Unhappy with Your Grade? Do’s and Don’ts





Resources to address this issue

You are concerned about your grade on an assignment.

Send your instructor repeated emails asking for them to increase/bump your grade.  

Monitor your grades throughout the semester and communicate with your instructors as soon as concerns about your performance come up. 


Read the course outline first, and then ask questions for clarification to your instructor.

Grades are earned and not given; to successfully pass a course, you must be able to demonstrate what you have learned. Pleading to the instructors to bump up your grades will be unfair to other students who have worked hard and earn their grades.

  1. Talk to an academic advisor to get discuss your course plan and the grades you need to achieve to graduate. Book an appointment here https://www.kpu.ca/international/advising

  2. Explore what the Learning Centre has to offer (workshops, tutoring).  Book an appointment here https://www.kpu.ca/learningcentres/tutoring

  3. Find out when you instructor has scheduled office hours and attend to discuss your progress in the course, obtain feedback on your work and ask questions if you are unsure around how grading works.

You receive a final grade that you do not agree with.

Threaten your instructor to change your final grade


Send your instructor repeated emails to change your final grade.

Request your instructor to meet with you to discuss why you earned the final grade that you received and what can you do in the future to improve your performance. 

Final grades are a reflection of the work that you have done over the semester. It makes sense that you may be upset that you received a lower grade than you expected, but it is unfair for the other students if you ask the instructor to give you a higher grade just because you are unhappy with it. 

  1. If, after consulting with the instructor, you still feel you were graded unfairly in the course, you may apply for a Grade Appeal (refer to policy ST3).

  2. Meet with an Academic Advisor to discuss Academic Standing or the Grade Appeal process.

  3. Meet with the learning strategist in the Library to explore how you can improve your grade in the future and what obstacles may have come your way. 

Your instructor submitted an academic integrity breach against you.

Plead with the instructor to forgive you this one time, and it will never happen again or presenting a difficult life situation as an excuse to why it made you engage in academic integrity violation.

Gather supporting evidence if you feel the Academic Integrity Breach was not justified. Be ready to make your case, using your evidence, before meeting the Dean or Dean's Designate that you are not guilty of the violation.

Academic Integrity Breach is taken seriously at KPU. It is the student’s responsibility to fully understand how to cite, use their own work, and be transparent about any outside sources used in your work. 

 1. Student Academic Integrity Policy – ST2 https://www.kpu.ca/sites/default/files/Policies/ST2%20Student%20Academic%20Integrity%20Policy.pdf

2. Review information on the Academic Integrity webpage. 

3. Take Introduction to Academic Integrity Tutorial https://www.kpu.ca/academicintegrity/introduction-to-academic-integrity

4. Meet with a KPU Student Ambassador to understand what academic integrity means. Email: ai.ambassadors@kpu.ca


You are struggling with your mental health and it is impacting your ability to succeed academically.

Tell your instructor to bump your grade or pass your exam because you are struggling with your mental health.

Let your instructor know that you are struggling with your mental health ahead of time if possible (rather than the day of test), but are seeking appropriate support to address these issues. 

KPU supports you. When you are struggling with your mental health, we want to be able to support you. Letting your instructor know gives them the opportunity to connect you with resources.

  1. Speak to a professional counsellor through one of the following ways (free of charge):

    1. Connect with KPU Counselling Services

    2. Access TELUS Health MyCare

    3. Access Here2Talk

  2. Call the Fraser Health Crisis Line for immediate, free, and confidential emotional support (+1 877-820-7444)

  3. If you are diagnosed with a condition that impacts your mental health, connect with Accessibility Services.

  4. Consult an academic advisor re: withdrawal under extenuating circumstances (review policy ST13).

You are financially stressed out and are having to work extra hours, causing you to miss classes and assignments.

Repeatedly request that the instructor grant extensions on assignments and/or exams.


Tell the instructor to help you out and pass you on the course as you cannot afford to repeat it.

Evaluate your commitments and prioritize them based on urgency and importance. 

Consider talking to a Learning Strategist to find ways to manage your workload effectively.

It is unfair to other students who are managing their academic responsibilities without such extensions. Learning to manage your time effectively is a crucial skill for academic and professional success.

1. Book an appointment with a Learning Strategists to gets tips on time management.

2. Consider reducing your courseload (consult with an Academic Advisor first before dropping/withdrawing any course).

3. Discuss the possibility of taking a Scheduled Break with an Academic Advisor.

4. Apply for KSA Student Food Bank.