2. Acceptable reasons for an extension

Extensions are not possible for every piece of assessment. 

To determine whether you are eligible to apply for an extension, refer to section 5.3 in the relevant electronic course profile.

If you are eligible for an extension, you must submit an extension request before the assessment item's due date.

Medical grounds

If a medical condition has jeopardised your ability to complete a piece of assessment and submit it on time, you are eligible to apply for an extension.

A medical practitioner must assess your condition and provide a signed medical certificate. You must submit this medical certificate with your extension request.

The doctor must be independent – they cannot be a near relative (e.g. a spouse, partner, child, brother, sister, or parent) or a close associate (e.g. a close friend, neighbour, or partner or child of a colleague).

Acceptable supporting evidence
  • A signed medical certificate from a registered medical practitioner, or a registered nurse.
  • A statement from a counsellor, psychologist or psychiatrist. The statement must confirm how your circumstances have affected your ability to meet the due date for the assessment item.

You must obtain a medical certificate within two business days from the assessment item's due date.

If you obtain a certificate more than two calendar days from the due date, your doctor must explain how the nature of your condition made it impossible, or unsafe, for you to have obtained a medical certificate sooner.

The medical certificate must:

  • be written on official medical centre letterhead,
  • include a provider number and stamp,
  • be free of handwritten amendments,
  • specify relevant dates, and
  • be from a face-to-face appointment.

Extensions cannot exceed the number of days you suffered from a medical condition, as stated on the medical certificate.


Unacceptable supporting evidence
  • Documentation that only states information provided by you.
  • A medical certificate for an elective or non-critical medical appointments (e.g. optical, dental).
  • A medical certificate obtained online.

Students with a chronic medical condition

If you have a disability or a chronic medical condition (including a mental health condition), we encourage you to meet with a Disability Advisor.

Disability Advisors work within Student Services.

They are responsible for evaluating your academic access requirements and for organising appropriate assessment and exam arrangements.

Appointments:

Compassionate grounds

You may be eligible to apply for an extension on compassionate grounds.

Compassionate grounds include:

  • sudden serious illness of a family member,
  • recent death of a family member or close friend,
  • traumatic events or misadventure, or
  • being the victim of a crime.
Acceptable supporting evidence
  • Death certificate or funeral notice. If the relationship between you and the deceased is not immediately clear (e.g. you have different surnames), please also provide a statutory declaration.
  • A police report or a statement from a relevant authority. The report or statement must confirm the occurrence of the trauma, misadventure, crime etc.
  • A statement from a medical practitioner. The statement must include the medical status of the patient, the patient’s relationship to you, and relevant dates. If you are a carer, the medical certificate must state the period that you are required to provide care for the patient.

Unacceptable supporting evidence

The following are not considered grounds for an extension:

  • Tension with or between parents, partners, or other people you are closely involved with.
  • Death or ill health of pets.

Elite sporting commitments

If you are an elite athlete representing Australia – or an Australian state or territory – you may be eligible to apply for an extension.

To apply for consideration, you must hold UQ Elite Athlete status for the current semester. See Programs and Assessments for Elite Athletes for more information.

The extension request must be related to a specific sporting event or activity.

Acceptable supporting evidence
  • A letter written on state, national or international sporting letterhead. The letter must confirm the specific event and dates of the sporting event or activity. The letter must also describe the nature of your sporting commitment (e.g. training, travel etc.) and explain how it affects your ability to submit the assessment item on time.

Unacceptable supporting evidence

The following is not considered grounds for an extension:

  • sporting events that aren't at a state, national or international level, and
  • additional holiday time before or after elite sporting commitments.

Elite performers

If you're working at the highest levels as an artist or performer, you may be eligible to apply for an extension.

You must have a specific and significant commitment to a recognised state, national or international cultural or artistic event. These events might include members of:

  • Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance,
  • Ausdance or Australian Dance Theatre,
  • Australian Chamber Orchestra,
  • State symphony orchestras,
  • Australian Youth Orchestra, or
  • Opera Australia.

This list is not exhaustive. Performers or artists who are working at similarly high levels are eligible to apply.

Acceptable supporting evidence
  • A letter on official letterhead that confirms the dates of the event. The letter must confirm the nature of your commitment to the event and explain why you can't submit the assessment item on time.

Unacceptable supporting evidence

The following is not considered grounds for an extension:

  • amateur or community theatre performances, or local artistic or cultural events, and
  • attending performances or cultural activities.

Unavoidable work commitments

We expect students to tell their employers about their university commitments at the beginning of each semester – employment-related reasons are not usually accepted as exceptional circumstances.

However, we will consider your application if you have been directed to undertake unusual or extraordinary duties that were beyond your control and affected your ability to submit an assessment item on time.

Acceptable supporting evidence
  • A letter on company letterhead from your employer. The letter must confirm the existence of unforeseen and extraordinary work commitments. The letter must detail the date when you were first notified of the unforeseen or extraordinary work commitments, why they were unexpected, and how they affect your ability to submit the assessment item on time.

Unacceptable supporting evidence
  • Emails from a colleague about work are not accepted as supporting evidence.
  • A statement from you without supporting evidence from your employer.

The following are not usually considered grounds for an extension:

  • irregular casual work,
  • increased ordinary work commitments,
  • financial problems,
  • conference attendance,
  • ordinary demands of employment, or
  • increased work or pressures as a consequence of promotion.

Significant family or social commitment

Attending a wedding as a guest is not usually considered an acceptable reason for an extension.

However, if you are an important member of a wedding party (e.g. bridesmaid, groomsman, or equivalent) or if the event is a significant and important family occasion, you may be eligible to apply for an extension.

Acceptable supporting evidence
  • A copy of the wedding invitation must be provided. The evidence must clearly show that you are invited to the wedding and that you are a member of the wedding party.

Unacceptable supporting evidence

The following is not considered grounds for an extension:

  • being invited to attend a wedding as a guest,
  • pre-booked flights to return home,
  • pre-arranged holidays or other travel / accommodation,
  • additional holiday time before or after a wedding, or
  • reasonably anticipated or ordinary family commitments.

Defence forces or emergency services

If you're a reservist member of the defence forces or an emergency services member or volunteer (e.g. SES, Rural Fire Service) and you are required to render any service, including training, you are eligible to apply for an extension.

Acceptable supporting evidence
  • A letter or statement on official letterhead, signed by an authorised officer of the relevant organisation. The letter must detail your role within the service, and the start and finish dates of training or activity.

Jury duty

If you have received a jury summons that clashes with assessment due dates, you are eligible to apply for an extension.

Acceptable supporting evidence
  • A copy of the jury summons. The summons must include the start and finish dates of the jury duty.

Academic commitments

If you have academic commitments directly related to your enrolment and studies at the University – such as a research trip, or an exchange program – and they conflict with the due date for assessment items, you are eligible to apply for an extension.

Applications are considered on a case-by-case basis.

Acceptable supporting evidence
  • A confirmation letter from a relevant staff member. The letter must detail the nature of the academic commitment and how it will benefit your studies.

Unacceptable supporting evidence

The following is not considered grounds for an extension:

  • events of a purely social nature,
  • events of minor benefit.

Unacceptable reasons

The following reasons are not grounds for an extension:

  • computer or internet problems,
  • holiday arrangements (including overseas travel),
  • misreading an assignment due date or time,
  • unexpected events causing the loss of a few hours of study time close to the due date,
  • difficulty studying effectively or adjusting to the demands of university life,
  • normal levels of stress or anxiety associated with study (accommodations can be made for students with a mental health condition),
  • English language difficulties,
  • visa problems,
  • financial problems,
  • moving house or changing address (exceptions may exist when the move is sudden and involuntary),
  • social or leisure events (other than sporting or cultural activities at an elite level),
  • minor events or accidents,
  • ordinary family events or commitments, and
  • normal pressures relating to study or employment.

A tutor, course coordinator or relevant staff member will refuse your extension request if they are not satisfied you took reasonable measures to avoid the circumstances that contributed to your being unable to submit an assessment item on time.