Appeals Guidance

The release of your exam and assessment results can be a particularly emotional time. If you feel overwhelmed and upset and in need of emotional support the Student Hub's Wellbeing Team have a range of resources and support for students. You can contact them by email on

Watch our series of videos to help guide you through the Appeals process:

After receiving your results you may also have practical questions about what you can do next. There are additional sources of academic and wellbeing support depending on your questions:

These may include queries regarding degree classification, calculation of modules, progression, re-sits/referrals, grade compensation or any other programme related queries.

You should contact The Student Hub or your Personal Academic Tutor (PAT) in first instance.

If you have questions about your graduation, please contact the Graduation Team on:

The Advice Centre is here to support you with your academic appeal. We will be running daily webinars from Thursday 29 June which will cover how to complete an Appeals form, how to write an Appeals statement, your next steps, and more. We also have video guides, online guides and answers to frequently asked questions which we can share with you.

During this period our Advice Centre team is exceptionally busy, and we may not be able to respond as quickly as we usually would. You can phone us on 02380 59 2085 and if you can't get through, please leave us a voicemail with your phone number and name and we will call you back. You can also email us, and we will respond as soon as possible.

The Student Hub's Wellbeing Team are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week via their online chat or phone: 02380 599 599. Contact The Student Hub and find out more about their support here: The Student Hub.

You can also visit their team in person in the following locations:

  • Building 37 on Highfield Campus (Monday - Sunday, 08:00 - 20:00)
  • Building 65 on Avenue Campus at the main reception (Monday - Friday, 08:00 - 20:00)
  • Building 63F on Winchester Campus at the main reception (Monday - Friday, 08:00 - 20:00)
  • Sir James Matthews Building (Building 135) (Monday - Friday, 08:00 - 20:00)

Frequently Asked Questions

General Information

An appeal is your opportunity to question an academic decision made by the University. It is a formal process governed by regulations which can be found here: Regulations Governing Academic Appeals by Students.

Yes, The Advice Centre can support you with your appeal. We are independent, confidential and free. You can email us on, phone us on 02380 59 2085 or visit us on Highfield campus, Building 40 Monday- Friday 09:00 - 17:00.

An appeal is directly related to a decision by an Assessment Board regarding a student’s assessment, progression or award.

A complaint may concern any aspect of the student experience except those issues which are covered by appeals. The appeal regulations require certain grounds to be satisfied for an appeal to be considered. The complaints regulation does not specify grounds which must be met.

If you aren't sure, speak to your personal tutor or The Advice Centre.

Any student currently enrolled at the University of Southampton or students studying at another institution for an award accredited by, validated by or made by the University of Southampton. Students who have left the University of Southampton can also appeal providing they adhere to the timescales within the regulations.

Unfortunately, you cannot appeal on the grounds that you are dissatisfied with your results, nor appeal to obtain a higher award classification due to marginally missing the required mark.

You must submit your notice to appeal form as soon as possible but within 10 working days or, in the case of pre-sessional results and supplementary examinations, 5 working days of the date a ratified decision is communicated to you.

You can only appeal against the final decision of the Exam Board regarding your results, award or progression. These are your ratified results. Any results you receive prior to the final Exam Board are provisional only and you cannot appeal against them. You may receive provisional results during the academic year, however, you will need to wait until formal notification from the Exam Board before considering an appeal.

Late appeals will not normally be accepted unless there are exceptional circumstances as to why the appeal is late. The appeal reviewer will decide whether exceptional circumstances have been provided so you should submit your appeal together with an explanation as to why the appeal is late.

Appeal Grounds

It can be helpful to begin by reading the Academic Appeal regulations and the supporting guide on The Advice Centre's page. You will first need to establish whether you have grounds to appeal.

There are three grounds under which you can base your appeal. They are:

1) That they possess new substantive information supported by evidence which was not known by the student and/or the evidence could not reasonably have been obtained by the student in time to present to the board or panel of the University which made the original decision against which the student is appealing.

An example may be that you received some new medical information that you didn’t have prior to undertaking an assessment that you believe the University would have considered when making its original decision.

2) That there has been significant failure of due process in the making of the original decision (including but not limited to irregularity in the procedures of the University or significant computational or administrative errors of fact in results published), which the student believes affected the University's original decision.

For example, you may be due to receive reasonable adjustments in your exams which were not put in place, and you were not able to apply for special considerations.

3) That their performance had been adversely affected by illness or by other factors (e.g: Family crisis) which, in exceptional circumstances, they were unable or for valid reason unwilling to disclose to the University before it made its original decision.

For example, you may have suffered from an illness or a flare up of an existing illness that you weren’t able to raise through other means such as special considerations but you believe that this has significantly impacted your performance.

You must have a minimum of one but you can choose more if it is suitable.

We would never tell you which grounds you should appeal under but we can help you to understand the grounds so you can make an informed decision about which is the best option for you.

If you have long-term health conditions that the University are aware of, these wouldn’t ordinarily be considered in an appeal however, flare-ups of pre-existing conditions may be. You would need to submit supporting evidence of a flare up of a pre-existing condition.

Appeals Form and Evidence

The ‘Notice to appeal’ form can be found in appendix A of the University Regulations, found here: Regulations Governing Academic Appeals by Students.

No, you can submit them all on one form, but you will probably find it beneficial to include a statement that explains the events in more detail. This will help to avoid confusion.

Ideally, yes. If you have access to evidence to support your appeal, it would be beneficial to submit this alongside your appeal.

If you are waiting for evidence, then submit your form but state on the form that you are waiting for the evidence to arrive. You can submit the evidence later, but you must adhere to the timelines for submitting your appeal.

You will need to get this translated into English by a professional certified company, . We are not able to recommend anyone to translate this for you, but a search online should be able to provide options for local translators.

Appeal Statement

An appeal statement is your opportunity to explain what happened and the impact it had on you and your studies. It is a separate document that you can either send alongside your appeal form to help the reviewer understand your appeal, or you can take it with you to a preliminary discussion if you have one and read it on the day.

There are many benefits in writing a statement to support your appeal, a few have been listed here:

1) It can add more detail to your appeal.

The appeal form has limited space to add your information so a separate document will allow you the space to explain events in more detail. This may be especially helpful if your appeal is quite complex.

2) You can explain the impact in more detail

One of the key features to any good appeal is being able to explain impact. It isn’t enough to say what happened, you need to explain how you were affected by what happened and, how it affected your performance.

3) It will help to ensure you don’t miss anything

Writing a statement will allow you to gather your thoughts and put them on paper giving you time to edit, amend and add information. This can be a therapeutic process and it will give you the space you need to reflect on the impact of the events which is key to a good appeal.

4) You may be nervous during a preliminary discussion

Not all appeals will require a preliminary discussion, but many will and you may be nervous. At a preliminary discussion, you will have an opportunity to read your statement as if it were a script. This means, you won’t forget anything important, and you won’t stumble over your words or ramble. It will be a clear and concise review of what happened.

5) Your Adviser can read your statement

You may find that you are too nervous or too stressed to be able to read your statement. If that happens, your Adviser can read it for you, as they are imparting your words, and not ‘speaking for you’.

The Advice Centre has a guide to help you write your appeal here: Academic Appeal Statements.

What Happens Next

You will need to submit your form to the relevant Curriculum and Quality Assurance team. Their contact details can be found in Appendix E here: Regulations Governing Academic Appeals by Students.

If you wish to add more information or send evidence in that you have received after you have submitted your appeal, you can send that to the relevant curriculum and quality assurance team. There information can be found in Appendix E here: Regulations Governing Academic Appeals by Students.

After submitting your appeal form, it will be sent to a reviewer who will decide whether a preliminary discussion needs to take place. If a preliminary discussion is required, this will take place within 5 working days of submitting your appeal.

Not all appeals require a preliminary discussion. If the appeal reviewer decides that you have demonstrated grounds for an appeal based on the information provided to them on paper, they will approve the appeal , and you will be notified of the outcome within 10 working days.

If a preliminary review does take place, the outcome along with any notes will normally be sent to you within 5 working days of the discussion.

An appeal cannot be rejected without a preliminary discussion taking place.

A preliminary discussion is an opportunity for you to offer more information about your appeal and for the reviewer to ask any questions they may have.

Many people feel nervous attending a preliminary discussion and this is understandable, but the discussion is intended to be friendly and informative.

You can take someone along to the preliminary discussion if you wish. This could be a student adviser, a personal tutor or someone else associated with the university such as a fellow student.

Yes, you should continue to revise. It can take up to 10 working days to receive an outcome and if your appeal is upheld and you are given another chance at the assessment, this would be a lot of lost revision time spent waiting.

There are 3 possible outcomes from a stage 1 appeal:

1) The staff member believes that the student can demonstrate grounds for an appeal, and they make a recommendation to the board to reconsider their original outcome.

2) The staff member believes that the student can not demonstrate grounds to appeal the original decision.

3) The staff member doesn’t believe that the appeal submitted falls within scope of the regulations and may refer the student to a different procedure (i.e. the student has made a complaint using the appeal regulations).

If the staff member believes that grounds for an appeal have been demonstrated, they will make a recommendation to the board to reconsider their original decision. In this instance, it is the board that makes the decision whether to uphold an appeal or not.

Should an appeal not be upheld for any reason, a student can progress to the next stage of the appeal process.

We would always recommend that the student contacts The Advice Centre before progressing with this.