Complaint and Grievance Systems

Complaint and Grievance Systems at Ohio State

The university gives students several options for filing complaints and grievances, depending upon the context of the situation and the level of the student.

In the academic context, undergraduate and graduate students are advised to resolve any dispute or grievance with the person or persons most closely involved – starting with the course instructor. If that step does not produce an acceptable result, the student is advised to work with the department and then the college.

If the complaint is not resolved to satisfaction, students are encouraged to file a grievance with the Office of Undergraduate Education or the Graduate School.

Other channels for filing complaints and grievances include the following:

Student Advocacy Center
The Student Advocacy Center is committed to helping students navigate Ohio State's structure and to resolving issues that they encounter at the university. Its purpose is to empower students to overcome obstacles to their growth both inside and outside the classroom. The Student Advocacy Center offers general advising related to academic areas: personal circumstances, instructor complaints, grade grievances, withdrawals, dismissal/reinstatement and a variety of other issues.

Student Conduct
Student Conduct is a department within the Office of Student Life whose purpose is to support the educational mission of the university by administering the Code of Student Conduct and serving as a resource to the university community and beyond.  An educational and holistic approach to discipline is employed whenever possible. Students can make complaints through this office about wide-ranging subject matter, including alcohol and drugs violations, theft, destruction of property, or other Code of Student Conduct violations. A proscribed investigation and hearing process guides the adjudication process.

Office of Institutional Equity
The Office of Institutional Equity exists to help the Ohio State community prevent and respond to all forms of protected class harassment, discrimination and sexual misconduct. This centralized office houses the university’s Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Affirmative Action and Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO), Youth Activities and Programs, and Title IX functions. The office also coordinates the university’s response to all complaints of harassment and discrimination based on age, ancestry, color, disability, gender identity or expression, genetic information, HIV/AIDS status, military status, national origin, race, religion, sex, gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy, protected veteran status, or any other bases under the law.

Committee on Academic Misconduct (COAM)
The Committee on Academic Misconduct (COAM) is charged with maintaining the academic integrity of The Ohio State University by establishing procedures for and investigating all reported cases of alleged academic misconduct by students.

Campus Free Speech Policy
Our Shared Values include a commitment to diversity and innovation. Pursuant to these values, the university promotes a culture of welcoming differences, making connections among people and ideas, and encouraging open-minded exploration, risk-taking, and freedom of expression. As a land-grant institution, the university takes seriously its role in promoting and supporting public discourse. To that end, Ohio State is steadfastly committed to protecting the First Amendment right to free speech and academic freedom on its campuses, and to upholding the university’s academic motto — “Education for Citizenship.” The Campus Free Speech policy supports this commitment and outlines a process for students, student groups and faculty to submit complaints about alleged violations of the policy by university employees.

Office of University Compliance and Integrity and Anonymous Reporting Line
The Office of University Compliance and Integrity oversees compliance efforts across the university, including compliance in Research, the Medical Center, Athletics, Environmental Health and Safety, Information Security, Clery Act reporting, and the Ohio Public Records law. If you suspect a violation of laws, rules, regulations or policies affecting the university community, the office has resources to make a report or raise a question or concern, including anonymous reporting through EthicsPoint.

Student Financial Aid (SFA)
Students who have complaints about financial aid should first work with the office of Student Financial Aid to resolve the dispute. If the dispute is not resolved to the student’s satisfaction there are resources outside of the university that may assist:

Office of the University Bursar
Students who have complaints about their financial account may contact the Office of the University Bursar.  Students may also contact the Consumer Financial and Protection Bureau for complaints regarding private student loans and servicers of federal student loans.