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Complaints Processes

Students waiting for class

University of Otago Grievance Procedures

The University of Otago is committed to providing a safe and fair work and study environment. All complaints are treated seriously and the University will attempt to resolve them as quickly as possible.


The University has grievance procedures available to ensure that students are able to make complaints and that complaints are responded to appropriately without prejudice to the student.
 

If you have concerns about your treatment by the university, by a staff member or by another student the first thing you should do is try and resolve the problem directly with the person(s) concerned. Wherever possible, complaints should be resolved by a process of discussion, cooperation and conciliation.


If you cannot reach an agreement about your grievance, or if you do not want to approach the person(s) directly, please contact any of the following:

  • The International Student Advisers
  • The Otago University Students' Association (OUSA)
  • A representative from the Ethical Behaviour Network
  • The University Mediator

They will discuss the issue with you and try and help you reach an agreeable outcome.


If you are not satisfied with the proposed outcome you can make a formal complaint under any of the following:

  • Academic Grievance Procedure
  • Ethical Behaviour Policy
  • International Office Complaints Procedure

Your support person will advise you which of these is the most appropriate for your complaint; they may also suggest another person to help you with your complaint.

International Office Complaints Process

  1. Talk to an International Student Adviser about your complaint. Together you will discuss the issue and try to reach an agreeable outcome. If the complaint is regarding an International Student Adviser, talk directly to the Deputy Director, International.
  2. If you are not satisfied with the proposed outcome, you will be asked to put your complaint in writing to the Deputy Director, International.
  3. The Deputy Director, International, will discuss the complaint with you and inform the person (if there is one) that the complaint has been made against.
  4. The Deputy Director, International, will decide upon an outcome and action to be taken and discuss this with you.
  5. If you are unhappy with the outcome, you should put your complaint in writing to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (External Engagement).
  6. If you still have any concerns with the decision of the University you can contact the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA).  This is an independent organisation that deals with complaints from international students. The NZQA enforces the standards in the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students. Please note that the NZQA is unable to act on behalf of PhD or Exchange students

The University of Otago is a signatory to the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students. To find out more about this Code, please read the Code of Practice Summary brochure you received upon arrival, or ask the International Office for a copy.

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Education (Pastoral Care of International Students) Code of Practice Complaints Procedure

There is a formal process in place for you or your parents to follow if you have a complaint about Otago University' s compliance with the Code.

If you or your parents have a complaint about Otago breaching the Code, you can make a complaint in writing to the Director of the International Office.   The Director will take all steps necessary to ensure that the grievance is settled.

If your complaing is not resolved, you can contact the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) by phone on 0800 697 296 or email: qadrisk@nzqa.govt.nz

If it is a financial or contractual dispute, you can contact iStudent complaints by phone on 0800 006 675.

For more information about the complaints process for international students, please refer to the NZQA website.


For further information please email international-support@otago.ac.nz