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Policy 51

                             
Administrative Policy 51:
Student Complaint Procedures
Issued: 6/22/2012Reference:
      UWPF 7
      UWPA 10
Institution Approval:
Deborah Ford
Reviewers:
      Dean of Students
      Provost
Maintained By:
      Dean of Students

51.01 Background

Occasionally, a student will encounter a concern/problem on campus that they do not know how to resolve.  When this happens, students should always try to work out the concern/problem by first discussing it with those most involved in the issue.  Dealing with concerns in the most direct and honest fashion should always be the first step toward resolution.  Many issues are settled or problems resolved when a student makes an appointment with a faculty or staff member and calmly/honestly communicates their frustration or concern.

51.02 Informal Complaint Resolution Process

Prior to initiating the formal complaint process, and as a prerequisite, the student shall first request to meet with the person with whom they have a concern.  This informal meeting shall occur within fourteen (14) calendar days of the initial concern.  If a satisfactory resolution cannot be reached within seven (7) days of the meeting, the student may then request a meeting with the Department Chair, Supervisor, or Dean who shall assist in finding a resolution within fourteen (14) calendar days. 

There are times when it is not possible to initially address the person directly.  At that point, the student should consider talking with the Department Chair, Supervisor, or Dean as the first step.

If the problem is not satisfactorily resolved the student may file a formal complaint with the Dean of the appropriate College or the Dean of Students Office.

51.03 Formal  Complaint Process

If the informal process does not yield a successful resolution, the student may file a formal complaint in the following manner:

Complaints shall be filed within seven (7) calendar days of the end of the informal resolution process.

A complaint must be in writing and include the following:

  • Student's name, address, email address, and phone number;
  • A full and complete description of the problem, including names of individuals, departments, and or programs involved;
  • A statement of the remedy requested;
  • A statement of confirmation that  an informal  resolution has been pursued.

The complaint shall be filed with the Dean of Students Office.

Upon receipt of the complaint, the Dean of Students or designee will, within seven (7) calendar days, review the complaint for timeliness and appropriateness and if warranted move the complaint to the committee process.  The Dean of Students will provide the student written notice acknowledging its receipt and if the process will be moving forward.

If the complaint is against a Faculty member the process shall follow the Faculty Policies and Procedures, UWPF 7 Faculty Rights and Responsibilities.

If the complaint is against an Academic Staff member the process shall follow the Academic Staff Policies and Procedures, UWPA 10 Complaints and Grievances.

All other complaints shall follow the following process.  The Dean of Students or designee shall convene the complaint committee within fourteen (14) calendar days of receiving the complaint unless unusual circumstances prohibit it. Once the committee is convened, they will select a member to serve as a chair for the formal complaint proceedings. The Dean of Students, with the concurrence of the Provost, or designee, may take appropriate action on an interim basis, when there is reasonable cause to believe that such action is needed for the health, safety, or welfare of the student or other member of the University community, or to avoid disruption to the academic process.

The complaint committee shall consist of:

  • A faculty  member  appointed  by the Provost Office
  • One administrative staff member  appointed  by the Dean of Students
  • One student  representative

Investigation/Hearing - The Committee shall promptly initiate an investigation. In undertaking the investigation, the Committee may interview, consult with and/or request a written response to the issues raised in the complaint from any individual the Committee believes to have relevant information, including faculty, staff and students. The student and any person towards whom the complaint might have been directed shall have the right to submit written materials to the Committee and suggest names of any faculty, staff, students or others from whom he/she believes the Committee should hear. The Committee may assign any member who has been adequately trained to conduct any part of the investigation as the Committee determines to be appropriate. 

Advocacy - The Committee shall promptly initiate an investigation. In undertaking the investigation, the Committee may interview, consult with and/or request a written response to the issues raised in the complaint from any individual the Committee believes to have relevant information, including faculty, staff and students. The student and any person towards whom the complaint might have been directed shall have the right to submit written materials to the Committee and suggest names of any faculty, staff, students or others from whom he/she believes the Committee should hear. The Committee may assign any member who has been adequately trained to conduct any part of the investigation as the Committee determines to be appropriate. 

Findings and Notification - Upon completion of the investigation, the Complaint Committee, in consultation with the Dean of Students or designee, will prepare a final report containing a summary of the investigation, written findings and a proposed disposition. The report will then be transmitted to the student and the party against whom the complaint is directed. The report should be submitted within fourteen (14) calendar days of the first convened meeting of the complaint committee unless prohibited by unusual circumstances. 

Disposition - The Dean of Students shall take whatever actions are deemed appropriate based on the final summary report.  The Dean of Students or designee shall report their decision in writing to the student, the complaint committee and all other relevant parties.  The decision of the Dean of Students or designee shall be final.

51.04 Policy  Review

The Dean of Students Office shall review this policy annually. Recommendations for changes will be forwarded to the Chancellor's Cabinet for approval no later than March 1st.

 


           
 

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