Academic Grievance Procedure
Last update: July 29, 2020
Students and faculty at Temple University Japan Campus have the right to a fair adjudication of grievances concerning academic matters as explained in the University’s policy on Student and Faculty Academic Rights and Responsibilities.
The procedures outlined here are for the resolution of academic grievances of undergraduate and Graduate College of Education Master’s level students related to courses taught at Temple University, Japan Campus (TUJ). Undergraduate students who are taking courses in the Bridge Program should refer to the modified procedures that have been adopted for academic grievances relating to Bridge courses. Students in the Law and EMBA programs should contact their Program Directors.
Non-academic undergraduate grievances (for example, related to housing, affirmative action, student financial services, disability services, and so forth) should be referred to the Office of Student Services at email@example.com. Graduate program non-academic issues should be referred to the respective graduate Program Director.
An academic grievance is a grievance related to the evaluation of academic work in a course. This may include, but is not limited to, a grade, attendance, and compliance with course guidelines. The standards and assessment of academic performance are reserved for faculty responsible for teaching the course in question. These standards should be clearly delineated in course syllabus. In a review of academic cases, policies stated on a course syllabus will be understood to have been viewed and accepted by the student concerned.
All undergraduate and College of Education Master’s level students enrolled in courses offered at TUJ may grieve any academic matter in which they believe they have been treated unfairly. At any time a student may withdraw his or her grievance, thereby halting the grievance process. Once the grievance has been halted it cannot be reinstituted on the same basis.
All efforts will be made to settle grievances within the semester of filing the grievance with the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs (ADAA). However, grievances must be filed by the following dates: 1
- February 1 of the calendar year following the end of a Fall semester
- July 1 following the end of a Spring semester
- October 1 of the same calendar year following a Summer semester
Students cannot appeal grades after they have graduated.
This Grievance Procedure will be made available to students on the TUJ website, and will be provided to students by the Dean of TUJ, the ADAA, the Academic Advising Center, Graduate College of Education Administrative Director, or the Registrar’s Office on request.
All documents and hearings related to a student grievance will be treated as confidential, with disclosure limited to those involved in the grievance process. Documents are to be maintained by the Grievance Coordinator, a staff member.
1. Attempting informal resolution with the instructor or Major/Area Coordinator
A student who believes s/he has been treated unfairly or graded in error should first contact the course instructor and ask for clarification on the specific issue of concern. If the issue can’t be resolved in this way, the student should approach the Major/Area Coordinator or Program Director to discuss possible resolution.
If the instructor is no longer employed by Temple University, Japan Campus or is, for other reasons, unavailable, the student should first meet with the Major/Area Coordinator, Program Director, or ADAA.
Students wishing to take their dispute further should send a written request to the ADAA (firstname.lastname@example.org) outlining the grounds for a grievance, the steps taken to date, and the desired resolution. Students must include their contact information including name and TU ID number.
2. Attempting a mediated resolution of a grievance with a faculty ombudsperson
The ADAA will forward the student notice of grievance within seven days to the Grievance Coordinator. The Grievance Coordinator will then forward the student's statement to the faculty member concerned, and arrange for the student to meet with a faculty Ombudsperson. At this point the Grievance Coordinator will be responsible for the work-flow, for informing those involved of the process, and for keeping records. All documents and related correspondence are to be treated confidentially, with disclosure limited to those involved in the grievance process.
Initially, the Ombudsperson will attempt a resolution with the student and the faculty member. If an agreement is reached, or if the student decides not to pursue the grievance further, a statement should be drafted detailing the resolution and signed by the student and the instructor. The Ombudsperson should send this to the Grievance Coordinator. Copies of the signed agreement will then be distributed to the student, the instructor, the Major Coordinator or Program Director, and the ADAA.
If no resolution is reached at this stage, the Ombudsman should make a brief report of that outcome, and inform the Grievance Coordinator and the Chair of the Grievance Committee, together with all related documents and correspondence.
At this point the Grievance Committee is convened.
3. The TUJ Grievance Committee
The TUJ Grievance Committee shall consist of a Chairperson and at least three full-time faculty members or instructors or staff appointed by the ADAA and renewed annually. It shall be the duty of the Grievance Committee to solicit, receive, and consider information from parties involved in a grievance and conduct any hearings it deems necessary. The Grievance Coordinator will assist them in this as requested.
In the event that a grievance is launched against a member of the Committee, that member shall withdraw for the consideration of that grievance, and a substitute shall be appointed by the ADAA.
The process shall be as follows:
- The TUJ Grievance Coordinator will forward copies of the grievance and all previous proceedings, documents, and correspondence to the Committee for review and arrange a meeting of the Committee.
- The Grievance Committee shall prepare a written report with recommendations for the resolution of the grievance. This report may include majority and minority opinions, should any members of the Grievance Committee so desire.
- The Grievance Committee report shall be sent to the Dean for disposition, and the Grievance Coordinator shall be informed.
- After reviewing the opinions of the TUJ Grievance Committee, the Dean or Dean’s designee (not the ADAA) shall render a decision and send this to the Grievance Committee Chair and the Grievance Coordinator.
- The decision will be communicated by the Grievance Coordinator to the ADAA, the student, Major Coordinator or Program Director, and the faculty member.
- The grievance report and relevant correspondence and documentation will be kept on file by the Grievance Coordinator.
Decisions of the Dean of TUJ on grievances by undergraduate students may be appealed to the Vice-Provost for Undergraduate Studies, within seven (7) calendar days of notification, but only on the grounds that procedural defects substantially prevented the student from obtaining a full and fair hearing on the merits of the case. Appeals to the Vice-Provost for Undergraduate Studies shall be in writing and delivered via the office of the ADAA.
Students in TUJ Graduate College of Education master’s level courses should follow the same appeal procedure as Undergraduate students, but should be appealed to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Education.
1 If circumstances warrant, students may appeal for an extension of time to file a grievance. Appeals should be in writing and sent to the ADAA for consideration.