3,511: Processing of Student Academic Complaints

Revised: April 2015

This policy complies with accreditation requirements of the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU) and federal regulations (34 CFR 602.16).

Undergraduate and graduate students should follow this procedure for any instances of an academic complaint that is not resolved following consultation with the appropriate academic instructor or advisor. Reasons for an academic complaint could include, but are not limited to, unfair grading, limited course availability, unfair course policies, poor instruction, poor academic advising, unwillingness to accommodate approved class absences, etc.

Academic complaints shall be submitted online through the Academic Complaint System on the Concierge Service webpage. Students filing complaints must supply their student identification number; however students may request confidentiality in the handling of their complaint when appropriate.

Upon receipt of the complaint, the student will be contacted by email within two business days to confirm receipt of the complaint, to request additional information (if needed), and to indicate the initial routing of the complaint. In some cases, if the complaint is determined to be of a non-academic nature, the complaint may be immediately referred to other offices for review (e.g.: sexual harassment, disability compliance). In cases of grade appeals, the information will move into the procedure for grade appeals described in UAM 3,510.

The review and response process depend upon the type of complaint and will be determined by the Concierge Service after review of University policy and in consultation with the Provost's Office. The response process will result in referral of the complaint to the appropriate office on campus. That office shall acknowledge the complaint and report an action to be taken in response to the complaint. The complaint shall be referred to the appropriate next higher level of authority if within a two week period there is no report of action to be taken. In some cases the Concierge Service may notify the student initiating the complaint about outcome of the response process.

The Concierge Service shall supply a record of complaints and responses to the relevant Associate Dean(s) and the Office of the Provost at the end of each Fall, Spring, and Summer academic term.