Complaint Procedures

At James Madison University, we strive to provide the best possible learning experience to all of our students. We are committed to resolving student complaints in a fair and prompt manner. This page provides procedures you should follow if you have an academic or non-academic complaint. Click here for a visual flow chart of these procedures.

Please try to exhaust all avenues of complaint resolution within James Madison University before going outside of the University.

While you are unlikely to experience issues at JMU, you are welcome to review examples of issues that would warrant a complaint.

Academic Complaint Procedure

In the event that you have a complaint about an online course, certificate, or degree program, we ask that the following procedures be followed:

  1. We ask that you follow the student grievance procedures as outlined in the university catalog that applies to you: Undergraduate Student Complaint Procedure or Graduate Student Complaint Procedure. Generally, starting from the lowest level and working your way up is a good rule of thumb. If your complaint is academic, this means first speaking with your professor, then the academic department head, and then the dean of the college, as per the complaint procedure.
  2. If all campus-based procedures have been attempted, and the complaint has not been resolved, the student may complain directly to the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia.
  3. If you are an out-of-state student and have a complaint that you feel has not been resolved through these grievance procedures, you may file a complaint with the state in which you reside. In compliance with Federal Department of Education regulations, we are providing this list of state agencies with contact information for each state: Student Complaint Information by State.

Please note that upon enrollment at James Madison University, you are automatically subject to the provisions of the Honor System. To learn about the JMU Honor Code, possible violations, reporting of violations, and all other matters related to the Honor Code, please visit the Honor Code website.

Non-Academic Complaint Procedures

Harassment and Discrimination

JMU students who have experienced discrimination, harassment, or sexual harassment should read and follow the guidelines offered by the Office of Equal Opportunity and Title IX.

General Issues That Could Warrant a Complaint

While you are unlikely to experience issues at JMU, you are welcome to review examples of issues that would warrant a complaint. Examples of issues that may arise in regard to alleged fraudulent activity or more general complaints include, but are not limited to:

  • Veracity of recruitment and marketing materials
  • Accuracy of job placement data
  • Accuracy of information about tuition, fees and financial aid (Please go to the Cost of Attendance Calculator to see the estimated cost of attendance for your program of study.)
  • Complete and accurate admission requirements for courses and programs
  • Accuracy of information about the institution’s accreditation and/or any programmatic/specialized accreditation held by the institution’s programs
  • Accuracy of information about whether course work meets any relevant professional licensing requirements or the requirements of specialized accrediting bodies
  • Accuracy of information about whether the institution’s course work will transfer to other institutions; 
  • Operation of distance education programs consistent with practices expected by institutional accreditors (and, if applicable, programmatic/specialized accreditors) and/or the C‐RAC Guidelines for distance education.


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