If you experience circumstances that affect your ability to perform in assessments you may be able to claim Extenuating Circumstances.
N.B. For IT problems experienced during an assessment there is a different process, please see Assessment Information and Support.
The University defines 'extenuating circumstances' as:
“exceptional circumstances which are outside of the control of the student AND which have prevented, or will prevent, them from performing in assessment at the level expected or required of them.”
The main principle of USW’s Extenuating Circumstances Regulations is to provide equality for all students in relation to the assessments they are required to undertake as part of their course. Assessments covered include exams, in-class tests and coursework.
If you are unable to submit coursework by the deadline, or sit an exam or in-class test, because of exceptional circumstances that you could not have prevented, you should submit a claim under the Extenuating Circumstance Regulations.
A successful claim may result in a student being given an extension or a deferral, allowing them to retake an assessment at the next suitable opportunity. This could be in the re-sit period or at a time agreed by the module tutor.
There are four different types of Extenuating Circumstances claims:
In every case you are required to complete an Extenuating Circumstances Claim Form. You can request the form using Advice Zone Online (AZO) - this video explains how.
You may also need to complete other forms and/or supply supporting evidence documents, depending on the nature of your claim.
This type of extenuating circumstance claim can cover circumstances that may impact on studies for a week or more and can be supported by independent evidence.
This type of extenuating circumstance claim can cover a short period of illness (other than Covid-19) where it would be difficult to obtain evidence.
You can only submit one claim supported by self-certification in each academic year.
This type of extenuating circumstance claim can cover issues impacting on your studies as a result of Covid-19.
There is no limit to the number of times you can self-certify for Covid-19 related issues.
recognises that some students have long-standing conditions that are subject to
flare-ups; for example, certain mental health conditions, fibromyalgia and
Crohn’s disease. If you have such a condition, you are able to submit a claim
for extenuating circumstances to cover flare-ups at the start of the academic
year, or upon diagnosis so that evidence is not required for subsequent claims.
Initial application (at the start of the academic year or upon diagnosis):
* Should you wish to request the consideration of assessments affected due to circumstances currently being experienced please follow the guidance notes regarding form completion.
Each time you have a flare up:
There is no limit to the number of times you can claim extenuating circumstances.
You may however only self-certify for a non-covid-19 related issue once per academic year, you can however submit further claims supported by independent evidence.
NB: Making a claim does not guarantee that your claim will be approved.
Claims should be submitted as soon as you are aware of the circumstances and no later than 5 working days after the original submission deadline/date of examination.
If your claim is late, you must complete the late claim section on the Extenuating Circumstances Claim Form and your evidence should support the reason for the late claim.
All claims should be submitted by the late claim deadline which will be 2 weeks prior to the assessment board that will consider your module marks.
You will receive Guidance Notes with your Extenuating Circumstances Claim Form. Please read them and make sure that you complete all of the sections of the form and any additional forms that are relevant to you.
Advice Zone Online has a number of Frequently Asked Questions (and answers) about extenuating circumstances. You can also ask a new question which will be sent to Advice Zone staff.
You can also Contact the Advice Zone directly.
Advice Zone staff can discuss the claim process and provide guidance on eligibility. They cannot give an opinion on the strength of your claim.
If you need additional support with completing your claim the Students’ Union may be able to help.
You will receive notification of the outcome of your claim and advice on what to do next via Advice Zone Online.
If your claim is straightforward you should receive an outcome within 5 working days of submitting your completed Extenuating Circumstances Claim Form and accompanying documents.
Complex claims are referred to an Extenuating Circumstances Panel. The panel is made up of academic staff from across the institution. You should receive an outcome within 5 working days of the panel’s decision.
If you have requested an extension, you should continue with your work and not wait for the outcome of your claim as any extension granted will be from the original submission date and not the date that you receive the outcome.
If you are unhappy with the outcome of your claim you can make a Request for Review of the decision. Requests must be made within 10 working days of notification of the outcome and can be made on one of two grounds. The first being that there was a procedural error that you feel has disadvantaged you. The second is that you are now able to provide new evidence that was not available or known about at the time of your original claim.
The Request for Review Form is available from Extenuating Circumstances Regulations page.