Mitigating Circumstances for Assessed Components Excluding the Thesis

(3)9.42 Professional doctorate students must notify their department of any circumstances that may adversely affect their ability to complete the specified assessed components. All claims of mitigating circumstances must be received by the programme team no more than five working days after the specified submission deadline for the assessed component or, if applicable, the end of an approved extension period. Claims of mitigating circumstances that are received after that time shall not be considered. The professional doctorate student shall be responsible for ensuring that the claim of mitigating circumstances has been received on time.

(3)9.43 Professional doctorate students may submit a claim of mitigating circumstances for their assessment performance:

1. in respect of assessed components that:

a. fail to achieve a pass mark

or

b. were deemed to have failed owing to non-submission or late submission

or

2. in respect of assessed components which could not be submitted within the maximum permitted extension period

(3)9.44 Professional doctorate students may not submit a claim of mitigating circumstances for their assessment performance in respect of assessed components that:

1. achieved a pass mark

or

2. were deemed to have failed owing to plagiarism or academic dishonesty

(3)9.45 The Board of Examiners shall normally be responsible for considering claims of mitigating circumstances in respect of assessed components. A Mitigating Circumstances Panel, operating under delegated authority from the Board of Examiners, shall be convened if the programme team is satisfied that there is a good reason for a decision in respect to a claim of mitigating circumstances to be taken earlier than the next meeting of the Board of Examiners.

(3)9.46 The membership of the Mitigating Circumstances Panel shall be subject to approval by the Programme Director or their nominee and must comprise at least two academic members of the programme team or programme markers.

(3)9.47 The Board of Examiners/Mitigating Circumstances Panel shall accept claims of mitigating circumstances in respect of assessed components only where:

1. the circumstances described were

a. unforeseen and/or unpreventable

b. significant in nature

c. likely to have had a significant adverse effect on the academic performance of the professional doctorate student

2. the professional doctorate student has provided all appropriate evidence in support of the claim

(3)9.48 The professional doctorate student shall be responsible for providing such evidence in support of their request as is required by the University and this evidence must relate to the relevant period. Such evidence must be in English or submitted with a certified English translation. Evidence relating to circumstances of a medical nature must be from a qualified medical practitioner. The University may require independent verification of evidence submitted in support of a claim of mitigating circumstance.

(3)9.49 In considering a claim of mitigating circumstances the Board of Examiners/Mitigating Circumstances Panel may consider as relevant:

1. what efforts had been made by the professional doctorate student at the time to notify the programme team of their circumstances

2. whether the professional doctorate student had requested an extension to the specified submission or re-submission period

3. whether the professional doctorate student had requested a suspension of their registration

4. whether there had been any reasonable adjustment(s) to the assessment arrangements owing to the professional doctorate student having a specific learning difficulty, disability, or long-term medical condition

5. whether there are any fitness to practice concerns and whether the circumstances merit initiation of fitness to practice proceedings (DClinPsy only)

(3)9.50 The Board of Examiners/Mitigating Circumstances Panel shall on completion of consideration of a claim of mitigating circumstances make one of the following decisions:

1. to accept the claim of mitigating circumstances

2. to reject the claim of mitigating circumstances

(3)9.51 If the claim of mitigating circumstances is accepted, the Board of Examiners/Mitigating Circumstances Panel shall normally require the professional doctorate student to repeat the relevant assessed component(s) without penalties:

1. where the mitigating circumstances have been accepted in relation to the original submission of an assessed component, the student shall be given a further opportunity to submit this with no cap on the marks awarded; a subsequent re-submission shall be permitted where appropriate

2. where the mitigating circumstances have been accepted in relation to the re-submission of an assessed component the student shall be given a further opportunity to re-submit this and the mark shall be capped at the minimum required for a pass; a further re-submission shall not be permitted

(3)9.52 In exceptional circumstances and only if it is impracticable to require the professional doctorate student to repeat the assessed component, the Board of Examiners may require the professional doctorate student to complete an alternative form of assessment through which the student can demonstrate achievement of the same intended learning outcomes. Mitigating Circumstances Panels may not approve the completion of an alternative form of assessment in such cases but may make a recommendation to the Board of Examiners to this effect.

(3)9.53 In exceptional circumstances and only if the professional doctorate student is unable through illness or other sufficient cause to repeat the assessed component or complete an alternative form of assessment, the Board of Examiners may award a pass mark for the assessed component if the student has in other successfully completed assessed components demonstrated achievement of the same intended learning outcomes sufficient for an overall mark to be derived. The derivation of an overall mark in this way shall be used only to allow the professional doctorate student to satisfy the requirements for an intermediate qualification and shall not be used to enable the student to continue with the doctoral programme. Mitigating Circumstances Panels may not approve the derivation of an overall mark in such cases but may make a recommendation to the Board of Examiners to this effect.

(3)9.54 If the claim of mitigating circumstances is rejected, the professional doctorate student may submit a formal academic appeal as specified in Senate Regulation Ten.

(3)9.55 A decision on a claim of mitigating circumstances that has been taken by a Mitigating Circumstances Panel shall be documented and reported to the next meeting of the Board of Examiners.

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