Graduate with 2:2 degree takes Oxford university to court




An Oxford graduate's failure to get a top degree cost him the chance of a lucrative legal career, the British High Court has heard.

Faiz Siddiqui alleges the "inadequate" teaching he received on the Indian special subject part of his modern history course resulted in him only getting a low upper second degree when he took his finals in June 2000 instead of a First or high 2:1.

He blames the situation on staff being absent on sabbatical leave.

He also alleges that medical information about him was not submitted to the examiners by a tutor.

Mr Siddiqui, 39, who has put his claim at £1m, says he would have become an international commercial lawyer if he had gained the top qualification at the end of his time at Brasenose College.

He claims that his clinical depression and insomnia have been significantly exacerbated by his "inexplicable failure".

In London today, his counsel Roger Mallalieu told Mr Justice Foskett that in 2000, Mr Siddiqui was a "driven young man" aiming at a postgraduate qualification at an Ivy League university before a career at the tax bar in England or a major US law firm.

"Whilst a 2:1 degree from Oxford might rightly seem like a tremendous achievement to most, it fell significantly short of Mr Siddiqui's expectations and was, to him, a huge disappointment."

His employment history after Oxford in legal and tax roles was "frankly poor" and he was now unemployed, said Mr Mallalieu.

"Mr Siddiqui has been badly let down by Oxford.

"He went there with high - perhaps extraordinarily high - expectations.

"He - and others - became the victim of poor teaching provision by the University in what was anticipated to be his favoured special subject and he, uniquely among his peers, was further disadvantaged by his personal tutor not conveying his knowledge of his illnesses to those responsible for making reasonable adjustments and for moderating his examinations."

A view of (L-R) Brasenose College, the Radcliffe Camera (a library), the Codrington Library and All Souls' College in Oxford.
A view of (L-R) Brasenose College, the Radcliffe Camera (a library), the Codrington Library and All Souls' College in Oxford.

Oxford University denies negligence and causation and says the case was brought "massively" outside the legal time limit.

The seven day hearing is concerned only with liability - with damages to be assessed later if Mr Siddiqui succeeds.


More in this Section

Locals have mixed feelings about Barcelona’s lack of tourists in lockdownLocals have mixed feelings about Barcelona’s lack of tourists in lockdown

Mourning period for George Floyd begins as protests continue worldwideMourning period for George Floyd begins as protests continue worldwide

Houses swept into sea by landslide in Arctic NorwayHouses swept into sea by landslide in Arctic Norway

Las Vegas reopens its doors to gamblers following Covid-19 lockdownLas Vegas reopens its doors to gamblers following Covid-19 lockdown


Lifestyle

Eve Kelliher consults a Munster designer to find out what our future residences, offices and businesses will look likeHow pandemic life is transforming homes and workplaces

Nidge and co return for a repeat of a series that gripped the nation over its five seasons.Friday's TV Highlights: Love/Hate returns while Springwatch looks at rewilding

A family expert at the charity Action for Children advises how parents can maintain contact with kids after separation if there’s an access problem.My ex won’t let me see my child because I haven’t paid maintenance during lockdown. What can I do?

THREE years ago, when radio presenter Daniella Moyles announced that she was quitting, few could have guessed from her upbeat Instagram post the inner turmoil she’d been enduring.Daniella Moyles on how she beat anxiety

More From The Irish Examiner