Grade Dispute Policy

The PLU School of Nursing is dedicated to fair and accurate appraisal of each student’s coursework. When disagreements arise over grades assigned in a course, students and faculty should first follow the School’s established procedure for informal grade dispute resolution. If the informal procedure is unsuccessful in resolving the grade dispute, students and faculty will undertake the School’s formal grade dispute resolution procedure*.

Procedural Steps:

  1. A student considering a grade dispute must first read this document in its entirety and discuss it with their assigned faculty advisor before proceeding to step 2. If the student’s advisor is also the faculty member responsible for submitting the disputed grade, the student should contact the School of Nursing Associate Director of Advising, Admission, and Student Support to determine an alternative advisor for these proceedings.
  2. A student who chooses to dispute a grade should first initiate the informal grade dispute process by addressing the matter with the faculty member responsible for submitting the grade in the following manner:
    1. Submit to the responsible faculty member a written statement, detailing why the grade is being disputed and the grade and/or remedy the student is seeking, and requesting an appointment time to meet with the faculty member.
      1. The student is responsible for providing a copy of the written statement to the School of Nursing office to be placed in the student’s official School of Nursing file.
      2. The written statement should be available during the discussion between the student and the responsible faculty member.
    2. After the initial discussion, the responsible faculty member should provide a written statement detailing the issues discussed, including why or why not the grade will be changed.
      1. Both the responsible faculty member and the student should sign this written statement; the student should have an opportunity to provide additional written comments.
      2. The faculty member is responsible for submitting this statement, along with any additional written comments from the student, to the School of Nursing office to be placed in the student’s official School of Nursing file.
  3. If the matter is not resolved between the student and the responsible faculty member, the student may request assistance and advocacy from his or her faculty advisor. With regard to written statements, requests for meetings and discussions held between the responsible faculty member, the faculty advisor, and the student, should follow the same procedures and guidelines as outlined in Step #2.
  4. If the matter is not resolved after discussion with the faculty member and the faculty advisor, the student may initiate the formal grade dispute process by appealing to the Recruitment, Admission, and Progression (RAP) Committee. The RAP committee will consider only those grade disputes arising from documented incidents of discrimination or harassment, or non-compliance as detailed in step #5 of the informal grade dispute procedure. The RAP committee will make a recommendation to the Dean, who will make the final determination. If the Dean is the faculty member responsible for submitting the disputed grade and/or is the student’s advisor, the student may appeal to the provost. With regard to written statements, requests for an appeal, and discussions held between the responsible faculty member, the faculty advisor, the student and the Dean or provost, should follow the same procedures and guidelines as outlined in Step #2.
  5. If the student chooses to pursue the matter beyond Step #4, he or she may submit a grievance to the University Dispute Resolution Committee (UDRC). It is expected that the procedure outlined here will be followed in its entirety before a grievance is made to the UDRC. All copies of written statements from the student’s official School of Nursing file regarding the grade dispute will be made available to the UDRC upon request.

*Some courses required for completion of the nursing major are offered in academic departments other than the School of Nursing. These courses are administered by the respective departments with regard to scheduling, evaluation, grading, etc. Grades earned in such courses cannot be disputed through the School of Nursing process outlined here, and must be addressed with the respective academic department as appropriate.