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Student life and support services



  • To strengthen accountability within the university by contributing to a consistent and transparent approach to resolution of student grievances
  • To ensure that students and staff are aware of the process for independent review of unresolved complaints by the University Student Ombudsman


All campuses:

  • All HDR and coursework programs, including non-award programs
  • Prospective students whose complaint or grievance relates to administrative processes during application, selection or admission
  • Currently enrolled students
  • Complaints and grievances by past coursework students may be lodged up to six months after course completion, or after enrolment is discontinued
  • Complaints and grievances by past HDR candidates may be lodged up to six months:
  • after the written notification of the result of his/her thesis examination;
  • after written notification that his/her candidature has lapsed, been terminated or not confirmed; or
  • after written notification by the candidate that he/she has withdrawn
  • The University has separate procedures for exclusion for unsatisfactory academic progress, discipline, exclusion for health reasons and complaints of discrimination or sexual harassment.

Policy Statement

  • The USO will provide an independent and balanced review of student complaints and grievances which come within the scope of the policy. S/he is not an advocate for the student or the faculty/department.
  • Generally the office of the USO is an avenue of complaint of last resort and the aggrieved student will first be required to complete the relevant grievance procedures.
  • The USO has broad authority to conduct independent investigations at his/her discretion and to make recommendations to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor & Vice-President (Education) for resolution of the grievance.
  • The services of the USO will be available to all students regardless of location or learning mode.
  • Confidentiality will be respected. All parties involved in the resolution of a complaint will restrict information about the complaint including the identities of those involved strictly to the minimum number of parties who need to know in order to resolve the complaint. All materials related to a complaint will be held securely and labelled strictly confidential.
  • The principles of natural justice will be followed in the conduct and reporting of investigations.
  • No student will suffer disadvantage as a result of making a complaint to the USO or assisting a USO enquiry.
  • Staff members will cooperate with enquiries and investigations and no staff member will suffer disadvantage as a result of assisting a USO enquiry.
  • Every attempt will be made to resolve complaints informally at the lowest level possible.
  • The preferred approach will be resolution by conciliation or negotiation to avoid an adversarial approach.
  • Recommendations will focus on system improvement.
  • The implementation of recommendations will be monitored and reported to the University Council as part of the Annual Report.

Procedures Title

University Student Ombudsman Procedures

Responsibility for implementation

  • University Student Ombudsman
  • Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education)



Key Stakeholders

  • Victorian Ombudsman
  • University Student Ombudsman
  • Deputy Vice-Chancellor & Vice-President (Education)
  • Pro Vice-Chancellor (Academic)
  • University Solicitor's Office
  • President of Academic Board
  • Deans of faculties
  • Associate Dean (Teaching) or equivalent and/or Associate Dean with responsibility for Research training
  • Heads of academic units
  • Faculty managers
  • Faculty grievance officers
  • University and/or student associations
  • Monash Postgraduate Association
  • University Review Officer
  • Divisional Directors and Managers
  • Chair, Research Graduate School Committee
  • Chair, Research Graduate School Committee Grievance Appeal Panel
  • Monash Research Graduate School
  • Research Graduate School Committee
  • School/department graduate studies co-ordinators and officers

Approval Body

Name: Vice- Chancellor

Endorsement Body

Name:University Student Ombudsman Implementation Committee
Date:11 September 2007
Agenda item: 4


Student Complaint: An expression of dissatisfaction from a student with a process, decision or service offered or provided by the University.

Student Grievance: A formal written notice given by a student after an unresolved complaint which initiates Complaints and Grievances Procedures.

Course: An award, non-award or enabling program.

Completion of coursework studies: The date on which the final results of a student's course/units are ratified by the relevant Faculty Board of Examiners or equivalent.

Completion of research degree: The date on which the final result of a candidate's HDR program is ratified by the relevant faculty or the Research Graduate School Committee.

Discontinued studies - coursework: Enrolment which has ceased on written advice from the student that he/she has withdrawn; or when the student's enrolment has been discontinued by the University.

Discontinued studies - research: HDR candidature which has ceased on written advice from the candidate that he/she has withdrawn; or HDR candidature that has lapsed, been terminated or not been confirmed.

HDR: Higher degrees by research

MRGS: Monash Research Graduate School

RGSC: Research Graduate School Committee

Working days: Days other than Saturdays, Sundays and university holidays

Related Legislation

Monash University

  • Monash University Act 2009
  • Statute 4.1-Discipline
  • Statute 6.2 -Exclusion for unsatisfactory progress
  • Exclusion for Unsatisfactory Progress regulations
  • Research Graduate School Committee Regulations

Australian Commonwealth and Victorian State Governments

South African Government

Related Policy

  • Academic and Administrative Complaints and Grievance Policy
  • Privacy Policy

Related Documents

Date Effective

10 October 2007

Review Date

10 October 2008


University Student Ombudsman


University Student Ombudsman

Contact Person

University Student Ombudsman

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