If a student has a complaint about any aspect of a course, such as the classroom environment, the instructor, the course’s grading system, or class activities (including online and out-of-class activities), the student should take the following steps:

  1. Talk with the instructor about the situation.
  2. If the student does not feel comfortable approaching the instructor directly or if the problem continues, they should talk immediately to the DEO (Departmental Executive Officer, also referred to as the department chair) of the faculty member’s department.  If the student is uncomfortable dealing directly with a faculty member or a DEO, they may consult the College of Engineering ombudsperson for students in seeking a resolution of a complaint.  It is anticipated that grievances generally can be satisfactorily resolved most expeditiously at the faculty or chair level.
  3. If this does not resolve the situation, the student may write a formal letter of appeal to the Associate Dean for Academic Programs which should outline the situation as well as the student's attempts to resolve the issue.  Students should provide copies of appropriate materials to support their complaint.  Students with grading grievances are responsible for providing completed assignments, tests, quizzes, and all other documentation.
  4. In attempting to resolve the complaint, the Associate Dean may convene a special committee to recommend appropriate action. The Associate Dean will notify the student of the outcome of their complaint via University e-mail.
  5. Any student, after receiving a decision about a complaint from the Associate Dean of the College of Engineering, may appeal the decision through the Office of the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education.

Additional links:

https://dos.uiowa.edu/policies/student-complaints-concerning-faculty-action/

https://dos.uiowa.edu/policies/student-complaints-concerning-actions-by-teaching-assistants/