Every university has its own Examination Appeals Board, or COBEX (College van Beroep voor de Examens). The COBEX is charged primarily with evaluating decisions taken by examinations boards and examiners. You can also lodge an appeal with the COBEX against decisions taken by an admissions board or entrance examination committee. However, note that if you do not agree with an examination on the grounds of an administrative error, you do not need to appeal to the COBEX; in that case, you should discuss the error with staff at the Student Desk of your study programme.
If you do not agree with a decision taken by an examinations board or examiner, you have six weeks in which to appeal it. An appeal may concern issues such as the following:
The notice of appeal must be submitted to the COBEX and must include at least the following: your name and address, the date and the grounds for your appeal. Your letter must also provide a clear description of the decision that you are appealing against. Please also include a copy of the decision and be sure to provide your signature on the letter.
You will receive a confirmation of receipt of the notice of appeal. You may also be asked to provide additional information. The person(s) who took the decision at issue will be asked to determine if an amicable settlement may be possible. If not, the COBEX prepares a response to the appeal, of which you will receive a copy. Based on that response, you will have to decide whether you wish to withdraw or pursue the appeal.
In the event that you wish to pursue the appeal, a hearing will be scheduled at the earliest possible opportunity. The chair of the examinations board or a representative will also be invited to attend. Both parties can opt to engage legal counsel to represent or advise them. You must engage such legal counsel yourself.
At the hearing, you will have the chance to present your case to the COBEX. The hearing will be led by the COBEX, consisting of an external chairperson and two members. Both you and the opposing party will have the chance to explain your respective positions at the hearing.
Under Section 7.61, paragraph 2 of the Higher Education and Research Act (Wet op het Hoger Onderwijs en Wetenschappelijk onderzoek, or WHW), the COBEX must assess whether the contested decision is within the law. It is not authorised to assess the content of your completed papers or examinations. Following the hearing, you will receive the COBEX’s decision in writing, stating whether the initial decision is to be upheld or a new decision taken. This decision is drawn up in the Dutch language.
There are no costs involved in the objection procedure.
Section 3 of the Student Charter provides information about legal protection for students at the UvA.
Send your appeal in writing to:
University of Amsterdam
Attn. Examination Appeals Board
P.O. Box 19268
1000 GG Amsterdam
You can also submit a notice of appeal to the Examination Appeals Board using the digital service point for complaints, objections and appeals.
If you have a UvA-net ID, use the link below for students with an UvA-net ID.
If you do not have a UvA-net ID, use the link below for alumni and prospective students.
If you have any questions, please contact:
T: +31 (0)20 525 2736
F: +31 (0)20 525 28 75