Petition of Academic Policy

This petition process exists for students who seek an exception to stated university-wide academic policies, procedures, and/or regulations in cases where extenuating circumstances are evident and can be substantiated. Students will not be provided an opportunity to meet in person with the Dean. Therefore, it is important the appeal include all necessary information. Incomplete petitions will be denied. 
 
Click here to access the Petition of Academic Policy form.
 
Process: Students should take time and consideration when developing their petition materials. Be sure to review the information below. Return the completed form with all required items to the school of their major to obtain Academic Advisor signature. Once Advisor signature is obtained, the petition will be delivered by the advisor to the appropriate deciding body. Both the student and Academic Advisor will be notified via email of the final decision within twenty business days (decision time may be delayed if the deciding body is the Undergraduate or Graduate Council). 
 

Extenuating Circumstances

Extenuating circumstances beyond a student's control could include, but are not limited to the list below. Experiencing and documenting an extenuating circumstance is not automatic cause for petition approval.
  • Documented death of an immediate family member (spouse, mother, father, guardian, sister, brother, son, or daughter)
  • Documented major medical issue experienced by the student or immediate family member (designated above)
  • Documented domestic violence
  • Documented involuntary call to active military duty
  • Documented other extreme circumstances (case by case basis)
The following circumstances are not considered extenuating and beyond the student's control:
  • Not knowing the deadline or procedure
  • Work conflicts
  • Incarceration resulting from a guilty verdict
  • Voluntary overtime
  • Not needing or wanting a class, not doing well in a class, not knowing you were enrolled in a class
  • Having too heavy of a course load
  • Wishing to improve your GPA

Documentation

Your inability to provide supportive documentation may result in your appeal being denied. Please submit date-specific supportive documentation. Do not submit original documents as they will not be returned. Documentation could include, but is not limited to:
  • Medical documentation, which could include a letter from a physician or counselor on letterhead indicating the dates you were under care
  • Copy of a death certificate or obituary
  • Accident reports, policy records, court records
  • Statements from each individual instructor for every course change being petitioned. Such statements should include confirmation of attendance, the start and/or end dates of your participation in the course, and any other information as applicable to the situation you are petitioning. Statements are strongly recommended if you are requesting a course add, drop, or withdraw. Petitions submitted without this documentation will likely be denied.
  • A graduation plan outlining how you plan to finish your degree requirements
  • A statement from your academic advisor or campus authority involved in your situation
  • Any other documentation that will support the reason your request should be considered

Your appeal must include the following:

  • A completed Petition of Academic Policy form
  • Attached form, if appropriate, based on the exception you are requesting. For instance, attach a Course Withdraw form if you are requesting an exception to the deadline to withdraw from a course. 
  • A typed personal statement (or use the front of the form)
  • Attached documentation of the extenuating circumstances that led to your request
Students will not be provided an opportunity to meet in person with the committee. Therefore, it is important the appeal include all necessary information. Unexplained or excessive delay between discovering the necessity of filing this petition and submitting it may be grounds for denial.
 
Policy Deciding Body
Add (after third week) Instructor and (School or Graduate Dean)
Dropping (after third week) Instructor and (School or Graduate Dean)
Course Withdraw (after eleventh week) Instructor and (School or Graduate Dean)
Part-Time Status (after third week) Obtain School or Graduate Dean approval on form, then email sbs@ucmerced.edu
Complete Withdraw from University (after semester ends) School or Graduate Dean
Grade Mode Option (after second week) School or Graduate Dean
Change to Curriculum (degree, major, concentration, minor) after 90 units School Dean
Normal Progress (beyond nine semesters) School Dean
Course Repetition School, Graduate Dean, or Vice Provost and Dean for Undergraduate Education
Course Substitutions School or Graduate Dean
Catalog Year School Dean
Residency Requirement School Dean
Educational Leave Program (after semester ends) School Dean
Credit Toward Degree Requirement Undergraduate or Graduate Council
Minimum GPA for Graduate Undergraduate or Graduate Council
Entry Level Writing Requirement (ELWR) Undergraduate Council
American History and Institutions (AHI) Undergraduate Council
120 Minimum Unit Requirement Undergraduate Council