Student complaints procedure
We are committed to helping you have the best possible experience while studying at Reading. However, we know that sometimes things can go wrong.
The first thing you should do is try to resolve the issue informally by having an open and straightforward discussion with your School or the relevant Function team.
Where early and informal resolution of your concern has not been possible or is not appropriate, you can make a complaint under the Student Complaints Procedure.
If you are not sure what to do before making a complaint, you can contact the Student Appeals Complaints and Discipline team. Any requests for support will be treated sensitively by the University.
Making a formal complaint
Complaints can be wide-ranging and might include:
- Issues with your teaching and supervision;
- Unfair treatment
- Poor quality delivery or standard of University services, such as the library or catering facilities;
- Problems arising from misleading or incorrect information provided by the University;
There are some issues that the complaints procedure can’t be used for, because those matters are addressed by other University procedures. These include:
- Complaints about another student’s behaviour. These are dealt with under the University’s Student Disciplinary Procedures.
- Complaints about academic decisions made regarding progress or awards including appeals against academic decisions. Read more on our Academic Guidance and Regulations.
- Complaints made by applicants regarding admissions decisions.
- Complaints against staff (of a potentially disciplinary nature). These are normally dealt with through the University’s Human Resources procedures.
- Complaints relating to commercial or business decisions of the University.
You can read more about the issues that the procedure can’t be used for and what procedure might apply instead in section 2.8 of the Student Complaints Procedure.
If you wish to make a complaint, there are three stages to the Procedure.
Key date: You must raise a Stage 1 complaint within three calendar months of the incident which is the cause of your Complaint.
An initial consideration of your Complaint, with an emphasis on conciliation and informal resolution. This stage will not be appropriate for all Complaints.
If informal resolution has not been successful or was not appropriate, you should raise a Stage 1 Complaint. You should email the relevant member(s) of Staff from your University email account. If you are unsure who to contact, email email@example.com.
When reporting, you should:
a. Be specific about your Complaint and describe it succinctly;
b. Provide supporting documentary evidence where available and appropriate; and
c. State the outcome you are requesting, being clear and realistic.
A more formal procedure, requiring detailed investigation, which may include mediation.
A request for a review of Stage 2.
Following a Complaint, a Completion of Procedures letter will be issued by the University, which marks the end of the internal University complaints process.
We have created a flowchart showing how the Procedure works.
Support during the complaints process
- We strongly encourage all Students to access the Reading Students' Union Advice Service before beginning a formal complaint.
- Students can be accompanied to meetings by a Representative , as defined in the Procedure.
- We know that the process can cause stress and worry, so you can also speak to the Student Welfare Team who can support you.
- We encourage students to make use of online support functions, leaflets and workbooks .
Full details on where to find support during the process are in Appendix 3 of the Policy.