The audit appeals procedure will be followed when an agreement cannot be reached between an assessment centre or Assistive Technology Service (ATS) provider with Disabled Students Allowances Quality Assurance Group (DSA-QAG) in relation to accreditation/re-accreditation after an audit.

Depending on the nature of your complaint DSA-QAG may take the initial complaint by telephone, however, in most instances DSA-QAG will only action the complaint when we receive written communication by letter or e-mail, and if possible, any relevant supporting evidence should be included and sent to the complaints manager at the Central Administration Unit (CAU) in Glasgow.

All complaints will be sent an acknowledgement within 5 working days of receipt.

We will aim to reply within 10 working days from the day of receiving your complaint, however, depending on the nature of the complaint we may not be able to give a full and detailed reply within the 10 day turnaround time, for example, your case may require a more detailed investigation and DSA-QAG need to collate information and evidence from third parties. In these cases where we need additional time we will notify you about what is being done, and when you can expect the full reply.

Should you not be fully satisfied with our findings, you may request that your complaint will be raised with the DSA-QAG Chief Executive Officer (CEO), and then the DSA-QAG Board for further investigation and resolution.

DSA-QAG COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE AUDIT PROCESS ONLY

This document outlines the procedure for handling complaints made regarding the audit process for ATS providers and assessment centres -

Assessment Centres/ATS Providers

If an assessment centre or ATS provider is dissatisfied with any part of the audit process and how their audit has been conducted, they may wish to raise a formal complaint. All complaints should be sent in writing and addressed to the complaints manager at DSA-QAG CAU within 5 days of the audit being completed.

Where a disagreement arises between the two parties and this needs further investigation or intervention, please use the table below as a guide to resolving any outstanding issues.

Audit ProcessTaskAction RequiredWhenFurther Action Required
Pre Audit SchedulingBooking the Audit/Staff InterviewsIn writing to the complaints managerWithin 5 days
Pre Audit DocumentationDocumentation SentIn writing to the complaints managerWithin 5 days
DuringAuditTelephone call to audit manager –
depending on nature of the complaint it may need to be followed up in writing
Within 5 days
Post AuditAudit Summary Report, Audit Action Plan etcIn writing to the complaints managerWithin 5 days

ADDRESSING THE COMPLAINT

1. To avoid confusion it is important that a formal complaints procedure deals in a written format only.

2. DSA-QAG will log the complaint and issue an acknowledgment within 5 days of receiving the complaint from the assessment centre or ATS provider.

3. The complaints manager will keep a full record of all complaints and will report to the DSA-QAG Board and Associate Members on this area of activity, or on individual cases of complaints should DSA-QAG practitioner request that.

4. The complaints manager will fully investigate the complaint and will aim to resolve all complaints received in a prompt and professional manner and will respond in writing on behalf of DSA-QAG within 10 working days of receipt of the formal complaint.

5. The DSA-QAG complaints managers decision will carry the following paragraph:

"I have investigated your complaint and on the basis of all the information available to me I have reached the following decision."

[DECISION]

6. It is important that complaints are dealt with expeditiously and, to that end, if we cannot reply within 10 working days of a complaint you should be made aware in writing of the steps being taken by DSA QAG to address the complaint and the time-scales that are being applied.

IF YOU ARE UNHAPPY ABOUT OUR DECISION

7. If you are not satisfied with this decision, you may request, in writing, that the CEO review your complaint but, in making such a request, you should draw to the CEO’s attention, the specific issues which you feel have not been fully taken into account and your justification for that view.

8. The CEO will carry out a full investigation and will aim to reply to you with 10 working days of receipt.

9. Should you still remain dissatisfied you may request that your complaint be passed for review to the DSA-QAG Chair and Board members. As this Board meets quarterly, it may take some time to reply, however, DSA-QAG will advise you with approximate timescale's when you can expect a full reply.

10. It should be noted the DSA-QAG Chair will have the final decision in the complaints process.

A review of this complaints procedure will form part of the overall review of the Quality Assurance Framework (QAF).

To view the 'DSA-QAG Complaints Procedure and Strategy Document' in full, please click here: DSA-QAG Complaints Procedure and Strategy Document (20.38 kB)