Student and PHD student ombudsperson
If you as a student or PHD student encounter problems in your education, please feel free to contact us. It could be that you have had a conflict with the university, want support in disciplinary matters or if you feel you have been treated unfairly or incorrectly during your studies.
What can we help you with?
We can be a neutral and independent body between you as a student / PHD student and Uppsala University in a possible conflict.
We can help you understand your own rights and responsibilities as a student or PHD student.
Student and PhD Student Ombudsperson can look into whether Uppsala University is following the rules in handling your cases and that your rights are protected.
Assist with complaints and pursue them towards the University.
What can 't we help you with?
We cannot decide on the matter. We can give you advice and help you make your case, but we cannot influence decisions.
Represent you against Uppsala University when they have complied with laws, rules and guidelines.
Instruct or be instructed by units or decision-making bodies at Uppsala University.
To be an appeal body for matters already dealt with by other units or decision-making bodies at Uppsala University.
Representatives receive requests via contact form. If you wish to make an appointment or telephone call with the representatives, please fill in the form. Do not forget to include your telephone number. All students and doctoral students at Uppsala University are welcome to contact the ombudsmen, regardless of any student union membership.
Frequently asked questions for undergraduate and postgraduate students
What is the easiest way to find out what is specific to the course I am taking?
Read the syllabus! It contains things that you as a student should know, such as course objectives, how you will be examined and how your performance will be assessed. The syllabus is binding according to the Higher Education Ordinance, what it says cannot be changed during the course. Reading the syllabus is an excellent way to know your rights.
My course starts in two weeks and I still haven't received either the schedule or the reading list. Is this really okay?
No, it's not okay! An outline of all the examinations and compulsory teaching must be available at least five weeks before the start of the semester. A list of the main literature must also be available at that time. A final schedule must be communicated at least one week before the start of the course.
Now I have waited three weeks to have my exam corrected, and there is not much time left until the re-examination. How long will I have to wait?
Unless there are special reasons, a student has the right to have an exam or other examination corrected and graded after a maximum of 25 calendar days. This must be done at least 14 days before the re-examination.
Help! They say at my institution that my exam has disappeared. What is the case?
If an exam is lost, misplaced or similar and the university is responsible for this, students in this situation must be given the opportunity to write a new exam as soon as possible. Please contact the teacher in charge of the course and ask what applies.
I was admitted to a course but forgot to accept it on antagning.se. Now I have been withdrawn from the course and have to make a late application, which most likely means that I will not be admitted to the course. Is there anything I can do? If I had accepted in time I would have been accepted...
Application and response of admission to courses within the prescribed time is the responsibility of the student. Unfortunately, this means that you cannot claim a place on the course on the grounds that you would have been admitted if you had not forgotten to accept the place. Therefore, you should first and foremost make a late application for the course via admissions.se if this is possible. Another way to try to resolve your situation is to contact the institution offering the course you want to study, after you have made a late application, to explain your situation. For example, you can contact the course director or the study counsellor. Often they have a system of reserve admissions which takes place after the start of the course when they know how many students will be taking the course. They can give you better information about your chances of being accepted as a reserve.
I receive student grants from CSN for full-time studies. What happens if I fail to pass all the courses this semester, will the money be reclaimed?
As long as you actually study to the extent that you have indicated in your application, i.e. do not deregister from the course and complete all the compulsory modules, you will not receive a refund for not passing the course. However, you will not be able to receive any more funding until you have passed at least 75% of the marks in the courses for which you have applied for funding, or 62.5% if you are taking your first or second semester.
How will my student grant be affected if I become ill?
When you fall ill, you can keep your student grant. You must report your illness to the Social Insurance Agency on the first day of illness, and after the eighth day a medical certificate is required. For 30 days, your student grant will be paid as usual, but without any credit requirements. From day 31 onwards, the repayment requirement disappears. Do not deregister from the course you are planning to take or have started. If you deregister, you will no longer be considered a student and you will no longer be eligible for CSN student grants while you are ill. Whether you are sick or not, you will not be able to receive any benefit during the summer.
I have been rejected by CSN because I have not taken enough credits in the previous semester. Therefore, I need to apply for a waiver to continue my student loans. What should I write in my appeal to CSN?
In order for you to be exempted, there must have been special reasons why you were unable to take the credits for which you were awarded a student grant. Examples of special reasons are that you or a close relative has been ill or a close relative has died, that you have a disability which means that your studies take longer or that you have had difficulty completing your studies because of serious shortcomings at school. It is a good idea to attach documentation to your application for exemption to prove the special reasons you are citing. Dropping out of education because you got a job is not typically a special reason for waiving the credit requirement.
I understand that the rules on cheating and plagiarism are strict at the university, what happens if I am reported for cheating?
A student who is caught using unauthorised aids or otherwise attempting to mislead during an examination may be reported for suspected cheating or plagiarism. The report is usually written by the director of studies of the student's department and then sent to the Disciplinary Board at Uppsala University.
As a student, you have the right to write a statement to the Disciplinary Board, and to make a further statement at the Board's meeting. The Board can acquit or convict. Either a warning is given, which means that you can continue studying as usual. However, you will most likely have to retake the exam. The other action that can be taken is suspension. This means that you will not be allowed to take part in any teaching, examinations or other educational activities at the College for a certain period of time. The most common length of suspension is between 2-6 weeks but can be up to a maximum of 6 months.
A suspension also means that the institution notifies the CSN of the period of suspension, as during the suspension the student is not counted as a student and is therefore not entitled to receive student financial assistance. However, it is up to the CSN how they choose to act, the university is only obliged to inform about the suspension. A suspension decision by the Disciplinary Board usually takes effect immediately. It is possible to appeal the Board's decision to the Administrative Court if the student considers it to be incorrect.
If you are reported for suspected cheating or plagiarism, you are welcome to contact the Student and Doctoral Ombudsmen who can provide help and advice in writing your statement and, if time permits, accompany you to the Disciplinary Board meeting.
I have failed an exam in a course twice. I have always written it in a room. I wonder if I can request a different form of examination?
If you have failed two examinations, you have the right to have another examiner appointed. If there are special reasons for not being able to offer another examiner, you have the right to another form of examination.
What can I do if I think I got the wrong grade in an exam?
You cannot appeal against a grade, but you can request a review. A re-examination takes place if new circumstances have arisen or if the grade is clearly incorrect. A re-examination can never lead to the grade being lowered. If, after the re-examination, you still feel that the examination was not carried out correctly, you can appeal to the university's grading officers. They can make recommendations to the examiner if they feel that something in the examination process went wrong, but it is still the examiner who ultimately decides the grade.
I've heard that you can only rewrite an exam five times to pass, is that really true?
Well, there is no upper limit to how many times you can rewrite your exam. However, the number of times you have to take an exam to pass must not be limited to less than five. This is regulated in the Higher Education Ordinance. You are therefore entitled to a minimum of five exams in order to pass.
I have previously taken a course that I didn't quite finish. I attended all the required seminars but did not hand in the memo and did not write the exam. Now when I want to finish the course, the department says I have to apply and re-register for the course. Is this true?
No, if all you have left in the course are non-teaching examinations, including exams and assignments, you do not need to re-register for the course. What you need to do is to check the exam or assignment date and then do the exam parts. Please note that you may need to give advance notice that you intend to write an exam or submit a writing assignment.
The exam for one course was a home exam. For the re-examination, the examiner wants to change the form of the examination to an oral examination. Can he do this? Don't I have the right to request the same form of examination?
There is no general rule that says you can't change the form of examination. However, if the syllabus says something about the form of the examination, this should also apply to the re-examination. An omtenta may never be more difficult or easier than the regular exam.
I have a very bad relationship with my thesis advisor and I feel that she is not helpful in my thesis writing. Do I have the right to change my supervisor?
If there are special reasons, a student should be given the opportunity to change supervisors during the degree project. The change must be requested from the department.
I didn't finish my essay on time, do I have the right to get help from my tutor even after the course is actually over?
There is no absolute right to continue tutoring after the course has ended. However, tutors sometimes help students who are late, whether or not there is a formal right to do so. All departments and courses should have rules on what constitutes tutoring. Contact your department and ask to see the rules that apply there.
I have been given an internship far from Uppsala that I will have difficulty completing because I have an illness and have to see a doctor for treatment several times a month, do I have the right to change my internship?
Most courses that include a traineeship have rules that allow those with medical or other special reasons to have a traineeship that allows the traineeship to run as smoothly as possible. The important thing is to get in touch in good time and clearly state the reasons why you are entitled to a particular traineeship. If you suddenly fall ill or have an accident during your traineeship and are unable to complete it, you have the right to do the traineeship at a later date.
My internship has been located very far from Uppsala. I therefore have quite high travel expenses, what are the rules for getting reimbursed for them?
If the internship is unpaid and compulsory in the curriculum, you as a student should not pay more than 25% of the additional costs resulting from it. The department must therefore contribute 75% of the travel costs. However, this presupposes that you choose the cheapest possible travel option.
I have literacy problems and find it difficult to keep up with my classes and exams? Is there any help available?
Yes, there is! The Discrimination Act states that higher education institutions must, within the framework of their activities, actively promote equal rights for students and applicants regardless of, for example, disability. If your literacy difficulties are of a permanent nature, this counts as a disability within the meaning of the Discrimination Act, which gives you a right to the educational and other support measures necessary to make teaching accessible to you. One suggestion is to get in touch with your department's study counsellor or the university's coordinator for students with disabilities to talk about the barriers you face in your study environment and what can be done about them. When meeting with the coordinators, you will be required to bring some form of documentation of your disability.
I tripped on the stairs in the lecture hall, broke my leg and got scalding hot coffee all over me. Is there any insurance for students?
Yes, according to the Higher Education Ordinance, a higher education institution must ensure that you, as a student, are insured for personal injury when the injury has occurred as a result of an accident in connection with higher education in Sweden. You have personal injury insurance through Kammarkollegiet during school hours and to and from university.
The last few months have been really tough. No matter how much I study, I never feel satisfied with myself. I feel constantly stressed and it has started to negatively affect my studies. I don't really know who to talk to about this...
If you need support in dealing with your institution to explain your situation and, if possible, to find an individual solution that will help you in your studies, please contact your local student advisor or the student ombudsman for assistance. It may also be helpful to talk to someone about the stress and performance anxiety you are experiencing in your studies. The Student Health Service has doctors, psychologists and counsellors who all specialise in study-related issues. During their regular opening hours, you can call the reception on 018-471 69 10 to make an appointment.
I am a single parent and will start studying in the autumn. I'm wondering how I can combine parenthood with studying. Is there anything in particular I should think about? What are my rights?
Uppsala University has a parental policy that states that working and study conditions should be such that parents can take full responsibility for home and children without this interfering with their studies. Departments should make it as easy as possible for students who have children by having good scheduling procedures, so that you as a student can plan the form and time of childcare in good time. To some extent, more individualised arrangements should also be offered, for example when you need to stay at home temporarily to care for a sick child. It may also be useful to contact the institution where you plan to study to discuss your particular situation.
My examiner was very rude during the opposition of my essay. Is that really allowed?
Of course, a teacher should behave properly and not be rude. The invigilators or counsellors can help you to talk to the examiner and his/her superiors so that you get an apology and so that it does not happen again.
The course I'm studying has scheduled compulsory classes between 8am and 5pm on most weekdays, which feels rather cumbersome. How much of the teaching can be compulsory in a course?
There are no rules on how much of the teaching can be compulsory. However, the syllabus must state what is compulsory in a particular course. The total number of hours of full-time study should not exceed 40 hours per week, including both teaching and independent study. If the pace of study is less than full-time for the course you are studying (i.e. third or part-time), the number of hours of study per week will be fewer. The best advice here is to try to have a dialogue with the teachers about what will be a reasonable arrangement. There should always be a reason and a justification for why a particular module is compulsory.
We have a course to be examined on a Saturday. Is that allowed? I am under the impression that a regular exam cannot be on a Saturday, or am I completely wrong?
The existing rule states that teaching and exams should be scheduled on weekdays between 08.00 and 17.00 unless there are special reasons, or it has been specified in the syllabus that teaching is at other times, for example evening courses. In the first instance, you should contact the course coordinator for your course, and if your concerns are not heard, you can contact the invigilator for your department.
Transfer of credits
Where do I turn if I want to transfer a course that I have taken before and that is part of a programme, but now I am refused to transfer it when I start the programme?
Talking to the counsellors is always a good start. Other people who can be contacted in this matter are the programme director and the director of studies. Decisions on credit transfer can also be appealed to the Higher Education Appeals Board.
Last updated: 2022-11-17