Formal complaints are defined as student, faculty, or staff complaints that are submitted through the SoN or the University’s formal grievance, complaint, or other reporting processes such as through Human Resources.
The SoN maintains a petition process for students who are requesting an exception to policy, permission to step out of the nursing curriculum sequence, to address professional conduct issues, or to dispute a grade. Policies regarding student concerns or grievances can be found in the respective student handbooks.
The student who feels s/he has a complaint should first address the concern and seek resolution through normal academic and/or administrative processes, as applicable for the situation, addressing the concern at the lowest and least formal level possible. If this proves unsatisfactory the student may use the petition process described in the SoN Student Handbook. The petition process is initiated by the student appealing to the Recruitment, Admission, and Progression (RAP) Committee with a formal statement explaining the circumstances of their situation. Students work with their academic advisor to help them determine the best course of action: what type of petition the student should pursue, how to craft this petition, and the process involved. The RAP committee will make a recommendation to the Dean, who will make the final determination. Students may contact the University Dispute Resolution Committee (UDRC) if they feel the processes for the petition did not follow School of Nursing or University policy. The UDRC review is limited to whether a School of Nursing or University policy, including the policy on Equal Opportunity, was violated.
Note: Faculty members and academic advisors assisting students with a dispute are expected to ensure that informal dispute resolution channels have been fully utilized, beginning at the lowest level possible, prior to advising students to pursue formal dispute resolution and/or the petition process. Internal SoN mechanisms, including communications with the Course Lead/Coordinator, Level Leads, FNP or PMHNP Lead Faculty, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, and the SoN Dean are expected to be utilized before proceeding to the university level whenever possible and as applicable.
Faculty with concerns should first address the concern and seek resolution through normal collegial, governance, or administrative channels as applicable for the situation at either the SoN or University level, addressing the concern at the lowest and least formal level possible, including communications with other involved parties, and as needed, with the SoN Dean. If the faculty member is not satisfied with the results of efforts to informally resolve her/his concern, a written complaint may be filed with the University Dispute Resolution Committee (UDRC). The process and timeframes for UDRC review and decision making are posted on the PLU Human Resources website: https://www.plu.edu/udrc/resolving-disputes-at-plu/