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Student complaints and grievances

The University of Minnesota Morris takes student concerns, complaints, and grievances seriously. The University has processes in place to ensure that complaints are addressed appropriately and in a timely manner.

Have you tried to resolve the concern directly?

When you encounter a problem on campus or feel you have been treated unfairly, you should first try to resolve the issue informally with the faculty/staff member or the office/program directly involved. Many issues can be resolved by making an appointment with a faculty or staff member and calmly and honestly communicating your concerns.

In some cases, a meeting with an appropriate third party (a faculty member, the academic division chair, director of the office/program, residence hall staff, or other administrator) can be helpful in addressing and resolving an issue.

In meetings and conversations regarding your concerns, it is important to be clear and specific about what the concern is and what action is being requested to address the concern.
You may also contact the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs for assistance and advice on how to address any University-related concern.

Have you considered one of the University’s processes for addressing concerns or complaints?

If direct contact with the other party does not resolve the situation or if it would be inappropriate (for example, a bullying or sexual harassment complaint), you can seek assistance through the University’s more formal conflict resolution, complaint, and appeal channels depending on the nature of the complaint, as listed below. Some campus policies and programs have specific documented complaint/appeal processes.

Academics

Grades and evaluation of student work

Students are entitled to an explanation for the grade assigned. You should, in almost all instances, bring the matter directly to the instructor. Where this is clearly inappropriate or when such action does not bring about a mutually satisfactory solution, you should consult the appropriate academic division chair of the discipline in which the course is offered. If consultations with the division chair do not resolve the issue, you may consult the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Dean.

Quality of instruction 

Student concerns regarding the quality of instruction should be directed to the academic division chair of the discipline in which the course is offered. If consultations with the division chair do not resolve the issue, you may consult the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Dean.

Academic advising 

Student concerns about academic advising should be directed to the director of the Office of Academic Success. If a concern cannot be resolved at that level, you may reach out to the academic division chair for their major program. If consultations with the Office Academic Success and division chair do not resolve the issue, you may consult the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Dean.

Areas not addressed above

Academic units manage academic complaints, which are defined by the Addressing Student Academic Complaints policy as complaints brought by students regarding the University's provision of education and academic services affecting their role as students, based on a claimed violation of a University rule, policy, or established practice. Under this policy, student academic complaints do not include student complaints regarding grades and other evaluation of student work, University employment, University admission decisions, or disciplinary action under Board of Regents Policy: Student Conduct Code.

Discrimination, harassment, or sexual violence complaints (includes all Title IX complaints)

The Morris Human Resources and Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Office serves as a neutral party to advise individuals and departments about perceived, existing, and potential discrimination, harassment, sexual violence, retaliation, and potential violations of the policy against nepotism through consultation and investigation. To report a complaint, please use the Bias/Harassment/Discrimination Reporting Form or contact EOAA at quamjl@morris.umn.edu or 320-589-6024.

Employment-related concerns

For concerns or complaints related to student employment at the University, contact the Office of Financial Aid Student Employment Coordinator at morrisfa@morris.umn.edu.

Residence hall concerns

For concerns or complaints about housing experiences, please contact the Office of Residential Life at housing2@morris.umn.edu or 320-589-6475.

Parking and transportation concerns

For concerns or complaints related to campus parking, streets, walkways, and way-finding, please contact Facilities Management via the contact us form or 320-589-6100.

Safety and security concerns

For concerns about any aspect of campus safety, contact Campus Police at ummpd@morris.umn.edu or 320-589-6000.

Student Conflicts and Violations of the Student Conduct Code

Staff in Residential Life, Student Life, and Student Affairs offer informal and more formal conflict resolution support for students' addressing conflicts with other students, as well as possible violations of the student conduct code.  Advocates are available to assist students in formal grievance or disciplinary proceedings. Contact Student Affairs at ummvcsa@morris.umn.edu or 320-589-6013.

Violations of law, regulation, or policy

You may use UReport, the University of Minnesota's reporting system, to report any situation or University conduct that you believe violates an applicable law, regulation, government contract, grant requirement, or University policy. The site includes the option for anonymous reporting.

Was direct resolution unsuccessful? Is direct resolution not appropriate? Or is your concern outside the specific areas, policies, and processes listed above?

The Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs works closely with students to help them identify resources and options to resolve their problems. Student Life advocates are available to assist you in formal grievance or disciplinary proceedings. Contact Student Affairs at ummvcsa@morris.umn.edu or 320-589-6013. 

The Office of the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Dean provides strategies to approach conflicts related to grading, instruction, and other academic concerns, including formal grievance processes. Contact Academic Affairs at 320-589-6015.

If the area of concern is outside the processes listed above, or in cases where concerns persist and you wish to file a formal complaint, you may file a complaint online using this online form. You may also contact the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs for assistance and advice on how to address any University-related complaint.

Formal complaint

A formal complaint is defined as any written complaint filed in paper, via online form, or through UReport that is signed by a student and has been received by a University of Minnesota Morris Division Chair, Vice Chancellor, or Chancellor after administrative or informal resolution of the complaint at the program or office level has failed.

You may file a formal complaint at any time while you are an enrolled student (full-time or part-time) at the University and within the first 12 months after your last date of enrollment for any concern that arose while you were enrolled. Formal complaints cannot be filed by parents, relatives, employers, agents, and others acting for you or on your behalf.

Complaint review and resolution process

Once a formal complaint is received by a Division Chair, Vice Chancellor, or Chancellor, an attempt will be made to resolve the issue in a timely manner by working with you and the appropriate university employees and offices to assure a fair process. The Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs will coordinate the process for addressing complaints received through the University’s student complaint form. Questions related to the student complaint process and resolutions should be directed to the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs.

If the student is unsatisfied with attempts to resolve the complaint within the University, the student has the option to file a complaint with the University of Minnesota Board of Regents or the University’s accrediting body, the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) in accordance with their processes and procedures.

Prohibition of retaliation

University policies prohibit retaliation. Within the scope of student concerns and complaints at Morris, retaliation shall mean taking an adverse action against an individual because of the individual’s good faith participation in the following:

  • Reporting concerns, reporting suspected or alleged prohibited conduct, or making a complaint
  • Expressing opposition to a campus process, proceedings, or suspected or alleged prohibited conduct
  • Participating in an investigation related to a reported concern, a formal complaint, or a prohibited conduct allegation
  • Accessing the services or resources of a campus or University office or officer to resolve a student concern, a formal complaint, or a conflict related to prohibited conduct

Complaint tracking

To meet Federal Regulations, a record of formal student complaints and their disposition will be filed by the office handling the complaint and maintained within the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs. All formal written student complaints received by the Division Chairs, the Vice Chancellors, or the Chancellor will be filed and tracked. Collected information will include the date the complaint was received, the student’s name and student ID, a brief description of the complaint, a summary of action taken by the receiving office, the resolution/outcome (including the steps taken to resolve the complaint and the documentation associated with those steps), and the date of resolution, as well as notations of any changes to university policy, procedure, or practice resulting from the complaint.

Each year, the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs (or its designee) will compile an Annual Institutional Summary of Student Complaints. The Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs will also conduct a review of current and prior years’ complaint logs to identify any trends/issues that warrant further investigation, possible revisions to existing policies, or additional actions required to strengthen the student learning environment. Information from the annual review will be shared with and reviewed by the Vice Chancellors Group along with the appropriate university office(s) for action.

Private student data is maintained in accordance with University policies. Information tracked will be made available to regulatory agencies and accrediting bodies, including the Higher Learning Commission as required in accordance with applicable laws, regulations, and policies.

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