Board of Appeals & Review (Spring '10)

Reference Number: S10-121
Senate Approval Date: Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Academic Senate Policy #S10-121

Board of Appeals and Review


The charge of the Board of Appeals and Review (BOAR) was last reviewed and approved by the Academic Senate in May, 1984. As part of the Senate’s “sunset policy review” procedures, the Student Affairs Committee reviewed the charge, in consultation with the Chair and members of BOAR.

The original charge included that two students be included as members of BOAR. This is consistent with the values of the Academic Senate and the SAC regarding the importance of student participation in shared governance. Executive Order 1037, regarding Grade Appeal policy and procedures, also requires the inclusion of student members in campus committees addressing grade appeals. However, the BOAR charge did not explicitly address the protection of student appellants’ confidentiality when their academic records are subject to review by student members of BOAR. In consultation with University Counsel, SAC has added additional language requiring that forms and materials be redacted prior to full BOAR review.

SAC also recommends the addition of a Student Affairs professional staff member to the membership of BOAR, to provide additional perspective from the “front lines” of student services.

Finally, SAC has suggested minor text and formatting revisions to correct outdated language and increase clarity.


Board of Appeals and Review Policy

(formerly S84-121)

All students at San Francisco State University, as they work toward their educational objectives, are expected to adhere to a number of regulations and policies that have been established by the State Legislature, the Board of Trustees of the California State Universities and Colleges, and San Francisco State University.

In administering these regulations and policies, the University recognizes that it must at times take into consideration the special needs of the individual student. The President, by virtue of his authority and responsibility for the administration of the educational program in the University, has delegated to the Board of Appeals and Review the responsibility for ruling on requests for special consideration. This Board, in addition to acting on student requests for special consideration, also evaluates policies and regulations and, when appropriate, recommends to the appropriate body reconsideration of policies and recommends modifications in interpretation and application of policies.



Dean of Graduate Studies (or designee)

Dean of Undergraduate Studies (or designee)

Four faculty members (appointed by the Academic Senate to serve staggered two-year terms). No more than one may be appointed from any one College. At least one must represent a department with a graduate program.

Director of Undergraduate Admissions (or designee)

Director of the Undergraduate Advising Center (or designee)

One professional staff member designated by the Vice President for Student Affairs/Dean of Students

University Registrar or designee (non-voting, to serve as secretary and record-keeper)

Two students (selected by the Associated Students)


A quorum is defined more than 50% of voting members present at the scheduled BOAR meeting.



BOAR shall select its own chair.



The BOAR appeal forms and face sheet shall include a consent form that informs the appellant of his or her FERPA rights, describes the membership of BOAR, and requires the appellant to explicitly agree or refuse to have BOAR’s student members involved in reviewing his or her appeal.


Requests for Exception to Academic Policies Subject to BoAR Review

Appeals of Direct Action

The Board hears appeals on the following direct actions:

1. Withdrawal from an individual course that has been previously denied at College Dean’s level;

2. Withdrawal from all courses in a semester;

3 Withdrawal from the University occurring within the last three weeks of the semester or retroactively for reasons other than "verified cases of accident or serious illness";

4. Administrative withdrawal for academic reasons (e.g. upon repeat of same course within one year);

5. Changes to/or from Auditor status after the deadline when denied at the College Dean’s level.

6. Individual student requests for special consideration related to academic policy.


Appeals for Exception to University Graduation Policies

The Board hears appeals on exceptions to University Graduation Policies, including the following:

1. Only 30% of a student’s courses may be graded "Credit;"

2. Only 60 units may be in one discipline (major) for an undergraduate degree;

3. Course equivalencies for graduation requirements that do not fall into normal guidelines (except BOAR cannot act on cases involving acceptance of community college work as upper division credit, which is prohibited by Title 5);

4. There must be 45 graded SFSU units to qualify for undergraduate graduation with honors;

5. Retroactive award of a degree for a student who has missed the original filing deadlines and, rather than accepting the next available degree date, has petitioned for the degree retroactively (Requests falling within one year of the date of graduation have customarily been acted on by the Registrar);

6. Acceptance of credit completed prior to the award of the Bachelor’s degree as graduate credit (beyond that allowed by University criteria of having been completed the last semester of undergraduate study and not in excess of 12 units).


Requests for Exceptions not Subject to BoAR Review

The Board does not review the following requests for exceptions:

1. Stipulated requirements of Title 5, or other State laws or regulations;

2. Grade changes subsequent to the award of a degree;

3. Any change of grade within the appropriate grading policy involving a reevaluation of work (authority for which has been delegated to each College Grade Appeal Committee as established by the College Dean);

4. Course equivalencies involving an evaluation of course content in terms of its applicability to major program requirements;

5. Change in major program requirements;

6. Variations in G.E. requirements that have been denied by the Dean of Undergraduate Studies.



BOAR normally meets monthly during the academic year.


Rights of Consultation

BOAR members may, in individual appeal cases where additional clarification is needed, solicit consultation with appropriate deans, directors, faculty or students.

When a student files a petition, a copy should be sent to all participants in the original action.



BOAR shall report through the Academic Senate to the President.


***Revisions Approved by the Academic Senate at its meeting on May 11, 2010***

Endorsed by SF State President Robert A. Corrigan