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Mitigating Circumstances and Reasonable Adjustment

Each student in our department is given a personal tutor from the academic staff. See the Personal Tutor page for more details of when and how you will meet with your personal tutor, and what you can expect from these meetings as well as what is expected of you. The information below will help to guide you should you need additional support, but please do liaise with your personal tutor in first place and if you have any queries.

The information on this page reflects the University's policy on Mitigating Circumstances and Reasonable Adjustments as set out here. In the event of discrepancies, the University page should be followed.

What is Reasonable Adjustment?:

• Long term chronic conditions (normally greater than a term in duration and that are likely to continue) and disabilities are dealt with under the Reasonable Adjustments policy.

• Students who have long term chronic conditions or disabilities and who believe they are entitled to reasonable adjustments should in the first instance contact Wellbeing Services and request an appointment to discuss their support requirements.

• A reasonable adjustment may be unique to the individual and could include special examination arrangements, delayed or flexible deadlines but also alternative methods of assessments.

• Any reasonable adjustments made are evidence based; students are required to supply appropriate and recent medical evidence, or, in the case of a specific learning difference such as dyslexia or dyspraxia, a full diagnostic assessment. The type of appropriate evidence required can be discussed with Wellbeing Services.

• Once a student has met with Wellbeing Services, the adviser will contact the student's department and the Examinations Office (with their permission) to recommend any specific adjustments.

• Reasonable adjustment recommendations for examinations must be made before the annual deadlines as set out by the Examinations Office on the Disability Services website Recommendations that are made AFTER these deadlines will be handled under the Mitigating Circumstance Policy.

• However a significant deterioration of a chronic condition or disability already reported and covered by reasonable adjustments, is classed as a mitigating circumstance. In which case, students should apply via the Mitigating Circumstances route below.

• In addition, if you have an official recommendation from Disabilities that reasonable adjustment for your condition includes considering Flexible Deadlines for essays you should discuss a plan for your deadlines for the term ahead with your Personal Tutor as soon as possible, and your Personal Tutor will email the plan agreed by you both to DUGS for consideration. We will expect you to factor in the self-certification policy into your requests (see below). Once this has been accepted by DUGS, your deadlines will be updated on Tabula. Any further changes to your deadlines can then only be granted via a Mitigating Circumstances application or a period of self-certification.

What are Mitigating Circumstances?

During the course of study, you may experience exceptional unforeseen short-term circumstances which are outside your control and might have a detrimental effect on your studies. The purpose of mitigating circumstances is to inform exam boards about the circumstances in your life which may have affected your studies to allow them to take this into account when making decisions about your assessment, progression and degree classification. Mitigating circumstances cannot result in the change of marks for specific pieces of assessed coursework, exams, or modules.

If you are interested in applying for mitigating circumstances you should, in the first instance, contact your Personal Tutor. They will be able to provide advice and support with your mitigating circumstances. It is important to contact your Personal Tutor as early as possible to ensure that appropriate support is put in place. Additionally, you may wish to consult Wellbeing Services, the Dean of Students Office, or one of the advisors at the Students’ Union Advice Centre. Even if your circumstance is not eligible for consideration under mitigating circumstances, you should consider seeking support from the central university support services.

NOTE: Long term chronic conditions (normally greater than a term in duration and that are likely
to be ongoing) and disabilities are dealt with under the reasonable adjustments (RA) policy which
can be viewed at: https://warwick.ac.uk/services/disability/howwecanhelp/. See also above.

Mitigating Circumstances applications can take two forms:

1) Route One: Requests for short-term extensions to deadlines due to an exceptional unforeseen circumstance

or

2) Route two: Requests for the exam board to consider the impact on your studies of other circumstances, which are time limited, but have had an sustantial effect on your studies - e.g. bereavement, serious illness, need for medical treatment.

For details of what is and is not covered please see this guidance to students. There is also updated advice on mitigating circumstances related to COVID-19.

Mitigating Circumstances Route 1:

If you experience unforeseen short-term circumstances which are outside your control, or if there has been a significant deterioration in an already present chronic condition or disability, which might have a detrimental effect on your ability to complete a piece of assessed coursework for one of your modules on time, then you should apply for a short-term extension.

These are now handled through the University's Self-Certification Policy. This allows all students to apply for a 5 working day extension for assessed work in the event that they are unable to submit the work on time due to one of the following factors: minor illness, family emergency or caring responsibilities or other personal circumstances. You can only have 2 self-certifications in any one academic year. You should be mindful of this limit, and only use self-certification when absolutely essential. It is not an alternative to good time management!

Students must submit a Self-Certification form on-line normally at least one full working day before assessment deadline and no earlier than 5 days before the deadline. Exams are not eligible for self-assessment.

To apply for self-certification:

log onto your personal profile on Tabula

Click on the personal circumstances tab and choose 'mitigating circumstances'. There is a walk-through guide available.

Under 1) click 'Other' and enter 'Self-certification' , then please fill the details of the essay and add the reasons for the self-certification in the 'notes' section.

Self-certifications need to be manually changed on Tabula by our administrative staff, so there may be a delay before the new deadline appears; no changes will be processed outside normal working hours.

If you require a longer extension, or have already had two periods of self-certification, you will need also to submit via Tabula and will need to upload further supporting evidence. This will be forwarded to the Director of Undergraduate Studies, Prof James Davidson for consideration - we suggest that you also contact email him [james.davidson@warwick.ac.uk], ccing the Senior Tutor S.Frey-Kupper@warwick.ac.uk] to explain the circumstances of your application.

The submission must be made at least one full working day before assessment deadline (this means by 12 noon on a Friday for a 12 noon deadline on Monday). You will receive a decision from the Director of Undergraduate Studies usually within one working day and within a maximum of 3 working days. A request for mitigation which is approved after the deadline has passed can include the waiving of lateness penalties. All extensions granted will be conditional on receipt of evidence. When an extension is granted, students must check that the extension is recorded on Tabula. Only in very exceptional circumstances will an extension be allowed beyond one week. Essays which are submitted on time, but where it is subsequently deemed that the circumstance would have qualified for an extension will be discussed at the Mitigating Circumstances Panel in June.

NB: Predictable problems with time management as a result of deadline bunching or other commitments, and social problems with housemates are not usually admissible. Problems with e.g. printers/computers, getting hold of books, bunching-up of essay-deadlines are not considered acceptable excuses. Nor is involvement in an extracurricular activity, whether sport, drama, or music.

Mitigating Circumstances Route 2: Circumstances to be considered by the Mitigating Circumstances Panel ahead of the Exam Board

If you experience any of the following:

- unforeseen short-term circumstances which are outside your control, or if there has been a significant deterioration in an already present chronic condition or disability, which might have a detrimental effect on your ability to sit an exam (including language exams through the year)

- unforeseen short-term circumstances which are outside your control, or if there has been a significant deterioration in an already present chronic condition or disability, which you wish to be considered as affecting multiple exams/ periods of time through the academic year (but which are not covered by reasonable adjustment recommendations),

- unforeseen short-term circumstances which are outside your control, or if there has been a significant deterioration in an already present chronic condition or disability, during the Summer Term

then you should act as follows:

Apply for Mitigating Circumstances through the Personal Circumstances Tab on your Tabula profile.

For guidance on how to complete your submission on the Mitigating Circumstances Portal click here.

It is advisable to collect the support evidence when the issue first affects you, so that you keep a record of events at the time. You should give as much detail as possible on the assignments affected and can update your entries at a later stage. If, for example, you submit an assignment late without an extension, due to an exceptional event, you can put in an application for mitigating circumstances after the deadline (whereas self-certification should be done beforehand). In such circumstances, the essay will usually be penalised for lateness and the penalties considered by the Summer Mitigating Circumstances Panel (MCP).

The Mitigating Circumstances Panel meets in June to consider the evidence, and then make recommendations to the Exam Board on any necessary actions.

The deadline for submission of Mitigating Circumstances applications via Tabula for events which relate to either the examination period or to the whole year will be 12 noon Wednesday 16th June 2021.

If in doubt, please contact the Director of Undergraduate Studies: Prof James Davidson (James.Davidson@warwick.ac.uk) OR the Senior Tutor, Prof Suzanne Frey-Kupper (S.Frey-Kupper@warwick.ac.uk).

______________________________________________________________________________________________

Appendix A: Supporting Evidence required
Mitigating Circumstances: Guide for Students
Mitigating Circumstances: University of Warwick policy

Mitigating Circumstances Officers:

UGs: Donna Davies
PGs: Susan Doughty

Mitigating Circumstances Panel membership:

Senior Tutor (Chair) – Suzanne Frey-Kupper

Head of Department – Zahra Newby
Director of Undergraduate Studies - James Davidson

Taught MA Convenor: Dr Eris Williams-Reed

Exams Officer – Maude Vanhaelen
Director of Education – David Fearn

Mitigating Circumstances Officers – Donna Davies/Susan Doughty