Complaints

Policy

Definition of a Complaint: anything that you have a concern about, or dissatisfaction with, that is part of the student experience. This may include issues with how your course is managed, or the services and facilities provided by the University. Concerns with academic matters and concerns relating to other students are covered by different procedures (See Academic Appeals and Code of Student Behaviour).

The Complaints Team do not usually deal with anonymous complaints but if they do receive an anonymous complaint, they will decide whether to investigate it. In making this decision, they will look at how serious the issues raised are, how credible the allegation is, the evidence received, and how likely it is that the allegation can be confirmed.

They will also make sure you are not discriminated against as a result of raising concerns. 

Procedure

This procedure can be used for complaints made by either an individual student or by a group of students with the same complaint. If a complaint is made by a group, one student should act as the main contact.

Informal Procedure:

  • The complaint must, first be raised informally by speaking with member of staff in the area in which the complaint has arisen.
  • If informal discussions do not sort out your complaint, you may raise your concerns with the Complaints Team.

Complaints to do with halls accommodation are dealt with under the Residential Halls Complaints procedure. If you cannot sort the complaint out under the Residential Halls Complaints procedure, the complaint can then be taken to the Complaints.

You can contact the Complaints Team on complaintsadvice@port.ac.uk or call 023 92 84 3110

Formal Procedure:

You need to make your formal complaint no later than 20 working days from when the incident happened, or from when you have completed the informal procedure.

The Complaints Team will then decide if there are issues that need to be answered.

  • If they believe the complaint can be dealt with in a straightforward way, they have 10 working days to complete an investigation.
  • If you are not satisfied with the decision, you can contact the Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education (OIA).
  • If they decide that the matter needs a full formal investigation an ‘Investigating Officer’ will be assigned to the case. The investigation will be carried out and completed within 30 working days.
  • The investigating officer will hold separate meetings with you and others they believe may have information about the complaint.
  • You will then receive a final report of findings and conclusions, including proposals to resolve the complaint if they believe there is a case to answer. If you are not satisfied with the outcome you can ask for a review by the Director of Corporate Governance.
  • If after review by the Director of Corporate Governance you are still not satisfied with the decision, you can contact the Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education (OIA).

You may withdraw a formal complaint at any time by giving our Complaints Team or the person leading the investigation notice in writing. Once a formal complaint has been withdrawn the matter is closed.

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