Graduate Grievance & Grade Appeal Procedure

SCHOOL OF INFORMATION STUDIES
Graduate Grievance/Grade Appeal Procedure
DRAFT 2010-03-13

Informal Resolution of Grievance/Grade Appeal

The instructor of record for a course has responsibility for evaluating student work in the class and assigning grades. Instructors and teaching assistants (TAs) also may interact with students in the classroom or in the advising process. On certain occasions, students may experience actions on the part of an instructor or TA assigned to the course that cause the student to consider filing a grievance or grade appeal. In that case, the student must first seek informal resolution by discussing it with the instructor.. Many such situations arise as the result of misunderstanding or incomplete information. The majority of situations in which students consider taking a formal action are resolved informally.


If the situation involves a teaching assistant, the student first should discuss the situation with the TA. If the situation is not resolved to the student's satisfaction, the student should discuss the matter with the supervising instructor for the course.

If the difficulty cannot be resolved informally, the student has thirty (30) working days from the date of the instructor's action to initiate a formal appeal as indicated below. Therefore, efforts to reach an informal resolution should be initiated as soon as possible.

Formal Grievance/Grade Appeal Procedure

Step 1

Within thirty (30) working days from the date of the action prompting the appeal or grievance, the student may file with the MLIS or PhD Program Director as appropriate or his/her designee a written statement of appeal. The statement should describe relevant facts surrounding the appeal/grievance and identify actions that will resolve the problem to the student's satisfaction. In response to this statement, the Program Director or designee will meet jointly or individually with all parties in an effort to resolve the problem and will prepare a written "mediation report" of the results of his/her mediation efforts. The meeting may be in person or by telephone or other appropriate interactive medium. The report will be given to both the student and the instructor, and both the statement of appeal and the mediation report will be retained in the School's files.

If a proposed resolution is agreeable, the student will be asked to indicate formally that the matter is resolved.

If the proposed resolution is not acceptable to either the student or the instructor,
or if no resolution has been proposed, then the process continues to Step 2.

Step 2

If the situation is not resolved in the Step 1 process, the student or the instructor may request, within ten (10) working days of receiving a copy of the written mediation report, that the Program Director or designee send the appeal/grievance to the SOIS Student Grievance and Appeals Committee (SGAC). The SGAC will gather and consider all information it deems appropriate, afford the student and the instructor an opportunity to present their cases, and recommend a course of action in its own report. The report will be given to both the student and the instructor, and a copy will be retained in the School's files.

If a proposed resolution is agreeable, the student and instructor will be asked to indicate formally that the matter is resolved.

If the proposed resolution is not acceptable to either the student or the instructor, or if no resolution has been proposed, then the process continues to Step 3. Both the student and the instructor will be informed that the decision arising from Step 3 is final.

Step 3

If the situation is not resolved in the Step 2 process, the student or the instructor may request, within ten (10) working days of receiving a copy of the written report from the SGAC, that the appeal/grievance be referred to the Associate Dean of the Graduate School. The Associate Dean will review all documents, independently consider all information s/he deems appropriate, afford the student and the instructor an opportunity to present their cases, and decide on a course of action.

Following evaluation at this level, the decision of the Dean of the Graduate School is final.

Failure by the student or the instructor to meet any of the prescribed deadlines for an appeal to the next step terminates the appeal procedure.

UWM Graduate Academic Appeals and Exceptions: http://www.graduateschool.uwm.edu/students/policies/appeals-and-exceptions/


Contacts:

PhD Program Director: Dr. Iris Xie

Graduate Program Director: Tom Walker

SOIS Student Grievance & Appeals Committee Chair: Mohammed Aman


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