Student Complaint Process

A student who has a complaint should bring it forward promptly for resolution.

Grade Complaint Process

If the matter concerns a final grade for a course, a student should attempt to resolve it informally in discussions with the instructor of record. A final grade is reviewed only when there is a question about whether the grade was calculated in accordance with the requirements and grading procedures stated in the course syllabus. A complaint that is not resolved informally between a student and an instructor should be submitted in writing (email or letter sent by post) first to the appropriate department chairperson and, if still unresolved, to the school dean. The decision of the school dean is final. Problems involving course grades must be brought forward within 45 days of the end of the semester in which the grade was earned.

Academic Grievance Process

A student who has an academic grievance other than a grade should attempt to resolve it informally in discussions with the appropriate instructor, faculty member, or his/her advisor. A complaint that is not resolved informally between a student and a faculty member is to be submitted in writing (email or letter sent by post) to the appropriate department chairperson. If it is not resolved, the complaint may be taken to the school dean. The decision of the school dean regarding the issue(s) of concern is final. A student should bring forward a complaint or problem no later than 45 days from the end of the semester in which the concern occurred.

Non-Academic Grievance Process

Non-academic complaints should be addressed to the department or office in which the problem originated. Complaints not resolved at this level may be submitted in writing (email or letter sent by post) to the supervisor for that office. If students are not satisfied with the resolution of the problem by a supervisor, they may refer the concern to the office of the vice president who supervises the area in which the complaint originated. The decision of the vice president regarding the issue(s) of concern is final.

For issues related to student academic integrity or behavioral misconduct not handled through the grievance process, please refer to the processes outlined in the Community Standards Book, which is available on the  Office of Student Conduct and Academic Integrity website.

In accordance with VAC 40-31-100 of the Virginia Administrative Code, the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) is responsible for investigating all written and signed complaints against postsecondary educational institutions operating in Virginia. This includes SCHEV oversight of complaints from students taking distance education under the aegis of the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (SARA). If a student has a complaint and has exhausted the avenues provided by Marymount University to resolve the complaint internally, the student can submit a Student Complaint Form to SCHEV. More details on the formal SCHEV student complaints procedure can be found on the SCHEV website at www.schev.edu.

Disability Grievance Process

Students who believe they have been subjected to unlawful discrimination on the basis of disability, or have been denied access to services or accommodations, have the right to use this complaint process. Depending on the nature of the complaint listed below, students are encouraged to contact the following university representatives to resolve the issue in-house:

The institutional ADA officer or a designee if

  • Student Access Services (SAS) inappropriately denied a request for accommodations in light of what the student feels is a clearly defined need to overcome a barrier to access.
  • the student was unable to access a non-academic program or activity due to a disability for which an SAS accommodation is not needed. This typically applies to a student’s access to common areas, transit services, event seating, and communication needs such as interpreting services.
  • the student experienced discrimination or harassment based on disability by any person/s on campus.

SAS if

  • accommodations authorized by SAS were inadequately implemented by a campus individual or unit.
  • a student has been approved to use accommodations in an academic program activity and believes that implementation fell short of its intention. Academic program activity includes course instruction, student housing, and dining accommodations.
  • the student feels there was a violation of privacy in the context of a disability during participation in an academic program or activity (to include housing and dining services).

While students are encouraged to utilize Marymount’s process for resolving disability-related complaints (above), all students have a right to file a grievance directly with the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR). OCR’s contact information is below:

Washington DC (Metro)
Office for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-1475
Telephone: 202-453-6020
FAX: 202-453-6021; TDD: 800-877-8339
Email: OCR.DC@ed.gov