Students may receive an academic caution because they have failed a number of subjects in a particular semester; or more than half of the subjects that they studied in their first year at university. The idea is to try to catch students and give them some support before it all gets too much and they become overwhelmed. Essentially – it’s early intervention. The University wants to provide as much support as possible, so the Academic Caution is a way of getting your attention so that you can learn about what supports are available to you.
The Academic Caution process will usually involve completing a form, meeting with an Academic Liaison Officer from your Faculty, and attending a few of the support programs provided by HELPS such as organisation, time management or planning, amongst others. Research shows that students who get this support do better as they progress through their course. It’s a good idea to be honest and upfront about what difficulties you experienced during your studies when you meet with an Academic Adviser from Faculty as they are able to provide you with information and recommendations about ways to manage your course that you may not be aware of. For example – if you are an international student struggling to pass a full load of subjects - you may be eligible to reduce your study load until you gain more experience and build your confidence. Or you may be a student with a health condition or carer responsibilities who may be eligible for special consideration or special provisions for assessment work or exams.
It’s also really important NOT TO IGNORE notice that you are under Academic Caution because if you continue to struggle and end up getting a Notice of Exclusion – the Faculty will be aware that you decided not to access the support that they tried to offer you earlier which won’t help your cause when you seek to appeal an Exclusion.
Remember – the Academic Caution process is designed to assist and support you. There are many ways that support can be provided – and talking with an Academic Adviser may make all the difference to your experience as a student. The aim is to help you progress through your studies with a positive outlook, knowing that help and support is available to you when you need it.