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Assessment - Academic Progress Procedure

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Section 1 - Purpose

(1) This procedure supports the Assessment Policy by stating how the academic progress of domestic and international coursework students will be monitored and how students who are not meeting satisfactory progress requirements will be supported and assisted.

Date of taking effect

(2) This procedure will take effect in sessions that begin on or after 1 January 2021. In sessions that begin before that date, the Academic Progress Policy and International Full Fee-Paying Students – Monitoring Course Progress Policy will continue to apply.

Scope

(3) This procedure applies only to students enrolled in coursework courses, and to staff.

(4) The Higher Degree by Research Policy states academic progress requirements for higher degree by research candidates.

References

(5) Where a supporting document is referenced in this procedure, it will be listed on the associated information tab.

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Section 2 - Glossary

(6) The terms used in this procedure are defined in the glossary section of the Assessment Policy.

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Section 3 - Policy

(7) This procedure supports the Assessment Policy and should be read alongside it.

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Section 4 - Procedure

(8) Student Administration will review all students’ academic progress after each session. 

(9) Students must maintain satisfactory academic progress as stated in the Assessment Policy. Where satisfactory progress is not maintained:

  1. the Assessment Policy states the three stages of academic progress for students who do not maintain satisfactory academic progress. The process for students at each stage of academic progress is stated below, and
  2. international students may be at risk of breaching their student visa requirements and/or need to apply for an extension of their confirmation of enrolment (COE) as set out in the Enrolment Policy.

Detailed criteria for deciding a student’s academic progress stage

(10) Student Administration will apply the criteria in the table below to identify students whose academic progress is unsatisfactory. There are more detailed versions of the criteria for academic progress monitoring stated in the Assessment Policy.

  1. A student who meets a criterion will be subject to the actions indicated in the table.
  2. In applying these criteria, subjects with FNS (fail non-submission) grades are counted as failed subjects.
Academic progress criterion Actions
a. The student’s enrolment in an undergraduate course has continued past the maximum time for completion of the course stated in the Course and Subject Design (Coursework) Procedure. Students will be advised that they are at stage three – considered for exclusion.
b. The student has failed subjects that comprise 50% or more of their enrolled subjects (or units of study) in a session (or where the student is enrolled in only one subject per session, they have failed subjects that comprise 50% or more of their enrolled subjects (or units of study) points in a year). 
The first time the student meets this criterion, they will be advised that they are at stage 1 – support offered.
The second time the student meets this criterion, they will be advised that they are at stage 2 – support required.
The third time the student meets this criterion, the student will be advised that they are at stage 3 – considered for exclusion.
c. The student has failed any subject in a one-year bachelor (honours) degree or in the honours component of an integrated bachelor honours degree.
The first time the student meets this criterion, they will be advised that they are at stage 2 – support required.
The second time the student meets this criterion, they will be advised that they are at stage 3 – considered for exclusion.
d. The student has failed workplace learning requirements that are specified as necessary to progress further in the course. The student may not enrol in further subjects in the course until they have passed these requirements. See also the processes for refusing a student permission to go on workplace learning in the Assessment Policy.
e. The student has failed a subject that is identified as a key subject for academic progress in a course.
The first time the student meets this criterion, the student will be advised that they are at stage 2 – support required.
The second time the student meets this criterion, the student will be advised that they are at stage 3 – considered for exclusion.
See the additional conditions for application of this criterion in the key subjects section below.

Matters that will be considered in academic progress decisions

(11) A student’s whole academic record in the course will be considered in a decision whether the student’s academic progress is satisfactory, and in any decision on whether to exclude the student, including:

  1. subjects the student completed before any previous exclusion from the course, even if the student appealed against the exclusion and it was overturned, and
  2. any previous exclusion of the student from any Charles Sturt University course for unsatisfactory academic progress.
  3. Where a student has already been assessed as being at an academic progress stage in a course and transfers to a different course, they will remain at the same academic progress stage in the new course.

Key subjects

(12) A student’s key subjects will be identified in the handbook entry for the year in which they commence the course of study. Where a key subject in a student’s commencing course structure changes: 

  1. it will be treated as a key subject for the student if it replaces one of their original key subjects and is a close equivalent in content and learning outcomes, and
  2. it will not be treated as a key subject for the student if it is new or is significantly different from the original key subject it replaces.

Delayed assessment of academic progress

(13) Assessment of a student’s academic progress and any resulting process or decision may be delayed until:

  1. grades for additional assessments, additional exams, deferred exams, assessments still in progress or pending grades have been converted to achievement grades,
  2. review or change of grade processes have been completed, or
  3. late grades have been published.

Exemptions from maximum time for elite athletes and performers

(14) The Deputy Dean of the teaching faculty may extend the maximum time for a student to complete their course where the student is registered by the University as an elite athlete or performer, or in other exceptional circumstances. 


Process at each academic progress stage

(15) All actions in the processes in this section will be recorded in the University's centrally managed system.

  1. Staff interacting with students as part of academic progress management will attach those communications, or notes of them, to the student’s record in the system.
  2. Where students seek support from a central service to improve their academic progress, the service will record that fact in the system.

Stage one – support offered

(16) Where Student Administration identifies a student as being at stage one – support offered, the following process will occur:

  1. Student Administration will inform the relevant faculty of students who are at stage one. 
  2. The student will be informed in writing:
    1. that they have not maintained satisfactory academic progress (including the relevant criterion at clause 10) and are now at the first stage of academic progress management, where they are being offered support, and
    2. of support services available, at no cost, that may help them address any issues that are impeding their academic progress.

Stage two – support required

(17) Where Student Administration identifies a student as being at stage two – support required, the following process will occur:

  1. Student Administration will inform the faculty of students who are at stage two and are required to create an improvement plan. 
  2. The student will be informed in writing:
    1. that they have not maintained satisfactory academic progress (including the relevant criterion at clause 10) and are now at the second stage of academic progress management, where they are required to create an academic progress plan appropriate to their circumstances, and
    2. of support services provided by the University, at no cost, that may help them address any issues that are impeding their academic progress, and how they can request an academic advice interaction from those service areas.

Stage three – considered for exclusion

(18) Where Student Administration identifies a student as being at stage three – considered for exclusion, the following process will occur:

  1. Student Administration will inform the faculty of students who are at stage three and considered for exclusion.
  2. The student will be informed in writing:
    1. that they have not maintained satisfactory academic progress (including the relevant criterion at clause 10) and are now at the third stage of academic progress management, where they will be considered for possible exclusion, and
    2. that they have seven calendar days from the date of the notification to make a written submission (‘show cause’) providing reasons why they should not be excluded.

Exclusion decisions

(19) Where students at stage three submit a written ‘show cause’ response, Student Administration will collate all relevant information for the student and make a recommendation to the relevant faculty Deputy Dean for consideration and determination:

  1. This process will normally be timed so the exclusion decisions are made before the census date in the teaching period immediately after the one in which the students met the unsatisfactory academic progress criteria.
  2. Where, however, students’ results have been delayed, the Deputy Dean's decision may also be delayed. 
  3. The Deputy Dean of each faculty will consider the student’s ‘show cause’ response and other information provided and, as authorised by the Assessment Policy, will decide either:
    1. to exclude the student for the default exclusion period or a longer period if appropriate (see clause 22b.), or
    2. not to exclude a student where:
      1. there is evidence to support a decision that the student has a reasonable chance of success, and 
      2. the Deputy Dean considers that the student will have a reasonable chance of success.

(20) Students will progress directly to exclusion and will not be considered by the faculty or Deputy Dean (unless there are extenuating circumstances) if they do not:

  1. in stage 2, create an academic progress plan or engage with support services, or
  2. in stage 3, submit a written ‘show cause’ response. 

(21) Late ‘show cause’ responses will be considered by the faculty on a case-by-case basis where the student has demonstrated that circumstances beyond their control prevented them from submitting the response on time.

Finalisation of decisions

(22) Where a student is identified for exclusion under clause 19 or 20, the following process will occur:

  1. The faculty Deputy Dean will provide their final decision to Student Administration via the University's centrally managed system.
  2. Students will be excluded for a default period of one year, unless the faculty advise a longer period is appropriate for individual cases.
  3. Students will be advised in writing of:
    1. the decision on the evidence provided in their ‘show cause’ response and the exclusion decision,
    2. their right of appeal, the grounds of appeal and the timeframe within which they must submit the appeal for it to be considered, and
    3. for international student visa holders, the need to contact the Department of Home Affairs.
  4. The exclusion will not be finalised: 
    1. until the appeal period has expired, or
    2. if the student submits an appeal or complaint within the advised timeframe (and provides evidence of the submission), until the appeal or complaint process is complete, or
    3. in the case of international student visa holders, if the student lodges an external appeal within the advised timeframe (and provides evidence of the lodgement), until the external appeal process is complete. 
  5. Subject to clause 22d., students will be excluded and their current enrolment fees will be refunded or Higher Education Contribution Scheme or Higher Education Loan Program debt will be cancelled.
  6. For Australian international student visa holders, where the student’s enrolment is cancelled, the cancellation and the reason will be recorded in the Provider Registration and International Student Management System (PRISMS). The Department of Home Affairs will then consider the effect of the enrolment cancellation on the student visa.
  7. Students who have been excluded from a course and who later wish to resume studying the course must apply for readmission on the same basis as any other applicant. The Admissions Procedure states the conditions on which students who have been excluded from a course may be readmitted to the course or may be admitted to a different course.

Management of academic progress in deliveries with third parties

(23) For Charles Sturt University students enrolled in courses or subjects delivered in partnership with third parties:

  1. Charles Sturt University staff, led by Student Administration, will collaborate with partner staff to confirm the engagement of student’s adherence with their academic progress plans, and
  2. Student Administration will assess students’ academic progress, the Deputy Dean will make exclusion decisions and (where relevant) Student Administration will update international students’ record on the Provider Registration and International Student Management System (PRISMS).
  3. The student will be informed of the decision in writing.

(24) The partner institution or organisation is required to keep records of its interventions to support students and provide access to University staff (in accordance with the Privacy Management Plan) as required. 

Suspension of a student from workplace learning

(25) The Student Misconduct Rule authorises certain officers of the University to issue an order to suspend a student from an activity where there would be risk of harm to persons or the University’s reputation if the student continued in the activity. A suspension order can be issued suspending a student from workplace learning, including external workplace learning. Such a suspension may impact on a student’s academic progress.

(26) The Student Misconduct Rule states in detail the scope and effect of suspension orders and the processes in relation to them.

Appeals and complaints

(27) Where a student wishes to appeal an original decision made under this procedure, or has a complaint about their treatment, quality of service or the conduct of staff, the following policies apply:

  1. University Student Appeals Policy and University Student Appeals Procedure
  2. Complaints Management Policy and Complaints Management Procedure

Notification of external appeal avenue to international students

(28) Where an appeal by a student studying on an Australian international student visa does not overturn the exclusion decision, the University will communicate the outcome to the student and inform them that:

  1. their appeal has not overturned the exclusion and the reasons for this decision,
  2. the University now intends to exclude them and report their exclusion to the Department of Home Affairs, which may lead to cancellation of their student visa,
  3. they have the further right of appeal to the external reviewer for such appeals in the relevant state or territory (in New South Wales, the NSW Ombudsman),
  4. the University will not report their exclusion to the Department of Home Affairs for 10 business days, and
  5. if before the end of the 10 business days, the student provides evidence that they have submitted an external appeal (such as the reply by the New South Wales Ombudsman with the case number), the University will wait until the outcome of that appeal is known before excluding the student and notifying the Department of Home Affairs of the exclusion.

(29) Where the student is studying on an international student visa, once they have been excluded and all appeal processes have ended, the University will notify the Department of Home Affairs of the cancellation of their enrolment. The University will notify the student that this may lead to the cancellation of their student visa.

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Section 5 - Guidelines

(30) Nil.