Appeals Policy and Process (effective 6 May 2021)
The OET Appeals Policy aims to ensure candidates are able to appeal against decisions made in relation to the OET Re-marking and Complaints policies, and that such appeals are received, reviewed and resolved in a fair and transparent manner.
- OET Appeals Policy and Process
The OET Appeals Policy aims to ensure that candidates and OET Partners are able to appeal decisions made in relation to the OET Re-marking and Complaints policies, and that such appeals are received, reviewed, and resolved in a fair and transparent manner.
The term ‘Appellant’, as used throughout this Policy, refers to OET candidates and OET Partners, including agents, preparation centres, test venues, or Recognising Organisations, that lodge an appeal with OET.
1.1 Appeals Process
The OET appeals process is an escalation point for Appellants who have undergone the OET Re-marking Process or the OET Complaints Process focusing on whether, in the course of reaching decisions relating to the Re-marking Policy or Complaints Policy, OET applied its procedures properly and fairly in arriving at decisions by:
- implementing, where relevant, sufficient investigation of material facts including, for example, invigilator and interlocutor conduct, malpractice, venue staff behaviour, the specific delivery and administration of OET; and/or
- appointing qualified assessors who were not involved in the original marking to re-mark a candidate’s sub-test; and/or
- ensuring the assessor(s) carried out the relevant assessment process in accordance with the marking criteria; and
- ensuring communication with the Appellant in a timely manner.
For re-marking appeals, the appeals process is not concerned with judgments about candidates’ work in the test. An appeal will not involve re-marking or re-assessment of a candidate’s work, although this might be ordered as the result of an appeal if it is found that procedures have not been followed satisfactorily.
Where the outcome of an appeal brings into question the accuracy of grades awarded in an assessment, OET will take all reasonable steps to identify any other candidate who may have been affected and wherever possible correct or mitigate the error.
Where the outcome of an appeal results in the discovery of a failure in one of our processes or systems, the relevant Appeals Committee (Re-marking or Complaints) will review the relevant Process or system and take all reasonable steps to prevent re-occurrence.
OET has a two-stage appeal process:
- Stage 1 – this is the when the Appellant appeals the decision and outcome from either the OET Re-marking Process or Complaints Process
- Stage 2 – this is when the Appellant appeals the Stage 1 appeal decision and outcome from the relevant OET Appeals Committee
- Please refer to the OET Re-marking Policy if you wish to have sub-test results re-marked.
- Please refer to the OET Complaints Policy to submit a complaint.
- Please follow this Appeals Process if you wish to lodge an appeal following the decision from either a re-marking request or complaint.
1.2 Appeal Requirements
1.2.1 Re-marking Appeals
- A fee of AU$120 (OET on Paper) US$95 (OET on Computer) is payable for the submission of each stage of a re-marking appeal: Stage 1 and Stage 2.
- This fee covers the administrative costs related to processing the appeal request.
- Appeal fees will be refunded in full if the Appeal is upheld.
- OET will only consider an appeal about a test result if the re-marking Process has taken place first. For more information, please see OET Re-marking Policy.
- Re-marking charges will be refunded in full if the sub-test grade(s) change because of the Appeal.
- Appeal Requests will only be accepted from candidates personally via the OET Appeal Request Form. Requests made by a relative, friend or colleague will not be accepted.
- Appeal requests must be submitted within 5 calendar days from the date of receiving the re-marking outcome.
1.2.2 Complaint Appeals
- A fee of AU$120 (OET on Paper) US$95 (OET on Computer) is payable for each stage of a complaint appeal: Stage 1 and Stage 2.
- This fee covers the administrative costs related to processing your request.
- Appeal fees will be refunded in full if the Appeal is upheld.
- OET will only consider an appeal about a complaint if the complaint process has taken place first. For more information, please see OET Complaints Policy.
- Appeal requests will only be accepted from candidates personally via the OET Appeal Request Form
- The appeal request is submitted within 5 calendar days from the date of receiving the decision from the OET Complaints Committee that has led to making an appeal.
- Appeal requests will only be accepted from candidates personally.
- A request made by a relative, friend or colleague will not be accepted.
Note: If you take another test (OET or from any other provider) during the appeal, re-marking or complaint processes, OET will not refund any costs incurred in taking the additional test.
1.3 Appeal Management
1.3.1 Stage 1 Appeal
- The written evidence relating to your case will be considered by either the OET Remarking Appeals Committee or OET Complaints Appeals Committee.
- All OET Appeal Committees will have an independent member, who is not involved in the administration or marking of OET.
- The Appeals Committee will review all the written evidence relating to your case, to review and decide whether OET has applied its procedures properly and fairly in reaching its decision.
- It is the role of the OET Appeals Committee to consider whether any further work relating to the original decision should be authorised (e.g. re-marking of additional scripts, gathering of additional evidence). If further work relating to the original decision is authorised, this information will form part of the OET Appeals Committee final recommendation.
- The OET Appeals Committee includes the CEO (or their delegate) of OET and at least one member who is not a member of the OET Board, or an OET employee or assessor. The OET Appeals Committee will make a decision based on the findings, and any further information obtained during the appeal case review.
- You will be notified in writing of the Stage 1 Appeal decision, including the outcome of any further work authorised, within three weeks of your submission of the OET Appeal Request Form.
1.3.2 Stage 2 Appeal
- If you remain dissatisfied after receiving the decision of the OET Appeals Committee at Stage 1 you may request a Stage 2 appeal.
- Upon request by you, your submission will be forwarded to an Independent Reviewer who considers appeals against OET Appeals Committee decisions. An Independent Reviewer is a suitably qualified external consultant with relevant experience.
- You will be notified in writing of the Independent Reviewer’s decision within three weeks of your submission of the OET Appeal Request Form.
- Consideration of an appeal by the Independent Reviewer concludes the OET appeals procedure.
How to lodge a Stage 2 Appeal
You must clearly explain in writing the reason for requesting the Independent Review by completing the OET Appeal Request Form, within 5 days from the date of receiving the decision of the OET Appeals Committee, with AU$120 (OET on Paper) US$95 (OET on Computer) payment in accordance with the payment instructions.
1.4 Appeal Outcomes
- Results processed and published – your results may be processed following standard OET assessment processes. Note that OET is NOT able to increase marks in consideration of any issue affecting candidate performance.
- Resit arranged – you may be offered a free resit if your Appeal is upheld.
- Appeal upheld – you may receive a refund if an Appeal is upheld.
- Reversal of decision – decisions regarding Test administration may change as a result of further investigation.
- Report from investigation – you will receive a report by email outlining the investigation and decision made by the Chair of the Appeal Committees.
- OET continuous improvement – information regarding appeals will be provided to OET teams and used to improve OET processes.