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Student Academic Rights Advisor

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O108 (NAITSA Office)

Empowering students through academic challenges

The NAITSA Student Academic Rights Advisor offers free, confidential, non-partisan support to students seeking guidance regarding their academic challenges.

We promote fairness to ensure students understand their rights and responsibilities as members of NAIT’s community.

We are well-versed in NAIT’s policies, procedures, and regulations, and are available to meet with students experiencing barriers related to their academic rights and responsibilities.

Quick Links:

From Issues to Solutions:
How We Assist NAIT Students

We will

 Listen to understand the student’s issue and provide guidance, support, and/or options;

 Promote fairness and empower students to make informed decisions about their academic concerns;

 Identify and explain relevant NAIT policies, procedures, or practices;

 Refer students to other NAIT departments, services, or community resources as necessary;

 Attend review meetings and/or hearings with the student at their request as a neutral party;

 Assist the student with conflict resolution, including facilitating discussions and using informal channels to seek resolution;

 Give sound, practical advice.

We won’t

 Speak directly for students;

 Disclose confidential information unless given permission;

 Provide legal advice or counselling services;

 Compel actions or force decisions to be reversed;

 Receive complaints unrelated to NAIT;

 Find loopholes or breach policies.

We can assist with

  Academic issues;

  Appeals and reviews;

  Communication strategies;

  Interpersonal concerns;

  Misconduct issues;

  Policies and procedures.

SARA x VPA Differences

Student Academic Rights Advisor (SARA)

 First point of contact at NAITSA for students with academic concerns.

 Upon the student’s request, attends meetings as emotional support and silent note-taker with them and NAIT staff.

 Meets daily with students to guide them through their rights and responsibilities, and conflict resolution on academic issues.

 Meets regularly with VPA to bring current student concerns to their attention so they can advocate to NAIT for changes.

NAITSA Vice president academic (VPA)

 Student representative that advocates to NAIT executives on behalf of the students.

 Can help students find tutors on the Nimbus platform.

 Member of several committees including the Academic Council to bring students’ voices to the table when NAIT is making decisions that will directly affect them.

 Meets regularly with SARA to understand current student concerns and advocate for changes.



How do I refer a student to speak to the Student Academic Rights Advisor?

Students may be referred to the Advisor via email, phone, website, booking system, or in person at the NAITSA office. Staff and faculty are welcome to speak with the Advisor generally about a student, but they won’t be able to share information without the express consent of the student.

A student has requested the Student Academic Rights Advisor to attend a meeting with them. What is the purpose of this?
The Advisor is available to attend meetings as support for students when the student requests. They are silent note-takers in the meeting and typically meet with the student before or after to ensure the student understands the nature of the meeting or what was discussed. While the Advisor is there to support the student emotionally, they are there to ensure that policy is being followed and that students have an opportunity to provide their perspectives.
What is the Student Academic Rights Advisor office’s relationship with NAIT?
The Advisor’s office is fully funded by NAITSA and has a strong, mutually collaborative relationship with NAIT, which allows them to provide effective support to all students using a non-confrontational approach rooted in fairness, transparency, and accountability.


If I tell something to the Student Academic Rights Advisor, will there be consequences?

The Student Academic Rights Advisor is a confidential and supportive resource. They will not share the details of your situation with anyone without your expressed permission unless there’s an indication of an intention to harm others.

How much does it cost for the Student Academic Rights Advisor to support my case?

Consultation, advice, and/or ongoing support from the Advisor is a service that NAITSA provides to all its members at no extra cost.

I believe I have been graded unfairly. What should I do to get my exam/assignment reassessed?
  • AD 2.5 Academic Progression Appeals Procedure, section 3.2.
  • Grade Reappraisal Form
  • You can appeal the grade of a specific assignment or your final course grade. The first step is to follow the Informal Appeal process and contact your instructor. Suppose you’re not satisfied with the instructor’s answer or they don’t respond to you. In that case, you can forward your informal appeal to your chair/program leader within seven (7) business days from the date the final grade of your course was posted. If you are in the business school, the appeal should be forwarded to the Business Information Centre (BIC). The program leader (or BIC) has five (5) business days to provide you with a written response to your informal appeal request.
  • If you’re dissatisfied with the response received, you can initiate the Formal Appeal process by submitting the Grade Reappraisal Form and supporting documents to the Office of the Registrar within three (3) business days of receiving the program leader’s written response.
  • You should remember that, if the appeal package is accepted, the revised grade is final regardless if it is higher, lower, or equal to the original grade.
What should I do if I am experiencing discrimination or having conflicts with an instructor/classmate?

All NAIT students have the right to an inclusive learning environment that is free from discrimination and harassment, and that protects the students’ safety and sense of dignity.

I have been unfairly/wrongfully suspended from my program. How can I appeal that decision?
I am having difficulty understanding the content of my course. Is there a tutoring service available to help me?

NAITSA is proud to partner with Nimbus Learning to bring NAIT students the opportunity to find (and become) tutors in the courses they need help with! If you can’t find a tutor for the course you need support with on the Nimbus app, you can go to and fill out the tutor request form – our VP Academic will receive the request and search for a tutor to support you in your studies! If you need extra support, don’t hesitate to reach out to us – we will be happy to help you find the resources you need!

How long after I hand in my assignment/complete my exam will my grade be available?
  • IP 1.3 Assessment Procedure
  • According to NAIT’s Assessment Procedure, sub-section 3.4.1, “summative assessment feedback, which may or may not include grades, is provided in a timely manner, within five (5) business days, to allow students to use that feedback to inform where they should concentrate their learning.” Some assessments may require a longer period of time for feedback based on their nature, and it should be indicated on the course syllabus if that is the case.
  • Students should have received grades back in the LMS (Moodle) on at least 30% of the course weight prior to the course withdrawal date.
I want to withdraw from a course without receiving an F (fail) on my transcript. What is the deadline for that?
  • AD 2.7 Cancellation and Withdrawal Procedure
  • Credit courses (certificate, diploma, or degree) and Academic Upgrading:
    • To view the following deadlines for each of your courses, go to your MyNAIT Student Portal > Open Self-Service > Manage Classes > View My Classes > Enrolment Deadlines.
    • Withdrawal before 12% completion of the course: no grade will be shown on your official transcript, and your GPA won’t be impacted. Withdraw can be made through the student portal.
    • Withdrawal after 12% but before 75% completion of the course: a W (withdrawn) will be shown on your official transcript, and your GPA won’t be impacted. The withdrawal form must be completed and submitted to Program Leader.
    • Withdrawal after 75% completion of the course: a WF grade will be assigned, which has a grade point of zero (0), and it will impact your GPA. The withdrawal form must be completed and submitted to Program Leader.
  • Apprenticeship courses:
    • You can drop your course through the MyTradeSecrets portal before your first day of classes.
    • If you want to withdraw from a course after the first day of classes, you need to contact your program chair.
  • Non-credit courses (e.g. Continuing Education and ESL):
    • Withdraw before the first day of classes: course won’t be shown on your official transcript.
    • Withdraw on or after the first day of classes: a W will be shown on your official transcript.
  • For refund information, please visit NAIT’s Refunds website.
  • Compassionate withdrawal: if extraordinary circumstances beyond your control (e.g. incapacitating illness, death in the immediate family, or caring for an immediate family member with a critical illness) prevent you from following the drop or withdrawal timelines, you can submit a Compassionate Withdrawal Form to request a withdrawal without academic penalty and a pro-rated refund.
I am experiencing learning barriers in the classroom. Can I get accommodations to support my learning?

NAIT’s Learning Advisors can support you with staying on top of your studies, achieving grades to a higher standard, overcoming barriers in the learning environment, and accessing disability services. You can book an appointment with them to talk about your accommodation needs here, by emailing them at, or stopping by room E105 at the main campus during their drop-in sessions.

Can my parents or other supporting persons contact the SARA on my behalf?
The SARA is a confidential service focused on supporting students directly and, according to FOIP regulations, cannot discuss their concerns with anyone else other than the student without their direct consent. We encourage all students to contact the SARA themselves so their questions and concerns can be addressed in a more timely manner.

If a support person contacts the SARA on the student’s behalf without their approval, we will only be able to discuss general matters without specifics regarding the student’s case.