Welcome to uOSatisfACTION, University of Ottawa Complaints Office – La Rotonde

Visual credit:

Article written by journalist Eya Ben Nejm

Since its launch in 2018, uOSatisfACTION has defined 7000 comments from the student community. This is a University of Ottawa (U of O) platform that allows students to express concerns about a professor or a specific service. How does this tool solve the problems faced by students?

The platform allows students to express themselves anonymously or by name regarding a complaint. Alain St-Amant, director of uOSatisfACTION and a professor of chemistry and biomolecular sciences in the U of O Faculty of Science, says he receives complaints and feedback from students about everything about the University.

Intermediary between students and good service

uOSatisfACTION receives feedback from students to provide a better experience. St-Amant explains that they don’t necessarily know which service to turn to when they have a problem. When a complaint or concern is received, uOSatisfACTION attempts to forward the information to the appropriate service, it states. Depending on the problem, the platform forwards the information to the associate dean or associate dean of the faculty, undergraduate administration or even graduate studies, St-Amant continues.

As soon as a problem arises, some students turn to uOSatisfACTION. However, some complaints can be dealt with internally before contacting the platform, says second-year biology student Amélie Mercier. He says he prefers to discuss with teachers before moving on to such a tool, believing that “communication is a key element of society.” Exchange with teachers is also encouraged by St-Amant, who says it is an individual approach based on teachers’ responses.

While trying to discuss with professors before filing a claim is preferable, students sometimes don’t know which service to turn to, which has a St-Amant nuance, Mercier said. In these situations, uOSatisfACTION then acts as an intermediary.

No obligation, just suggestions

Fall 2022 intake has been announced face-to-face forced return, leave teachers free to record their lessons. Most of the complaints were related to demand at the beginning of the year hybrid courses or informs St-Amant in favor of course registration. This echoes the experience of Mercier, who said after missing three acting classes due to the coronavirus, he wished the teacher could add him to the video conferencing platform so he could attend classes. . Only the biology teacher offered him an accommodation that allowed him to attend classes virtually.

uOSatisfACTION offers suggestions to teachers, but cannot force them to write their lessons, says St-Amant. He explains that repeated complaints about the professor are referred to the associate dean of the faculty to resolve the conflict, but the professor has the right to refuse. He adds that it is impossible to fire a teacher and force them to change their work style if they don’t want to. The director, however, believes that the platform has “succeeded in opening the eyes” of teachers by implementing a form of flexibility.

Student identity is protected

Everyone has the right to present themselves anonymously in the event of a complaint. Students disclose their names to uOSatisfACTION, but may indicate their wish to remain anonymous when submitting a complaint to the appropriate service or professor. St-Amant states that the activity of uOSatisfACTION does not end with the simple transmission of requests and complaints. The team scrutinizes each of them to eliminate any signs that would reveal identity at the event, such as front row seating.

Depending on the case, anonymity is not always the best solution. St-Amant says anonymous emails without details are not an easy way to solve the problem because they are often “too vague to track.” He cites the example of a fourth-year student who did not consider graduating because of truancy. Later, the release of his name allowed the principal to observe his academic profile in the database to answer his fears.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *