Annex E - Mitigation

1. Mitigation - Examples of circumstances which may be considered to have significantly affected a student’s performance

These are normally exceptional circumstances, outside your control, that may have prevented you from either demonstrating or acquiring the skills, knowledge, competencies required to meet the learning outcomes associated with an assessment that contributes to the qualification for which you are studying.

1.1 Applications for mitigation are considered on an individual student basis, taking in to account any previous applications for mitigation.

1.2 Where an Individual Learning Plan (ILP) is in place, recommendations for support have been considered for students in conjunction with Chapter 4 – Assessing Students with Disabilities and the AccessAbility or Wellbeing Services. However, students with long term, fluctuating health conditions/ disabilities will be able to apply for mitigation as a result of their health and their ILP will provide the Mitigation Committee or their delegated representative a useful context when considering an application. Students with ILPs, where extensions have been supported, may be able to apply for a week’s extension without additional evidence, once a mitigation form has been completed. Longer extensions will be considered with additional supporting evidence from AccessAbility/ mental health pathway or GP. 

1.3 It is at the discretion of the Mitigation Committee to consider the individual circumstances provided by the student in order to agree reasonable and justifiable outcomes.

2. A non-exhaustive list of examples of commonly accepted grounds / reasons:

1. Bereavement – death of close relative / significant other

2. Serious short term illness or accident of a nature which in an employment context would have led to an absence on sick leave (please see section 4 below for guidance on non-accepted medical grounds)

3. Students who have an ILP in place with extensions supported

4. Evidence of a long term fluctuating health condition/ disability

5. Significant worsening in any adverse personal / family/ welfare circumstances

6. Caring responsibilities e.g. where pre-established caring arrangements temporarily break down (please see section 4 below for guidance on non-accepted grounds related to caring).

7. Other exceptional factors for which there is evidence of impact.

3. Examples of evidence accepted in support of mitigation applications;


Mitigating Circumstance Evidence Required
1. Bereavement – recent death of close relative / significant other Letter from next of kin and, retrospectively, an Order of Service, public announcement, legal document or death certificate. If the student has a different last name to the deceased, please provide evidence of the relationship with the deceased (this will take into account loss of close friends/partners in addition to family members, for which there is no legal documentation).
2. Serious short term illness or accident(of a nature which in an employment context would have led to an absence on sick leave).e.g.

Neurological (e.g. concussion, migraine, blackouts, seizure, severe pain)

Ear/eye (e.g. eye, ear infections, tinnitus, vertigo)

Respiratory (e.g. asthma attack, chest infection/pneumonia)

Digestive (e.g. stomach upset, diarrhoea, food poisoning, vomiting / nausea)

Genito-urinary (e.g. U.T.I.)

Musculo skeletal (e.g. severe back pain, broken bone)

Infectious diseases (e.g. chicken pox, flu, swine flu, measles, mumps, meningitis)

Other medical conditions (e.g. severe allergic reaction, severe toothache, panic attacks)

Pregnancy related condition

Letter from a healthcare professional/ Statement of Fitness for Work/Study/ supporting letter from the University’s Health Centre.

The letter must give a clear diagnosis and confirm that your illness has had an impact on your ability to study at the time of the assessment/s you are claiming for.

3. Students with disabilities who have an ILP in place with extensions supported Email/ letter from Doctor/ hospital or ILP if extensions are supported. Further supporting evidence from a mental health pathway or AccessAbility practitioner would be required for over a week’s extension.
4. Evidence of a long term, fluctuating health condition/ disability
5. Students with disabilities where recommendations from the ILP have not been able to be put in place
6. Significant worsening in any adverse personal/ family/ welfare circumstances • Email/letter from Doctor/hospital confirming any diagnoses/ incidents with dates.
• Email/letter from organised carers to confirm the breakdown in normal arrangements e.g. school, nursery, care home.
• Supporting letter from Wellbeing Services
7. Caring responsibilities e.g. where normal caring arrangements temporarily break down

4. Examples of circumstances which may not be considered to have significantly affected a student’s performance: a non-exhaustive list of examples of commonly rejected grounds/reasons:

a) Alleged statement of a medical condition without reasonable evidence (medical or otherwise) to support or a condition supported by ‘retrospective’ medical evidence – that is, evidence that is not (contemporaneous) in existence at the same time as the illness, e.g. a doctor’s note which states that the student was seen (after the illness occurred) and declared they had been ill previously.

b) Alleged medical circumstances outside the relevant assessment period or learning period for which extenuating / special circumstances have been applied for.

c) Colds, minor illness or ailment, which in a work situation would be unlikely to lead to absence from work. Students should allow time for such circumstances within their planning.

d) Failure to establish adequate arrangements in advance for the care of a child or adult for whom the student has caring responsibilities.

e) If there is a reasonable case that circumstances relied on were foreseeable or preventable, i.e. the following will commonly not be accepted:

1. Holidays
2. Financial issues
3. Personal computer problems or poor practice e.g. no back up of electronic documents
4. Printer problems
5. Lack of awareness of submission dates /times and examination date / times
6. Poor time management
7. Submission of incorrect document or submission of correct document to the incorrect location

f) Late disclosure of circumstances on the basis that students were able but unwilling to confide in a staff member about their extenuating / special circumstances.

If the disruption to study caused by illness/ accident does not reasonably disrupt the submission of an assignment on time, mitigation will not be approved (please refer to sections 2 and 3 above for more information on accepted grounds for mitigation).

5. Examples of exceptional circumstances which may be considered where retrospective or late application for mitigation are made or where examination deferral or deadline extension are not appropriate;

a) Confirmed severe mental health issues.
b) Illness which has led to confirmed hospitalisation of the student and prevented the submission of a mitigation application.



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