The School of Nursing Formal Complaint/Grievance Policy is based on the shared core values stated in the School’s Values Statement. Each member of the School of Nursing community, whether student, faculty, or staff holds himself or herself to the highest standards based on the values of excellence, respect, diversity, integrity, and accountability.

Definition: A formal student complaint/grievance is defined as a signed statement written by a student alleging discriminatory, arbitrary, or improper treatment.


  1. A formal student complaint should be submitted within 10 days of the event causing concern to the relevant course coordinator, program director, or associate dean. The statement should include:
    1. a factual description of the complaint or dispute resulting in the grievance;
    2. names of persons involved if any;
    3. a brief description of all informal attempts at resolution; and
    4. any other information that the student believes to be relevant to the complaint.
  2. In addition to the relevant course coordinator, program director, or associate dean Students may contact the Executive Vice Dean of the School of Nursing at any time in the formal complaint/grievance process. The Executive Vice Dean may communicate with relevant faculty or the Associate Dean for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs regarding the complaint. The Executive Vice Dean will not overturn a grade given by a faculty member or decision concerning safety in the clinical setting.
    • Complaint regarding a grade: Complaints involving grades or other evaluation of the student’s academic work (excluding Progressions Committee decisions, please see below) may be addressed by this policy only if the evaluation is alleged to be arbitrary or capricious by the student. In the event that informal discussion between the student and instructor(s) fails to resolve a dispute, the student should appeal to the relevant Program Director. The Program Director will consult with the instructor(s) and attempt to resolve any process disputes but the instructor(s) retains the final decision about the grade for the assignment or the course.
  3. Documentation of Complaint Response: The faculty or staff responding to the complaint should document the details below and submit this document to the Executive Vice Dean:
    • The date the complaint was formally submitted
    • The nature of the complaint
    • Steps/action taken to resolve the complaint
  4. The formal process established here is not meant to supplant attempts at resolving complaints through informal discussion, though there are no circumstances under which a formal complaint/grievance must be settled informally. Whether settled informally or formally, the grievance process should move expeditiously without sacrificing the integrity of the process. Nothing in this policy should be construed to impinge upon the responsibilities of any office and/or regularly constituted body of the University. Moreover, no action may be taken with respect to a formal complaint/grievance that would conflict with a university policy, federal, state, or local law or regulation.

For complaints related to: