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Stage 1: Local resolution

Stage 1 of the student complaints procedure is designed to address straightforward concerns swiftly and locally without the need for escalation to the formal stages of the complaints procedure.

Who to contact

Issues and concerns should be raised initially with the person that is responsible for the area that you want to raise a complaint about, for example the module leader or departmental manager (known as the “local manager”). If you are unsure about who to speak to then you can contact DSU Advice or your faculty’s Student Advice Centre and they can advise you on who best to contact in the first instance.

Timescales

It is advisable to raise issues as soon as they occur, so that issues can be resolved before it is too late.  Therefore, the University expects that all Stage 1 complaints will be submitted within 30 days of the issue occurring.  Complaints may be dismissed if they are received after 30 days if there is no valid reason for not raising the matter in a timely manner.

Students should expect a response from the local manager within 21 days. However, some cases may take longer to resolve if they involve multiple issues or detailed investigations need to be undertaken, in which case the local manager will ensure students are kept informed about the progress of their complaint.

Stage 1 response

The local manager has a responsibility to acknowledge receipt of the complaint, investigate all issues raised and try to resolve all the issues raised to the satisfaction of all parties. Usually students will receive a written response to their complaint however on occasion a face to face meeting may be deemed more appropriate; students can request a written confirmation of any decisions taken at such a meeting.

Further information

Before submitting a complaint students may want to consider talking to their course representative who is trained to help with course related matters.

The University has a team of trained mediators who may be able to assist with the early resolution of issues raised at local level. Please contact the Academic Support Office (acasupportoffice@dmu.ac.uk) for further advice in relation to mediation.

If you are in any doubt as to whether this procedure is applicable to you please contact DSU Advice, the Academic Support Office or your personal tutor.

Details of all Stage 1 complaints received will be logged by the designated person within the relevant faculty or department and an annual report will be produced for consideration by the University’s Executive Board. 

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