Discuss the outcome if the Provost denies the petition. Would the student have substantial grounds for suing the school? What arguments might the student make, and what relief could he request?
SECS . 8.3. and 8.4. Grades, Credits, and Degrees and
Procedures for Suspension, Dismissal, and Other Sanctions
The Provost's office of a large public university has received a lengthy petition from a
graduate student in psychology who was recently dismissed from the doctoral program.
University records indicate that the student had been enrolled as a full-time doctoral student for 6
semesters. An explanatory note on the student's record indicates that "a pattern of insufficient
academic performance in the past two semesters, in course work, clinical field work, and the
qualifying exam," was the basis for the dismissal. The dismissal had been recommended by the
graduate faculty of the psychology department's clinical psychology program, approved by the
psychology department faculty, and further approved by the Dean of the Graduate School of Arts
The graduate school catalogue, along with various departmental announcements
distributed to graduate students, sets forth the requirements for the award of doctoral degrees.
For the doctoral degree in psychology, the catalogue establishes a dissertation requirement and
states that, prior to beginning the dissertation, a student "must have: (1) successfully completed
all course work specified by the departmental faculty, and (2) received a passing grade on the
written and oral qualifying examination." The catalogue also states that "students must
demonstrate competence in an area of specialization and the ability to meet the generally
accepted academic or professional standards of the discipline in which the degree is to be
obtained." Further, the catalogue states that "no official time limits have been imposed on
acquiring the doctoral degree."
In his petition, the student challenges his dismissal and makes these points:
(1) "I had a good academic record during my first four semesters.
I had a "B" average. This performance indicates that I am
capable of meeting the psychology department's standards."
(2) "I did fail one course during my fifth semester, but that was
because the professor misled me and others concerning the
final exam instructions. (The course grade was based entirely
on the final exam.) The professor told us during the course
and again just before the exam that we would have to do 3 of
the 5 questions on the exam; instead, the actual directions,
used in grading our exams, required that we do 4 of the 5
questions. I relied on the professor's statements in studying
for the exam and in taking the exam, and I failed because I got
a zero for the fourth question that I did not do."
(3) "I also did fail my clinical field work in my sixth semester, but
I consider this assessment of my work to be very unfair. First,
this was my very first clinical experience. Second, my field
supervisor, upon whose recommendation the failing grade
was based, spent very little time with me and gave me almost
no feedback on my work either during or at the conclusion of
my fieldwork. Third, the psychology department did not give
me or my field supervisor any evaluative standards by which
my work would be judged."
(4) "I took my qualifying exam near the end of my sixth semester.
I had to have a combined score of at least 70.00 on the oral
and written parts in order to pass. The score I actually
received was 69.73! I think that this score should be rounded
up to 70.00 and considered a passing score. If not, I at least
think that I should be allowed to take the qualifying exam
over again; other students in the past have been allowed to do
Based on current knowledge, there is no reason to believe that any of the facts stated in
the petition are untrue. The Provost must now decide whether and how to respond to the petition
and whether to take any other action as a result of having received the petition.
Does the law constrain the Provost in her decision making on this matter? How so? Is
there any other information the Provost would need to have before ruling on this petition? If so,
why is this information needed? If the Provost denies the petition, would the student have substantial grounds for suing the school? What arguments might the student make, and what relief could he request?
i need some help in approaching this discussion--please help! please see the attached doc.
Discuss the outcome if the Provost denies the petition. Would the student have substantial grounds for suing the school? What arguments might the student make, and what relief could he request
If the Provost denies the petition, the student has sufficient grounds for suing the school the reason is that the school catalogue clearly states that the student must have completed the course requirement and receives a passing grade on the ...
This posting gives you an in-depth insight into students' rights.