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Mitigating Circumstances

if there is something happening in your life that is affecting your academic work, it is important to tell your Personal Tutor or department about it as soon as possible so that the circumstances can be taken into account in any decisions being made which affect you.

Mitigating Circumstances are any personal issues such as:

  • Illness
  • Bereavement
  • Family issues
  • Housing problems

Usually, the person you should talk to is your Personal Tutor. If don’t feel able to talk to your Personal Tutor, you can talk to the Senior Tutor in your department.

The University offers guidance on Mitigating Circumstances.

When you are explaining your circumstances, it is important to include:

  • That you would like your circumstances to be taken into account by your department and Board of Examiners.
  • Explain the circumstances that are affecting your academic work.
  • Explain how the circumstances have affected your academic work.
  • Explain what academic work has been affected – i.e. which essays, modules etc.
  • Provide any evidence you have to support your case.
  • The Rules relating to absence for medical reasons are found in Regulation 12.

If you cannot take an exam due to illness, you should ensure that the University receives a medical certificate no later than 3 days following the last day of your University examinations.

There are separate rules for the submission of assessed work. Under certain circumstances, it is possible to self-certify for periods of illness lasting no more than 7 days where an assessment contributes 10% or less of the module credit. This should be submitted within 3 days of returning to University after the illness.

You will need to get a medical certificate when you have an illness that prevents attendance at a major exam or prevents you from submitting an assignment that constitutes at least 10% of the module mark.

See Rule 36.3 for details about penalties that can be given for the late submission of work, if no formal extension has been granted.

The important thing is to talk to your department as soon as you start to have problems, and make sure they have all the available information. If you need to appeal a decision later on, you will have to justify why you did not tell your department before the Examinations Board made their decision.