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Higher Education: Appeals

Question for Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

UIN HL567, tabled on 24 June 2014

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to establish a nationwide appeals system for higher education students in the United Kingdom who wish to appeal on the basis of awarded grades or complain about alleged unfair treatment by university staff.

Answered on

3 July 2014

The Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education (OIA) operates a national complaints handling scheme for England and Wales, under provisions in the 2004 Higher Education Act. The OIA can review complaints made by students against Higher Education Institutions if they remain unresolved, once a student has completed the institution's own complaints procedures. This may include, for example, complaints from students about unfair treatment by university staff. The service is free of charge to students.

Separate arrangements are in place in Scotland and Northern Ireland.There are, however, some complaints that OIA cannot consider. These relate to concerns about admission to a university and to academic judgement. In the latter case, OIA can look at whether an institution has followed its rules and regulations in making an award to a student.

Answered by

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills