Posted here as OP is not on SE: Ok I have a dilemma. I am a university student. I was re-diagnosed late with ADHD due to a misdiagnosis of severe depression and anxiety, I have struggled at university often having submited assignments late with careless mistakes.

Now I know that the standard concessions given to someone with my condition are extensions plus additional support someone to help break down the assignments and help with structuring my arguments through providing strategies to organise my work.

My problem is the majority of my low marks and fails were caused by penalties for late submission 5% per work day. I failed multiple assignments being hit for the maximum penalty of 50% (10 working days).

Now that I have my late diagnosis, should I contest those results and ask the penalties be withdrawn or tempered? Or should I just go dig a hole and bury myself because without that degree that is about all I have left to do. 🤷‍♂️

  • Your question implies that you may have depression (though you claim you do not), and should be getting help from a medical professional, not the internet. Nov 28 '19 at 21:30
  • They are getting therapy and treatment. Getting misdiagnosis from a medical professional was part of the problem. The issue is about how accommodation can be retrospective. Something I have not heard before.
    – Poidah
    Nov 28 '19 at 21:33
  • The wording of the question suggests the asker needs to concentrate on the mental health challenges they face, and take care of the academic challenges later. Nov 28 '19 at 22:17
  • I guess that is the angry phase and vindictive stage of ADHD diagnosis. ADHD diagnosis is very difficult and most medical and health professionals are not able to and not confident in diagnosing ADHD as well. Depression and anxiety is a common reaction to untreated ADHD. Like a missed cancer diagnosis, anger and threats of malpractice are common.
    – Poidah
    Nov 28 '19 at 23:35

Go talk to someone at the university who has some responsibility in such matters. There is often a specialized office for it. Discuss the situation there and ask for advice. They have knowledge that few of us here have and can make suggestions few of us might think of.

But it isn't necessarily a question of contesting results. Find out your broader options before you choose any particular one. There may be some combination of things that can be made to work for you.

You aren't alone in such things, and universities short be adept at handling them.


(Possibly US-specific) This is a regrettably common situation, but universities generally still do not have a standard way to handle it that will give you the outcome you want. It is also unlikely that your instructors are under any legal obligation to retroactively provide accommodations. I personally agree with you that this is not fair to the student. Unfortunately, that is not how many universities and instructors see it, so don't get your hopes up.

Consult with your disabilities office first to see whether they can intercede on your behalf, but it is likely that they will tell you that your only option is to try to negotiate with your instructors yourself. If you do this, remember that you have essentially no grounds to contest anything and are appealing to their sympathy.

As a matter of long-term strategy, it might be preferable to withdraw from school before the end of the term and take a leave of absence until you get a handle on managing your disability. Taking a time-out and starting fresh might be a better option than trying to fix the situation you're currently in.

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