Students with a grievance may wish to consult with a Student Grievance Adviser to assist with the resolution process.
Student Grievance Resolution Process
If you have a grievance because of a decision or action by a University of Adelaide staff member or the action of one or more University of Adelaide students, we will do our best to help you resolve the grievance.
Stages of the Process
The University has a four-stage process to assist in the resolution of student grievances.
Types of grievances
Most student grievances fall into one of three categories:
- Academic decisions – grievances about decisions which involve the exercise of academic judgment
- Administrative decisions, services or facilities – grievances about decisions on administrative matters, the quality of administrative service or the provision of facilities
- Unfair treatment – grievances about student behaviour in breach of the University's Fair Treatment Policy as well as grievances about staff behaviour
For grievances about Research Conduct, see the Research Code of Conduct Procedures.
The University of Adelaide's Student Grievance Resolution Process is intended for use by all students who have a grievance against the University, whether the students are on-shore or off-shore, domestic or international, undergraduate or postgraduate, on-campus or studying externally.
However, it is important to note that using the Process will not always mean that the University will reverse a decision, end the complained of behaviours or right all perceived wrongs. There are practical limitations on the scope and effectiveness of the resolution process, including:
An action or decision may not be unreasonable or unfair simply because you disagree with it, particularly when academic judgement is involved.
Some grievances are directly linked to the availability of resources and may not be resolved due to limitations such as budget - for example, a grievance with the size of tutorial classes or availability of computing facilities.
If you are considering beginning the Student Grievance Resolution Process, read the confidentiality requirements before you start.
Access to Stage 4: External review or appeal
The University of Adelaide’s Student Grievance Resolution Process does not inhibit the right of any student to take their grievance directly to Stage Four, ie to seek external appeal or review. Note that external agencies generally expect you to have exhausted the University's internal grievance resolution processes first.
If a grievance is the subject of formal external enquiry or legal action, the application of Stages 1-3 of the Student Grievance Resolution Process will be suspended until the external enquiry or action is completed.
This Student Grievance Resolution Process has been designed to:
- be compliant with s.19-45(1) of the Higher Education Support Act 2003 (Cth) and Standard 8 of the National Code under the Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 (Cth)
- be consistent with AS ISO 10002-2006, Customer Satisfaction-Guidelines for complaint handling in organisations
conform with the principles of procedural fairness
Authority to change Student Grievance Resolution Process
Changes to this process may only be made by authority of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Vice-President (Academic), except that changes to titles, names, references or links may be approved by the General Manager, Student Services and Administration.