Student Complaint Process
In accordance with federal law and accreditation standards, Berkeley College provides the following policies and procedures for resolving student complaints. Students are advised to proceed as promptly as possible to initiate a complaint with the appropriate office or College official and provide any detailed information and/or documentation related to their complaint. Faculty, staff and administrators are advised to acknowledge receipt of a complaint promptly and to respond in a timely manner.
A student wishing to appeal a course grade must submit a completed grade appeal eForm to the faculty member by the end of the first week of the academic term following posting of the disputed grade. The faculty member will respond to the student’s appeal as soon as practical. All responses should be entered into the grade appeal eForm.Should the student disagree with the faculty member’s decision, then no later than two weeks after receiving the faculty member’s decision, the student may appeal that decision to the Department Chair. The Chair will respond to the student’s appeal as soon as practical and shall have the authority to modify the grade as the Chair may deem appropriate. Should the student disagree with the Chair’s decision, then – and only then – no later than two weeks after receiving the Chair’s decision, the student may submit a final appeal to the Dean of the School. The Dean will respond to the student’s appeal as soon as practical and shall have the authority to modify the grade as the Dean may deem appropriate. The Dean’s decision shall be final.
When submitting an appeal to either the Department Chair or the Dean of the School, the student should continue to use and submit the original appeal eForm, containing the response received from the faculty member and, if submitting to the Dean, the response received from the Department Chair. The student should indicate on the eForm why the student believes the faculty member’s decision was in error.
Complaints relating to academic matters other than grade appeals, academic probation, and financial aid probation should be promptly presented to the appropriate faculty member, and then, if necessary, the Department Chair, and finally, the Dean of the School. The decision of the Dean of the School is final.
Academic Integrity & Plagiarism
For complaints related to academic integrity or plagiarism, see the Catalog, Academic Integrity & Plagiarism.
Satisfactory Academic Progress (“SAP”)
For procedures regarding academic and financial aid probation and dismissal due to unsatisfactory academic progress, see the Catalog, Satisfactory Academic Progress and Catalog, SAP – Clinical Students Enrolled Prior to June 6, 2016.
Equal Opportunity, Title IX, VAWA, and NY 129-B
For complaints related to (i) harassment and/or discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or any other protected category; and/or (ii) complaints related to sexual assault, intimate partner violence, and stalking, please see the Equal Opportunity Policy and Equal Opportunity Complaint Procedures for Students.
For complaints related to accommodation requests and/or disability services, please see the Disability Services page and the Disability Services Accommodation Policy for Students.
If you witness an emergency situation, or the commission of a serious crime, or perceive a situation to be an immediate threat to your safety or the safety of others, or are a victim yourself, you should immediately dial “911” or call your local police department. You should also call the Berkeley College Public Safety Department, but only after reporting the matter to the police. For more information, see the Conduct and Safety Policy.
For complaints related to student records and privacy rights afforded under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”) see the Student Records (FERPA) Policy.
Computer Access & Technology
For complaints regarding technology and access-related issues, contact the Information Systems HelpDesk: email@example.com (973)-278-5400 Ext. 1540.
Other Non-Academic Complaints
Complaints relating to (a) suspension or dismissal for nonacademic reasons other than conduct covered by the Equal Opportunity Policy; or (b) any matter other than grade appeals, academic matters, or appeals for academic and financial aid probation and dismissal due to unsatisfactory academic progress must be presented in writing to the Campus Operating Officer within 10 business days. The Campus Operating Officer shall review the circumstances and action taken and may modify such action only where, in the judgment of the Campus Operating Officer, a failure to do so would result in a manifest injustice. In such matters, the decision of the Campus Operating Officer shall be final.
Unavailability of Decision-Maker and Potential Conflicts of Interest
Whenever, in the sole discretion of the College, the official designated by these procedures as a decision-maker shall be unavailable or perceived by the College to have a potential conflict of interest that may unduly influence the investigation or determination of an Equal Opportunity complaint, Academic Complaint or Non-Academic Complaint, the College may designate a substitute decision-maker.
Berkeley College is approved to offer online education programs and participate in the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (“SARA”). For a current list of SARA member states, see http://nc-sara.org/. Students and prospective students residing in California and Massachusetts – please see the Non-SARA States section below for more information.
Online Students Enrolled in New York Programs
Students must first direct their complaint to Berkeley College for investigation and resolution. If the complaint remains unresolved after all institutional procedures have been exhausted, complaints may be directed to the SARA State Portal Entity. Students have two years from the date of the incident about which the complaint is made to appeal to the SARA State Portal Entity. Complaints regarding grade appeals or conduct are subject to Berkeley College procedures and will not be addressed by the State Portal Entity.
SARA State Portal Entity:
Attn: Supervisor, Higher Education Programs
New York State Education Department
89 Washington Avenue
Albany, NY 12234
For more information see New York State Department of Education.
Online Students Enrolled in New Jersey Programs
Students must first direct their complaint to Berkeley College for investigation and resolution. If the complaint remains unresolved after all institutional procedures have been exhausted, complaints may be directed to the SARA State Portal Entity. Students have two years of the incident about which the complaint is made to appeal to the SARA State Portal Entity. Complaints regarding grade appeals or conduct are subject to Berkeley College procedures and will not be addressed by the State Portal Entity.
SARA State Portal Entity:
Attn: Director, Office of Licensure
New Jersey Office of the Secretary of Higher Education
20 W. State Street, 4th Floor
P.O. Box 542 Trenton, NJ 08625
For more information see http://www.state.nj.us/highereducation/SARA.shtml and http://www.state.nj.us/highereducation/OSHEComplaintInstructions.shtml.
Due to state regulation of distance education, Berkeley College cannot accept residents of Massachusetts into its online courses or education programs.
Contact Information by Department
Below are examples of complaint types and links to department contact information:
|Complaints Related To||Department|
|Amending student records||Office of the Registrar|
|Federal, state, and institutional aid||Financial Aid|
|Billing; fees; account charges||Student Accounts Department|
|Student conduct||Student Development and Campus Life|
|Internships; career assistance||Career Services|
|Veterans benefits; Veteran Affairs work-study program||Office of Military & Veteran Affairs|
|Resources; library-related services||Library|
|Tutoring||Center for Academic Success|
|Safety/security; criminal activity||Public Safety Department|
|Alumni communications; alumni career services||Office of Alumni Relations|
On occasion, the College may receive legal documentation such as a summons, complaint, or subpoena, along with communications from agencies and/or outside law firms. All notices and legal documentation must be forwarded immediately to the Office of the General Counsel.
State Regulatory Information
Complaints that have exhausted Berkeley College’s procedures and remain unresolved may be directed to the appropriate state agency.
New Jersey: Berkeley College is authorized by the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education (“OSHE”). See the OSHE complaint instructions and complaint form.
New York: Berkeley College is authorized by the New York State Board of Regents. See the Office of College and University Evaluation complaint instructions and complaint form.
Berkeley College is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (“MSCHE”), 3624 Market Street, 2nd Floor West, Philadelphia, PA 19104, 267-284-5000. Accreditation was last reaffirmed in June 2018. Complaints that have exhausted the institution’s procedures may be directed to MSCHE. See the “How to File a Complaint with the Commission” instructions.