Admissions Appeals Policy

Policy Owner
Document Type
Document Approval Date

Dublin City University (DCU) is committed to fair, transparent and consistent admissions processes in line with DCU’s Admissions Principles.

All applicants to DCU are carefully assessed on the basis of published entry requirements  and entry paths  outlined on the DCU website and in relevant publications. 

Each DCU entry path is linked to a specific assessment and decision making process.  As part of the assessment process, in addition to meeting the published entry requirements, applicants may be asked to:

Clarify information they have provided; submit additional supporting documentation; submit a written piece of work; take part in a formal test/assessment or attend an interview. 

The purpose of this policy is to define the grounds for an appeal against an admission decision; set out how an applicant can appeal an admission decision and outline how the University will assess the appeal.

This policy applies to all candidates who submit an application to Dublin City University to enrol in a programme of study leading to the awarding of credits.

An appeal is a formal request for an admission decision to be reviewed.  An appeal will only be considered where there is adequate grounds as described below:

  1. Procedural irregularity; specific evidence of procedural irregularity in the University applications assessment process;
  1. Specified/stated grounds where the University’s decision was based on misinterpretation of data or information provided as part of the application process.

Appeals may be submitted only by the applicant. Appeals submitted by a third party will not be considered. Where an appeal is deemed to be malicious or vexatious, or where false information is submitted, the appeal will not be considered and appropriate action may be taken.

Submitting an Appeal

If an applicant believes that s/he has grounds for appeal against an admission decision as outlined in the policy statement above s/he should:

i) Submit the appeal in writing (either e-mail or hard copy) within 20 working days of the date of the original decision stating the grounds for the appeal and other relevant information to support the appeal. 

ii) Provide any relevant supporting documentation with the written appeal (submitted either as e-mail attachments or as hard copy).

iii) Send the appeal to the Student Enrolment Manager/Admissions Officer, Registry Dublin City University Dublin 9.

Appeal Assessment

The appeal will be considered impartially and by staff who were not involved in making the original decision. The function of the appeals process is to ensure the rules are applied fairly. The appeals process cannot set aside the rules for applicants who appeal for special treatment.

The Registrar or their nominee will conduct an initial assessment of the appeal to establish if there are sufficient grounds for an appeal.

The membership of the Appeals panel will be decided by the Registrar. The Appeals panel should consist of at least three individuals.  Membership of the Appeals panel may vary but will normally include a senior academic from the relevant faculty and an experienced member of the DCU admissions team. 

i) In the majority of cases the appeal will be assessed on the basis of the written submission alone.

ii) If necessary the applicant may be contacted for further information or to clarify points already raised.

iii) Unless exceptional circumstances arise (e.g. if requested further information/clarification has not been provided by the applicant) the decision relating to the appeal will be communicated to the applicant in writing (either e-mail or hard copy) within 20 working days of the receipt of the appeal.

iv) The decision will be considered final in all cases and there shall be no further opportunities for review or appeal within the University.

Note: If an applicant feels that they have been unfairly treated or are not satisfied with the decision, it is open to applicants to contact the Office of the Ombudsman. By law the Ombudsman can investigate complaints about any administrative actions or procedure, as well as delays or inaction in your dealings with the institution. Further information can be accessed on the website - Office of the Ombudsman.

Please contact the Registry for any queries relating to this policy.  Telephone: 01-7005338 or Email:

This policy will be reviewed every three years by the University Standards Committee/ Academic Council.

Document Name

Admissions Appeals Policy

Unit Owner


Version Reference

Version 1.0

Approved by

Academic Council

Effective Date

February 11th 2020