Academic Progress Reviews

He hiahia nō Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha kia eke panuku, eke tangaroa koe – kai konei mātou hai taituarā mōhou. At the University of Canterbury we want you to succeed and we are here to help. 

All students are expected to make satisfactory academic progress in each enrolment period.

At the end of each semester, the records of students who have failed to make satisfactory academic progress will be reviewed by their Faculty. During this process, the students’ academic transcripts are assessed to determine whether they are making sufficient academic progress, whether they are able to complete their qualification within the maximum timeframe, and whether they are able to meet the professional requirements for their chosen degree.

During this Arotakenga Akoranga | Review of Academic Progress, the University communicates with all students whose grades are of concern to direct them toward the help and support they need, or towards other avenues in which they may be more successful. Students are encouraged to utilise the resources on offer to improve their academic performance.

Students found to have made unsatisfactory academic progress will be offered academic and wellbeing support, but may have restrictions placed on their enrolment, or be excluded from their award/UC.

About Academic Progress Reviews

Grades are analysed twice yearly, after mid-year and end-of-year course results are released. Criteria to trigger a review include:

  • Not passing half or more of the points a student is enrolled in.
  • GPA for the current year of less than 1.0.
  • Failure to demonstrate competence in the professional requirements.
  • Withdrawal from more than half of enrolled courses in the preceding two years.
  • Failure to demonstrate any likelihood of success.

See Academic Progress Regulations in the UC Calendar

The GPA is based on an average calculated by multiplying each grade's value by the course's points to achieve a Grade Point Total, which is then divided by the total number of points taken. 

  • A+ = 9
  • A = 8
  • A- = 7
  • B+ = 6
  • B = 5
  • B- = 4
  • C+ = 3
  • C = 2
  • C- = 1
  • D = 0
  • E = -1
  • X = -3

See the example below. 

Course codeGradeGrade valuePointsGrade point totalGPA
TREO 111 B- 4 15 60  
SOCI 112 C 2 15 30  
PSYC 105 C- 1 15 15  
PSYC 106 D 0 15 0  
LAWS 101 C- 1 30 30  
      90 135 1.5 (135 ÷ 90) 

 

 

Students who meet the criteria for an Arotakenga Akoranga | Academic Progress Review may receive one of the following:

  • Warning: This may be given if a continuing student has not made sufficient academic progress. A Warning can also be issued with restrictions (restricted points), an enrolment condition or a request for the student to meet with the Associate Dean of their Faculty.
  • Impending Exclusion from an award or Faculty: This may be given to a student who has not made sufficient academic progress after receiving a Warning. This is a notice to inform the student that they will need to meet with their relevant Dean to discuss their circumstances and develop a study plan. Failure to meet with the Dean will result in an exclusion and the student will be withdrawn from their studies.
  • Exclusion from an award or Faculty: This may be given if a student has previously been given a warning and has not made sufficient academic progress in a subsequent round. These exclusions prevent the student from continuing to study in in the same qualification, any subjects in that qualification or in that Faculty.
  • Exclusion from the University: This may be given if a student has previously been given an exclusion from an award or Faculty and has not made sufficient academic progress in a subsequent semester. This exclusion prevents the student from continuing to study at the University of Canterbury.

Students are notified of outcomes via email the week following the release of grades. Students who receive restrictions or exclusions and are able to request a review of a decision. It is important to check UCLive email to ensure the deadline to request a review is not missed.

Requesting an outcome review

Students will need to request a review of the decision within a specified timeframe. Only students who receive restrictions or exclusions will be eligible for reviews. The University will communicate a student’s exclusion via email and students should check their email regularly to ensure the due date to request a review does not pass. For assistance through this process, they should contact the UCSA Student Advocate, or UC Student Care.

Students should outline the exceptional circumstances that impaired their ability to successfully complete their course of study, or significantly impaired their ability to perform in an assessment.

Evidence should be provided (such as medical certificates, death notices, other relevant documents) to support the student’s application.

The student should then explain why the impairment is no longer likely to impact on their ability to successfully complete their studies, and how they will ensure their success going forward.

If the impairment is significant and can be verified, along with a strong study plan in place,  the restrictions or exclusion  may be removed and the student permitted to continue their study.

An exclusion means you are excluded from the named qualification or from the University for the future. During the exclusion period, you are not permitted to continue to study in the qualification, or at the University in the case of a University exclusion. The exclusion is valid for a period of no less than 12 months. The University would consider allowing the student readmission after:

  • At least one year of successful study elsewhere (in another Faculty or at another tertiary institution) or at least one year of successful work experience in relevant employment.
  • Evidence of their likelihood of success in future university studies.
How to re-apply
  • Applications for readmission to a course, subject, award or Faculty shall be made to the Faculty’sAcademic Dean, or nominee. (please see contact information below for each Faculty and who to contact to arrange the reapplication process) 
  • Applications for readmission to the University shall be made to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic). (please send all applications to academicprogress@canterbury.ac.nz)

For support or advocacy through these processes, students should contact the UCSA Student Advocate, or UC Student Care.

See charts below to better understand your options after a qualification exclusion or univeristy exclusion

Qualification Exclusion - Flow Chart

University Exclusion - Flow Chart

Domestic students

Students should visit the StudyLink website to ensure all information is accurate.

Actions taken by the University during the Arotakenga Akoranga | Academic Progress Review may impact on a student’s regular StudyLink payments. This refers to students who have had restrictions placed on the number of points they can take, and students excluded from a college or the University.

In some cases, students with restrictions placed on their study will experience an interruption in their StudyLink payments as their circumstances have changed. These students should check their eligibility for limited full-time study on the Studylink website and follow the process to apply as soon as possible.

There are other factors regarding StudyLink eligibility that are relevant to students affected by the Arotakenga Akoranga | Academic Progress Review.

The StudyLink website advises that a student needs to pass more than half of the courses that they are enrolled in to continue to be eligible for a Student Allowance. The same test is also applied to assess Student Loan eligibility once a student has completed 1.6 EFTS (usually about two years of study).

International students

An exclusion can have serious consequences for international students.

International students studying in New Zealand must have a student visa/permit which specifies the institution they are studying at and the qualification they are studying. This means that if they change their plan of study they are legally obliged to apply for a new student visa/permit.

International students who have been excluded need to decide whether to study in another qualification at UC (this is not an option if they have been excluded from the University), to study at another tertiary institution, to apply for an alternative temporary permit, or to return to their home country.

The Arotakenga Akoranga | Academic Progress Review process can be a wake-up call for students struggling with their studies who have not previously asked for help. 

The University recommends they take the opportunity to speak with friends, whanau and university staff to seek sound advice and be directed to the help that is available.

Students who struggle with time management, study skills, exam skills, problems with academic writing or English language difficulties can talk to Faculty student advisors and be directed to the help they need:

The University has several units offering assistance:

For personal or financial difficulties:

All resources and supports can be found here: Wellbeing Hub

Other related documents can be found below: 

So, you’ve received a letter from the University about last semester’s grades.  Or maybe you’ve been told that you are now excluded and not able to continue your studies. Cue panic, right? Wrong! We are here to help.

The Academic Progress Reviews are not meant to be a punishment, however the University has a due diligence to make sure that all students are achieving satisfactory academic progress. This is to ensure that students are provided with the right support- both academically and pastorally, and that students are enrolled with genuine interest and ability to complete their studies.

We understand this may seem like a complicated process but really there are only some simple steps that you need to follow which are provided to you in your letter. Still not sure what to do? Read below to find the answer to your question. If not, please contact the Academic Progress team- academicprogress@canterbury.ac.nz or UCSA Advocacy & Welfare- help@ucsa.org.nz

You cannot get kicked out for having one semester of bad grades however, there are certain requirements that you are expected to achieve throughout your University studies. If you do not meet the requirements, you will be flagged for a review of your progress. These requirements can be found below or under the ‘Criteria for Review’ section of the website.

If you fail to meet these satisfactory academic requirements after more than one semester and/or after previous warnings or conditions, then it can lead to exclusion from your qualification and potentially from the University in the future.

You received a letter because you did not meet the satisfactory academic requirements during the previous semester. You will receive a letter if you:

- failed half or more of your enrolled points

- have a GPA of less than 1.0

- failed to demonstrate competence in professional requirements of your programme (i.e- failed a placement)

- withdrew from more than half of your courses in the preceding 2 years of study

- failed to demonstrate any likelihood of success

- at risk or failed to meet the progression requirements of your programme (some postgraduate programmes do not permit students to fail a certain amount of points or have other regulations that differ from other programmes. If you’re unsure, please check with your Programme Director or Administrator)

*If you received an Advice letter- this letter is designed to give you a head’s up and prompts you to seek out some advice for how to progress successfully. Please take us up on the offer for help and support!

Yes. The letter you receive is a formal University communication and any review decision made is recorded on your internal transcript, but not visible on an official transcript. You must meet the satisfactory criteria in every semester after receiving a notice in order to continue studying. Any decision related to your academic progression will override your enrolment which could be cancelled by the University if you do not follow the conditions or requirements.

A qualification is the same thing as a degree. It’s the programme under which you will graduate and be qualified.

If you receive a letter with ‘Impending exclusion’, it means that you have been provided with a condition on your enrolment that you MUST meet, or you will be excluded. ‘Impending’ is another way of saying that you are heading towards an exclusion. Usually an ‘Impending’ notice means you must meet with the Associate Dean. If you don’t, you will be fully excluded and the University will cancel your enrolment. Read your letter carefully and book that meeting as soon as you can!

An exclusion means that you are now no longer allowed to study in the specified area. An exclusion period is valid for 12 months. If you have been excluded from a qualification- you are not permitted to carry on with your degree, but could study under another degree if approved by the Associate Dean of the Faculty. If you have been excluded from the University- that means you are not allowed to study at the University.

If you have been excluded from a qualification, you can opt to take a break from your studies, or apply to enrol in another qualification. You must have approval from the Associate Dean in order to continue your studies. Or if you have been impacted by circumstances outside of your control and your semester didn’t go as planned, we get it-life happens! You can also request a review of the decision. This means that you are indicating that the decision to exclude you is the wrong choice because these circumstances prevented you from doing your best work. You must provide evidence to demonstrate how you were impacted.  

Follow the flowchart provided to you in your letter or use the checklist found under ‘Useful Resources’ to help you plan.

If you have been excluded from the University, you have two options.

If you have been impacted by circumstances outside of your control and your semester didn’t quite go as planned, we get it- life happens! You can also request a review of the decision. This means that you are indicating that the decision to exclude you is the wrong choice because these circumstances prevented you from doing your best work. You must provide evidence to demonstrate how you were impacted.

You can take a break from your studies at UC-This might be useful if you wish to develop study skills or stronger foundational knowledge at another educational institute, or if you want to take a break from studying in general and gain some work, life and/or travel experience. You can always re-apply after the exclusion period of 12 months.

Yes, there is an appeal process but it is only available for students who have received restrictions or exclusions, and who have experienced circumstances that have impacted their studies such as illness, bereavement, or any other exceptional situation. If you are just unhappy with the decision, it is unlikely to be overturned.  

The first step is to request a review of the decision. Please fill out the Request for Review form in your letter.  You must provide supporting evidence with your form.

Then, the application will be reviewed by the Associate Dean. If the decision remains unchanged, you will be asked to attend a meeting with the Academic Appeals Committee on a specified date. If you are unable to attend, the Committee will decide in your absence. If the decision is overturned, you will need to follow any requirements provided to you when notified of the decision.

You will be advised of the outcomes and any further right of appeal by the Grievance and Academic Processes Advisors.

Please contact UCSA if you require assistance with your application or would like extra support or advocacy in the meeting- help@ucsa.org.nz

The University has a number of support options and services to help you get back on track. Whether you need pastoral care to help you get through some tough times, or assistance with your academic skills-we got it! The services that are available are funded by the Student Service Levy and are available for all students to access without an extra cost. A list of support services can be found  under ‘Get help’ or on the wellbeing hub- Wellbeing Hub | University of Canterbury

Not sure what you need? If you would like some assistance connecting with any of the support services, please contact UCSA Advocacy & Welfare- help@ucsa.org.nz

Don’t forget, you will not improve if you are not willing to put the time and effort!

It’s ok, University can be tough! If you would like some help with your academic skills, please visit or contact the Academic Skills Centre. They offer seminars, workshops, language support and individual consultations  Academic Skills Centre | Support services | University of Canterbury. No, they can’t do the work for you!

Peer Assisted Learning Sessions (PALS) is offered in ACCT102, STAT101, PSYC105, COSC131, ARTS102, WRIT101, MAOR165, PHYS101, CHEM111, SPCO101, PROD110, AKOT100. You can be paired up with someone who has already taken the course to provide study support. Peer Assisted Learning Sessions (PALS) | University of Canterbury

Discuss your concerns with your lecturer/Course Coordinator/Tutor, they may be able to offer you some suggestions or provide you with some resources to help you with the specific content of the course.

If you have received an advice or warning letter, you can make the change yourself in MyUC within the Change of Enrolment period. If you require assistance with this, please contact 0800 VARSITY (0800 827 748) or enrol@canterbury.ac.nz.  Please refer to the Enrolment and Course Dates to ensure you complete this in the right timeframe- Enrolment & Course dates | University of Canterbury. You may also want to discuss course or programme advice with a Student Advisor before making this change- Student Advisors | University of Canterbury

If you have received an Impending exclusion or have been excluded from your degree, you are required to meet with the Faculty’s Associate Dean of the new qualification. This is mandatory before you are able to study in the new programme. For example, if you are studying towards a BE (Hons) and want to switch into a BSc, you would need to meet with the Associate Dean of the Faculty of Science.  If you do not have this meeting, the University will withdraw you from your courses even if you are fully enrolled or pre-approved.

If you have received a University exclusion, I’m sorry but this option is not available to you.

The exclusion is valid for a period of no less than 12 months. The University would consider allowing you readmission after: At least one year of successful study elsewhere (in another Faculty or at another tertiary institution) or at least one year of successful work experience in relevant employment. You must also provide evidence of your likelihood of success in future university studies.

Applications for readmission to the University need to be made to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic). (please send all applications to academicprogress@canterbury.ac.nz)

For support or advocacy through these processes, students should contact the UCSA Student Advocate, or UC Student Care.

The exclusion is valid for a period of no less than 12 months. The University would consider allowing you readmission after: At least one year of successful study elsewhere (in another Faculty or at another tertiary institution) or at least one year of successful work experience in relevant employment. You must also provide evidence of your likelihood of success in future university studies.

Applications for readmission to a course, subject, award or Faculty shall be made to the Faculty’s Academic Dean, or nominee. (please see contact information below for each Faculty and who to contact to arrange the reapplication process)

For support or advocacy through these processes, students should contact the UCSA Student Advocate, or UC Student Care.

Yes. If you have received an impending exclusion letter, you must meet with the Associate Dean in order to continue studying. Failure to do so will result in the University cancelling your enrolment and withdrawing you from any fully enrolled courses, even if you have been pre-approved.

Want to be prepared for your meeting? The meeting questionnaire can be found under ‘Useful Resources’.

To be honest, that would not be an ideal situation, not only for your own learning and development but could result in more severe consequences. You could have your enrolment cancelled and be withdrawn from your courses. This could impact your Student Visa and StudyLink which could cause even more problems.  If you receive a letter, please consider your options and reach out for help. It is always a good idea to be proactive so that the rest of your studies can go smoothly. If you are able to improve, you may never have to go through this process again!

You can discuss your letter with Student Care, Student Advisors, UCSA Advocacy, Academic Progress Team, Supervisors, Programme Directors who can all assist you moving forward.

An exclusion can have serious consequences for international students.

International students studying in New Zealand must have a student visa/permit which specifies the institution they are studying at and the qualification they are studying. This means that if they change their plan of study they are legally obliged to apply for a new student visa/permit.

International students who have been excluded need to decide whether to study in another qualification at UC (this is not an option if they have been excluded from the University), to study at another tertiary institution, to apply for an alternative temporary permit, or to return to their home country.

Students should visit the StudyLink website to ensure all information is accurate.

Actions taken by the University during the Arotakenga Akoranga | Academic Progress Review may impact on a student’s regular StudyLink payments. This refers to students who have had restrictions placed on the number of points they can take, and students excluded from a college or the University.

In some cases, students with restrictions placed on their study will experience an interruption in their StudyLink payments as their circumstances have changed. These students should check their eligibility for limited full-time study on the StudyLink website and follow the process to apply as soon as possible. There are other factors regarding StudyLink eligibility that are relevant to students affected by the Arotakenga Akoranga | Academic Progress Review.

The StudyLink website advises that a student needs to pass more than half of the courses that they are enrolled in to continue to be eligible for a Student Allowance. The same test is also applied to assess Student Loan eligibility once a student has completed 1.6 EFTS (usually about two years of study).

If you rely on a different type of student loan, you will need to contact your financial provider to discuss your eligibility to continue to receive funds. 

The Academic Progress regulations can be found in the 2023 Maramataka | Calendar or via this link: general-regs-academic-progress.pdf (canterbury.ac.nz)

Some programmes require students to complete a professional element- this could include a professional practice, placement, or practicum. If you are unsuccessful at completing the requirement, you may be up for review of your academic progress. If you are struggling with your professional practice, placement or practicum please discuss your concerns with your Programme Director, Director of Studies, Student Advisor or Student Care if you are experiencing difficult circumstances.

Some programmes require students to meet different academic requirements to successfully complete their programme that differ from other programmes. Some of the progression regulations could include requirements to pass a certain amount of points that are different from the general regulations, or that a course may not be attempted more than twice without permission, instead of three times (please note that these are examples only and not for every qualification). While there are some undergraduate degrees that have different progression regulations, most postgraduate degrees will have different progression requirements. Failure to meet the requirements may result in the review of your academic progress. If you are unsure what your progression regulations are and if you’re meeting them, you can check on the UC-Calendar.pdf (canterbury.ac.nz) under your qualification, or consult with your Faculty’s office, Programme Director or Director of Studies.

Interview Contacts

Students that have received an Impending Exclusion from their qualification or from the University, and students that have received a "Warning - Deans Meeting" letter are required to meet with their relevant Dean prior to the start of the next semester.

Students are required to be proactive in scheduling these appointments and can do so via the following contact details. Please include any times from which you are precluded from meeting due to prior commitments to enable more efficient scheduling.

Faculty of Arts

Please contact the following shared email address artsdegreeadvice@canterbury.ac.nz

Faculty of Education

Vicki Badis, Academic Administrator, vicki.badis@canterbury.ac.nz

Faculty of Engineering

Please contact the following shared email address engdegreeadvice@canterbury.ac.nz

Faculty of Health

Please contact the following shared email address studyhealth@canterbury.ac.nz 

Faculty of Law

Bronwyn Frost, Personal Assistant to the Executive Dean of Law, bronwyn.frost@canterbury.ac.nz 

Faculty of Science

Please contact the following shared email address science@canterbury.ac.nz 

UC Business School

Jane Whiteside, Academic Administrator, UC Business School, jane.whiteside@canterbury.ac.nz

For all enquiries regarding academic progress please contact academicprogress@canterbury.ac.nz