Unfortunately, there are times when your studies don't always go to plan and when you get your results you might find that you have some decisions to make if you haven't passed all your modules. This can be confusing and any decisions you make can have an impact on other things such as student finance, student visas etc. It's really important you understand the options you have been given and the consequences of your choice going forward. There is information on the University's web pages about the different outcomes but you can also contact SU Advice if you would like to discuss your situation with an adviser.



For taught course students (Undergraduate and Postgraduate), the University will need to hold an Exam Board before your results for the year can be confirmed.  Generally the Exam Boards take place in June/July after the main summer exam period, however, boards will also be held after the summer reassessment period (Sept) and possibly some additional points of the year for certain courses.

The Board of Examiners confirm and ratify those students who have passed and can proceed (either to graduation or to the next stage of their studies).  The Exam Boards will also consider what action should be taken where students have not passed or have had extenuating circumstances that have impacted their work.  In line with the University's Rules of Assessment, they will consider what options can be given to each student - this could be options for reassesment, repeating years of study, continuing with failed credits etc. 

If you are unhappy with the decision made by the Exam Board, you have the right to appeal, if you have relevant grounds to do so.  

choosing your preferred option


In many cases you will be given different options by the Exam Board and you will need to decide which you would prefer.  The options will differ depending on your individual circumstances and your course requirements and it can be tricky to understand what option might be the best one for you.  There is a lot of guidance and information available on the University web pages to help you to make your decision, but if you would like to discuss this with an adviser then please contact us at suadvice@essex.ac.uk or contact the University at examboards@essex.ac.uk or via the University's Live Chat.

The deadline to inform the University of your preferred option is 20th July 2022 (this may differ for some courses so please double check your results information).  If you have not chosen an option by this date, then you may not be able to proceed with your studies/undertake any reassessments.

You should choose your preferred option even if you intend to submit an appeal against these options. If your appeal is successful then your records will be updated.



There are 3 grounds under which you can submit an appeal:

Extenuating Circumstances

You can appeal on the grounds that you have extenuating circumstances that may have impacted your performance, IF these could not reasonably have been submitted before the relevant extenuating circumstances deadline.

  • If you are appealing on this ground you will need to clearly explain your circumstances (ECs) and the impact you feel these have had on your performance and explain why you could not have submitted these before.
  • Appeals based on the retrospective reporting of ECs without a valid reason as to why you could not have provided this information earlier will usually be rejected
  • For example, if you had been feeling unwell during the exam period but had not received a diagnosis until after the EC deadline you could explain this in your appeal form
  • You should think about what evidence might be most helpful to support your appeal - medical records, death certificates etc - make sure you include these as attachments to your appeal form and list on the form what each document shows


You can appeal on the grounds of a procedural irregularity occurring (including administrative errors) that may suggest the results would have been different had the error not occurred.

  • If you are appealing on this ground you should provide evidence to show that the University has not followed its own policies, procedures and rules.  These are all published on the University web pages and could include the University Rules of Assessment, the Progress and Appeals Procedures and Department specific guidance such as your Departmental Handbook/Moodle Guidance etc.
  • This ground could also be used if you think there is an error on your results table (for example, your results table suggests you scored a 56 on an assignment but your result was actually a 65).
  • Be clear in your form about what the irregularity or error is and how this has affected your results
  • Assessments will only be remarked if there is clear evidence of a procedural irregualrity to suggest remarking is necessary


You can appeal on the grounds of evidence of prejudice or bias during the consideration of your progress by the Board of Examiners

  • If you are appealing on this ground you will need to consider what evidence is available to suggest prejudice or bias has occurred - this could include email correspondence or evidence that you have been treated differently to another student in the same situation that cannot be explained through the Rules of Assessment.
  • This ground cannot be used to question the academic judgement of a marker or to complain about teaching or supervision if this complaint has not be raised prior to the results being issued.

The appeal form can be downloaded here and once complete should be emailed to appeals@essex.ac.uk along with any relevant evidence.

The deadline to submit your appeal is 10 working days from the date your results were published - remember this may not necessarily be the same date that you first viewed your results.

additional help and support


If you would like to discuss your results and appeal options with one of our advisers, or would like us to read your appeal form and offer feedback before you submit it, please send an email to us at suadvice@essex.ac.uk.  As well as your questions or queries, please make sure you include the date your results were published and attach a screenshot of your results grid and options you have been given by the Exam Board as we do not have access to this information.  We aim to respond to emails within 3 working days but during busy periods this may take longer.  Please bear this and your deadline for appealing in mind when you contact us as we may not be able to respond to emails at short notice.