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Procedures

Appendix D.2 of the Graduate School Handbook

D.2.1
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When the dean of the Graduate School receives a petition for the review of a grievance related either to a graduate examination or to a graduate associate appointment, the dean will determine first that there has been an attempt to resolve the problem at the local graduate program or individual appointing unit level. If such a resolution is not achieved, the dean will review the petition and determine if the matter should be referred to the chair of the Graduate School Grievance Committee.

Upon receipt of such a request from the dean, the Graduate School Grievance Committee will conduct, expeditiously, a hearing for the review of the grievance. The Graduate School grievance committee will consist of the following members:

  • Three graduate faculty members of  Graduate Council (voting)
  • Two graduate student members of Graduate Council (voting)
  • An associate dean of the Graduate School (nonvoting), who will serve as chair of the Grievance Committee. In the event of a tie vote, the chair casts the deciding vote.

 In cases where any of the individuals serving in these roles have a conflict of interest or perceived conflict of interest, substitutions will be permitted with the permission of the dean of the Graduate School.

The chair of the Grievance Committee will convene the hearing. Faculty members or graduate students who are members of the graduate program(s) involved are disqualified from sitting on the grievance committee.

At least one week prior to the hearing, the chair of the Grievance Committee will provide the materials listed below to all members of the Grievance Committee and to all parties to the grievance, depending on the nature of the grievance:

  • A letter detailing the nature of the grievance and establishing the time, location, and expected duration of the hearing
  • A copy of these guidelines
  • A copy of the complainant’s letter to the dean

Each party is expected to attend the hearing in person to present his or her case and may call witnesses in his or her behalf. A party unable to attend the hearing may submit a written statement.

Parties are defined as follows:

  1. Graduate Examination Grievance: a) the student, and b) the members of the examination committee, including the graduate faculty representative (doctoral-level examinations only)
  2. Graduate Associate Grievance: a) the student, and b) the student's GA supervisor and/or head of the GA appointing unit

Additional persons who may attend the hearing include the Graduate Studies Committee chair of the student’s graduate program and resource personnel from the Graduate School.

The parties may submit written statements related to the charges. Such documents must be received no later than three working days prior to the scheduled date of the hearing. All materials so submitted will be shared with all parties and the grievance committee members on a confidential basis.

Notice must be given to the Graduate School at least one week prior to the hearing if any of the parties is to be accompanied by witnesses and/or legal counsel.