Appealing an Academic Action

The integrity of the academic process is paramount at the USC Rossier School of Education. To this end, every effort is made to ensure a fair, just and expedient adjudication process. In compliance with policies outlined in the university SCampus Student Guidebook (, the USC Rossier School of Education has its own procedures for disputed academic evaluations. This document represents the official academic appeals process for the USC Rossier School of Education.

The policy regarding disputed academic evaluations entitles a student to several levels of appeal based on the type and severity of the issue. The appeals process exists to review the appropriateness of initial decisions. To that end, appeals must be logical and contain clearly defined purpose and rationale.

The USC Rossier School of Education has charged the Office of Academic Programs to inform students of their rights and responsibilities and to assist them in these matters. The assistant dean for student affairs is available to meet with students to provide information and clarification on the academic appeals process, conduct administrative hearings and convene panel hearings.

Please not that the policies and procedures described here do not pertain to situations involve allegations of situations that result from discrimination. Students who feel that an academic action was motivated by their membership in a protected class may request an investigation by the USC Office of Equity and Diversity. This office investigates complaints by faculty, staff, students and applicants who believe themselves to be harmed by sexual harassment or discrimination and harassment related to issues that have protected class status. If contacted, the Office of Equity and Diversity will conduct a separate, independent investigation. More information may be found online at

Per USC Rossier and USC policy, not all academic actions are subject to appeal. The conditions of admission cannot be appealed. Other actions, such as the results of the qualifying exam and dissertation defense, can be appealed through the USC Graduate School only.

PhD students are also subject to USC Graduate School policies, which in some instances provide an additional level of appeal.