Complaint Process

Pierce College strives to provide a high quality education to all students; however, we realize we may miss something that needs addressing. We want students, employees, and visitors to have a venue to express concerns and complaints. We understand that there are a variety of issues that may come up, so we have provided a variety of options below. If you are uncertain on how to report or which one to choose, please pick the one you feel best meets your needs. We will ensure the information gets to the correct person or department.

Report Discrimination, Harassment (including sexual misconduct), or Retaliation

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (20 U.S.C. § 1681) is an all-encompassing federal law that prohibits gender-based discrimination in educational institutions that receive federal funds. Title IX is most commonly associated with gender discrimination in sports and is credited with advancing participation of women in athletics. However, the scope of Title IX is much broader. It prohibits gender-based discrimination in all college programs and activities.

Title IX protection from discrimination extends to faculty, staff and students and includes such things as: sexual harassment, dating violence, domestic violence, stalking, gender-identity and pregnancy. It also prohibits retaliation against anyone who makes or participates in a complaint.

Anyone can report a concern about sexual harassment, sexual misconduct or gender discrimination that impacts a person at Pierce College. Visit the Title IX homepage for more information, including contact information and resources.

Report Concerning, Troublesome, or Threatening Behavior

The Behavioral Intervention and Threat Assessment Team (BITA) is a multi-disciplinary group who meets regularly to support the Pierce College community. The BITA team receives, assesses and responds to reports of concerning or troublesome behaviors of students, employees or others that may affect the College community. BITA’s primary focus is to provide support for individuals through referrals to internal and external resources while addressing threats to, and safety of, the College community.

Individuals who are concerned about a student or employee should complete the electronic BITA report, sharing as much information as possible. Visit the BITA web page for more information.

Report an Accessibility Concern

Pierce College supports an integrated learning experience for students with disabilities by promoting an environment that is free from physical and attitudinal barriers. Students are encouraged to develop successful learning strategies in collaboration with faculty and staff.

Report a Complaint

Do you have an issue or complaint with an individual or department at Pierce College that you are not able to resolve? Pierce College is committed to appropriate resolution of complaints as efficiently and effectively as possible. We believe providing a mechanism for complaints to be heard gives us the opportunity to improve our services.

Report a Student Code of Conduct Violation

The complete Student Conduct Code outlines students’ responsibilities and the process of adjudicating alleged violations.

If you believe that a Pierce College student may have violated the Student Conduct Code, you are encouraged to report the incident to the District Conduct Officer by completing the Student Conduct Code Incident Report and uploading supplemental information as appropriate. Once a report is received, the District Conduct Officer will review the report and may contact the reporting party for additional information if needed. The District Conduct Officer will discuss the allegations directly with the student involved, working to create educational opportunities to support the student's academic and personal success while holding them accountable for behaviors which are not consistent with Pierce College's expectations.

Report an Accident

Pierce College promotes safety and encourages reporting of accidents when they occur on campus or during any college-sanctioned activity. The appropriate online forms should be submitted within the specified time frames below. 

Vehicle related accidents should be reported to Campus Safety.

Grade Appeal Petition

Students who believe they have been awarded final course grades improperly by members of the faculty may appeal those grades. Only final course grades may be appealed. A final course grade has been awarded improperly if done in an arbitrary or capricious manner as defined under RCW 34.05.570 (4) (C) (iii).

National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement

The Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC) has authority to investigate student complaints against specific schools. WSAC may not be able to investigate every student complaint. For information regarding the WSAC complaint process, visit the WSAC website.

Consumer Protection (Title IV) Student Complaint Process

The Higher Education Act (HEA) prohibits an institution of higher education from engaging in a substantial misrepresentation of the nature of its educational program, its financial charges, or the employability of its graduates. Below you will find the Pierce College process to review and appropriately act on complaints concerning the institution including enforcing applicable state laws. The Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) maintains a process to investigate complaints of this nature brought by community and technical college students in the state of Washington. For information, contact SBCTC Student Services, PO Box 42495, Olympia, WA 98504-2495, 360-704-4315.