Process for Graduate Admissions Appeals
Appeals of graduate admissions decisions at Kennesaw State University are made to the Dean of The Graduate College. KSU Graduate Catalog, “Graduate Admissions.” This memorandum details the process such appeals will follow.
1. Notice to applicants. Applicants will be apprised of their ability to appeal admissions decisions through postings on the University’s Office of Graduate Admissions and The Graduate College’s websites, as well as contemporaneously with admissions decisions.
a. Website Posting. The Office of Graduate Admissions website will prominently feature a link regarding admissions appeals, which will link to an explanation of the appeals process. This will also be included on The Graduate College’s website under web resources for graduate students.
b. Notification of Admissions Decisions. Contemporaneously with notifications of admissions decisions, applicants will be informed of their ability to appeal those decisions and directed to the University’s web resources detailing the appeals process.
2. The Appeal.
a. Basis for appeal. Appeals of admissions decisions may follow different processes based on the grounds of the appeal.
i. Discrimination. If the applicant believes her or his admissions decision is impermissibly based upon the applicant’s real or perceived gender identity, sexual orientation, veteran status, spiritual beliefs, physical abilities, racial and ethnic background, and economic status, the applicant may directly contact the University’s Office of Diversity & Inclusion at 470-578-2614.
ii. Other basis. If the applicant wishes to appeal his or her admissions decision based on other factors, the applicant needs to submit a written appeal to the Dean of The Graduate College.
b. Written Appeal. Within fourteen (14) days of the mailing date of the admissions decision, the applicant may file an appeal. The appeal should, at a minimum, contain the following:
i. An explanation of the admissions decision;
ii. An explanation of why the applicant believes the decision was incorrect;
iii. Identification of any evidence the applicant believes supports her or his position. The applicant may be asked to provide this information to permit The Graduate College to process his or her appeal;
iv. Any other information the applicant believes is relevant to her or his appeal.
Effective appeals will typically involve information the applicant may not have provided in his or her original application, but which might have influenced the University’s decision regarding her or his application.
For example, following notification of an unsuccessful application, an applicant for the Master of Science in Criminal Justice might speak to a professor regarding his or her application. During that conversation, the applicant notes her or his five (5) years of successful service as a law enforcement officer. The professor notes this was not included in the original application and states the program faculty might believe it relevant to their consideration of the application. The professor then suggests the applicant file an appeal, providing specific evidence of his or her successful law enforcement record and an explanation of why the applicant believes it contributes to his or her strength as a graduate student in that discipline.
Please note The Graduate College is unlikely to be influenced by arguments in which the applicant is challenging the judgment of a program’s faculty regarding particular aspects of the program’s application. This is particularly true regarding the faculty’s assessment of an applicant’s undergraduate grade point average or his or her scores on an admissions examination required by the program (e.g., GRE, MAT) or the weight to give such items in the faculty’s evaluation of the applicant.
c. Submission of Appeal. The appeal may be submitted electronically or in writing to The Graduate College. It should be submitted to:
Assistant Dean for Graduate Students
The Graduate College
Kennesaw Hall 3423 MD 0112
585 Cobb Avenue
Kennesaw, Georgia 30144
The Graduate College will acknowledge receipt of the appeal electronically or through US Mail.
3. Review Process. Upon receipt of the appeal, The Graduate College will identify an appropriate process for reviewing the appeal. This process may vary based upon the grounds of the appeal (such as a need to solicit input from the graduate program faculty).
After identifying and receiving information and evidence relevant to the appeal, The Graduate College will empanel a group of at least three (3) members of the University’s Graduate Faculty to review the appeal. The Graduate Faculty members will make a recommendation regarding the appeal to the Dean of The Graduate College.
4. Decision. In the absence of exceptional circumstances, within fourteen (14) of the receipt of the appeal, the Dean of The Graduate College will issue a decision regarding the appeal. It will be communicated to the applicant through U.S. or electronic mail.
Appeal of The Graduate College’s Decision. Within fourteen (14) days of the mailing date of the Dean’s decision, the applicant may appeal The Graduate College’s determination by sending a written appeal to the Provost of Kennesaw State University.