Guide to applicant complaints procedure

Index

1.    Complaints and Appeals
2.    Conduct of a Complaint
3.    Malicious or Vexatious Complaints
4.    Procedure
       4.1    Informal Stage
       4.2    Formal Stage
       4.3    Review Stage

1.    Complaints

1.1    An informal Admissions complaint is the expression of dissatisfaction about, for example, the way in which an enquiry or application has been handled. It may concern actions or inaction by the University or its staff.  The majority of these complaints can be resolved informally.  

1.2    A formal Admissions complaint is a request for a formal review of the outcome of an Admissions decision.  A formal complaint about an Admissions decision may only be submitted on grounds of:

  • procedural irregularity (eg failure to make a decision within the correct timeframe)
  • new information which may have affected the decision (with reasons why it was not made available at the time of application);
  • evidence of any action or decision which is not consistent with the University’s Admissions Policy or the Equality Act.

1.3    Prospective students have no right of complaint against a decision not to offer them a place at the University.  Because of the level of competition for places, there will inevitably be occasions when an applicant disagrees with the decision.  Unless any of the above grounds of a formal complaint exist, the University’s decision not to offer a place on a course is final.

2.     Conduct of a Complaint

2.1    Established procedures and channels of communication exist to bring and resolve formal complaints.

2.2    University staff involved in these procedures are at all times required to assist in their resolution in an impartial, fair and polite manner.

2.3    Whilst the University recognises that bringing a complaint can be a stressful experience for applicants, it is expected that all correspondence and other contact be in line with acceptable behaviour towards staff.  What is considered to be unacceptable behaviour is outlined on the Student Code of Conduct webpage.

3.    Malicious or Vexatious Complaints

3.1    If a student makes a complaint without foundation and without the aim to resolve a genuine grievance then this may be considered to be a malicious complaint.

3.2    If a student persists unreasonably with a complaint, the complaint may be deemed to be vexatious. A vexatious complaint may involve making serial complaints about different matters, or raising the same or similar issues repeatedly.
 
3.3    If a complaint is deemed to be malicious or vexatious the complainant will receive a letter from the University informing them that all correspondence has been concluded.

4.     Procedure

4.1    A complaint must be made on an individual basis by the prospective student.  Complaints made by a third party will not normally be considered.

4.2    Prospective students should normally raise the matter within 10 working days (normally Monday to Friday and excludes bank holidays or University closure days over the Christmas vacation) of the action causing concern, and in any case within 2 months or by the start date of the programme or course applied for, whichever is sooner.

4.3    Forward the complaint using the complaints form (doc) and attaching any relevant documentation to [email protected]

4.4    The complaint will be acknowledged and forwarded to the appropriate manager for action.

4.5    The University will aim to respond to complaints within 5 working days although it may take up to 15 days.

4.6    If the complaint is not resolved to the satisfaction of the prospective student through the above means, the complainant should then write to:

The Associate Director
Communications, Recruitment and External Affairs
University of Westminster
101 New Cavendish Street
London    
W1W 6XH

4.7    The Associate Director or nominee shall investigate the complaint fully with relevant staff and/or a third party if it is deemed necessary, and reply in writing within 30 working days.

4.8    In the event of any concern that the applicant has been unfairly treated, the Director will take the matter up with the relevant Undergraduate Admissions team or Head of School.

4.9    The decision of the Associate Director or nominee shall be considered final.

August 2016

book with flipping pages

Annual reporting

View our Financial Statements, Key Performance Indicator Reports and Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Reports.

Pencil on a calendar

University calendar dates

Check academic year and term dates, exam periods, open day dates and more.