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Student Complaints

The Student Complaints Procedure and Academic Appeal Process exist to enable students to alert the University when something has gone wrong, to review what has happened and, where appropriate, to put things right.

You must first decide whether the 'something' constitutes the basis for a Student Complaint or an Academic Appeal, which each have a distinct process. The following definitions and examples should assist:

What is a Student Complaint?

'An expression of dissatisfaction by one or more students about a university’s action or lack of action, or about the standard of service provided by or on behalf of the university.'

For example:

  • failure by the university to meet obligations including those outlined in course/student handbooks
  • concerns about the delivery of a programme, teaching or administration
  • quality of facilities, learning resources or services provided directly by the university
  • complaints involving other organisations or contractors providing a service on behalf of the university.

What is an academic appeal?

'A request for a review of a decision relating to student progress, assessment and awards.'

It may be based on:

  • a procedural irregularity in the assessment process
  • bias
  • extenuating or mitigating circumstances where, for good reason, the academic body was not made aware of a significant factor relating to the assessment of a student when it made its original decision.

If you wish to make a Student Complaint

You can download the current Student Complaints Procedures using the links below. These have been written for both students and staff who wish to understand the full process.

The Procedures explain what type of complaint would typically be followed up via the formal process and how an appropriate complaint would be reviewed, investigated and resolved.

It is important to remember that ...
if you have a complaint relating to a person or persons within a teaching department, College or any other division of the University
then you must first take that up with that department, College or division.

It is also important to note that the Student Complaints process does not cover grievances with regard to fines imposed upon a student by a College. Such grievances are normally directed via the University Dean and that process is outlined in Part II of the University Rules (available here).

Students Complaints: Procedures (Word) (PDF version)

Students Complaints: Formal Review form (Word) (PDF version)

If you wish to make an Academic Appeal

The Manual of Academic Regulations and Procedures outlines the procedure and parameters for Appeals at Section 12.13 (page 69). Please contact the Head of the Student Registry in the first instance for more information and to make your case.


This page was last edited on: 28/01/2015 12:36