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Faculty complaints procedure

There may be occasions when things may not meet the standards you expect. A complaint is defined by King’s College London as ‘an expression of dissatisfaction that warrants a response.’

Examples of complaint topics could include insufficient PhD supervision, poor services/facilities, or inadequate delivery of a programme. For matters involving exams and assessments, you should go through the Academic Appeals procedure.

Any student wishing to submit a complaint should read G31 Student Complaint Regulation as well as the procedure below. You should also consider contacting the Students’ Union Advice and Representation Centre.

Stage 1: Local informal resolution
  • If you have a complaint, you should first try to resolve the matter informally in your own department by contacting your personal tutor, your supervisor or the Department Senior Tutor – whoever you feel most comfortable emailing.
  • This individual will to and informally discuss the nature of the complaint, as well as advising on how the matter can be resolved quickly. They will not conduct a formal investigation.  If the outcome of the discussion is that no resolution can be agreed to the student’s satisfaction, they will signpost them to the next stage of the procedure. 
  • If your complaint is anything to do with discrimination, harassment or bullying, on contacting the staff mentioned above, your complaint will automatically be taken to Stage 3 (detailed below).
  • Although not obliged, students are expected to wait for the outcome of a Stage One Complaint before escalating their case.
Stage 2: Formal investigation
  • A Stage 2 Complaint should be made no later than 3 months from the student being aware of the incident/sequence of events giving rise to the complaint. A complaint received after this deadline will only be accepted at the discretion of the Head of Student Conduct & Appeals (or nominee).

  •  A Student Complaint Form should be submitted to the Student Conduct & Appeals Office for a formal investigation to be undertaken.  The outcome of the investigation will normally be communicated to the student within 21 days of receipt.

Time scale: SCF must be submitted within 3 months from when you became aware of the incident concerned. You should receive a response within 21 days of submitting the SCF.

Stage 3: Appeal
  • Following completion of a Stage Two Complaint, students may submit a Stage Three Appeal in the instance that they are dissatisfied with the previous outcome. Stage Three Appeals must be submitted on a Complaint Appeal Form to the Student Conduct & Appeals Office within 14 days of the date of the Stage Two Complaint outcome letter. and should include a copy of the original complaint and outcome letter.  In accordance with the G31 Student Complaint Regulation the Vice-Principal (Eduction) will allow an appeal to be heard if they are satisfied that one or both of the following conditions are met: -
  1. Where there is new evidence that could not have been, or for good reason was not, made available at the time of the investigation by the Director of Students & Education, and that sufficient evidence remains that the complaint warrants further consideration;
  2. Where evidence can be produced of a significant procedural error in the part of the College in investigating the complaint, and that sufficient evidence remains that the complaint warrants further consideration.
  • Where the Vice-Principal determines that an appeal should be heard, an Appeal Committee shall be convened; otherwise, the appeal will not be upheld.  The student will be informed of the Vice-Principal’s decision in writing.  The student will receive at least 7 days’ notice of an Appeal Committee and will be invited to present their case to the Panel.  The Appeal Committee’s decision shall be communicated to the student in writing, normally within 14 days of the decision.
  • When all internal procedures are complete, students may request an independent review of their case by the Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education, if they remain dissatisfied with the College’s final outcome.

 

Time scale: Appeals must be received by the Student Conduct and Appeals Office in writing within 14 days from the date of the Stage 2 outcome. You should receive a response from the Appeal Committee Chair within 60 days.

 

A note from KCLSU Advice Service

The KCLSU Advice Service offers confidential and impartial advice to all students throughout their studies at King’s College London. As an Advice Service, we function independently from the College and can support you on a range of problems that you may encounter during your time at King’s.

We’re able to advise on a variety of issues, for example: appeals, complaints, extension requests, mitigating circumstances, misconduct issues, fitness to practice, academic progress. We can attend meetings and hearings with you, and help you understanding the College’s procedures and regulations.

To find out more about our service and how we can help you, please visit our Academic Advice pages  You can contact us directly on advice@kclsu.org or you can call 020 7848 1588.

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