Master’s Program Grievance Procedures

Grievance Procedures in the Master’s Program:

Student Rights and Responsibilities

If a student feels unfairly treated or aggrieved by faculty, staff, or another student, the University offers several avenues to resolve the grievance. Students’ concerns about unfair treatment are best handled directly with the person responsible for the objectionable action. If the student is uncomfortable making direct contact with the individual(s) involved, they should contact the Master’s Program Manager or someone else they feel comfortable speaking with. Many departments and schools/colleges have established specific procedures for handling such situations; check their web pages and published handbooks for information. If such procedures exist at the local level, these should be investigated first. For more information see the Graduate School Academic Policies & Procedures > Grievances & Appeals:

Grievance Procedures for the Department of Economics

The student is encouraged to speak first with the person toward whom the grievance is directed to see if a situation can be resolved at this level if they feel safe and comfortable doing so. Students are welcome to seek advice from the Master’s Program Manager or others with whom they have a trusting relationship.

Should a satisfactory resolution not be achieved, the student should contact Master’s Program Manager, Director of the Master’s Program, or another faculty or staff member that they feel comfortable with to discuss the grievance (the Master’s Program Manager is named in and the Director of the Master’s Program in At this point in the process, this informal discussion would be considered confidential, unless the issue involves certain conduct that university employees are required to report to University Officials (as specified in section 8). The department will facilitate problem resolution through informal channels and facilitate any complaints or issues of students. The first attempt is to help students informally address the grievance prior to any formal complaint. Students are also encouraged to talk with their faculty advisors or the department DEI committee regarding concerns or difficulties if necessary. University resources for sexual harassment, discrimination, disability accommodations, and other related concerns can be found on the UW Dean of Students Office website:

Other campus resources are listed here. A resource providing “confidential” consultation can help people who want support or information, but do not wish to report. Confidential means they will not share information that identifies the person seeking support without that person’s permission.


If the issue is not resolved to the student’s satisfaction, the student can submit a formal departmental grievance to the Department Administrator in writing (the Department Administrator is named in The formal grievance should provide as much detail as possible about the incident(s) or situation(s) of concern.

On receipt of a written grievance complaint, the Department Chair will be informed and will convene a 3-member faculty committee r to manage the department-level grievance. The program faculty committee will preserve confidentiality if possible and desired and will obtain a written response from the person toward whom the complaint is directed. This response will be shared with the person filing the grievance.

The faculty committee will determine a decision regarding the grievance. The Department Administrator will report on the action taken by the committee in writing to both the student and the party toward whom the complaint was directed within 15 working days from the date the complaint was received when possible. Details shared with the aggrieved student may be limited by university policies regarding personnel matters or student records.

At this point, if either party (the student or the person toward whom the grievance is directed) is unsatisfied with the decision of the faculty committee, the party may file a written appeal. Either party has 10 working days to file a written appeal to the committee’s decision through the Department Administrator. Appeals will be reviewed by the Department Chair who will come to a decision within 10 working days from when the appeal was received, when possible.

Documentation of the grievance will be stored for at least 7 years. Significant grievances that set a precedent will be stored indefinitely.

The Graduate School has procedures for students wishing to further appeal a grievance decision made at the Department level. These policies are described in the Graduate School’s Academic Policies and Procedures: