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Complaints

We are committed to providing you with the support you need to remain safe and well while you study. You can report an issue of concern or make a complaint through our complaints process. We will work with you for a timely and effective resolution.    

Overview

In an emergency, follow the steps found on the emergencies and safety on campus page.

If you would like to talk to someone about an incident involving sexual harassment or indecent assault, you can call our confidential helpline service from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.

You can also contact our helpline if you would like to discuss making any form of complaint.

1800 SYD HLP (1800 793 457)

What is a complaint?

A complaint is any type of problem or concern about academic or non-academic matters that you raise with the University, and requires staff to work with you towards a resolution. It could be to do with your studies, student life, the University environment or the behaviour of a student or staff member.

General enquiries, feedback and comments (including on social media) will not normally be considered a complaint.

Complaints give us an opportunity to identify areas for improvement. We approach any experience of unreasonable treatment, disadvantage or distress seriously and with sensitivity. We will work with you towards a timely and effective resolution.

The Students Complaints Procedures 2015 outlines how complaints involving students and applicants may be raised and how they will be assessed and resolved by the Student Affairs Unit. You may also be considered a ‘student’ for the purpose of the procedure if you were admitted or enrolled within the two years before making the complaint and any person the complaint relates to has a current relationship to the University.

If you want to raise a sensitive issue, you can email us at studentaffairs@sydney.edu.au or call us on 1800 SYD HLP (1800 793 457).

Student and staff behaviour

Expected behaviour of students in relation to non-academic matters and personal behaviour is set out in the Code of Conduct for Students.

You can also find codes of conduct outlining professional and personal behaviour of staff and affiliates and the expectations of researchers.

Bullying, harassment or discrimination

We are committed to providing a safe and healthy learning environment that is free from bullying, unlawful harassment and discrimination.

What is bullying?

Bullying is repeated and unreasonable behaviour directed toward a person, or group of people, that creates a risk to health and safety. Examples of bullying include verbal abuse or threats, unjustified criticism or complaints, spreading rumours or physical abuse.

What is harassment?

Unlawful harassment occurs when a person, or group of people, is intimidated, insulted or humiliated because of one or more characteristics. Examples include telling jokes about a particular racial group, or making derogatory comments or taunts about someone’s race or religion, gender or sexual preference.

Sexual harassment occurs if a person engages in unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature in circumstances where a reasonable person would anticipate the possibility that the other person would feel humiliated, intimidated or offended. Examples include sending sexually explicit emails or texts or asking intrusive questions about someone's personal life.

What is discrimination?

Under law, discrimination occurs when a person, or group of people, is treated less favourably than another person or group because of one or more characteristics, or where there is an unreasonable rule or requirement that disadvantages a particular group.

The Bullying, Harassment and Discrimination Prevention Policy 2015 provides information about the University’s stance on preventing bullying, harassment and discrimination.

The Bullying, Harassment and Discrimination Procedures 2015 provides details of how the University will handle complaints by or about staff, workers or affiliates.

Academic appeals and other exceptions

Some areas of the University have separate policies in place that require you to follow a different process when making a complaint.

If you are concerned about an academic decision that affects your assessment or progression through your course, such as a decision on a grade, a special consideration request, or exclusion, you may need to follow the process for academic appeal.

The University of Sydney (Student Appeals against Academic Decisions) Rule 2006 describes how student appeals against academic decisions will be heard.

The Academic Honesty in Coursework Policy 2015 sets out the policy on handling allegations of academic dishonesty and plagiarism at the University.

The Privacy Policy 2013 sets out the rights and responsibilities of the University, its staff, students and affiliates in relation to privacy and personal information.

Read more on the Archives and Records Management Services (ARMS) website.

The University of Sydney Intellectual Property Policy 2016 sets out the policy on ownership and management of intellectual property at the University.

Read about intellectual property rights at the University.

Last updated: 27 February 2017

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