Extenuating Circumstances

The Extenuating Circumstances procedure is there to support you if there are short-term circumstances (problems) with your health or personal life, which have been serious and significant enough to have prevented you from attending, completing or submitting an assessment on time.

  Did you know?

If the circumstances extend more than 20 working days, the guidelines suggest that the circumstances are "long-term" and that you should consider Suspension of Studies.


You cannot submit an ECF for Deferred First Attempt Assessments or Second Attempt Assessments.

  "Fit to Sit"

If you attend an exam or submit an assignment on time, you have declared yourself "Fit to Sit" and Extenuating Circumstances will not be accepted.

The Process

To request support through the Extenuating Circumstances procedure you will need:

  1. An Extenuating Circumstances Form (ECF)
  2. A Statement of Case explaining your circumstances
  3. Evidence as required

If there is more than one circumstance you will need to complete an ECF for each. If your circumstances are confidential you should contact your Head of Department.

An ECF must be submitted within 20 working days of the original submission date for coursework type assessments or by the final date of the Consolidation and Assessment period for Exam type assessments. You will be informed within 10 working days of whether your ECF has been found valid or invalid.

You can apply for an ECF online.

Possible outcomes if your ECF is found valid may be to have a second attempt assessment, or have the late submission penalty lifted, if the work is submitted within 20 working days of the deadline.

How the Union Advice Service can help

We can…

  • guide you through the Extenuating Circumstances Procedures

  • help with identifying and accessing additional support that may assist you with the circumstances affecting you

  • help you develop your Statement of Case

  • assist you with an Appeal if you are dissatisfied with the outcome from the Extenuating Circumstances submission

For support with the Extenuating Circumstances Procedure please submit a support request form and we can arrange an appointment to go through it in more detail.

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