairs Committee. The Registrar will be advised by the Graduate School of any actions taken as the result of an approved academic petition. The Registrar will post such actions on the student's academic record.
College/school decisions on petitions are not final. As the above procedures clearly indicate, a college's/school's decision on a petition may be questioned by the Dean of the Graduate School. In the event of a lack of concurrence, the Graduate Council, Student Affairs Committee is empowered to resolve such differences. Because of the above, it is mandatory that the Graduate School, and not the Colleges/Schools, officially inform the students of the disposition of each petition.
After being notified of a petition decision, students may appeal the decision to the Dean of the Graduate School. The Dean will present all appeals to the Student Affairs Committee of the Graduate Council. Any waiver of a University-wide or Graduate School requirement, including admissions requirements, may be questioned or appealed to the Student Affairs Committee, and the Graduate School alone will notify the petitioning student of the final disposition of that petition. It is particularly important that the University speak with one voice in cases where administrative and even legal problems may result.
Written notification of the final decision rendered on the petition is sent by the Graduate School to the student within ten days of the decision.
The Graduate School may request that academic programs make a final decision and notify the students of the decision on petitions requesting a waiver to a program requirement which is not a Graduate School policy or procedure.
Students wanting to appeal a grade or request a grade change should do so in accordance with the students' college or school grade appeal process.
Petitions and /or recommendations requesting the removal from a student's record of the hours and points received for a course (the course and grade will remain on the student's record) may be resolved by the college or school petitions committee and the Graduate School. If there are unresolved differences between the Dean of the Graduate School, the program, and the college or school petitions committee, the petition will be referred to the Student Affairs Committee of the Graduate Council for a final decision.