Student Complaints Procedure

 

13.8 Procedural Introduction

13.8.1 Before making a complaint you should speak to the school or service that you would like to complain about. We also encourage you to seek advice from the Students’ Union Advice Centre and/or one of the student conciliators because they have experience of resolving complaints. We will try to resolve your concerns informally through conciliation. Conciliation is the informal consideration of your concerns with a view to finding a positive resolution. The process will depend on the nature of the concern you have raised.

13.8.2 The Students’ Union Advice Centre can provide you with independent advice and you can be supported by one of their advisers at any stage of the student complaints procedure.

13.8.3 There are deadlines within this procedure and we expect you to keep to these unless you have compelling independent evidence to show why you could not do this. We are also expected to meet our deadlines but there will occasionally be times when we are unable to do this for good reason. If so, we will let you know why and keep you informed of progress.

 

13.9 Stage 1 School-level Resolution

13.9.1 If you are unhappy with the informal resolution of your complaint, you should complete Stage 1 of the student complaints form. Please give us all the relevant details of your complaint, including any supporting evidence you would like to submit and tell us the outcome you would like in order to resolve your complaint.

13.9.2 You should make your complaint at Stage 1 as soon as possible and no later than one calendar month of the incident which has caused you to complain, unless you can provide compelling independent evidence which shows why you could not raise the complaint sooner.

13.9.3 If you are complaining on behalf of a group of students you must attach a sheet to the student complaints form, containing the names and signatures of the students who form part of the group raising the complaint. You should ensure that the members of the group have agreed the content of the complaint and any supporting evidence that is sent to us.

13.9.4 Where for good reason you are not able to engage with the procedure and you would like someone to complain on your behalf, you will need to provide us with your written authority by emailing us from your university email account to confirm who will be making the complaint.

13.9.5 You should send your completed student complaints form to your School Manager, these details are on the complaints form. The School Manager will review the complaint and pass it to the relevant person within the school or service who will investigate.

13.9.6 The staff member investigating your complaint, as part of their investigation, may seek other information such as email correspondence to help inform their investigation.

13.9.7 This person will invite you to meet with them to discuss your complaint. That meeting will take place either via online means or face-to-face. The investigator will take a record of the meeting and include this with the response, along with copies of any other evidence considered.

13.9.8 You should receive a response, providing reasons for the outcome, no later than 20 working days of the date that we received your Stage 1 complaint.

13.9.9 If you are satisfied with the outcome to your complaint, you must inform the investigator of this in writing by email. If you accept the outcome to your complaint this will be in full and final settlement of all issues raised in your complaint.

 

13.10 Stage 2 University-level Resolution

13.10.1 If you are unhappy with the Stage 1 response you should complete Stage 2 of your student complaints form and submit all documentation related to the outcome of your Stage 1 complaint. You should ensure that Stage 1 also remains completed from the earlier stage of your complaint. You may wish to use your earlier form to do this.

13.10.2 You should email the completed student complaints form to Registry via studentcomplaints@hud.ac.uk no later than 10 working days of the date you were issued with the Stage 1 response. You can submit the updated student complaints form and then provide supporting documentation afterwards during the investigation. You should not submit the form late because you have been waiting for something.

13.10.3 As part of this stage, Registry will investigate your complaint and review whether the Stage 1 outcome was reasonable and whether the complaints procedure was followed correctly. If your complaint is about Registry we will ask a senior member of staff elsewhere within the University to investigate your complaint.

13.10.4 As part of our investigations we may ask to meet with you and other people involved in your complaint.

13.10.5 We will send you a written response providing reasons for the outcome no later than 20 working days of the date that we received your Stage 2 complaint.

13.10.6 If you are satisfied with the outcome to your complaint, you must inform the investigator of this in writing by email. If you accept the outcome to your complaint this will be in full and final settlement of all issues raised in your complaint.

 

13.11 Stage 3 Request for Review

13.11.1 If you are unhappy with the Stage 2 response you can request a review by emailing studentcomplaints@hud.ac.uk no later than 10 working days of the date you were issued with the Stage 2 outcome. You will need to explain why you are unhappy with the Stage 2 response and what the desired outcome is when requesting the review.

13.11.2 We will review your complaint to consider whether the student complaints procedure was followed correctly at Stages 1 and 2, and whether the outcome reached at the Stage 2 was reasonable.

13.11.3 This stage will not be a new investigation of your complaint and you should not submit new arguments or evidence, unless you have a very good reason for doing so, which you can support with independent evidence. The reviewer will be someone who has not been involved in the previous stages of this procedure and their decision will be approved by a Pro Vice Chancellor.

13.11.4 The outcome to this stage may be that a remedy offered at the earlier stages may be offered to you again; you may be offered a new remedy; or it may be investigated again 2 if there were procedural issues with the investigation into the complaint.

13.11.5 We will send you a written response, providing reasons for the outcome, no later than 20 working days of the date we received your completed complaint review request form.

13.11.6 If you are satisfied with the outcome to your complaint, you must inform the reviewer of this in writing by email. If you accept the outcome to your complaint this will be in full and final settlement of all issues raised in your complaint.

13.11.7 The decision of the Pro-Vice Chancellor will be final and will bring to an end the University’s internal procedure. There are no further stages and we will issue you with a completion of procedures letter at this stage.

 

13.12 Independent review of student complaints

13.12.1 You can request an independent review of our final Stage 3 decision. You will need to send your completion of procedures letter to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) within 12 months of the date of the completion of procedures letter.