Pellissippi State Community College strives to provide the best instructional atmosphere and level of service to students. At times, however, students may have an issue, concern or complaint regarding their educational experience. In such cases, the College strives to resolve issues as quickly as possible and at the level closest to the issue.
Students should follow the procedures listed below to resolve their concerns or complaints.
Complaint regarding a class or instructor: The first step a student must take in resolving a complaint regarding an academic situation is to discuss it with the faculty member directly. If that discussion does not resolve the issue, the student should speak to the dean of the academic department. If there is no resolution at that level, the student may file a formal written complaint below.
Complaint about another student: The first step is to discuss the concern with the other student. If the student with the concern is uncomfortable addressing the other student, he or she may contact the Security Office or the Dean of Students at the Hardin Valley Campus or the Dean at the Division Street, Magnolia Avenue, Blount County, or Strawberry Plains Campus. If there is no resolution at that level, the student may file a formal written complaint below.
Other complaints: If the student has a complaint regarding college services (e.g., financial aid, facilities, advising and registration, admissions, computer accounts, etc.), he or she should first attempt to resolve the issue by speaking with a staff member or supervisor in that department. If the issue is not resolved at that level, the student may file a formal written complaint below.
A student who has attempted informal resolution without success may file a formal complaint. The student should fully complete and submit the electronic student complaint form. This form will be submitted to the appropriate vice president over the area in which the student has a concern. The vice president (or designee) will conduct an investigation within 10 working days of receiving the complaint. The vice president (or designee) will communicate the outcome of the investigation to the student in no more than 30 working days of receiving the complaint.
Students or prospective students who wish to file a complaint related to accreditation or regarding violations of state law not resolved at the institution may submit a Student Complaint Form to the Tennessee Board of Regents at 1415 Murfreesboro Road, Suite 340, Nashville Tennessee 37217, or by going on line and filing out the form electronically at http://www.tbr.edu/contact/default.aspx?id=2936. Under Tennessee's open records law, all or parts of complaints will generally be available for review upon request from a member of the public.
Complaints regarding accreditation can also be made by contacting the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097, telephone: 404-679-4500 (www.sacscoc.org).
Complaints of fraud, waste or abuse may be made by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling the Tennessee Comptroller's Hotline for Fraud, Waste and Abuse at 1-800-232-5454.
Complaint Resolution Policies and Procedures for Non-Tennessee Resident Students in State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement States, commonly known as SARA.
Student complaints relating to consumer protection laws that involve distance learning education offered under the terms and conditions of the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA), must first be filed with the institution to seek resolution.
Complainants not satisfied with the outcome of the Institution’s internal process may appeal, within two years of the incident about which the complaint is made, to the Tennessee Higher Education Commission (https://www.tn.gov/thec/bureaus/student-aid-and-compliance/postsecondary-state-authorization/request-for-complaint-review.html).
For purposes of this process, a complaint shall be defined as a formal assertion in writing that the terms of SARA or the laws, standards or regulations incorporated by the SARA Policies and Standards (http://www.nc-sara.org/content/sara-manual) have been violated by the institution operating under the terms of SARA.
For a list of SARA member States, please visit the NC-SARA website (http://nc-sara.org/sara-states-institutions). Students residing in non-SARA states should consult their respective State of residence for further instruction for filing a complaint.