Manual of Policies and Procedures

E/9.3 Student Ombudsman

Contact Officer

Student Ombudsman

Approval Date

05/05/2015

Approval Authority

Vice-Chancellor and President

Date of Next Review

01/05/2018

9.3.1 Role of Student Ombudsman
9.3.2 Status of Student Ombudsman
9.3.3 Grievances and dispute resolution
Modification History

9.3.1 Role of Student Ombudsman

The Student Ombudsman is responsible to the Vice-President (Administration) and University Registrar for maintaining procedures for the formal and informal management of grievances in student matters. The Student Ombudsman also acts as a catalyst for innovation and improvement in standards, practices and procedures relating to undergraduate, postgraduate coursework and Higher Degree Research (HDR) students.

The primary functions of the Student Ombudsman are:

  • to provide advice to students and staff encountering difficulties associated with student related rules, policies and procedures
  • to advise the Vice-President (Administration) and University Registrar on academic and administrative matters affecting students and strategies for reducing the number of formal appeals lodged by students
  • to participate in the University's procedures for resolution of student related grievances
  • to undertake formal investigation of student related complaints which cannot be resolved by other means
  • to encourage and facilitate improvements in the quality of the University's administrative, teaching, learning and student service processes and promote input by staff, students and interested third parties into development of University policies.

The Student Ombudsman attends Appeals Committee by invitation.

The Student Ombudsman will normally serve for a fixed term of five years, but this may be subject to renewal. The Student Ombudsman reports annually to the Vice-Chancellor and President, via the Vice-President (Administration) and University Registrar, on activities and matters handled each academic year.

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9.3.2 Status of Student Ombudsman

The University recognises that the Student Ombudsman must maintain neutrality, independence and confidentiality in performing the role. The Student Ombudsman has direct access to all levels of the University, including senior officers such as the Vice-Chancellor and President and Deputy Vice-Chancellors, as well as executive deans of faculty and heads of school, academic and administrative staff.

There will be occasions when there could reasonably be a perception that a conflict of interest arises which is sufficient to compromise the Student Ombudsman's independence and impartiality (eg where a matter arises from an academic activity or administrative decision in which the Student Ombudsman has had a direct involvement). In such cases the matter will be referred to the Vice-President (Administration) and University Registrar for resolution. The provisions of the University's Code of Conduct for staff (B/8.1) also apply.

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9.3.3 Grievances and dispute resolution

See grievance resolution procedures for student related grievances (E/9.2).

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Modification History


Date

Sections

Source

Details

05.05.15 All Vice-Chancellor Revised policy
07.08.13 E/9.3.1 Council Revised policy to reflect Appeals Committee Membership change (E/1.2)

23.09.11

E/9.3.2

Student Ombudsman

Periodic review - Minor editorial changes only

12.01.07

All

Vice-Chancellor

Policy reviewed and updated

24.07.02

E/9.3

Vice-Chancellor

Approved new student grievance procedures

23.10.01

E/9.3

Vice-Chancellor

Revised role and status of Student Ombudsman

28.08.00

E/9.3

Registrar

Revised to define and limit areas of conflict of interest

07.10.99

E/9.3

Registrar

New section

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