Lodging a Grievance
If any student currently or previously enrolled in a Sydney College of Divinity (SCD) course feels that they have been subjected to discrimination, harassment, vilification, victimization, or other unfairness, the student may lodge a formal, written complaint about this in accordance with the SCD’s Student Grievance Policy and Procedures.
A formal complaint is known as a ‘grievance’. The person making the complaint is the ‘complainant’ and the person(s) against whom the grievance is made is/are the ‘respondent(s)’.
A formal complaint may be about an academic or a non-academic matter related to a student’s personal experience. It is quite distinct from the regular student feedback on course and teaching.
Grievances may be lodged with SCD itself as the responsible Higher Education Provider. Grievances lodged by research degree students are covered by the arrangements pertaining to the SCD level.
SCD’s Student Grievance Policy and Procedures applies to all students currently or previously enrolled in SCD courses regardless of the location of the campus at which the grievance has arisen, the student’s place of residence, or the mode of study.
Ultimate responsibility for oversight of the proper implementation of the Student Grievance Policy and Procedures is vested in the SCD Council, which delegates oversight of the grievance process to the Dean. The process is carried out by designated persons in the Office of the Dean. A person appointed as the Grievance Handler acts as the basic go-to person and facilitator of the process, and another person appointed as the Student Advocacy Officer is provided solely to assist the student in working through the process for a just outcome. The student has the right to an alternative Grievance Handler and/or Student Advocacy Officer if the person appointed is not acceptable for any reason. The student may, in addition, choose to be accompanied by a friend or family member throughout.
If a grievance is not resolved at the SCD level, the matter is referred by SCD to an External Grievance Officer, for domestic students, and overseas students are referred directly to the Overseas Students Ombudsman.
The student is not asked to pay anything to anyone throughout the grievance process.
A student wishing to lodge a grievance, or simply to enquire about the process, should normally approach the person designated as the Grievance Handler in the place concerned, but may approach the Research Director or SCD Dean, as relevant, or any other member of staff to seek initial help.