Procedures for Students Seeking Resolution or Reporting University- Related Complaints
UPPS No. 07.10.06
Issue No. 3
Effective Date: 7/19/2016
Next Review Date: 6/01/2020 (E4Y)
Sr. Reviewer: Associate Vice President and Dean of Students
This policy provides procedures for students seeking a resolution or reporting a complaint about a university-related issue. Sexual misconduct complaints must be directed to the Title IX Office (TitleIX@txstate.edu)).
Texas State University’s general policy regarding complaints, including student complaints, appears as part of the university’s Compact with Texans. The specific section regarding student complaints provides this information:
Student complaints should be directed to the specific offices involved in the complaint, and if the complaint cannot be resolved at that level, the complainant is instructed to contact the next higher office in the chain of command.
Enrolled Texas State students may also address complaints to the Dean of Students Office, where the student ombudsman assists students with achieving resolutions to university-related complaints.
The Dean of Students Office refers other customer complaints to appropriate campus offices when the problem cannot be resolved within the Dean of Students Office.
A student who believes that specific actions, practices, or decisions on academic or non-academic matters have been made or carried out in an arbitrary, discriminatory, inequitable, or inconsistent manner, as stated by appropriate university policy statements, can initiate a complaint.
POLICIES ADDRESSING STUDENT COMPLAINTS AND GRIEVANCES
In addition to this policy, there may be additional divisional and individual office policies that exist to address specific student complaints and grievances. A complete list of University Policies and Procedures Statements (UPPS) can be found here. Students should review and follow the procedures for specific policies in regard to student complaints and grievances.
The following policies provide specific procedures for some typical types of complaints:
Prohibition of Discrimination (UPPS No. 04.04.46)
Disability Services for Students (UPPS No. 07.11.01)
Excused Absence Policy Related to University-Sponsored Events (UPPS No. 02.06.03)
Honor Code (UPPS No.07.10.01)
Parking and Transportation (UPPS No. 05.07.02)
Satisfactory Academic Progress for Undergraduate Students on Financial Aid (UPPS No. 07.07.01)
Satisfactory Academic Progress for Graduate and Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Certificate Seeking Students on Financial Aid (UPPS No. 07.07.02)
Student Absences for Religious Holy Days (UPPS No. 02.06.01)
Student Employment Procedures (UPPS No. 07.07.03)
Tuition and Fees Refund Appeal Policy (UPPS No. 02.01.12)
PROCEDURES FOR NON-ACADEMIC STUDENT COMPLAINTS
The university encourages students to seek informal resolution of concerns through consultation with the faculty or staff person directly responsible for the initial action or decision before pursuing a more formal process. However, if a student deems the informal efforts unsatisfactory, he or she may pursue a formal complaint in accordance with this policy
Students must submit all formal complaints under this policy in writing unless a complaint involves safety issues that require an immediate action or response. In any circumstance where safety is a concern, the office receiving the complaint should immediately contact the University Police Department.
When an office receives a complaint, the designated representative in that office will evaluate it and determine whether a preponderance of evidence shows that the decision in question was arbitrary, discriminatory, inequitable, or inconsistent with an appropriate university policy statement. After the investigation and where applicable, departments will take corrective action.
The office will assure that the student receives a direct response in writing, via the student’s university assigned e-mail address within 10 business days. A business day is defined as any day the university is open for business excluding energy conservation days, closure for dates noted on the official university academic calendar, closure of school due to emergencies or closure by order of state or federal government officials.
If a student complaint is directed to a university office not involved in the complaint, this policy limits the responsibility of that office’s supervisor, or the supervisor’s designee, to acknowledge the complaint and forward any complaints to the office directly related to the complaint.
The designated representative will keep a Student Complaint Log and will retain appropriate documentation verifying the resolution of each complaint in accordance with the university’s records retention policy.
Students may appeal the decision to the vice president responsible for the department directly related to the complaint, in writing, no later than 10 business days after the date of the decision.
The only basis for an appeal is an allegation that the decision-maker did not follow university policy or that the procedures followed in providing service to the student did not meet the normal standards of professional conduct expected by a reasonable person. This policy does not permit substantive review of a final decision.
The appropriate vice president may approve, reject, or modify the decision within 10 business days of receipt. The vice president will inform the student via the student’s university assigned e-mail address and the department of his or her decision in writing. The vice president’s decision is final.
REVIEWERS OF THIS UPPS
Reviewers of this UPPS include the following:
Position Date Associate Vice President and Dean of Students June 1 E4Y TSUS Associate General Counsel June 1 E4Y
This UPPS has been approved by the following individuals in their official capacities and represents Texas State policy and procedure from the date of this document until superseded.
Associate Vice President and Dean of Students; senior reviewer of this UPPS
Vice President for Student Affairs