How to resolve student concerns

Resolution for any academic or non-academic student complaint at Mason is best achieved through the designated offices listed below. Please reach out to those offices to file complaints and appeals. All inquiries conducted via email must be communicated through your official Mason email account.


Informal Grievances

Students who have inquiries or questions about potential complaints can contact the offices below.

  • Office of the Ombudsman: Mason’s Office of the Ombudsman acts as a unique resource for students to discuss concerns and complaints. As an impartial party, the Ombudsman does not take sides in any conflict and operates independently of any formal university channels. Visit the Ombudsman’s website for more information.
  • Office of Compliance, Diversity, and Ethics (CDE): Discuss options with an office representative and receive assistance in filing an informal or formal complaint. Visit the CDE website for more information.

George Mason University Complaint Process

We want you to have the best educational experience possible in your time as a student with George Mason University. If you have a complaint about an online course or program, please contact resolve@gmu.edu. If we determine that your inquiry should go to a faculty member, an academic unit or another service unit on campus, we will let you know, and you will need to contact that office. Some situations can be resolved by reviewing processes for certain actions:

Grade Appeals

Academic Integrity

Discrimination

Reasonable Accommodation

Sexual Harassment and Misconduct


SARA State Complaint Process
NC-SARA Approved Institution Round Logo

Students enrolled in a course that takes place outside of Virginia in a SARA state must first file a complaint with the institution by following the above resources. If an issue cannot be resolved by the university’s internal processes, a complaint involving allegations of dishonest or fraudulent activity, including the provision of false or misleading information, may be brought to the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV). Alternatively, students may submit a complaint about a SACSCOC-accredited institution using the SACSCOC complaint process.

George Mason University works with the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) to resolve complaints that fall under the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA). The agreement provides enhanced quality assurance and consumer protection to students taking distance-learning programs from other member state institutions.

Examples of types of student complaints that may be brought to a SARA portal entity include, but are not limited to, complaints regarding accuracy of job placement data, tuition or fee information, accreditation, whether a program meets professional licensing requirements, or course transfer information. Grade appeals and student conduct appeals are not allowed under SARA.

If you live outside of Virginia, you may file a complaint in the state where you reside by using state contact information, or SARA institutions if your institution is in SARA.

Non-SARA State Complaints

Students participating in a course that takes place in a non-SARA state may file a complaint in the state where the student is located.

For students residing in Massachusetts, complaints can be made at:
Massachusetts Department of Higher Education
One Ashburton Place, Room 1401
Boston, MA 02108
617-994-6950
Filing a Complaint

For students residing in California, complaints can be made at:
Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education
2535 Capitol Oaks Drive, Suite 400
Sacramento, CA 95833
phone: 916-431-6959
Filing a Complaint

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