Skip to content

The Proctor has responsibility for the management of student complaints against the University. The Proctor encourages complainants to initially attempt to resolve issues informally and can offer advice and guidance on achieving this if necessary.

There is a formal process for students to make complaints against the University and you can find the procedure in the Student Policies and Guidance section on Portal.

If you would like further information on making a complaint please email or call Chester 01244 511 559 or Warrington 01925 534 206

Formal Complaint FAQs

What can the complaint be about?

  • the provision of programmes or part of programmes of study
  • services or facilities of the University
  • action or lack of action by the University

What isn’t covered by the Student Complaints Procedure?

This procedure may not be used in respect of any of the following, for which separate procedures exist:

  • Academic Appeals relating to examinations or assessments or to academic progress or against expulsion or exclusion on academic grounds (refer to the Student Appeals Procedure);
  • Disagreement with the academic judgement of a marker or examiner; Awards or Module Assessment Board; Academic Malpractice Panel or Academic Appeals Board or Mitigating Circumstances Board (refer to the Student Appeals Procedure);
  • Admissions Complaints regarding the admissions processes and decisions are subject to a separate procedure (refer to the Admission of Students Handbook);
  • Complaints involving bullying and harassment by, and the conduct of, other students (refer to the Student Disciplinary Procedure);
  • Complaints against the Students’ Union and its affiliated groups (refer to the Student Union Procedures, Student Union);
  • Complaints involving Equality or harassment by a member of staff (refer to the Dignity and Respect Policy & Procedure);
  • Complaints about decisions made under the Student Disciplinary Procedure, Professional Suitability Procedure or Fitness to Study Procedure (including Mental Health);
  • Complaints regarding matters relating to Freedom of Information or Data Protection;
  • Complaints from students at other organisations or on placement regarding service, facilities or other non-academic matters, not related to the University programme of study, that may reasonably be regarded as beyond the control of the University and under the direct responsibility or control of the other organisation or placement organisation (refer to the other organisation’s procedures);
  • Complaints submitted by a third party, which will not be accepted unless accompanied by written authorisation from the Student;
  • Issues raised under the Public Interest Disclosure Act (whistleblowing) relating to placements (refer to the relevant Faculty Whistleblowing procedure).
  • Information about these separate procedures can be found at the Students’ Union, Student Services or on Portal.

How do I submit a formal complaint?

  • All matters of complaint raised under this procedure should be submitted on the Student Complaint Form
  • The completed form should be submitted in a sealed envelope addressed to Student Complaints, Student Services or via email to

What is the process for my complaint?

There are flow charts on the process for complaints at Appendix A of the Student Complaints Procedure. Please visit Portal to see the process.

What are the timescales for my complaint?

Each of the following stages of this procedure has a specific time limit, as set out in column (2) of the following table, which a Complainant must comply with:

(1) Stage 

(2) Time limit

(3) Acknowledged

(4) Response by

1) Informal

Complaint must be raised within 2 months of the matter of complaint.


15 working days

2) Formal

Complaint must be raised to this stage within 10 working days after the informal response and no later than 3 Months after the matter of complaint or Complaint must be raised no later than 2 Months after the matter of complaint if stage 1 (Informal) has not been engaged.

5 working days

30 working days

3) Review

Complaint must be raised to this stage within 10 working days from the date of the response notification under stage 2 (Formal).

5 working days

30 working days

What outcomes are there for student complaints?

Although the University of Chester will make every reasonable effort to provide appropriate facilities, amenities and services, submitting a complaint will not always produce the Complainant’s preferred outcome.

For instance, policy or resource decisions may affect the level of service provided.

However, whatever the decision, Complainants will be informed of the outcome, the reasons for it and any recommendations for future or amended University, faculty or department working practices.

A determination under the complaints procedure will not, of itself, result in a change to an academic decision.

What if I’m not happy with the outcome of my complaint?

  • You can request a review if:
    •  the Investigating Officer has not responded to all the substantive areas of the complaint; or b. there was procedural irregularity in connection with the determination by the Investigating Officer;
    •  new evidence has come to light which was not, with reasonable diligence, obtainable by the Complainant(s) at Stage 2.
    •  That the findings of the Investigating Officer are not reasonable in all circumstances.
  • You should resubmit the complaint within ten [10] working days, from the date of the report notification from the Directorate of Student Services.
  • The request for a review should set out the grounds for a review and provide appropriate written evidence, including a copy of the University’s initial response and any additional evidence.
  • If previously unavailable new evidence is relied on, you should explain why it was not previously obtainable.
  • Where you believe that the findings are unreasonable you should explain why this is the case.

What if I’m not happy with the outcome of a review?

  • If the you are still not happy, you may ask the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) to consider the complaint.
  • The OIA will normally review a case only if all internal university procedures have been exhausted. A Completion of Procedures letter signifies that this stage has been reached.
  • Guidance on the OIA scheme can be obtained through the Directorate of Student Services, Student Union, or the OIA web site:

Where can I get advice?

If you require advice and support, please contact Advice at Chester Students’ Union Contact Advice

If you have any questions about the complaints process, please contact The Proctor’s Office on:

Telephone: 01244 511 559