Your academic progress

What is academic progress?

'Academic progress' is about you and La Trobe working together so that you can do well in your studies and complete your course smoothly.

We want you to succeed, and we know that your studies can be impacted by many things. You may find one of your subjects especially hard, or you may have personal issues that make it hard to study effectively.

Many students have difficulties - you're not alone.

Throughout your course, we check how you're going and provide support; you do what's required for your course and seek help when you need it.

What we do

One way for us to check whether all is well is to monitor your final marks and grades. We do this every six months for coursework students.

We assess your progress as satisfactory or unsatisfactory, depending on how many subjects you passed or failed during that six-month period ('progression period') and how long you're taking to complete your course.

Regardless of what's happening in your life, support is available to you. Make sure you tap into it as soon as you know you're struggling. Don't let things get worse - even if you ignore it, we won't.

If your progress is satisfactory

If your progress is deemed satisfactory, and you have no fails for the progression period, you'll simply continue with your course, or be invited to graduate if you've finished. You won't receive a letter saying that your progress is satisfactory.

If your progress is satisfactory, but you've failed a subject

If your progress is deemed satisfactory but you've failed less than 50% of your credit points, we'll send you a courtesy email or letter (the 'Unit fail' letter). This gives you information that will help you do better in the next period.

What is unsatisfactory progress?

Your College will consider your progress unsatisfactory if you do any of the following:

  • fail, for the first time, any workplace-based subject listed in Schedule A of the Academic Progress Review Procedures
  • fail 50% or more of your credit points
  • fail a subject more than once
  • fail to meet any conditions previously imposed on your enrolment
  • exceed the maximum allowed period for attempting a course (normally twice the number of years required to complete the course on a normal full-time basis, plus one year).

If your progress is unsatisfactory

If your progress is deemed unsatisfactory, we'll undertake a series of escalating interventions. It is our hope that these will help you manage your studies so that you can continue in your course. However, in some circumstances, you may be excluded from your course.

'Unit fail' letterThis will encourage you to seek academic or personal support from appropriate services. It will also tell you how to access these services.
'At risk' letterThis will require you to meet with your course/discipline coordinator. At the meeting, you'll review your course plan and discuss options to get your progress back on track.
Unsatisfactory Progress CommitteeIf your academic progress doesn't improve you may be asked to meet with the Unsatisfactory Progress Committee (UPC). The UPC is made up of an Academic Progress Officer, senior College staff, and Student Administration staff. The UPC will discuss your progress with you, then decide on a course of action.

Before meeting with the UPC we ask that you fill out the UPC submission form. The form will provide the committee with information about any problems or difficulties you have experienced during your studies.

Talk to us and try not to panic

If you're subject to any academic progress intervention, it's very important that you engage with us. Tell your College about any issues or concerns affecting your studies. Use the many available support services. Do everything you can to give yourself the best possible chance of success, rather than dropping out without giving things a good go.

We'll certainly do everything we can to assist.

Appeals and reviews

Seeking appeals and reviews

If your College imposes a condition on your enrolment, asks you to attend an Unsatisfactory Progress Committee meeting, or excludes you from your course, they will tell you about your options for appeal or review.


If your College imposes a condition on your enrolment or excludes you from your course, the letter will indicate if you're entitled to appeal the decision. You must lodge your Student Appeal Application within 10 working days from the date of the letter.

Complaints and reviews

If you have a complaint about how your case was handled, the Student Complaints Office can explain what actions you can take. These might include:

  1. firstly, asking the University Ombudsman to review the processes the University followed, to make sure they were correct
  2. if internal reviews are unsuccessful, asking the Victorian Ombudsman to review the processes the University used and determine whether they were reasonable or unreasonable.

Deadlines for international students

If your College decides to exclude you, La Trobe must report to the Department of Home Affairs that you haven't met the academic progress requirements for your course.

The Department may cancel your student visa.

If you:

  • choose not to appeal, we'll lodge the report 20 working days after the date of the exclusion letter from your College
  • choose to appeal, and if your appeal is unsuccessful, we'll lodge the report 20 working days after the date of the letter informing you that your appeal was unsuccessful.

The 20 working days gives you time to lodge a complaint or ask for a review.

If you wish to lodge a complaint or request a review, you MUST do so within the 20 working days allowed.

If you:

  • aren't entitled to appeal, or
  • choose not to appeal, or
  • choose not to lodge a complaint

we'll lodge the report 20 working days from the date of the letter from your College.

What to do
If you receive:

  • a letter placing conditions on your enrolment
  • a 'Unit fail' letter
  • a request to attend an Unsatisfactory Progress Committee meeting

Please contact La Trobe International for support and assistance.

Need more help?

Support available to you

If we've advised you your progress is inadequate, you have a number of sources of help. Make sure you use everything that's available to you.

Student advocates

Student advocates are independent of the University and provide a free, confidential and unbiased service. They can help you gather evidence, apply for an appeal or a review and come to hearings with you. Learn more about how an advocate can help you.

Contact a student advocate

Melbourne (Bundoora), Mildura and Shepparton


La Trobe's counselling service can give you personal support.

Student Learning

Student Learning can help you to develop the academic skills you need to succeed.

You can also attend a Better your grades workshop. These workshops will help you with time management, note-taking and study tools, how to use the university's support services, how to network and look after your health and wellbeing.

Session schedule:

Monday 4 FebruaryTLC114, Melbourne (Bundoora)12pm - 1pm
Thursday 14 FebruaryWebinar12pm - 1pm
Thursday 21 FebruaryTLC114, Melbourne (Bundoora)12pm - 1pm
Thursday 28 FebruaryTLC114, Melbourne (Bundoora)12pm - 1pm
Wednesday 16 MarchWebinar12pm - 1pm
Thursday 14 MarchTLC114, Melbourne (Bundoora)12pm - 1pm

Register today

Equality and Diversity Centre

The Equality and Diversity Centre can help you with issues like disabilities, mental health, different cultures and languages.

La Trobe International

La Trobe International can provide individual support for international students.