Each institution is required to have in place student complaint policies and procedures that are reasonable, fairly administered, and well-publicized.
(See FR 4.5). The Commission also requires, in accord with federal regulations, that each institution maintains a record of complaints received by the institution.  This record is made available to the Commission upon request. This record will be reviewed and evaluated by the Commission as part of the institution’s decennial evaluation.

Compliance Judgment: In compliance


East Carolina University (hereafter, ECU or the institution) acknowledges the value of information provided by students, employees, and others in determining the consistency of ECU's performance as set by standards of the University of North Carolina, specialty accrediting bodies and SACS-COC.

As outlined in federal requirement 4.5, the university has a student complaint policy and procedure that is reasonable, fairly administered and well-publicized. Procedures for academic and non-academic student complaints and inquiries are publicly posted for students on the Dean of Students website. The procedures assist students in determining the appropriate method of dealing with complaints and apply to all ECU students, including distance education students, as stated on this website. A copy of the student complaint policy is provided and several examples of how our institution follows the policy and documents resolution are included. The Office of the Dean of Students maintains this record based on information provided on the Student Complaint Form. The elements of the complaint review that are part of this record include: name and contact information, who the complaint is against, type of complaint, description of complaint, name of the person who you believe discriminated against you, corrective action sought, witnesses, and statement of veracity.

As further stated in the compliance narrative for federal requirement 4.5, if a complaint cannot be resolved after exhausting East Carolina University's procedure described above, students are directed to file a complaint with the following agencies:

The University of North Carolina General Administration, Post-Secondary Education Complaints, c/o Assistant Director of Licensure and Workforce Studies, 910 Raleigh Road, Chapel Hill, NC 27515-2688, (919) 962-4558, or via e-mail at studentcomplaint@northcarolina.edu.

The Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097, (404) 679-4500, or via the SACSCOC website.

Similarly, management of formal complaints against the institution is handled by the Office of the Chancellor. The Chancellor’s Chief of Staff is responsible for oversight of the records. When a complaint is received in the Office of the Chancellor, the Chief of Staff or another appropriate administrator within the Chancellor’s Office refers the complaint to the appropriate university administrator.  For example, if the topic of the complaint is related to the Division of Health Sciences, then the Chancellor’s Office would request that the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences handle the complaint directly and report back to the Office of the Chancellor on the action taken and the end result. The elements of the public complaints report include: date of the complaint, name of the complainant, Banner ID (if assigned), address, who the complaint is against, type of complaint, description of the complaint, the office the complaint is referred to, and the follow up action and result as identified by the appropriate office.  The record is centralized and located in the Office of the Chancellor’s Chief of Staff.  Examples of how ECU follows a complaint through resolution are provided here as Public Complaint #1, Public Complaint #2, and Public Complaint #3.

In summary, the institution has in place student complaint policies and procedures that are reasonable, fairly administered, and well-publicized, and maintains a record of complaints received by the institution. 


Reference Title


Dean of Students Website

Dean of Students website

Public Complaint #1

Public Complaint 1.28.09


Public Complaint #2

Public Complaint 6.1.12


Public Complaint #3

Public Complaint 6.29.12


SACS Website

Commission on Colleges

Student Complaint Form