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Posthumous Awards and Aegrotat Grades Policy

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Section 1 - Purpose and Context

(1) Posthumous awards can be awarded to students in certain circumstances who have died while studying at the University for a degree. By awarding a posthumous degree, the University acknowledges that but for death, the student would have been expected to satisfactorily complete their studies, and this formal recognition may be of some consolation to the loved ones of the deceased.

(2) Aegrotat grades can be awarded to students in certain circumstances where the student of the University is unable to complete the assessment schedule for a unit in which he/she is enrolled because of permanent disability or incapacity of a catastrophic nature.

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Section 2 - Definitions

(3) Nil.

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Section 3 - Policy Statement

Part A - Posthumous Awards

Coursework Posthumous Awards

(4) Applications for consideration of Posthumous Coursework Award can be made by the executor of the student’s estate, by their immediate family, or by the relevant Dean or Deputy Dean.

(5) Applications should be made to the School Academic Committee, which will consider and decide the award.

(6) The University may award a diploma or degree posthumously if, at the time of the student's death, he/she had successfully completed a minimum of 50% of the credit points for the award, having studied a minimum of one session (summer, quarter or semester) at the University. The percent of successful completion is calculated by dividing the number of credit points achieved, (including the credit points awarded for advanced standing) by the number of credit points still necessary for completing the degree, at the time of death, and expressing this as a percentage. If the student died with "incomplete" grades, these should be completed using usual processes. Any aegrotat grades are not to be included in the calculation.

(7) The Academic Senate and the Senate Assessment Committee must be notified of the award decision and the rationale for it.

Research Higher Degree Posthumous Awards

(8) Applications for consideration of a Research Higher Degree posthumous award can be made by the executor of the student’s estate, by their immediate family, or by the relevant Dean of a School or Director, Research Institute.

(9) Applications should be made to the Research Studies Committee who will consider and decide the award.

(10) The University may award a research higher degree posthumous award if, at the time of the student's death he/she had:

  1. successfully completed the confirmation of candidature; and
  2. undertaken sufficient work in such a form that when reviewed by the supervisor and the Research Studies Committee, the determination is that the student would have successfully completed had the death not occurred.

(11) The Academic Senate and Research Studies Committee must be notified of the award decision and the rationale for it.

(12) If the degree is awarded, the material on which the award was based may be developed and disseminated by the supervisory panel with appropriate attribution and intellectual property rights to the student (or their estate) and the panel which developed it within the requirements of the University Intellectual Property Policy in operation at the time of death. Where the candidate is also of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander descent the Intellectual Property must also be treated in alignment with the AIATSIS policy guidelines.

Testamurs for Posthumous Awards

(13) The testamur will have the name of the award as well as the word "posthumous".

Part B - Aegrotat grades

(14) Aegrotat grades do not apply in the case of student death. The provisions of the Posthumous Awards Policy override aegrotat grades.

(15) Aegrotat grades do not apply if in the view of the School Academic Committee the provisions of the Special Consideration Policy adequately cover the extenuating circumstances.

(16) If a student is unable to complete the assessment schedule for a unit in which he/she is enrolled because of permanent disability or incapacity of a catastrophic nature, but in the opinion of the School Academic Committee would have been able to satisfactorily complete the assessment schedule for the unit, an Aegrotat Pass can be awarded (see Assessment Policy - Criteria and Standards-Based Assessment clauses on "Grading Standards").

(17) The Unit Coordinator may apply for an aegrotat grade to be awarded.

(18) The School Academic Committee considers and decides the aegrotat grade. The Academic Senate and the Senate Assessment Committee must be notified of the grade decision and rationale.

(19) The aegrotat grade policy does not apply to core units in professionally accredited programs. Core units are identified in the course approval documents.

(20) In the event that a student suffers difficult circumstances but does not meet the criteria of permanent disability or catastrophic incapacity required for an aegrotat grade, then the provisions of the Special Consideration Policy will apply.

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Section 4 - Procedures

(21) Nil.

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Section 5 - Guidelines

(22) Refer to the Posthumous Award – School Guide.