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Heartland Community College

Student Appeals

Students can use the Student Appeals process when they question a decision that has been made. Students can appeal course-related matters or other non-course issues. The most common example of a non-course related issue is a withdrawal from courses due to physical or financial hardship. The most common example of a course-related appeal is to appeal a grade in a course. 

Students should seek issue resolution immediately. Students must appeal within 30 business days from the end of the semester in which the issue occurs. The appeal must be finalized by the end of the next semester.

  • Students who are experiencing financial or physical hardship have the option to appeal to be withdrawn or removed from classes. Examples of hardship include but are not limited to: serious injury or illness; chronic illness; medical issue of a family member that impacts the student; mental health condition; a sudden or consistent lack of transportation; and significant cost of living increase.

    Step 1: If you have a non-course related issue, you should immediately email or meet with the First Contact listed in the table below. If you are appealing due to extenuating circumstances, including financial or physical hardship, you should start by filling out the Student Appeal Due to Extenuating Circumstances form. You should explain the issue and state what you want the College to do. Once the form is submitted, you will be sent a letter with a meeting day and time to meet with the Dean of Students. Failure to attend your meeting and submit required documentation will result in your appeal expiring or being denied.

    Student Appeal Due to Extenuating Circumstances

    Step 2: If you are unsatisfied with the decision from Step 1 above, you can initiate a final appeal. The final appeal must be made within 10 business days of the dated Dean of Student’s or designee’s response. You should include a written explanation outlining the reason for the appeal and the proposed resolution. Each appeal must provide supporting documentation. Final Appeals should be emailed to: appeals@heartland.edu.

    Staff will provide a dated and written response to the final appeal. The College will send communication to your official my.heartland email, and the College will scan the communication into your student record.

    Non-Course Issues First Contact Formal and Final Appeal
    Academic Probation & Dismissal Dean of Students  Vice President, Enrollment & Student Services
    Assessment & Placement Dean of Students Vice President, Enrollment & Student Services
    Comptroller Collection Vice President, Enrollment & Student Services
    Financial Aid Director of Financial Aid Vice President, Enrollment & Student Services
    Graduation Dean of Students Vice President, Enrollment & Student Services
    Late Withdrawal Dean of Students Vice President, Enrollment & Student Services
    Hardship Withdrawal Dean of Students Vice President, Enrollment & Student Services
    Military Deployment Dean of Students Vice President, Enrollment & Student Services
    Past Student Accounts/Bills Dean of Students Vice President, Enrollment & Student Services
    Refund of Tuition/Fees Dean of Students Vice President, Enrollment & Student Services
    Registration Dean of Students Vice President, Enrollment & Student Services

     

  • Before starting a formal Grade/Course-Related Appeal, you should immediately email or meet with your instructor to discuss your situation. You should explain the issue and let your instructor know what outcome you are seeking. If the instructor does not agree to your outcome, then you can move to the formal Grade/Course-Related Appeal process outlined below. While there may be situations in which you may want to move straight to the formal appeal process prior to talking with your instructor, grade appeals should always start with the instructor.

    If you are having issues in your class and you do not need to appeal a grade, your issue will likely fall under the complaint umbrella. If you would like to submit a complaint about an instructor and/or course, you can use the complaint form located on the complaints page. Complaints submitted through this form are routed to the appropriate party and the resolution is recorded.  You can submit anonymously or include contact information if you would like someone to follow up on your submission.

  • Step 1: If you are unsatisfied with the informal decision from your instructor (described above), you should complete this form to start a formal Grade/Course-Related Appeal: Grade/Course-Related Appeal Form. Once submitted, your instructor will have to formally respond to your appeal. Instructor’s supervisors are notified of submitted appeals. Your instructor will provide a decision within 5 business days.

    Step 2: Once you receive the response, if you are still unsatisfied with the decision from Step 1, you will have an opportunity to move the appeal to the next level supervisor (Dean or Associate Dean). At this level, the appeal decision will be based on an assessment of whether or not there was an error in the grade calculation or if there was any misconduct on the part of the instructor. The Dean/Associate Dean will provide a decision within 5 business days.

    Step 3: Once you receive the response from the Dean/Associate Dean, if you are still unsatisfied with the decision from Step 2, you will have an opportunity to move the appeal to the next level supervisor (Vice President of Academic Affairs/Provost). Again at this level, the appeal decision will be based on an assessment of whether or not there was an error in the grade calculation or if there was any misconduct on the part of the instructor. TThe Vice President of Academic Affairs/Provost will provide a decision within 5 business days. This is the final step in the appeal process, however, you can elect to end the appeal at any step.

    Start Grade Appeal

  • Step 1: If you have a course-related issue for Adult Education or Continuing Education courses, you should immediately email or meet with the faculty member explaining the issue and stating what you want the College to do. Your instructor will provide a dated decision in writing within 5 business days.

    Step 2: If you are still unsatisfied with the decision from Step 1 above, you can appeal to the Associate Dean/Dean. You should explain in writing the issue and state what you want the College to do. The Associate Dean/Dean will provide a dated decision in writing within 5 business days.

    Step 3: If you are still unsatisfied with the decision from Step 2 above, you can initiate a final appeal to the appropriate Vice President. The final appeal must be made within 10 business days of the dated Associate Dean/Dean’s response. A final appeal includes a written document explaining the reason for the appeal and the proposed resolution. Each appeal must provide supporting documentation.

    Appeals may be emailed to: appeals@heartland.edu. The Vice President will provide a dated and written response to the final appeal. The College will send communication to the student’s official my.heartland email if available, and the College will scan the communication into the student record.

    *Note: Students enrolled in the Nussbaum Trucking Academy at HCC must follow the steps listed in the “Communicating Concerns” section of the syllabus.

    Course-Related Dispute First Contact Second Contact Formal & Final Appeal
    Undergraduate Instructor Dean or Associate Dean of Academic Division  Provost and Vice President, Academic Affairs
    Adult Education Instructor Dean of Adult Education Provost and Vice President, Academic Affairs
    Continuing Education Instructor Dean of Continuing Education Vice President, External Relations

     

If after following the College’s process for addressing Student Disputes & Appeals, an issue cannot be resolved internally, students may file a complaint about Heartland Community College with the Illinois Community College Board or with the Higher Learning Commission. If you are a student living out of the State of Illinois, you may also file your complaint with the state in which you reside. See Student Complaint Information by State (PDF) for more information.