Report #336

DATE: July 23, 2009
PARTIES: Z.K., (the Student) v. University of Toronto School of Graduate Studies

Hearing Date(s): May 28, 2009

Committee Members:
Tad Brown, Chair
Ken Davy
Professor Ronald Kluger
Professor Chris Koenig-Woodyard
Professor Elizabeth M. Smyth


For the Student Appellant:
Z.K. (the Student)
William Reid, Counsel for the Student

For the University of Toronto School of Graduate Studies:
Robert Centa, Counsel for the University
Professor Leonard Brooks
Professor Martha Dunlop
Hans Harding
Professor Berry Smith

University of Toronto School of Graduate Studies – terminate Student from program – failure of course – medical injury – back injury – deferred examination – examination rewrite – co-op program – insufficient time to prepare for supplemental exam – timely notice of format of exam – failure to provide suitable guidance – reasonable decision based on evidence – reasonable and fair in the circumstances – appeal dismissed

Appeal of a decision to terminate the Student from the Master of Management and Professional Accounting Program. The termination was based on the requirement of the Program that any student who fails more than two courses will automatically be asked to withdraw from the program. In particular at issue was the treatment of the third course in which the Student did not receive a passing grade. The Student was previously involved in an accident and injured his back. The Student wrote one examination and was granted a deferral for another examination. The Student later appealed on the basis of their medical condition to rewrite the final examination he had written during the time of illness. The deferred examination was not to be available until the next academic term during which the Student was to have entered the co-op portion of the Program. The Student requested the writing of the deferred examination be further deferred until after the co-op period had been completed because of the workload. The deferral was granted. The Student found out that the two examinations, the rewrite and the deferred examination, were to be written in the same period. The Student asked for a further deferral and was granted it. The Student failed the rewritten examination. The Student submitted that he was not given sufficient time to prepare for the supplemental exam, that the Student did not receive timely notice of the format of the examination, that he was unfairly disadvantaged because of the structure of the rewritten examination, and that the course instructor failed to provide him with suitable guidance was denied by the Committee. The Committee found the decision of the Graduate Academic Appeals Board was correct in rejecting the Student’s request and was reasonable based on the evidence presented. The Committee found notice given to the Student was reasonable and that there was no requirement that students be provided an examination model. The Committee found the examination covered course material. The Committee further found the rescheduling of the exam was done within guidelines. The Committee held that the decision to terminate the Student from his program was reasonable and fair in the circumstances. Appeal dismissed.