Review of Student Progress: ‘At risk’ and ‘Show cause’ procedures

The University tracks every student’s course grades to ensure satisfactory progress towards completing a degree. You can read the full policy here:

If you have failed topics or have not met the minimum standards specified in the rules for your course, you might be told that:

  • You are ‘at risk’ of preclusion (in other words you might not be allowed to re-enrol in your course or topic next semester), or
  • You have made ‘unsatisfactory progress’ in your course.

‘At risk’ letter

If you have failed 50% or more of your topics in a semester, failed a topic that your College has identified as being crucial to your degree, or haven’t met the minimum standards specified in the rules for your course, you will be sent an ‘at risk’ letter.

This letter invites you meet with an academic adviser in your College to discuss how to improve your results. It is highly advisable to take up this offer. They might recommend reducing your study load, changing your course of study, or they might refer you to support services for help.

‘Unsatisfactory progress’ and ‘show cause’ procedures

‘Unsatisfactory progress’ might mean you have a low Grade Point Average (GPA) in 36 units of study, or you have not met the minimum standards specified in the rules for your course.

If your progress is identified as unsatisfactory, your College may ask you to meet with an academic adviser. The academic adviser will discuss your progress with you, and will provide advice and assistance on how you can improve your progress.

It is advisable to attend this meeting; if you don’t, the College may send you a ‘show cause’ letter.

This letter invites you to ‘show cause’ (in other words, explain) why you think you should be allowed to continue in your course. If you receive a show cause letter, it is very much in your best interests to respond to it: your response matters, and can influence the outcome.

  • If you do not respond to the letter, the University may automatically preclude you from your studies.
  • If you do respond, and explain the circumstances that have affected your studies (e.g. illness, family issues, financial issues, academic difficulties, etc.) your College Committee can take this into account. Based on your response, they might:
    • Take no action, and you’ll be allowed to continue with your studies as normal
    • Allow you to continue studying, but with conditions
    • Require you to defer your enrolment for up to a year
    • Preclude you from re-enrolling in your course or topic for up to five years.

In any of the above scenarios, you have the opportunity to take action. Student Assist can help you to understand these processes and support you along the way with practical help. The processes might seem daunting, but they are designed to give you every opportunity to succeed.