Graduate Student Board of Appeals
The Graduate Student Board of Appeals (GSBA) will hear appeals related to the academic experience of a graduate student when the normal process for settling disputes has been exhausted. Disputes involving administrative offices, sexual harassment by a faculty member, nonpayment of debts, should not be referred to the GSBA, but should go directly to the Provost and Chief Academic Officer. Violation of these procedures that do not prejudice any party will not invalidate the procedure.
Membership in GSBA
When the Associate Provost receives a formal appeal from a student or faculty member, the GSBA will be constituted. The Associate Provost shall appoint three members of the graduate faculty to serve on the board.
Each year, the faculty of each program will identify one of their students for potential service. The Associate Provost will appoint two students (neither from the same program as the student or faculty member involved in the appeal) to serve on the GSBA.
The student and faculty member shall each have the right to ask for replacement of any two members of the original selection. The Associate Provost will appoint substitutes as needed. Only two such challenges may be used by either party.
Normal Procedure for Resolving Academic Disputes
Ordinarily, the student must first meet with the faculty member in question and try to resolve the issue. Failing this, the appellant should contact the department chair/program director. (If the faculty member in question is the department chair/program director, the student must first meet with the department chair/program director to try to resolve the issue.) The department chair/program director should hear from both the student and the faculty member and try to resolve the issue in a professional manner. The department chair/program director shall keep a record of the outcome.
If after meeting with the department chair/program director the issue is unresolved, the appellant should contact the college dean. The college dean should hear from both the student and the faculty member and try to resolve the issue in a professional manner. The college dean shall keep a record of the outcome. If an agreement is not reached after meeting with the faculty member, department chair/program director and college dean, then the appellant may file a written notice of appeal.
If the normal procedure does not resolve the complaint, the appellant may file a written notice of appeal with the Associate Provost within one academic term of the occurrence of the dispute. Upon receipt of the written appeal, the Associate Provost will have 15 working days in which to appoint the GSBA members. The GSBA will meet within 10 working days, select a chair and interview the student, faculty member and any other interested parties.
If an informal agreement cannot be reached at this level within 30 working days of the GSBA’s first meeting, the appeal process will continue in a formal manner as follows:
- Immediate written notification of the appeal by the GSBA to the Provost and Chief Academic Officer.
- Immediate written notification by the GSBA to any person charged in the appeal.
- A formal gathering of data and hearing of testimony.
- A recommendation by the GSBA by a majority vote within 30 working days of the written notification by the GSBA to the Provost and Chief Academic Officer. This recommendation should include the GSBA’s rationale for the decision.
- Immediate notification of the recommendation to all interested parties.
- After consideration of the recommendation from the GSBA, the Provost and Chief Academic Officer will make a decision within 15 working days and inform the student, faculty member, program director, dean and chair of the GSBA of his/her action.