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The Special Consideration policy has been replaced by the Disruption to Studies policy. The Disruption to Studies policy provides provisions for students who have been adversely affected by a serious and unavoidable disruption to their studies that is beyond their control, to demonstrate the Unit Learning Outcomes through Disruption to Studies provisions.
A Disruption to Studies does not cover the following situations:
- Missing a Final Exam – refer to the Deferred Exams web page
- Minor illnesses or misadventure preventing a student meeting an assessment deadline – refer to Request for Extension form in Western Now
- Missing a compulsory component of a subject, except where a serious and unavoidable disruption is the cause – refer to the Assessment Policy Guidelines.
Disruption to Studies
Disruption to Studies is a serious and unavoidable disruption that prevents a student undertaking study or completing assessment during the teaching term. The University will provide students who have experienced a serious and unavoidable disruption to their studies a Disruption to Studies provision, which is an opportunity to demonstrate that they have met the learning outcomes for the subject. To be eligible for a Disruption to Studies Provision, the disruption must impact your studies for at least three consecutive days.
Am I eligible to apply for a Disruption to Studies provision?
You are eligible to be considered for a disruption to studies provision if the disruption was caused by:
- health issues, either physical or Psychological;
- hardship, for example, sudden loss of employment or family breakdown;
- trauma, for example, impact of a crime, domestic violence or accident;
- compassionate reasons, for example death of a close family member or other unavoidable circumstances;
And the disruption that affected your study meets all the following criteria:
- you could not have reasonably anticipated, avoided, or prevented it from occurring;
- it was beyond your control;
- it caused substantial disruption to your capacity for effective study and/or completion of assessment items;
- and it occurred during a critical study period;
- was at least three consecutive days in duration;
- and the disruption clearly affected your preparation or study for your assessment.
I have an Academic Integration Plan (AIP) – am I eligible for a Disruption to Studies provision?
An Academic Integration Plan (AIP) can adjust for the effects of your disability or health condition while you are able to manage your symptoms.
If you have an AIP you may only apply for a Disruption to Studies provision if the symptoms of your disability or medical condition significantly increase to the extent that you are unfit to attend class, complete assessment tasks or undertake an exam and the increased impact affects your studies for at least three days and the criteria above. The existence of a chronic condition cannot be a basis to apply for Disruption to Studies provision.
If you have an AIP, you may apply for Disruption to Studies if:
- the issue is not related to your medical condition or disability (e.g. a death in the family/motor vehicle accident); and
- the symptoms of your disability/medical condition became worse than can be reasonably accommodated by the adjustments in your AIP; and
- you have supporting documentation additional to your AIP. It is not sufficient for you to provide a copy of your AIP as evidence for a Disruption to Studies application.
When do I need to submit an application for a Disruption to Studies provision?
You must submit your Disruption to Studies application:
- no later than five days after the disruption commenced; and
- no later than two days after the due date of an affected assessment task.
If you submit your application more than two days after the due date for an assessment and more than five days after the disruption commenced, you must provide evidence to support extenuating circumstances affected your ability to submit the application on time.
What can I do if I could not submit my application on time
You may be able to submit a late application if you had extenuating circumstances that prevented you from submitting on time. If you submit a late application, you must provide documentary evidence that explains why you could not submit your application on time or it will not be considered.
Refer to the Documentary Evidence page for information on the type of documentation you need to provide.
How do I apply for a Disruption to Studies?
You can submit a Disruption to Studies notification online using the online Disruption to Studies form. All applications for Disruption to Studies must contain appropriate supporting documentation to substantiate the circumstances that are impacting on your studies. Applications without supporting documentation will not be considered. Refer to the Documentary Evidence page for information on the type of documentation you need to provide.
What Documentary Evidence or supporting documents do I need to provide?
You will need to either have your medical practitioner complete, sign, and stamp the Western Sydney University Medical Certificate Form, or provide you with a medical certificate that contains all of the information requested on the Western Sydney University Medical Certificate Form.
Provide other Documentary Evidence for non-medical circumstances. Refer to the Documentary Evidence page for information.
Applications without supporting documentation will not be considered.
How do I submit my documentary evidence / supporting documentation?
You must provide an electronic copy of all your supporting documents. Hard copy documents will not be accepted. If your supporting documents are hard copies, you will need to scan them and attach them to the online form as electronic copies.
You can submit your supporting documents as part of the online application process. Otherwise, all supporting documentation must be submitted no later than five working days after you submit your application.
Submitting documentation separately to your application
All supporting documentation that is not included with your initial application must be provided within five working days of original submission. You will receive a notification to your student email address with instructions on how to submit your documentation.
For auditing purposes you must keep either the original or certified copy of all supporting documentation you attach for at least one year. The University conducts audits to validate the information students provide in their applications. You may be contacted any time within one year of submitting your application and required to produce either the original or a certified copy of all supporting documentation. Documentation that has been fraudulently altered or manipulated may constitute non-academic misconduct.
My study has been impacted for less than three days
If you have been impacted for less than three consecutive days, you cannot apply for a Disruption to Studies provision. You may submit a Request for Extension or speak to your Subject Coordinator.
I am a WSU Online student – how do I apply for Disruption to Studies?
Please forward your request for Disruption to Studies to firstname.lastname@example.org
Students impacted by COVID-19 and/or political unrest can apply for special consideration at The College or the University by providing a statement (either via a document or in the comments section) covering:
- Date/s the impact was first identified.
- Duration of the impact
- Nature of the impact. For example:
- Your ability to study online– inadequate access to appropriate internet or technology.
- Isolation due to health considerations – you have been required to self-isolate due to their own health or someone you have been in contact with, or other health/government advice.
- Financial, psychological or employment changes.
- Disruption to accommodation/residential arrangements.
- How it affected your ability to complete and/or submit an assessment on time. Medical certificates/other documentation can be provided if available but are not mandatory at this stage.
If you need further help completing your application, you can contact one of the following services:
- Student Central (help submitting the form)
- Student Welfare Service (help understanding the process and completing the application)
- Disability Service (for students with a disability, mental health condition or chronic illness or injury)
- Counselling Service (for students who have been in touch with Student Support Services during a period of hardship)