CON Undergraduate Academic Review Committee Rules of the Faculty Organization

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UNIVERSITY OF NEBRASKA MEDICAL CENTER
COLLEGE OF NURSING
Undergraduate Academic Review Committee Rules of the Faculty Organization Subsection: 4.1.6
Section 4.0 - Faculty Policies Originating Date: April 2006
Responsible Reviewing Agency:
Undergraduate Academic Review Committee
Faculty Coordinating Council
General Faculty Organization

Related Documents:
Revised: October 2006
Revised: March 2007
Revised: March 2009
Revised: May 2010
Revised: November 2011
Revised: February 2013
Revised: May 2015
Revised: May 2022


1.    Purpose:

The purpose of the Undergraduate Academic Review Committee (UG-ARC) is to provide the mechanism for formal student appeal of a grade prior to the implementation of the proposed action as specified in the Bylaws of the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska; Section 5.3. An appeal is heard by the Undergraduate Academic Review Committee Hearing Board, a 5-member hearing board comprising four faculty and one student member of this committee.

2.    Functions:

  1. Review submitted written appeals and administer the procedural steps to determine appeal outcomes of students who allege the evaluation of their academic progress has been prejudicial or capricious.
  2. Provide information to students, faculty, and administration about the appeal process, procedures and guidelines.
  3. Submit reports and conclusions of the committee in writing to the Undergraduate Program Director, students, and the faculty involved.
  4. Review Bylaws of the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska and related procedures yearly.

3.    Membership:

  1. All undergraduate faculty voting members of the General Faculty Organization (GFO) who are .50 FTE or greater are equally eligible for membership on this committee. The Dean of the College of Nursing, Associate Dean of Academic Programs, Undergraduate and Professional Graduate Program Directors, Division Assistant Deans, and Academic Coordinators are ineligible to sit on this committee.
  2. Ten undergraduate faculty members will be selected by a vote from GFO. From each division there will be two faculty members chosen. This is a two-year term.
  3. Appointments from each Division will be voted on according to an odd/even year distribution:
    • Omaha                  even years
    • West Nebraska    even years
    • Lincoln                  odd years
    • Kearney                 odd years
    • Northern               odd years
  4. Two undergraduate students from each campus, who are in good standing, will be solicited and then selected at the beginning of each academic year representing each of the five divisions.
  5. Names of UG-ARC members are submitted by the committee Chair to the Dean for submission to the Chancellor’s Office at the beginning of the fall semester. Changes in membership shall be promptly communicated with the Chancellor.

4.    Membership Hearing Board

  1. For each appeal hearing, the chair of the UG-ARC will chair the Hearing Board but as an ex officio member and not a voting member.
    1. If a committee faculty member is unavailable, if required, the UG-ARC chair will identify a replacement in order to facilitate the conducting of committee proceedings.
    2. If the UG-ARC chair is involved in the appeal, an alternate appointment will be made by the Undergraduate Program Director or an administrative delegate.
    3. In the event the faculty member alleged in the academic appeal, or the student requesting the appeal, is a member of the UG-ARC, another faculty member or student will be chosen for the UG-ARC Hearing Board. If required, the Undergraduate Program Director shall designate another faculty member or student to serve during the period when that particular matter is being discussed.
  2. For each appeal hearing, a subcommittee of four faculty will be selected to participate on the UG-ARC Hearing Board. Selection for the hearing board will consider the possible conflict of interest meaning representing a division not involved.
  3. Only one of the ten students will serve on each UG-ARC Hearing Board. They may be selected on the basis that they represent the same division from which the appeal originated and may be in the course presently or may have completed the course (prior) in which the academic appeal is shared.
  4. The UG-ARC Hearing Board chair shall appoint a person, who may or may not be a member of the UG-ARC, to act as secretary of the hearing. The secretary shall keep minutes of the hearing's proceedings and shall also cause a verbatim record of the hearing to be prepared and maintained.

5.    Guidelines:

  1. Only the official record of the hearing (and if there is a hearing) will be provided to the student upon such reasonable terms as the UG-ARC chair shall prescribe.
  2. The verbatim record of the hearing will be a digitally recorded record, or a verbatim record prepared as determined by the UG-ARC chair.
  3. When there is a hearing, the student may record, at their own expense, any hearing or proceeding at which the student is present but this will not be recognized as an official recording.
  4. Each member of the UG-ARC Hearing Board (faculty and student) will have one vote in the appeal. Any members of the UG-ARC Hearing Board will not have a conflict or competing interest in the outcome. A majority vote of the UG-ARC Hearing Board will determine the appeal outcome.
  5. Procedures for the UG-ARC Committee are initiated once the UG-ARC chair receives the written student request for an academic appeal within the 10 university day time allocation.
    1. All committee communication will be sent via electronic notification via UNMC email.
    2. The UG-ARC chair will identify the Hearing Board members and identify the first meeting for distribution of materials and beginning discussions.
    3. The UG-ARC chair will conduct the meeting(s) with the UG-ARC Hearing Board and will include:
      1. Providing all required information provided by the student and related to the alleged behavior.
      2. Verifying all required information on appeals that was sent to the student and note the received document with appeal information with the UNMC delivery date
      3. Identifying potential specific dates for the proceedings:
        1. this may include a final date of submission for any additional documents from the student as well as identification and information on requested witnesses. The UG-ARC Hearing Board may request information in writing or via interview.
        2. the date of submission of information from faculty alleged in the appeal
        3. the date of expected completion of review of the documents by the UG-ARC Hearing Board. The UG-ARC Hearing Board may decide to grant the request for a hearing OR it may decide a closed investigation is adequate. If an academic dismissal or suspension is the proposed outcome; a formal hearing must be held.
        4. the date of the hearing with reasonable notice of time, method of delivery and/or place.
        5. the date that a decision is expected and the report due to the Undergraduate Program Director and faculty involved. This date should be within 10 university days of the conclusion of the appeal or the hearing.
        6. the date that the student will be notified of the decision. The UG-ARC chair will notify the student of the decision
  6. The UG-ARC Hearing Board shall determine if the criteria were met to hold a hearing. The UG-ARC Hearing Board shall determine the appropriate process for decision making on the appeal.
    1. If the UG-ARC Hearing Board determines a hearing is not warranted, the UG-ARC chair will notify the student and Undergraduate Program Director.
    2. If the UG-ARC Hearing Board determines a hearing is warranted:
      1. The student may appear, if requested, and the request is approved by the UG-ARC Hearing Board.
      2. The student's faculty advisor may be present at the hearing but they may not actually participate in the proceedings unless the UG-ARC Hearing Board chair specifically permits.
      3. Faculty may appear if desired or called to testify, may present prior submitted evidence, and answer questions from the UG-ARC Hearing Board. Faculty may also refuse any listed items unless student dismissal or expulsion is identified as an outcome.
      4. The UG-ARC Hearing Board members may question witnesses. Witness must be UNMC students or faculty and a list must be provided to the UG-ARC chair by the date set for submission of materials.
  7. The UG- ARC Hearing Board may decide:
    1. To rule on the basis of the written evidence and interview evidence submitted without the need for a hearing.
    2. To agree to have the hearing without the student present.
    3. To agree to have the hearing with the student and faculty present.
      1. A request to appear before the UG-ARC Hearing Board must be submitted by the student with and when the materials for the appeal are submitted.
      2. This request to appear before the UG-ARC Hearing Board must be approved by the UG-ARC chair.
  8. The UG-ARC and UG- ARC Hearing Board shall adhere to policies and procedures for the College of Nursing, the University of Nebraska, the University Student Code of Conduct, the Bylaws of the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska and any specific ethics for the nursing profession (i.e.: ANA Code of Ethics).
  9. The decision of the UG-ARC Hearing Board must be based on the majority affirmative vote.
    1. A vote shall be either a Yae or Nae.
    2. No UG-ARC Hearing Board member may abstain from the vote on the academic appeal.
  10. The UG-ARC Hearing Board has the following options:
    1. Determine there is no basis for the appeal and that the weight of the evidence that the grade/evaluation was capricious or prejudiced was not met. This outcome upholds the faculty issued grade/evaluation.
    2. Grant the academic appeal if the grade/evaluation has been judged to be capricious and/or prejudiced.
    3. Grant the academic appeal and suggest a new, less stringent action than the original academic evaluation from the course faculty.
    4. The CON Dean may be consulted at any time. but must be consulted if the proposed outcome is suspension or expulsion.
    5. The UG-ARC Hearing Board should request University counsel for advisement during the process of planning for the hearing and may request that counsel be present during the hearing.
  11. All voting will be conducted in a confidential manner.
  12. In the event that the UG-ARC Hearing Board has a parliamentarian question, that cannot be resolved unanimously the CON Parliamentarian will be consulted.
  13. The UG-ARC Hearing Board chair shall submit the report and conclusions of the appeal in writing to the Undergraduate Program Director within 5 days after determining the final decision.
  14. If the grade/evaluation has been judged to be fair and proper and if the student wishes to appeal further, the student may submit a written appeal to the Dean of the CON setting forth any reasons the student has for challenging the decision of the UG-ARC Hearing Board and UG-ARC.
    1. The student will have 10 university days to respond to the Dean after receiving the Hearing Board's final decision.
    2. The Dean of the CON will review the record of the investigation and the facts to determine if the appeal procedure has been fair and thorough. The Dean may then either affirm the findings of the Hearing Board or direct the Hearing Board to conduct a reinvestigation or rehearing either in whole or in part. The decision of the Dean is final and no further appeal may be made.
    3. If no response is received from the student during the 10 university days then the decision will be considered final.
  15. If the faculty member bringing forward the charge is debating the final UG-ARC Hearing Board decision; the faculty member will be directed to the procedures to follow in the appeal to the Dean of the CON.
  16. A verbatim recording of the hearing must be maintained and included in the report.
    1. UG-ARC reports and information will be housed in Associate Dean's Office for a minimum of one year following the conclusion of the grade appeal or graduation, whichever occurs later .
    2. Each report will be placed in the student's file and on the student's transcript when required by policy.
  17. Refer to Academic and Professional Performance Policies in the UNMC Student Handbook and refer involved faculty to these materials and any others relevant to the formal appeal process.
  18. Refer to the CON Procedures for Handling Undergraduate Student Appeals of Academic Evaluations (Appendix N).
  19. Academic grade appeal(s) requires the student to bear the burden of proof that a faculty member has been one or both of the following:
    1. Capricious
    2. Prejudiced
  20. The student will informally discuss an appeal directly with the faculty member involved or course coordinator immediately after receiving the grade alleged to be capricious or prejudiced.
    1. The student can informally discuss the appeal with the program director in which the course is offered after meeting with the faculty member involved or course coordinator.
  21. If a satisfactory agreement cannot be made, the student may appeal in writing to the chair of the UG-ARC.
    1. The student is required to submit the written evidence to the UG-ARC chair, no later than 10 University days after the challenged grade was posted or received.
    2. The student will be required to:
      1. formally request an academic appeal by the UG-ARC.
      2. provide written evidence with example utilizing one or both terms to determine if there is just cause for the academic review/appeal.
      3. the student is also required in this written information to include a request to appear personally before the committee if the student wishes to do so and if a hearing is held.
    3. Include any request for additional time if appropriate
    4. Upon receiving the student’s request for appeal, the chair of the UG-ARC will provide the student with a electronic link to the Academic and Professional Performance Policies section of the current UNMC Student Handbook. Delivery Receipt with University email will serve as confirmation that the student has received this information.
  22. The UG-ARC, comprising 10 undergraduate faculty members, will serve in accordance with the Rules & Regulations for this standing committee and in alignment with the Rules & Regulations of the Faculty Coordinating Council and General Faculty Organization.
    1. A UG-ARC chair will be chosen from the 10 undergraduate faculty of the committee at the fall biannual meeting.
    2. Previous committee experience is a preferred qualification for the UG-ARC Hearing Board chair.
  23. The UG-ARC Hearing Board, will be appointed 5 member subgroup from the UG-ARC assigned to a specific academic appeal, who are following the rules and the functions of the Committee for the specific student appeal and not representative of the campus involved. The UG-ARC chair will preside over the hearing and be a non-voting member of the committee.
    1. The UG-ARC Hearing Board will decide if the hearing will be the held, or not, and have the choice to review information in closed session.
  24. The judgements of the UG-ARC and the UG-ARC Hearing Board will be in conformity with the policies related to the UNMC College of Nursing and the academic appeal information for proceedings. UG-ARC Hearing Board will also consider and support faculty’s academic freedom in relation to the course being taught.
  25. The UG-ARC will meet “as needed/on call” in addition to biannual meetings in September and April. The chair will direct the agenda for reporting, trending in data and policy review and updates to all responsible reviewing bodies listed above.
  26. UG-ARC Hearing Board proceedings related to student issues will be conducted as confidential proceedings.
    1. At any time during the appeal process, the student will be entitled to examine the student’s school file and any materials which were used in determining the challenged grade.
  27. A majority vote of the UG-ARC Hearing Board will determine the appeal outcome.
  28. The UG-ARC Chair will notify the student, the faculty and the Undergraduate Program Director. The Undergraduate Program Director will notify the Division Assistant Dean, the Associate Dean of Academic Programs and the Dean.