Making a Complaint
The University of Liverpool and Laureate Online Education define a complaint as:
“an expression of dissatisfaction either about the programmes, courses, facilities or services provided by the University/Laureate or about actions or lack of actions by the University/Laureate or its staff”.
This guide details the steps you should follow if you feel you have a complaint.
This procedure does not cover the following matters for which separate procedures exist:
- Appeals against academic assessment: see Assessment Appeals Procedure
- Appeals against decisions of the Review of Student Progress Committee
- Appeals against decisions of the Mitigating Circumstances Committee
Step One: Review the University of Liverpool’s Student Charter
To ensure that your expectations are realistic, and that you have reasonable grounds for making a complaint, you should first consult the University of Liverpool’s Student Charter. The Charter sets out the general entitlements and responsibilities of students.
If there are no grounds under the Student Charter for you to make a complaint, your feedback is still important to us but would not be handled using this procedure. Instead, you can either use the feedback survey you can complete at the end of each module or discuss the matter with your Student Support Manager.
If you have suggestions regarding improvements that can be made to programmes or services, then contacting your Student Representative (Management, Law, IT and MPH programmes) or taking part in the regular Staff-Student Forums (other programmes - ask your Student Support Manager for details) are appropriate channels through which to provide feedback. Please note that we do not accept anonymous complaints.
Step Two: Make an Informal Complaint
If there are reasonable grounds to make a complaint, the next step is to make an informal complaint. The University of Liverpool and Laureate Online Education believe that, if possible, complaints should be resolved through informal discussions. Our experience is that the vast majority of complaints are resolved at this stage.
Complaints regarding the content of a specific module or the experience received within a specific class should be addressed to the Instructor of that class. Other complaints should be addressed to your main contact at Laureate Online Education (typically a Student Support Manager), who will guide you on the next steps.
You should communicate your concern directly with the member of staff or instructor concerned via email. In addition to describing the nature of your complaint, you should always suggest a solution to the issue. Complaints should not be made in online classroom discussions or other public forums.
You should not proceed to the next step unless you have been unable to resolve the complaint informally, or have been unable to raise and discuss the issue with the responsible person within four weeks.
Step Three: Submit a Formal Written Complaint to Laureate Online Education
If you cannot resolve your complaint informally (or cannot discuss the matter with the person concerned within four weeks), you should complete the Complaints Form.
We ask you to use this form to ensure you provide all information required to carefully review your complaint. In the form you will be asked to describe what attempts you have made to resolve the complaint informally; if you do not appear to have made a satisfactory attempt to do this you will be asked to do so before the complaint progresses to the formal stage. You will receive confirmation that the complaint has been received.
When you submit the form you will be asked to provide evidence to support the complaint. For example, copies of emails, references to specific posts in the discussion board, etc.
The person investigating your complaint will only consider the information you supply; if you do not supply sufficient evidence you risk a delay caused by us requesting this information from you, or there not being sufficent evidence to support your claim.
At this point Laureate may contact you for further information. Academic complaints (e.g., complaints regarding a module's content) will be assigned to an appropriate academic director for resolution. Service complaints (e.g., complaints regarding communications) will be assigned to a Laureate department manager.
The assigned member of staff will then contact you and endeavour to resolve your complaint.
Step Four: Escalate the Complaint Within Laureate Online Education
In the unlikely event that your complaint remains unresolved after contact with the assigned Laureate representative, you have the right to request that the case be escalated to a senior Laureate representative (this would depend on your area of complaint but would normally be the Director of Student Experience or the Director of International Academic Delivery).
If this is the case, you should email a request to escalate your complaint to firstname.lastname@example.org. The subject line of the email should be ‘Complaint Escalation (Student Number xxxxxxxx)’.
In this email you should state:
- The reason for your complaint
- A brief summary of previous communications related to the complaint
- Why these communications have not resolved the issue
- What remedy you are seeking
You will receive confirmation of receipt of the complaint.
The senior Laureate representative will review your complaint and the communications that have taken place in previous steps, and will determine whether the complaint has receive the correct care and attention. A final response will be provided, in which we would hope to resolve the matter to everyone’s satisfaction.
Step Five: Escalate the Complaint to the University of Liverpool’s Registrar
Laureate hope that any complaint you have is resolved as early as possible in the above process.
However, if your complaint is still not resolved to your satisfaction after completing the above steps, you are entitled to escalate your complaint to the University of Liverpool’s Registrar.
Please see section 3 of the University of Liverpool’s Student Complaints Procedure for details.
When you submit a complaint to the University of Liverpool please ensure that you provide a copy of the final response you received in step four. If you have not made a satisfactory attempt to resolve the complaint using the previous steps of the complaint process, you will be asked to do so before the University of Liverpool’s Registrar reviews the complaint.
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