Extenuating Circumstances

Problems which stop you from performing to the best of your abilities in your studies are known as mitigating, unforeseen or extenuating circumstances.

Your Students' Union Advice Service is a free, independent and confidential service for all students.

The University recognises that you may have problems which stop you from performing to the best of your abilities in your studies. These are usually called mitigating, unforeseen or extenuating circumstances.

You may be asked to explain your extenuating circumstances if you are applying for an appeal or a deferral, or are preparing for an Academic Conduct meeting or Professional Suitability meeting.

Extenuating circumstances are problems beyond your control, which you could not reasonably expect to happen, and which can affect your judgement and cause you to rush assessments or behave in ways which are out of character.  

Things Likely To Be Considered Extenuating Circumstances:

  • Serious illness or accidents
  • An unexpected deterioration in a chronic illness
  • Very serious and unexpected weather conditions or transport problems
  • Death or serious illness of a close friend or relative
  • Divorce
  • Fire
  • Burglary
  • Court cases
  • Pregnancy issues

You will be expected to provide evidence to support your claim.  For more information on supporting evidence, see the Registry Team’s advice here.

Things NOT Likely To Be Considered Extenuating Circumstances:

  • Minor illness with no medical evidence
  • Routine work commitments
  • Minor transport problems
  • Social commitments
  • Holidays
  • Being unaware of a process
  • Forgetting to check email

Note: These are examples only and extenuating circumstances are considered on an individual basis. If you were not in control of what happened and could not have reasonably predicted it, you may have extenuating circumstances.

How Can Your Advice Service Help You?

Your Students' Union Advice Service can support you with appeals, deferrals,  Academic Conduct meetings or Professional Suitability meetings. To contact us please complete our online enquiry form. When doing so, please include as much information as possible about your circumstances and the kind of support you are looking for.

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