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Wow!  This is a touchy situation!  How to help the students without
getting in trouble with the faculty!  As you do, here at Albuquerque
Technical Vocational Institute, we try to keep the student on task;
however, as you noted, it ain't always easy to do this.  If the problem is
a serious one and we've heard it before from several students, we
recommend that the student (or group of students if several from the same
class have the same complaint!) take the problem to the department Dean.
We do have a problem-resolution officer on staff to help resolve serious
disputes.  Mediation is always better than confrontation!  If you don't
have such a mediation program in place, I highly recommend setting one up.
This keeps your neck off the chopping block and allows you to focus on
tutoring!

Peggy Keller
English Instructional Technician
Assistance Centers for Education
Albuquerque Technical Vocational Institute
525 Buena Vista SE
Albuquerque, NM  87106

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On Fri, 16 Jan 1998, Elizabeth Bergman wrote:

> What do you do when you receive a serious complaint about a professor or
> when the same complaint about a professor is repeated by several students?
>
> At our learning center, as with most of you, I am sure, we have heard
> plenty of whining about assignments, teaching styles, etc.  We have always
> redirected the students to the task at hand.  However, there were rare
> occasions when the complaint was so serious that the students wanted to
> know the procedure and hierarchy for making a formal complaint (see the
> department chair, and then, if necessary, talk to the Dean of Academic
> Affairs).
>
> We do not have a mechanism for our learning center to report complaints to
> Academic Affairs because we want to maintain a good working relationship
> with faculty.
>
> How does your learning center handle complaints?
>