Academic Sanctions Appeals Process

The Academic Appeals Committee (AAC)


  • One faculty member from each educational program (MD, MS, PA, DPT, Path Assist., Op Tech). Faculty members will serve a 1-year term (renewable annually for a total of three terms) and appointments will be staggered such that new members will join experienced members.

  • One student from each program, and one alternate student from a different academic year to serve as representatives to the AAC. Students will serve as needed only for appeals of actions concerning fellow students enrolled in their program (e.g., medical student representative for medical students, DPT student representative for DPT students, etc.). If the student representative is in the same class as the appellant, the student alternate will serve. Students will serve a 1-year term.

  • If a committee member was involved in recommending the sanction that is being appealed, an alternate member from that program’s faculty is selected in their place.

  • The chair will be selected by the vice dean for education.

  • The vice dean will serve ex-officio to assist with the process but will not participate in discussions or deliberations.


  • The student must submit their appeal in writing along with supporting documents to the vice dean for education within 10 business days of being notified of an academic sanction. The written appeal should address each of the reasons that were provided for the sanction and state why the sanction is not appropriate in their situation. In essence, the student should answer the question, “I should not be sanctioned because….” Any background information to support the student’s argument should be provided at that time.

  • Pending the determination of the appeals committee, the student will be allowed to continue course work provided they are not felt to be a threat to themselves or others.

  • A list of the committee members who will participate on the committee will be forwarded to the student. The student has the option of challenging any member of the committee that is felt to be prejudiced against them because of personal interactions, previous assessments, or participation in prior academic sanction committees. These members will be replaced by faculty members who have no previous interactions with the student.

  • The vice dean will create a summary report for the committee explaining the reason for the sanction and include supporting documents from the program and student.

  • The vice dean will supply the student’s written appeal request, the summary report, and any other pertinent documents to the committee for review.

  • The committee will hold a meeting within a reasonable time to make a decision about the appealed sanction. At least 72 hours prior to the meeting, all material to be considered, other than the interviews themselves, will be distributed to the committee members and the student for their review.

  • The student will be given an opportunity to explain in person to the committee their rationale as to why the sanction was not appropriate and should be reversed or modified.

  • The educational program will be given the opportunity to present why they recommended that the student be sanctioned.

  • The committee may ask for additional information and question other individuals as necessary to reach a decision about the appeal request.

  • The chair of the committee will inform the vice dean for education of its recommendation in a timely manner after the committee meeting (typically within a week). The committee can uphold the vice dean’s sanction, recommend another sanction or recommend no sanction.

  • The vice dean for education will then notify the student and other interested parties of the committee’s decision.

  • The student will have 10 business days after notification of the outcome of the appeal to submit a request to have the dean of the School of Medicine review the appeals process. An appeal to the dean may be made only on the grounds of improper procedures in the process rather than continued disagreement about the outcome of the process. The dean will review the information related to the process of the appeal and determine whether it was appropriate. The dean can uphold the committee’s decision, recommend another sanction, recommend no sanction, or send the matter back to the committee for further consideration.

  • Once the dean of the School of Medicine upholds a decision of dismissal, the student relinquishes student status and is no longer enrolled in the University.

Committee Meeting Procedures

  • At least 72 hours prior to the committee meeting the members and students will have access to:

  • The vice dean's letter to the student indicating the sanction and its reason

  • The written appeal request by the student indicating why the sanction is not appropriate

  • Supporting documents from the program as to why they requested the student be sanctioned. This includes such things as exam scores, learning contracts, performance reviews, academic counseling attempts, remediation efforts, police reports, etc.

  • Supporting documents from the student as to why the sanction should not be enforced.

  • The names of all faculty, students, or staff that will attend the meeting

  • The student has the right to be present at the appeals committee for the portion of the meeting that involves the education program’s presentation of the rationale for the recommended sanction and questions by the committee to the program’s representatives. The student is not permitted to be present for the deliberations of the committee.

  • The committee meeting will begin with a review of the sanction and the provided materials.

  • The education program that has sanctioned the student will present the reasons for the recommendation and answer any questions that the committee may have. Depending on the issue, additional faculty or other students who are involved may be asked to attend and provide information to the committee.

  • The student will then present to the committee why they feel the sanction is inappropriate or should be reconsidered and answer any questions the committee may have. The student may request that the committee also hear information from other faculty or students with knowledge about the circumstances surrounding the reasons for the sanction. These individuals should be able to provide specific clarifying or defining information and not act as “character witnesses.”

  • Before making its recommendation the committee may request to meet with other faculty or students that may be able to provide additional information or insight into the circumstances related to the recommended sanction.

  • The committee will discuss the issues and reach a recommendation by a majority vote as to whether the sanction should be upheld, changed to a lesser sanction, or removed.

  • The chair will draft a summary of the meeting and the committee’s recommendation and circulate it to the committee members for approval.

  • Once approved, the recommendation will be communicated to the Vice Dean for Education who will notify the education program and the student.