What is Academic Judgement?

What is Academic Judgement?

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Academic Appeals and Judgement graphic

Not happy with your marks? You can make an Academic Appeal on certain grounds which could result in a change of markings. You can find out more about Academic Appeals here.


When making an appeal, you have to make sure that you’re not questioning Academic Judgement.


What is Academic Judgement? 


Academic Judgement is the decision made by someone of high responsibility and expertise at the University. These people could be (but are not limited to) lecturers, personal tutors, module leaders and external markers.


These individuals are responsible for the outcomes of assessments, results, degree classifications, course progression and fitness to practice.



Is questioning Academic Judgment a ground for an appeal? 


Unfortunately, you cannot make an appeal if you are simply questioning the academic judgment of the university as you do not agree with the outcome you have received. 


However, if you believe there are errors in the marking, or the process in how this outcome was decided (for example, if your mark differs drastically to what was expected), then you may have grounds to appeal on these lines. 


It is important to note you must have substantial evidence to support your claims, such as past results, emails, written confirmation or assignment feedback. An appeal will not be considered if it lacks evidence or seems to question academic judgment. 



What if I do not agree with the academic judgement? 


If you do not agree with DMU’s academic judgement, ask yourself why:

  • Was the outcome not what you hoped for?
  • Are you unsure why the decision was made? 
  • Do you lack trust in your university?


It is important you explore this, as taking time for reflection can be a useful tool in figuring out your next steps. An example of this may include:

  • Having a conversation with the individual who made the academic judgment. Ask for a meeting to clarify the process and any questions you have regarding the outcome. 
  • Read your feedback thoroughly. If you do not have feedback, request this. Highlight the positives and negatives, find comfort in learning from moments like this and put the feedback into practice in the future. 
  • Access academic support, such as CLaSS. You can find out more about what they offer here.
  • Accept the outcome and try not to be too hard on yourself. 



What can I do if I want to question academic judgement? 


If you want to question the academic judgement made, it might be useful to have a conversation with the individual who made the decision. Discuss queries, questions and clarify an understanding of the outcome.  


Alternatively, before an academic judgment is made, if you believe the quality and standard of service provided by the university is in question, there is an official Students Complaints Procedure (SCP) which you can follow regarding your dissatisfaction. 


However, it is important to note, a complaint should be made during an assessment, not after an outcome of an assessment has been received. 


A complaint may relate, but is not limited, to:

  • the quality and standard of service provided by the University, including teaching and learning provision
  • failure to provide a service
  • unsuitable facilities or learning resources
  • inappropriate behaviour or treatment by a staff member, student or individual associated with the University
  • failure of the University to follow an appropriate administrative or academic process 


Therefore, if you have any concerns throughout your studies, it is important you follow the SCP before an academic judgement is made. 



For further guidance on Academic Appeals, Academic Judgement and making complaints, please contact the De Montfort Students’ Union Advice & Wellbeing team here.