Student Complaints

At SC State University, we want to provide the best experience possible to our students. Sometimes, we may fall short of meeting your needs. This page helps you to connect with resources to help resolve your complaints about activities on campus, both inside and outside the classroom.

If you have a complaint about a Faculty member or Department Chair, complaint about special accommodations in the classroom or academic facilities, complaint about a Staff member who works in an academic office or academic support unit, complaint about academic facilities or buildings, or a complaint about technology in a classroom, you have two ways to lodge your formal, written complaint.

1. Use the online Academic Affairs Student Complaint Form, or
2. Download the Academic Affairs Student Complaint Form and submit it to the department chair, supervisor, or dean.

Grade Appeal Process

A student may appeal a course grade if the student has evidence that the grade was assigned in a malicious, capricious, erroneous, or arbitrary manner. The steps that follow provide a guideline for the appeals process. All persons concerned with this process should make every attempt to adhere to the time schedule outlined in the process. No appeal will be entertained more than one year following the date the grade was assigned.

1. Appeal to the Course Instructor for Review of the Assigned Grade

a. Within three (3) weeks after the beginning of the next term, excluding Summer School, the student should discuss the assigned grade with the course instructor. If it is found that the assigned grade in incorrect in the judgment of the instructor, he/she will initiate the appropriate change. If the change is made at this point, the matter is concluded.

b. If the course instructor is no longer with the University, the student should confer with the department chairperson who will then make every effort to receive written input concerning the matter from the former instructor regarding the grade, then the student may appeal the grade using the procedures that follow and the department chairperson will represent the interests of the instructor who issued the grade.

2. Appeal to the Department Chairperson

a. If the question of the assigned grade cannot be resolved between the student and the course instructor, the student may appeal in writing to the chairperson of the department in which the course was taught. If at all possible, the written appeal to the chairperson should be made at the end of the fourth week of the term. The student should also include all known information relating to the appeal with the written appeal. After receiving such an appeal in writing from the student, the chairperson shall review with the course instructor the substance of the student’s appeal and seek to determine its validity.

b. If the chairperson determines that the assigned grade is, in his/her judgment inappropriate, the chairperson should recommend to the course instructor that the grade be changed. The course instructor may or may not concur with the chairperson’s recommendation.

c. The chairperson will notify the student in writing, usually within ten (10) days of the appeal, to indicate whether or not the assigned grade will be changed by the course instructor. If the grade is changed to the student’s satisfaction, the matter is concluded. If the grade will not be changed, the chairperson will also advise the student of the right to appeal to the dean of the school within which the grade was assigned.

d. If the grade will not be changed, copies of all written communications mentioned above should be sent by the chairperson to the dean of the school.

3. Appeal to the Dean

a. If the grade is not changed to the satisfaction of the student at the departmental level, a student may appeal the assigned grade, in writing, to the dean of the school within which the course was offered. With the written appeal, the student should provide all information possible relating to the appeal. The written appeal to the dean of the school should usually be within one (1) week of receipt by the student of the notice from the department chairperson. The dean will meet with the student to discuss the facts and contentions pertinent to the grade appeal. The dean will also meet with the instructor and the chairperson to gather all relevant information concerning the course, its grade structure and the assignment of the grade to the student making the appeal. Following these meetings, the dean shall make a recommendation concerning the student’s appeal to the department chairperson and the course instructor. If this results in the change of grade to the student’s satisfaction the matter in concluded.

b. If the resolution to the student’s grade appeal is not obtained the committee shall conduct a hearing and shall review all pertinent information presented by the student, the course instructor, the dean and any others who may be called to assist the committee through the procedures outlined above. The dean shall request a review of the student’s appeal by a committee comprised of three (3) faculty members and three (3) undergraduate students, all of whom have voting privileges. This committee will be appointed by the dean unless a standing committee already exists.