Grievance Policies

1- GRADE APPEALS PROCEDURES

A student who alleges unfair grading practices for an assignment or course must first communicate with the faculty member of the class within 10 days of grades being posted online. The burden of proof is on the student and the student shall provide evidence that unfair grading practices occurred. If the faculty member and the student agree to a resolution, the faculty member corrects the grade or the grade stands. If the problem has not been resolved and the student wishes to continue with an appeal, the student will send the Academic Appeal Form to the Dean’s Office within 10 days of the decision by the faculty member. The dean will review the student’s appeal, check with the professor and make a ruling.

1.1 Academic Dishonesty Appeals Procedures

Step 1: Within 10 days following notification of action for academic dishonesty, a student who wishes to appeal must first contact the faculty member of the class in which the incident occurred. The student should explain their reasoning for reconsideration. If the faculty member and the student agree to a resolution, the faculty member notifies the administration.

Step 2: If the problem has not been resolved and the student wishes to pursue the appeal, the student must complete and send the Academic Appeal Form to the Dean’s office. The Dean will review the documentation and share his decision with the student and faculty.

1.2 Non-Academic Grievances

Non-academic grievances involve non-academic policies or practices of the University, employees, or students, such as online safety, disputes, student employment, censorship, or library policies/practices.

1.3 Initiation of proceedings

      An attempt should be made to resolve matters informally through discussion between the parties involved. If matters cannot be resolved to the satisfaction of all parties, or if the student chooses to forego attempts of informal resolution, the following procedures shall apply.

A- Filing a Grievance:  A student shall file a written grievance to the Student Services within 20 regular class days of the contested action, of the date the action became known to the student, or of the date that informal efforts at resolution are ended.  The grievance should contain as much of the following information as possible.  The remaining information must be submitted in writing as soon thereafter as possible.  The Student Services Coordinator or his/her designee will assist the grievant in obtaining necessary information.

      1.   The grievant’ s name, address, telephone number or other means by which s/he can be contacted.

      2.   The respondent’s name, title (if any) and address (if known.)

      3.   Description of the contested action.

      4.   Date of contested action.

      5.   If a University policy, regulation or rule is at issue, a specific reference should be made to it, if known.

      6.   A statement of the harm suffered.

      7.   A statement of the remedy sought.

      8.   The names and addresses, if known, of grievant ‘s proposed witnesses.

      9.   Copies of supporting documentation, if any (e.g., papers, tests, etc.)

Students should maintain a copy of the grievance and all documentation for their use.

2-  TRANSMISSION OF GRIEVANCES

Upon receipt of a grievance, the Student Affairs department shall forward the grievance to the COO by the end of the next working day. If the grievance involves the COO, the grievance should be submitted to the President.  The Student Affairs Committee maintains the official files and records of the proceeding.

2.1 Student Affairs Committee

The Student Affairs Committee will receive all grievances submitted, determine the assignments of such grievances for proper action and disposition, establish a calendar for hearings and notify the parties involved of their rights and responsibilities. The Student Affairs Committee will keep the President and the University community informed of operations of the hearing system.

The Student Affairs Committee shall consist of one faculty, one staff, one student, and the president designee.  Student Affairs Committee responsibilities include:

     1.   Upon receipt of a grievance, the Chair will immediately send a copy of the grievance and this Procedure to the respondent.

     2.   Within 7 calendar days of receipt, the Student Affairs Committee will proceed as follows:

  • Dismiss a case as inappropriately filed or clearly frivolous, providing written reasons. 
  • Seek the agreement of the affected parties to attempt informal resolution of the grievance by acting as neutral mediator.
  • Hear a case which involves a time-sensitive emergency or which it considers minor in importance and make an appropriate determination.
  • Assign the case to an appropriately constituted hearing panel: The determination of the hearing panel is final and binding upon the parties.

3- ACADEMIC PROGRESS APPEALS

  • A student may appeal the University’s determination of dismissal due to failure to re-establish satisfactory progress by the end of the warning period to the Chief Academic Officer (CAO) based upon extenuating circumstances. These might include the death of a relative, an illness of or injury to the student or other extraordinary situations. The student’s appeal must be received on or before the first Wednesday of the first week of the new semester for the student to be eligible to register for the following semester.
  • The appeal must contain 1) an explanation of why the student failed to meet the SAP standards; and 2) a description of what has changed in the student’s situation that will enable him or her to again meet the satisfactory progress standards. Supporting documentation must be submitted if applicable (i.e. Hospitalization).
  • The CAO will review the information submitted in the context of the student’s entire academic record, and notify the student of his or her decision within 48 hours. This decision is final. If the appeal is granted, then the student will be placed on probation for the semester. The terms may extend beyond one semester, but must ensure the student will be able to complete the program within the maximum timeframe (1.5 times the program length) and with the required CGPA for graduation. A student on probation continues to be eligible to receive financial aid funds scheduled.
  • The student’s progress will be evaluated based upon the academic plan. If the student is meeting the SAP standards, or he or she has met all the terms of the academic plan, the student will be eligible to remain in school. In all subsequent semesters, the student must again meet the SAP standards or the terms of the academic plan.
  • If the student fails to meet the terms of the academic plan at the end of any respective noted checkpoint of the plan, the student may be dismissed.

4- ACADEMIC PROBATION

Undergraduate

  • Students with a CGPA below 1.5 will be placed on probation. They will have one more semester to achieve the minimum standards required of 2.0. Students not meeting these requirements beyond the extra semester will be academically dismissed.
  • Students placed on probation will be notified in writing and will receive academic advising to assist them in grade improvement.
  • If the Office of the Registrar determines that it is ultimately impossible for a student to obtain the required 2.0 CGPA at the end of the maximum time frame the student will be academically dismissed and will not be permitted to reapply in the same program.
  • For students reentering in a different program, only courses that apply to the new program will be calculated toward their CGPA.

Graduate

  • Any student whose cumulative average has fallen below 3.0 will be placed on probation. The student will have two terms (equivalent of 4 months) to raise their CGPA to the required minimum of 3.0 and be taken off probation.
  • Failure to do meet SAP requirements will result in academic dismissal and students must reapply for admission according to the Reinstatement Procedures.

4.1 Procedure for Re-Establishing Satisfactory Academic Progress

  • A student who is placed on Academic Warning and re-establishes SAP at the end of the Academic Warning period will be removed from Academic Warning. A student who is placed on Probation and re-establishes SAP at the end of the Probation period will be removed from Probation.

4.2 The Effect on SAP for All Withdrawal, Incomplete, Repeated Courses, and Transfer Credits.

  • Withdrawals: If the student withdraws from a course during the first week for any given semester (e.g., student receives a grade of W for the course), the course credits are included in determining credits attempted for the purposes of establishing satisfactory academic progress completion rate. A withdrawal does not impact the CGPA.
  • Incomplete Grades: A grade of incomplete (I) is not an official final grade. An incomplete is counted in credit hours attempted; however, it is not included in the calculation of the GPA or total credit hours earned.
  • Transfer Credits: All accepted transfer credits count both as attempted and as earned credit hours for the purposes of establishing the satisfactory academic progress completion rate. In general, transfer credits may reduce the time to complete a degree program.
  • Repeated Courses: Students will only be allowed to repeat courses, as required by the University, due to academic problems or attendance violations. Undergraduate may take a course three times. Graduate students may repeat a course only twice. The higher of the two grades earned for a repeated course will be used in calculating the CGPA. Students who repeat a course will be charged the current tuition for the course and must assume the responsibility for all associated fees.

4.3 The effect on SAP for non-punitive grades and non-credit or remedial courses

  • IUL does not offer remedial courses. The grade assignment of “T” for transferring a course is a non-punitive grade that does not impact CGPA.

4.4 The effect on SAP when a student seeks to earn an additional credential

  • If a student seeks an additional credential, the credits and grades attempted in the original credential that apply to the new credential are included in the determination of a student’s satisfactory academic progress, both in CGPA and completion rate, in the new program of study.

4.5 The effect on SAP for extended-enrollment status

  • A student who was withdrawn for failure to meet SAP standards and who is approved for re-enrollment by the University may choose to enroll without benefit of financial scholarships. The student may request a review of his or her academic record after any semester in which he or she is enrolled without receipt of financial scholarships. If SAP is re-established, financial scholarship eligibility may be regained for the subsequent semester of enrollment in the academic year.

4.6 The effect on SAP when student changes programs or is re-admitted to the same program

  • If a student is re-admitted into the University or changes their program of study, the credits and grades that are applicable to the student’s current program of study will be included in determining the student’s satisfactory academic progress and the appropriate evaluation level for the student. Students are not permitted to change programs of study unless they are meeting SAP requirements in their original program of study.

4.7 Re-entry for students dismissed due to failure to meet SAP

  • Students who have been dismissed for lack of satisfactory progress may apply to be readmitted into the same curriculum, as the class schedule permits, after one semester. A detailed plan for meeting SAP must be submitted and approved by the CAO prior to reentry. Submission of a plan for meeting SAP does not guarantee reentry and will be determined on a case by case basis.

5- ACADEMIC DISMISSAL APPEALS PROCEDURES

  • Within 10 business days of notification of dismissal, the student may appeal the decision by submitting a written appeal to the administration. The appeal should explain the circumstances that the student believes would affect his/her reinstatement.
  • The administration will review the student’s appeal, the student’s academic record, and the student’s attendance record, and may call upon the student’s instructors to determine relevant information.
  • Based on all the above, it will be decided if the student will be reinstated on an extended enrollment basis. The student will be notified in writing within 5 business days of the decision.
  • A student granted the opportunity to apply for readmission will need to address any outstanding balances and other obligations. If reinstated, the student will return on extended enrollment status.
  • In the case of unresolved conflict, the student can contact the Commission for Independent Education, Florida Department of Education, at 325 West Gaines Street, Tallahassee, FL, 32399-0400, toll free number (888)224-6684.

5.1 Reinstatement Procedures and Extended Enrollment Status

  • Students dismissed for failing to meet the satisfactory academic progress standards (all circumstances) may request continuance as an extended enrollment student. Upon approval, a student may take classes to meet the minimum satisfactory academic progress requirements.
  • To be reinstated to regular status, an extended enrollment student must seek to correct academic deficiencies by retaking courses they have failed. Once a student has met the minimum satisfactory academic progress standards, they may apply for reinstatement as a regular student. The reinstatement cannot begin any sooner than the first day of the next class period.
  • Students who are readmitted must repeat the last course in which they were enrolled and that resulted in their dismissal from the University. The decision to readmit a student rests with the Dean. A student dismissed from the University a second time is ineligible for readmission.

6- OTHER GRIEVANCES 

Students may submit any grievance in writing directly to student services unless the grievance concerns this department, then they can submit to the Academic Coordinator.  Students should expect a response in a timely manner.  In the event the response is not satisfactory they can submit in writing to the President. In the event the conflict remains unresolved, students are advised to contact the Commission for Independent Education at 325 West Gaines Street, Suite 1414, Tallahassee, FL, 32399-0400, Toll-free telephone number (888)224-6684.

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