Committee on Academic Standards - Information for Students

The Committee on Academic Standards (CAS) is a College-wide body composed of student representatives and faculty from each division of the College. Generally the Committee meets to hear student appeals four times during the fall semester. The same holds true for the spring semester.

The Curriculum, Assessment and Educational Policy Committee reviews courses submitted by academic departments for approval into the General Education Requirements (GERs). The Committee on Academic Standards does not exist to overrule the Curriculum Committee process by approving requests for substitutions or waivers in the General Education Requirements.

The purpose of the Committee is to uphold the academic standards of the College. If exceptions to academic rules and regulations are to be made, this body will adjudicate the case.

Students who wish to appeal to CAS for exceptions to academic rules and regulations should put their request in writing and must follow the guidelines enumerated below.  A petition should identify the academic policies or rules in question and the reasons for an exception to those rules.

The Committee on Academic Standards does not review grade appeals.  In some cases, students with extraordinary circumstances appeal for retroactive changes in grading status for a semester. Information on this option can be found in the Retroactive Academic Relief Policy. If academic relief is granted, all grades will be changed to “S" or “U" (pass or fail) for the semester. Grades of “S" do not fulfill GER requirements and most majors require all courses to be taken on a graded basis. If the relief is granted, courses that previously may have completed a GER requirement, no longer do so. 

The guidelines below should serve as your checklist for preparing your petition packet to the Committee. It is incumbent upon the student petitioner to present a compelling case for an exception to the academic rules and regulations of Emory College.

The written request is the only acceptable form of appeal. Students may not appear before the Committee in person.

CAS Deadlines and Meeting Schedule

CAS Student Petition Checklist

Students are responsible for gathering all materials necessary to support their appeal to the Committee and submitting them by the deadlines. The materials should include:

  1. A cover letter with the specific request. For example, “Academic relief for Fall 2011.” You can find the cover sheet (PDF) here.

  2. A brief written narrative stating the grounds for the appeal. Include a description of the situation that affected you, the time period during which you were affected, the extent to which this condition/event/situation affected you and the specific remedy you are requesting. Note that you should give details only to the extent that they support your request.

    Keep in mind that the committee does not base its decisions on your stated plans for the future but on their understanding of the situation and how it affected your past academic performance. In most cases, the committee will apply its decisions to an entire academic semester, in other words grant a comprehensive solution for all courses in that semester. It is unusual for the committee to grant single course solutions.

    The heading of the narrative must include your current contact information (full legal name, mailing address, ID number, e-mail, and telephone number). You may consult with a faculty member or Associate Dean Wendy Newby in the Office for Undergraduate Education if you have questions about how to prepare the narrative.

  3. For medical conditions (physical or mental health) provide documentation from a treating professional on letterhead stationery and signed by the health provider. The supporting documentation should include the following:

    a. The reason for the request

    b. The time period during which the condition/event/ situation affected academic performance

    c. The severity or scope of the condition or situation and the effect on academics

    d. The remedy requested (academic relief)

    Note: it is very important for the information from the medical professional to address the issues that arose during the time for which academic relief is being requested even if the professional did not treat you during that period of time. Information can be reported retrospectively for the committee to consider.

  4. A current transcript (available from OPUS)

  5. If requesting an exception or substitution for a General Education Requirement or a waiver of other academic regulations, you must include a statement from an appropriate faculty member, academic advisor or administrator supporting the request

Two ways to submit petitions and supporting documentation:

  1. You may submit paper copies of letters from physicians, mental health professionals, faculty or administrators in sealed envelopes. Envelopes should have student's name and the name of the writer clearly identifiable on the face. You should assemble all materials in date order in a packet and submit them by the deadline.

  2. You may submit electronic copies of your cover letter, petition, letters of support must be on letterhead, and transcript by scanning and attaching these to an email. Send to Ms. Brenda Nix ( marked CAS-Confidential with your last name and student ID. Do not submit double-sided documents.

Submit all petition packets to Ms. Brenda Nix, Program Administrative Assistant, Emory College of Arts and Sciences- Office for Undergraduate Education, White Hall Room 300, 301 Dowman Drive, Atlanta, GA 30322.
Incomplete packets will not be accepted. Ms. Nix will process your packet for distribution to committee members for review.

There is a deadline for submitting petitions. Refer to meeting schedule for the date of the meeting and the deadline for submitting petitions. If you miss one deadline, your petition will be held over for the next meeting. If your case is time sensitive, be sure to submit on or prior to the deadline.

For further information please contact:

Ms. Brenda Nix
Program Administrative Assistant (Committee on Academic Standards)
Emory College of Arts and Sciences - Office for Undergraduate Education
White Hall Room 300
301 Dowman Drive
Atlanta, GA 30322

For consultation contact:

Dr. Dan Dillard
Assistant Dean
300 White Hall

Petitions received by the student petition due date will be heard on the day the meeting convenes. Refer to the semester calendar. Requests must be received in White Hall 300 by the date specified. Any request received after the specified date will not be heard until the next scheduled meeting.

Decisions will be provided by e-mail following each Committee Meeting. If you do not receive an e-mail, please contact Ms. Brenda Nix at

Important: Appeals must contain current date, students' full legal name, student ID number, and e-mail address.