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OIA - What a Disappointment

Need advice guys, my complaint outcome was not favourable to me by OIA & need to know my next course of action/advice.

My complaint is related to academic qualification where I have strong case against the university. As such, I wish to pursue further on the complaint.

I have yet to provide my comments to OIA on the complaint outcome.

Any advices?
(edited 9 years ago)
Reply 1
You could take the OIA to court, but don't and don't listen to any solicitor who advises you to go this route.

You're better off to take the university to court via Judicial Review (i.e. where you challenge the fairness/bias/procedures the university used to make it's decision) or a Civil Action (i.e for breach of contract, discrimination, negligence etc.). Either way you need to issue the proceedings in under three months of the date the OIA give the final decision.

The OIA decision will count against you in court, so your comments need to limit the damage. There is a longer thread in this forum with more useful information... search my old posts.

Why exactly did the OIA not uphold your complaint? It's important that you identify good legal grounds on which you can win, which is different to just 'being right' or having a 'strong case'. If you lose the costs are gonna be around 30k upwards.
Reply 2
Hi Deech,

You are right, I should take the university to the court not OIA. I did not know that proceedings to be issued within 3 months of the date OIA give the final decision as well as their comments count against me in the court,thanks for that.

My issue is that Im in dispute of my degree classification, rightfully second lower class but was awarded third class. Reason given is that one my subject was a referred mark which is not counted towards the total class marks.

My contention is that I have email evidence from the university to indicate that it does count towards my degree classification but it seems that both the university & OIA do not buy the evidence. Their argument is that the degree determination was in accordance to the regulations and precedent/practise. The university does acknowledge the ambiguity in their regulation but state that it had clarified it during the appeal process.Well, whats the point , the damage was already done. They should have given me the correct advice when I checked with them before I took my referral paper. I relied on their advice and proceed with the referral paper. But that does seem to be the case here for both the unversity and OIA.

OIA also mentioned that they could not interfere on the decision of the university to count my referral paper. Thats the root cause of my issue, if the referral paper is taken, I m a graduate of lower second class.

So, do you think my contention is valid? Any solicitor that you suggest I could refer the matter? Btw, Im not from UK.
Reply 3
To be honest I wouldn't advise you to take it to court. For now at least, before issuing proceedings you have to follow the "pre-action protocol for Judicial Review", which involves you writing to the university, setting out what your claim is, and asking for a reply. It's basically a way to resolve it before getting to court. You can write them a pre-action letter as it won't cost you anything and might work. But after that I would say don't take it to court.


Read this recent case...

http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Admin/2014/162.html

It was made on similar grounds to yours. A medical student claimed that his marks were calculated incorrectly, and in his case the ambiguity was in the regulations themselves. In the judgement, it referred to bits of the OIA decision (para 32.5) and the judge agreed with it (para 33)

32.5 We do not find it plausible that, if Mr Crawford had been told expressly that the communication element of station 4 of the MOSLER would be double weighted, he would have prepared differently for the exam. If he had prepared selectively for the station, then that would be contrary to the main purpose of the final year assessments which is to test students' skills and knowledge in all areas.
33. Having carefully considered all the evidence and the cogent arguments made by both Mr Crawford and the University, we have concluded that Mr Crawford was not disadvantaged by the ambiguity in the wording of the Handbook.


So what that means for you is, even if you make good your case that the university told you the exam counted, the fact of whether it does or does not count is an "academic judgement" which the OIA/court can't intefere with. If the university don't want to count the grade, no court anywhere can make them count it. So your claim essentially has to concede that the exam doesn't count, but that you were disadvantaged by the misinformation about it. Now re-read the above court judgement.... it is hard to say you suffered due to it, because the judge will ask what would you do otherwise? Would you have put more effort into other modules? That isn't an impressive case. I guess it comes down to are you willing to let it go?
(edited 9 years ago)
Original post by deech
You could take the OIA to court, but don't and don't listen to any solicitor who advises you to go this route.

You're better off to take the university to court via Judicial Review (i.e. where you challenge the fairness/bias/procedures the university used to make it's decision) or a Civil Action (i.e for breach of contract, discrimination, negligence etc.). Either way you need to issue the proceedings in under three months of the date the OIA give the final decision.

The OIA decision will count against you in court, so your comments need to limit the damage. There is a longer thread in this forum with more useful information... search my old posts.

Why exactly did the OIA not uphold your complaint? It's important that you identify good legal grounds on which you can win, which is different to just 'being right' or having a 'strong case'. If you lose the costs are gonna be around 30k upwards.


Students just do not stand a chance seems all organisations with all their people who know more than students always win dont they.
Original post by Lifethroughalens
Students just do not stand a chance seems all organisations with all their people who know more than students always win dont they.

Please check the date before posting - this litigious student posted this 7 years ago, and is now doing the snacks in WH Smith.

, could we close this? :ta:
Original post by Reality Check
Please check the date before posting - this litigious student posted this 7 years ago, and is now doing the snacks in WH Smith.

@ecolier, could we close this? :ta:

Did they win the case lol?
Original post by CatInTheCorner
Did they win the case lol?

I'd say almost certainly not. :smile:
Original post by Reality Check
Please check the date before posting - this litigious student posted this 7 years ago, and is now doing the snacks in WH Smith.

:biggrin: :biggrin: :biggrin:

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