Christ.  Scholarship.  Service.

Grievance Procedure for Academic Matters

In any university, disagreements will sometimes arise about grading and other academic matters. Huntington University wishes to resolve these matters in a respectful manner consistent with biblical principles.

In nearly all circumstances, the student should first seek to resolve the disagreement directly with the faculty member. If all possible means to resolve it directly with the faculty member have been exhausted, the student may resolve the disagreement using the following process. All complaints will be kept confidential to the extent permitted by law. No adverse action will be taken against the student filing the complaint.

1. Grievance procedure for grades

a. Students who wish to appeal the final grade for a course on the grounds that it was assigned arbitrarily or capriciously must first seek conciliation directly with the professor. If a satisfactory agreement cannot be reached through informal discussion, the student may seek to resolve the dispute through the following process.

b. A written appeal to the director of the program must be made within two weeks of the formal posting of semester grades by the registrar. The director may grant exceptions to accept appeals after this length of time in the case of compelling extenuating circumstances.

c. The student must provide the following information in support of the appeal. Appeals will not be processed until all materials have been provided to the director of the program. The burden is on the student to show that the grade is arbitrary and capricious in light of the evidence.

  1. A written explanation of the basis for challenging the grade
  2. Copies of all relevant graded assignments and examinations
  3. A copy of the course syllabus as distributed to the class

d. The director may ask the professor to provide similar documentation when necessary.

e. The director will examine the evidence provided to determine whether the grade was arbitrarily or capriciously assigned.

  1. If the determination is that the grade was not arbitrarily or capricious, the director will sustain the professional judgment of the faculty member and the grade will stand. The director will communicate this decision to the faculty member, division chair, and the student.
  2. In the event that the grade assignment is determined to have been arbitrary or capricious, the director will recommend that the faculty member change the grade. The new grade will be determined by the faculty member and the director.

f. Any appeal of the decision will be referred to a panel consisting of three members of the Graduate and Professional Programs Committee. The panel's decision is final and not subject to further appeal.

2. Grievances about Other Academic Concerns

a. Students who have concerns about other academic matters involving a faculty member should, in most cases, first seek conciliation with the faculty member.

b. If student and faculty member cannot reach agreement or if the nature of the appeal is such that the student does not feel free to take the matter directly to the faculty member, the student should approach either the director of the program or the director of graduate and professional programs. In order for the University to evaluate and respond to the concern, the student must submit a brief written statement that describes the concern. Supporting materials and documentation, if any, should be included with the written statement. 

c. The program director and the director of graduate and professional programs will coordinate efforts to address and to decide the resolution of the student’s concern.

d. Either the student or faculty member may appeal this decision by presenting his or her case to the Graduate and Professional Programs Committee. The decision of the Committee is final and not subject to further appeal.

When the faculty member involved is the program director, all appeals should be taken to the director of graduate and professional programs who will present the appeal to the Graduate and Professional Programs Committee for resolution. The decision of the Committee is final and not subject to further appeal.

*For students residing in and taking classes in Arizona: If the complaint cannot be resolved after exhausting the institution’s grievance procedure, the student may file a complaint with the Arizona State Board for Private Postsecondary Education. The student must contact the State Board for further details. The State Board address is 1740 West Adams Street #3008, Phoenix, AZ 85007, phone # 602-542-5709, website address: www.azppse.gov.