Student Rights and Grievance Procedure
This section details policies for curricular standards for all graduate students. These policies have been approved by the Graduate Council of La Salle University.
- A student shall have the right to pursue any course of study available in the graduate programs of the University providing he or she can be accommodated within the program, meet the requirements for entering, and continue to meet the requirements of the program.
- A student shall have the right to know at the beginning of each semester, ordinarily during the first week of class, the criteria to be used by the instructor in determining grades in each course.
- A student shall have the right to see his or her own tests and other written material after grading, and the instructor shall have the duty to make this material available within a reasonable time.
- Upon request, a student shall have a right to have his or her grade on such written material explained by the instructor. A request for such explanation must be made within one week after the written material, as graded, is made available to the student.
- If a student believes that his or her final grade is the product of the instructor’s bias, whimsy, or caprice, rather than a judgment on the merits or demerits of his or her academic performance, the student must follow the procedure described in this subsection:
- The student must initiate the complaint procedure with the instructor before or within the first two weeks of the next regular semester.
- After receiving an explanation from the instructor in the course, the student may make a formal complaint to the instructor, giving his or her reasons, in writing, for thinking that the grade was biased, whimsical, or capricious.
- If dissatisfied with the explanation that has been given, the student may appeal to the director of the appropriate program.
- The student has a further appeal to the appropriate dean, who will:
- Request a written statement from that student, which will contain a complete and detailed exposition of the reasons for the student’s complaint. A response from the faculty member will then be requested.
- Advise and assist the student in a further attempt to resolve the problem at the personal level.
- If the student remains dissatisfied with the explanation that has been given, the student may initiate a formal appeal:
- The faculty member who is accused of bias, whimsy, or caprice may elect one of two procedures. The faculty member may request that the dean investigate the matter personally. In the alternative, the faculty member may request that a committee investigate the matter and reach a judgment on the merits of the complaint. In either case, the burden of proof shall be upon the complainant. Neither adjudicating forum (dean or committee) shall substitute his/her or its academic judgment for that of the instructor, but shall investigate and adjudicate only the complaint of bias, whimsy, or caprice.
- If a committee is to be established, the dean shall appoint the committee, consisting of two students and three faculty members. The two students and two faculty members shall, if possible, be from the graduate department responsible for the subject in which the grade was given. The third faculty member shall be from another graduate program.
- Should the designation of the review body (dean or committee) be delayed beyond a reasonable time, then the committee structure described in item 2 above will be convened and the question heard.
- If it is found that the grade given was neither biased, whimsical, nor capricious, the case will be dismissed. If it is found that the grade given was the product of bias, whimsy, or caprice, the review body (dean or committee) shall direct that a notation be entered on the student’s transcript that the grade “had been questioned for cause and the recommendation had been made that it be changed because of apparent (bias, whimsy, or caprice).” The original grade, however, will remain a part of the transcript unless changed by the instructor.
- A student shall be promptly informed if he or she is placed on any form of academic censure.
Individuals who hold a master’s degree in one of La Salle’s programs and are seeking a master’s degree in a second La Salle program may have credit for courses taken for the first degree apply to the second degree on condition that:
- Credits transferred from programs in other accredited institutions may not exceed six in La Salle programs requiring 36 credits or less, or nine in La Salle programs requiring more than 36 credits.
- All requirements for the degree in the second discipline are met to the satisfaction of the program director and dean.
- Courses taken for the first degree and to count for the second degree are essential to meeting requirements of the second degree.
- The total number of credits taken for the two degrees reach a minimum of 48 credits or the equivalent.