When students experience extenuating circumstances in a term, such as illness or bereavement, they have the option to submit aPetition for Exception to Academic Regulations which will be reviewed by the Arts Examinations and Standings Committee. A petition is a mechanism withinPolicy 70 (Student Petitions and Grievances) where students can request retroactive relief from a term where they were impacted by extenuating circumstances which affected their academic studies.

Examples of petition requests include adding or dropping a course after the deadline, increasing course load in a term, credit/no-credit (CR/NCR) grading for a term, and reconsideration of an academic standing decision.  

The Arts Examinations and Standings Committee (petitions) consists of 12 members (1 non-voting). The committee has representation from the Arts Undergraduate Office and Registrar’s Office. Faculty from a variety of disciplines are represented. The committee is chaired by a Faculty of Arts professor. It normally meets every Tuesday, with results sent out within a week of the meeting. The majority of decisions are received within four weeks of submitting a petition.

Steps to file a Petition 

A petition consists of a completed online form,and your supporting documents. 

  1. Discuss your situation with your academic advisor, including relevant timelines and desired outcome.  
  1. Gather any supporting documentsthat will support your case. Such documentation may include, but is not limited to: 
  • Obituary (online or printed version) 
  • Your medical documentation 
  • Police reports 
  • Other personal supporting documents where relevant
  1. Fill out thePetition for exception to academic regulations form and attach your supporting documentation. If you require assistance,  
  1. Once your petition is reviewed, you will receive the result at your email account. Results can take approximately 2-4 weeks to be communicated.  

Note:the committee cannot accept documents pertaining to a third party (e.g. medical records for a family member).Instead, you can provide documentation outlining how their illness or extenuating circumstances affected you. Please contact for further direction.  

Additional Information 

  • The Faculty of Arts Examinations and Standings Committee will review petitions submitted within three years of the end of the term in question. The Committee may review petitions if the applicable term occurred between three and five years in the past, but only if accompanied by an explanation as to the circumstances that resulted in the submission delay.  
  • The academic record at graduation reflects a completed period of study that is no longer subject to change. Therefore, petitions are not considered after a degree is awarded. 
  • Significant, extenuating circumstances normally affect all courses in a given term. Decisions normally apply to all courses in the term unless students can demonstrate that they only affected one/select course(s). 
  • Students should not use a petition to challenge a grade in a course, as described inPolicy 70 (Student Petitions and Grievances).  
  • Students on a study permit should meet with an Immigration Consultantbefore leaving Canada, if they plan to petition a term withdrawal, receive a ‘required to withdraw’ decision, or to discuss potential impacts of petition decisions on their Post-Graduate Work Permit. 
  • Medical documentation will be reviewed by a clinical records evaluator. The petitions committee does not view medical records.