Academic Concessions & Accommodations

***Effective March 17, 2020 and in response to the UBC directive to work at home in response to the COVID-19 virus, all first floor Student Services staff are working remotely.  While we are not available for in person appointments, we are fully committed to being able to support you. Please connect with a staff member by email and we can consider the best way to connect further (phone/Skype/email/Zoom)***

At Allard Law, we care about your wellbeing and are committed to supporting you in your academic pursuits. We recognize that sometimes unanticipated events or circumstances can affect your ability to complete your academic responsibilities. At Allard Law, requests for academic concessions are directed to the Academic Procedures Committee (through your Allard Law Advisor) rather than through your professor.

If you are already registered with the Centre for Accessibility and your concession is related to your registered medical condition or disability, contact your Accessibility Advisor in addition to completing the law school Academic Concession Request Form found below.

If you need immediate emotional, mental, or physical support, find a health and wellness resource to help you.

 

Allard's Academic Concession Policy           UBC's Academic Concession Policy

 

You may be eligible for academic concession if your circumstances fall within certain categories. An academic concession is an allowance for you to make up missed coursework or an exam at a later date or by alternate means.

Who is my Allard Law Advisor?
What are the types of academic concession that can be granted?

Determination of whether to grant an academic concession and which type of academic concession is most appropriate will depend on your individual circumstances. One or more of the following considerations may apply:

Though not an exhaustive list, the most common concessions granted are:

  • More time to work on your paper or assignment
  • A deferral of your examination (midterm or final) to a later date
  • A waiver of the participation requirement for a missed class day
  • Rescheduling of a presentation to a different day
  • Reweighting of missed marks to a later test or assignment
Will I be required to provide documentation to support my request?

A Self-Declaration of your circumstances will be sufficient for:

  • the first occurrence of an acute illness
  • a request on compassionate grounds
  • a conflicting responsibility for which there is no practicable way to provide a letter or other official document from an organization relevant to the conflict
  • religious observances

For some circumstances, you may still be required to submit supporting documentation along with, or following, your self-declaration (see details below in Requesting an academic concession).

We trust that the information you provide in a request for academic concession is accurate and truthful. The submission of false information for the purpose of obtaining academic concession is classified as non-academic misconduct, and will be investigated and penalized accordingly.

I was ill during my exam, but did complete it. Can I request to write a new exam?

Students are expected to make requests for an exam deferral prior to entering the examination room. Once a student sees an examination paper, the student has committed to writing and completing that exam.  If during the exam, a student experiences a sudden, debilitating illness, which renders them unable to complete an exam, the student must alert the invigilator immediately and ask to be taken to Academic Services Staff for assessment.  All attempts will be made to have the student complete the exam that day.

Requests from students for retroactive exam deferrals or concessions after an exam is written or submitted (eg. claiming an in-exam illness or incident) will not be reviewed unless the student alerted the invigilator during the exam as per the above process.

How can I request a late withdrawal from a course?

Withdrawal from a course after the last date to drop with a W is available as an academic concession and only in exceptional circumstances (for example, inability to complete the course due to a sudden health condition or tragedy, or you are experiencing unforeseen circumstances which are impacting your studies).  Late withdrawals can only be granted with approval from the Assistant Dean, Students (JD students) or the Associate Dean, Graduate Studies (graduate students). Students requesting a late withdrawal should do so promptly and are expected to provide supporting documentation. Late withdrawals are not available if you have written the final exam or completed the final assessments in the course.

If you remained registered in the course past the withdrawal deadline, and do not qualify for academic concession, you have committed to completing the course.

Can I defer a 1L December Practice Exam if I qualify for an academic concession?

Due to the fail-safe nature of December practice exams and the intensive nature of the first-year program, exam deferrals are not available for December practice exams. Rather, if a 1L student qualifies for an academic concession for a 1L December Practice exam, the student will be granted an exam waiver. The student's April exam in that course will be worth 100% of their final grade.

What circumstances do not qualify for an academic concession?

Requests for academic concessions will not be considered due to job interviews, conference attendance, court duties, volunteer commitments, travel or vacation plans, work schedules or a failure to back-up work. Students are expected to plan their personal affairs around their academic responsibilities. 

How do I request exam or classroom accommodations at Allard Law?

UBC’s Centre for Accessibility assists students with a disability or ongoing medical condition overcome challenges that may affect their academic success. If you think you may be eligible for academic accommodations, you should contact the Centre for Accessibility as soon as possible and ideally prior to the start of law studies to set up an appointment and register for accommodations.

If you are approved for accommodations, send a copy of your Letter of Accommodation to Kaila Mikkelsen, Assistant Dean, Students (graduate students should also send a copy to their graduate advisor).  As exams are coordinated centrally at Allard Law, if you only receive exam accommodations and do not receive classroom accommodation, you should not send your Letter of Accommodation to your instructors.

If you are eligible for exam accommodations, you need to register each term to write your exams with the Centre for Accessibility. The Centre has created this helpful Power Point outlining the process for Law Students to book exams with their office.

If you experience a temporary injury, such as a broken or sprained limb or mild concussion,  you should reach out to your Allard Law Advisor first to explore accommodation or concessions (such as exam deferrals or retroactive course withdrawals) prior to approaching Centre for Accessibility.

Requesting an Academic Concession

***Effective March 18, 2020, and as an interim measure in response to changes in examination procedures due to the COVID-19 outbreak, requests for an academic concession (such as a request to defer an exam) with respect to an April 2020 final examination must be made in advance of the start time of the examination.  Requests received after the start time of the examination will only be considered in exceptional circumstances***

If you need to request an academic concession, please choose the category that you believe most accurately reflects your situation and read the instructions carefully. Supporting documentation and/or a discussion with your Allard Law Advisor may be required before a concession is granted. 

Requests for academic concessions must be submitted to your Allard Law Advisor within 3 days of the missed deadline, class or exam. Requests for an exam to be rescheduled due a religious conflict are due no later than the last day to add a course for that term.

Medical Circumstances examples: acute illness, injury

Medical circumstances that create grounds for academic concession are normally unanticipated and include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Acute* physical or mental illness or a medical circumstance that emerges or recurs during a term
  • The emergence of, or a change in, a chronic physical or mental health condition

* An acute illness is one that has a quick onset and typically lasts for only a brief period. If your condition is contagious you are welcome to contact our office by phone or email.

 

Documentation

For first occurrences of an acute illness, a self-declaration of your circumstances will usually be sufficient. An Allard Law Advisor will evaluate your request and contact you if supporting documentation and/or a discussion is required before granting a concession.

For second or subsequent requests for an academic concession based on an acute illness within the same academic term, you may be required to submit medical documentation.

If you believe you are experiencing the emergence of a chronic condition, please speak to your Allard Law Advisor as soon as possible to discuss appropriate referrals and campus resources.

Students who are registered with the Centre for Accessibility, and who are requesting a concession related to their reasons for that registration, should not provide medical documentation or a self-declaration to their Allard Law Advisor and should instead contact their Accessibility Advisor for support.

Request a Concession by completing and returning the Academic Concession Request Form. If applicable, you can also complete and return a Self-Declaration with your Request Form.

Compassionate Grounds examples: bereavement, traumatic event

Compassionate grounds for academic concession may arise in the immediate aftermath of an unanticipated event, or later. Examples include:

  • a traumatic event experienced by you, a family member, or a close friend
  • an act of sexual assault or other sexual misconduct experienced by you, a family member, or a close friend
  • a death in the family or of a close friend

 

Documentation

For academic concession on compassionate grounds, a self-declaration of your circumstances will usually be sufficient. An Allard Law Advisor will evaluate your request and will contact you if additional information is required before granting a concession.

If a prolonged absence is anticipated on compassionate grounds, supporting documentation may be requested. Supporting documentation can be provided by a professional (for example, a counsellor or psychologist) or by a unit (for example, Counselling Services or UBC Hospital) that can assess the effect of the event on you.

The law school recognizes that circumstances may arise (eg. incidents of sexualized violence) where documentation is unavailable or not appropriate, and encourages students with questions about documentation requirements to reach out to the Assistant Dean, Students, for advice in advance of making an academic concession application.

Request a Concession by completing and returning the Academic Concession Request Form. If applicable, you can also complete and return a Self-Declaration with your Request Form.

Conflicting Responsibilities examples: unexpected and unanticipated conflicts; religious observance

It is your responsibility to arrange your personal life so that your attendance and participation in courses is not impacted. Conflicting responsibilities that create grounds for academic concession are unexpected and unanticipated, are beyond your control and normally arise after you have registered in courses. Examples (which are not exhaustive) include:

  • being absent from campus to represent the University, British Columbia or Canada in a competition or performance
  • a  change in the need to provide care for a dependent or family member
  • being called to serve in the military
  • being required to attend a hearing on a matter of university discipline or academic standing
  • being required to report to a government office for immigration or citizenship proceedings
  • participating in a religious observance

 

Requests for academic concessions will not be considered due to job interviews, conference attendance, court duties, volunteer commitments, travel or vacation plans, work schedules or a failure to back-up work. Students are expected to plan their personal affairs around their academic responsibilities.

 

Documentation

Supporting documentation should normally be provided in support of requests for academic concessions on the grounds of conflicting responsibilities.* A Self-Declaration may be sufficient where there is no practicable way to provide a letter or other official document from an organization relevant to the conflict. Please contact your Allard Law Advisor as soon as possible if you do not have supporting documentation for a concession request based on conflicting responsibilities.

*Documentation is not required for care of a family member. * For students who may miss a final exam due to a religious observance, per Allard Law policy, they must request an academic concession no later than the last day to add a course for that term.  The exam will be rescheduled to a different date during the examination period. Documentation is not required.

Request a Concession by completing and returning the Academic Concession Request Form. If applicable, you can also complete and return a Self-Declaration with your Request Form.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will my transcript reflect that I was approved for an academic concession?

After you’ve written your exam, your instructor will calculate and submit your final course grade. The SD notation will be removed when your final grade is posted.

When will I write my deferred exam?

The law school sets specific dates for deferred exams. Students cannot choose when they write their deferred exam. Please see the UBC Calendar or the Academic Concession Request Form.

Will I still be able to access course notes and materials in Canvas?

You will lose access to your courses in Canvas once the term is finished. It's your responsibility to download any materials you'll need to complete the course and prepare for the exam. You may also ask your instructor to extend your access to the course in Canvas, but do so as soon as possible as it may take several days for your request to be processed. Note that some copywritten material may not be available in Canvas once the term ends.