Mitigating circumstances (undergraduate programmes only) | Institute of Continuing Education skip to content

Institute of Continuing Education

From time to time you may encounter difficulties that affect your studies. These may be relatively minor and short-term, or they may be more substantial. In these cases, we strongly recommend that you contact your Academic Programme Manager to discuss all of the options open to you. When you submit work late, a penalty is only finalised after the mitigating circumstances process and moderation of the course have been completed.

The mitigating circumstances process is intended to help those facing severe difficulties such as:

  • hospitalisation
  • bereavement
  • serious illness of self or dependants
  • unexpectedly heavy work demands over an extended period

It is unlikely that minor ailments, technical problems or time management issues would be eligible for this process.

If you encounter difficulties that substantially affect your achievement (and you can provide direct evidence of this), result in late submission or cause you to miss classes, you should complete a mitigating circumstances form online (www.ice.cam.ac.uk/info/student-forms). Regardless of the nature of your mitigating circumstances claim, you may be asked to provide documentary evidence to support your request, except, for example, in cases of bereavement. You will also be asked to identify the length of time that the circumstances affected your study and to confirm for which assignments you are seeking mitigation and what remedy you are seeking.

The form and all supporting evidence will be treated confidentially within ICE and will be viewed only by those necessary to the process of the consideration of the request and to support you. Supporting documents can be sent by post to the Education and Student Services Manager at ICE, if preferred.

You should complete a mitigating circumstances form as soon as you can for each term where your work or performance has been affected adversely by significant events. Please note that the deadline for the submission of this form for each term is below:

  • Michaelmas term 2017:1 February 2018
  • Lent term 2018: 1 May 2018
  • Easter term 2018: 1 August 2018

If you are taking an Advanced Diploma course or studying or studying a Certificate or Diploma course which did not start in October, please discuss the appropriate dates for submission of mitigating circumstances requests with your Academic Programme Manager.

The Mitigating Circumstances Committee meets at the end of each term to consider all requests from that term. The Committee make decisions based on the information given on your form, so please provide as much detail as possible. If you wish to submit further information or evidence before the final submission deadlines above, please contact the Education and Student Services Manager at qa@ice.cam.ac.uk. The submission of late mitigating circumstance requests will be considered on a case by case basis.

The Committee may:

  • cancel some or all late submission penalties
  • recommend that the student is permitted to re-write and resubmit the assignment (with no late submission penalty)
  • recommend that the student is permitted to submit a missed assignment (with no late submission penalty)
  • recommend no action.

The Committee does not alter individual assignment marks.       

Students whose mitigating circumstances requests are approved will be advised by the Academic Programme Manager of their submission deadline for resubmitted or newly submitted assignments.

Students with mitigating circumstances may be permitted to resubmit more than one unit’s work if this is approved by the Mitigating Circumstances Committee.

Following the Mitigating Circumstances Committee’s decision, if you remain dissatisfied with the outcome, you may request a review by contacting the Education and Student Services Manager (qa@ice.cam.ac.uk). The review will not usually consider issues afresh or involve a further investigation.

The review procedure allows for a decision to be reviewed on the following grounds:

  1. Procedural irregularities that occurred during the decision-making process, which were material or potentially material to the decision reached; and/or
  2. The decision is unreasonable, in that no reasonable person could have reached the same decision on the available evidence; and/or
  3. The availability of new evidence, which materially impacts the outcome and which, for valid reasons, could not have been submitted at an earlier stage.

The Reviewer will convey the outcome to you in writing.

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