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Online Learning

Student Complaint System

Western New England University is committed to the quality of our students' online learning. We strive to have online classes that are academically rigorous, efficient, and fair, and to provide the online support services necessary to promote student learning.  If current students have an issue with an online course and feel that it has not lived up to these standards, they are encouraged to use the University resources below to file a complaint and work towards a satisfactory resolution. 

Filing Complaints at Western New England University

If you are having a problem with an online course, you are encouraged to contact the instructor first.  Instructor contact information should be readily available in your course's Kodiak or TWEN classroom.  If contacting the instructor proves to be ineffective or is not the appropriate way to solve your issue, then students may contact the relevant office listed below.

If your efforts to resolve an issue with the instructor or the appropriate office are not successful, then you can complete the online complaint form. Please read the WNE Student Complaint Procedure before doing so.

Filing Complaints Outside of Western New England University

If you feel that you have a serious complaint has not been properly addressed by Western New England University, you may file a complaint at the state or national level with the appropriate organization.  In general, outside agencies will require that all proper procedures be followed within the institution first, before they will consider a concern.  Before contacting one of the organizations below, Western New England University encourages students to first inform the University of your complaint.  We are eager to hear from you directly about your online learning experience and to work with you to resolve any issues.

The U.S. Department of Education requires institutions offering distance education to provide students with the contact information for the various agencies that handle complaints against postsecondary institutions that offer such courses.  As such, we have the following information.

For Massachusetts Residents and Online Students in Non-SARA Member States and Territories

After you have exhausted the complaint procedures made available by Western New England University, using WNE's online complaint form, if your complaint has not been resolved, you may file a consumer complaint with the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education by using the consumer complaint form. The DHE consumer complaint form should be used by students who are located in:

  • Massachusetts
  • Non-SARA Member States or Territories (e.g., California, Guam, etc.)

Students from California can also contact:
California Department of Consumer Affairs
Consumer Information Center

1625 North Market Blvd., Suite N-112
Sacramento, California 95834
Telephone: (833) 942-1120

For Online Students in SARA Member States and Territories

After you have exhausted the complaint procedures made available by Western New England University, by using WNE's online complaint form, if your complaint has not been resolved, you may file a complaint with the DHE by using the SARA complaint form. The DHE SARA complaint form should be used by students who are located in SARA member states and territories. This includes all students who are located in SARA member states and territories for the purposes of completing out-of-state learning placements, such as internships, practica, clinical experiences, etc. in SARA member states and territories outside Massachusetts.

Additional information from the DHE’s SARA complaint website is below.

The SARA complaint process is as follows:

  1. Students must first attempt to resolve their complaint using internal administrative procedures offered by the SARA institution.
  2. After all administrative remedies have been exhausted with the MA-SARA institution, the student may submit a SARA Complaint via the URL below.
  3. The Department shall send a copy of the complaint to the institution that is the subject of the complaint;
  4. Within 30 days of the date that the Department sends a copy of the complaint to the institution, the institution must provide a written response to the student and the Department.

More information about Massachusetts DHE’s complaint processes can be found here.