Help! I’ve been asked to attend an Academic Progress hearing!

University is not always easy. Sometimes, other factors get in the way which result in students not going as well as they would usually. For some students, they will be required to attend an Academic Progress Committee early in 2014 in order to explain to a panel the factors resulting in students receiving lower marks.

Luckily, your friendly MSA Education Officer and Student Rights Officers are here to help. This article seeks to explain what happens if you receive an Early Warning letter or a Notice of Referral and Hearing, and the services provided by Student Rights to assist if you do receive one of these letters.

This is generally sent out by faculties to students that they believe are at risk of receiving a Notice of Referral and Hearing if mechanisms are not put in place to improve their results. This letter will provide recommendations to students that may help in lifting their grades and prevent receiving a Notice of Referral and Hearing.  We advise that students carefully consider adopting these recommendations, especially if they have really struggled throughout the semester.

Notice of Referral and Hearing

A Notice of Referral and Hearing is sent out to students that:

  • Fail 50% (or more than 50%) of your units in a year; and/or
  • Fail a core unit twice; and/or
  • Do not meet previous APC conditions; and/or
  • Completed at least 2/3 of your candidature and passed 50% or less of your course.

If you receive this letter, you are required to respond explaining the factors that have impacted on your studies throughout the year.  Your Faculty also requires you to explain what kinds of things you have or will put in place to ensure that your results improve for the following year. There is a deadline for sending your documentation in, so  ensure that you do this by the date on the letter sent from your faculty.

You may be required to attend an Academic Progress Committee Hearing. This hearing generally goes for around 30 minutes. There are usually 5 people sitting on the panel, who make a decision on whether a student should be excluded from or be allowed to continue their course. This panel includes academics from the faculty of the student, as well as one student representative to provide a student’s perspective on the discussion. .

The panel wants to find the best result for students. They do not want to keep students in a course if they dislike it and are struggling as a result, and they do not want to exclude students automatically if other factors have resulted in students failing.

MSA Student Rights can help!

If you receive a Notice of Referral and Hearing, you are not alone. The Monash Student Association has staff that can help you complete the form and write a response to the Notice of Referral and Hearing. Student Rights can also provide you with an advisor to accompany you at your hearing. This service is free to all undergraduate students.

Student Rights are incredibly helpful in ensuring that you go into the hearing with an understanding of how best to present your case.

For Clayton students, you can contact Student Rights through the following ways:

Eugene Moore
Phone: (03) 9905 3126

Lauren Scott
Phone: (03) 9905 3118

The number one piece of advice that I have if you do receive an Early Warning letter or a Notice of Referral and Hearing is to not panic. Student Rights can help to make sure you have the strongest case to put forward, and have the best mechanisms to progress in your course successfully into the future.

Note: Early Warning and Notice of Referral and Hearing letters have been sent via email by many of the faculties. Check your email if you believe that you may be sent an early warning letter or a Notice of Referral and Hearing


Nic Kimberly is the 2014 Education (Academic Affairs) Officer at the MSA
Gene Moore and Lauren Scott are the MSA Student Rights Advisors

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