460 Student Grievances

460.1 Scope of the Policy.

Subject to the listed exclusion noted blow, any currently enrolled student or student enrolled in the previous academic year may submit a grievance alleging improper, unfair or arbitrary action or inaction by an employee of Indiana State University that adversely affects the student in a personal or academic capacity.

460.1.1 Exclusions Because of Other Processes. Because other issue-specific processes exist for resolving certain matters, this policy does not apply to the following areas:

460.1.1.1 Student Grievances Involving Other Students or Non-Employees. Student complaints or grievances against other students or individuals or groups not employed by Indiana State University will not be handled through the Student Grievance Process. Student complaints or grievances against other students are handled through the Student Conduct and Integrity Office.

460.1.1.2 Grade Appeals. Grade appeals will follow the policy and process set forth in 323 University-Level Grade Appeals.

460.1.1.3 Allegations of Discrimination. Allegations of discriminatory behavior as set forth in 921 Americans with Disabilities Policy, 922 Policy Prohibiting Sexual Misconduct, Intimate Partner Violence, and Stalking, and 923 Discrimination and Harassment Policy will be forwarded to the Equal Opportunity and Title IX Office for investigation and resolution.

460.1.1.4 Program Dismissals, Financial Aid Appeals, Residential Life Housing Decisions. Appeals related to academic program dismissal, denial of financial aid, and residential life housing decisions will be handled in accordance with the policies and procedures required by the program, academic or operational department, or college.

460.1.1.5 Code of Student Conduct Violations. Violations of the Code of Student Conduct will be forwarded to the Office of Student Conduct and Integrity for investigation and resolution.

460.1.2 Exclusion for Academic Freedom. The procedures for investigation and resolution of student grievances shall ensure compliance with AAUP guidelines for academic freedom and faculty duties and responsibilities. Faculty members are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with these guidelines, as set forth in 310 Faculty Duties and Responsibilities. Complaints about overall course content or pedagogy are excluded from this policy.

460.1.3 Other Exclusions. This policy does not apply to general complaints about (1) employee performance (2) the substance of a particular academic course or program (3) or institutional rules and regulations. Students who wish to make a complaint about an ISU employee may utilize the course evaluation process, make a verbal or written complaint to the department chair or supervisor, or utilize the online reporting function for complaints and concerns. The University Ombudsperson in the Office of the Dean of Students is available to assist students in making general complaints.

460.2 Procedures for Investigation and Resolution.

The Office of Academic Affairs, the Division of Student Affairs, and the General Counsel will develop procedures for the investigation and resolution of student grievances for presentation to the President for approval. The procedures will include review for any violations of ISU non-discrimination policies, including 921 Americans with Disabilities Policy, 922 Policy Prohibiting Sexual Misconduct, Intimate Partner Violence, and Stalking, and 923 Discrimination and Harassment Policy.

460.2.1 Respect for Rights of Parties. All parties to a Student Grievance are entitled to due process, including notice, the presence of an advisor, a hearing of record, and the opportunity to confront any adverse witnesses and/or to respond to adverse information.

460.2.2 Student Grievance Committee. A Student Grievance Committee will be nominated by the governance units and appointed by the President in accordance with the approved procedures.

460.2.3 Standard of Evidence. The Student Grievance Committee will be charged with:  (1) determining whether it is more likely than not that employee engaged in improper, unfair, arbitrary action against the student that adversely affected the student in a personal or academic capacity; and (2) making a recommendation as to sanctions and/or academic modification should the committee determine that improper, unfair, or arbitrary action against the student occurred.

460.2.4 Appeal. Either party may appeal the outcome of the hearing to the President within ten (10) calendar days of notification of the Committee’s decision by submitting a written appeal to the Office of the President.  The only basis of appeal to the president is lack of due process.

460.3 No Retaliation.

Retaliation for the submission of a student grievance or participation in its investigation and resolution is prohibited.

460.4 Suspension or Retention of College-Level Policies and Procedures.

The grievance procedures approved by the College of Health and Human Services on March 26, 2011 are suspended. Further, that section of the policy document entitled “Due Process, Faculty and Student Academic Related Appeals in the Bayh College of Education” approved by the Bayh College of Education Congress on April 9, 2012 involving the “right to grieve a matter where the student feels that his or her rights have been impinged by a faculty member or supervisor” is suspended. The student grievance procedure in the Bayh College of Education for (a) denial of admission to a program, (b) course grading, (c) academic dismissal from the University, and (d) fulfillment of requirements for graduation are retained.

Policy 460 was approved and added to the Handbook by the Board of Trustees on May 6, 2016.