Complaints/Appeals Policy and Procedure

Complaints/Appeals

Policy and Procedure

  Index

 

  1. Overview of Complaints handling policy
  2. Scope of Policy
  3. Centre’s Responsibility
  4. Review Arrangements
  5. How do I log a Complaint?
  6. If I complain, what details do I have to supply?
  7. Complaints brought to our attention by the Regulators
  8. Confidentiality and reporting
  9. What will happen to my complaint?
  10. What happens if my complaint is upheld?
  11. What if I am not happy with the reply, how do I appeal?
  12. Contact us
  13. Complaints Form

 

COMPLAINTS HANDLING POLICY

  1. Overview of policy

This document sets out our Complaints and Appeals policy and procedure and is aimed at our Centers, students all interested parties who encounter a direct or indirect service from Eyediology.

We value all the Centers delivering our qualification and the students who undertake them and our aim every day is to exceed the expectations of all our students.

We are confident in providing a high-quality service and would be extremely disappointed should this not be the case.

Therefore, it is important should you feel you have encountered a level of service that is below both your and our expectations, that you raise any concerns you may have with us immediately, so that we may address them and learn lessons from these complaints, in order to improve our service to you.

  1. Scope

This policy covers complaints that students, members of the public or Centers may wish to make in relation to the qualifications and associated services offered by Eyediology.

It is not to be used to cover enquiries about services offered by Eyediology or appeals in relation to decisions made by Eyediology. Should a complaint be submitted which is in fact an enquiry or an appeal, we will respond by informing the relevant party that the issue is being considered in accordance with our Appeals Policy.

If you are unhappy about the way an examination or assessment was delivered and conducted and you suspect malpractice, you should send your concern to us in writing in accordance with the arrangements in our Malpractice and Maladministration Policy.

  1. Center’s Responsibility

Eyediology suggest that all staff involved in the management, assessment and quality assurance of our qualifications, and your students, are aware of the contents of the policy and that your Centre has a Complaints Handling Procedure and Appeals Process in place to deal with complaints from students about the services they receive from your Centre.

  1. Review arrangements

Eyediology will review the policy and its associated procedures annually as part of our self-evaluation arrangements and revise it as and when necessary in response to student, centre or Regulatory feedback (e.g., to align with any Appeals and Complaints Process established by the Regulators) and any trends that may emerge in the subject matter of complaints received.

If you would like to feedback any views, please contact us via the details provided below.

  1. How do I log a complaint?

The entire team of staff have been trained to help our students and they all like to help, so you should first try to sort out any complaint or problem at the earliest opportunity by speaking to the person/trainer who dealt with you.

If they cannot help or you wish to speak to someone else, you can ask to speak to the Manager in charge of that department.

If this is not possible, or if you are not satisfied with the help provided by the Manager, please send a written complaint, normally within 20 working days of the event you are complaining about, and address it to us at the contact details outlined at the end of the policy.

Students and/or members of the public who wish to complain about a level of service provided by the Training Centre at which they have taken an Eyediology qualification, should preferably have exhausted their Centre’s own complaints process before bringing the complaint to us.

However, students can make the complaint directly to Eyediology in exceptional circumstances where they feel there was a significant breach by the Centre of our various procedures.

  1. If I complain, what details do I have to supply?

When you contact us, please give us your full name, contact details including a daytime telephone number along with:

  • A report that should contain the following if possible and relevant:
    • Copies of correspondence between the Student and the Centre regarding the complaint
    • A statement of the circumstances and facts surrounding the complaint
    • Written statements from all Learners concerned
    • Details of the Centre’s procedure for informing Students of Eyediology’s policy
    • Any work of Students and other assessment material relevant to the investigation
    • Any other supporting documents relevant to the complaint
  • Eyediology will, if it feels necessary, contact the Centre directly for their comments on the complaint ensuring confidentiality regarding the students concerned. The Centre has 10 working days to respond.
  • Each complaint will be considered on an individual basis by the Eyediology Quality Assurance Team based on all the information provided by the Centre
  • Eyediology will contact the Centre/student in writing within 20 working days of receipt of the complaint outlining any further action Eyediology may take.
  • Eyediology will write to the Centre outlining any actions or sanctions in accordance with the Eyediology Policies.
  1. Complaints brought to our attention by the Regulators

Where the Regulators notify us about failures that have been discovered in the assessment process or other activities of another awarding organization, these will be reviewed in the same manner as other external complaints in accordance with the procedures below to ascertain if the same issue could affect Eyediology qualifications.

  1. Confidentiality and reporting

Sometimes a complainant will wish to remain anonymous. However, it is always preferable to reveal your identity and contact details to us, and if you are concerned about possible adverse consequences, please inform Eyediology that you do not wish for us to disclose your identity. If it helps to reassure you on this point, Eyediology can confirm that we are not obliged (as recommended by the Regulators) to disclose information; to do so would be a breach of confidentiality and/or any other legal duty.

While we are prepared to investigate issues, that are reported to us anonymously, we  always try to confirm an allegation by means of a separate investigation before taking up the matter with those the complaint/allegation relates to. At all times we will investigate such complaints from reporters in accordance with the relevant legislation.

  1. What will happen to my complaint?

We will acknowledge receipt of your complaint within 2 working days, revealing to you who will be investigating your complaint.

We aim to investigate the complaint within 10 working days. If your complaint is more complex or involves people that are not available at the time, we may extend this by 10 working days. We may contact you within this period to seek further information or clarification (in some instances we may recommend a meeting.) At the end of the investigation we will write/email to inform you of our decision.

  1. What happens if my Complaint is upheld?

If any part of your complaint is upheld, we will respond to the Complainant accordingly and give due consideration to how we can improve our service and arrangements. For example, by reviewing our procedures to assess the impact on our arrangements and assessment process (if relevant) or arranging for staff training. In extreme circumstances, internal disciplinary procedures may be exercised where the performance or behaviors of our staff is deemed inappropriate.

In situations where a complaint has been successful and indicates a failure in our assessment processes, we will as appropriate, take actions such as:

  • Identify any other Student who has been affected by that failure
  • Correct, or where it cannot be corrected, mitigate as far as possible the effect of the failure
  • Ensure that the failure does not recur in the future
  1. What if I am not satisfied with the response?

If you disagree with the decision, the first point of call, is to the Eyediology Customer Service. If you are still unhappy with the decision taken by Eyediology in reviewing the complaint you can, where relevant, take the matter through our Appeal arrangements which are outlined in our Appeals Policy.

If after you have exhausted our Appeals arrangements and you are still unsatisfied with the outcomes, you can complain/appeal directly to the relevant Regulatory Authority for the qualification.

  1. CONTACT US

If you have any queries about the contents of the policy, please contact Eyediology on 011-463 4320 or email them at info@eyediology.co.za

Malpractice & Maladministration Policy

Index

  1. Introduction
  2. Centre’s Responsibility
  3. Review Arrangements
  4. Definition of Malpractice
  5. Examples of Malpractice
  6. Definition of Maladministration
  7. Examples of Maladministration
  8. Conflicts of Interest
  9. Process for Making an Allegation of Malpractice or Maladministration
  10. Confidentiality and Reporting
  11. Responsibility for the Investigation
  12. Notifying Relevant Parties
  13. Investigation Timelines and Summary Process
  14. Investigation Report
  15. Investigation Outcomes
  16. Contact us

 

MALPRACTICE & MALADMINISTRATION POLICY

  1. Introduction

This policy is aimed at Eyediology Students, registered on an Eyediology training course/qualification or separate units, involved in suspecting Malpractice/Maladministration. It is also for use by Eyediology staff to ensure they deal with all Malpractice and Maladministration investigations in a consistent manner.

It sets out the steps the Centre’s, Students or other Personnel must follow when reporting suspected or actual cases of Malpractice/Maladministration and then Eyediology’s responsibilities in dealing with such cases and the procedural steps that will be followed by Eyediology when reviewing these cases.

  1. Centre’s responsibility

It is important that the staff involved in the management, assessment and quality assurance of Eyediology qualifications, and the Students, are fully aware of the contents of the policy and that the Centre has arrangements in place to prevent and investigate instances of Malpractice and Maladministration.

Failure to report suspected or actual Malpractice/Maladministration cases, or have in place effective arrangements to prevent such cases, may lead to sanctions being imposed on the Centre (see Eyediology’s Sanctions policy for details of the sanctions that may be imposed)

If you wish to receive guidance/advice from us on how to prevent, investigate and deal with Malpractice and Maladministration, then please contact us (details below) and Eyediology will happily provide you with such advice and/or guidance.

The Centre’s compliance with this policy and how it takes reasonable steps to prevent and/or investigate instances of Malpractice and Maladministration will be reviewed by Eyediology periodically through our ongoing Centre monitoring arrangements.

Should an investigation take place, the Head of the Centre must:

  • Ensure the investigation is carried out by competent investigators/staff members who have no personal involvement in the incident or interest in the outcome
  • Ensure the investigation is carried out in an effective, prompt and thorough manner.
  • Respond speedily and openly to all requests relating to the allegation and/or investigation
  • Co-operate and ensure their staff co-operate fully with any investigation and/or request for information
  1. Review arrangements

Eyediology will review the policy and its associated procedures annually as part of our self-evaluation arrangements and revise it as and when necessary in response to student, centre or Regulatory feedback (e.g., to align with any Appeals and Complaints Process established by the Regulators) and any trends that may emerge in the subject matter of complaints received.

If you would like to feedback any views, please contact us via the details provided below.

  1. Definition of Malpractice

Malpractice is essentially any activity or practice, which deliberately contravenes Regulations and compromises the integrity of the internal or external assessment process and/or the validity of certificates. It covers any deliberate actions, neglect, default or other practice that compromises, or could compromise any of the following:

  • The assessment processes
  • The integrity of a Regulated Qualification
  • The validity of a result or certificate
  • The reputation and credibility of Eyediology
  • The qualification or the wider qualification’s community

Malpractice may include a range of issues from the failure to maintain appropriate records or systems to the deliberate falsification of record in order to claim certification.

For the purpose of this policy, this term also covers misconduct and forms of unnecessary discrimination or bias towards certain groups of Learners.

  1. Examples of Malpractice

The categories listed below are examples of Centre and Student Malpractice. Please note that these examples are not exhaustive and are only intended as guidance on Eyediology’s definition of Malpractice:

  • Denial of access to premises, records and information to any authorized Eyediology representative and/or the Regulatory Authorities
  • Failure to carry out internal assessment, internal moderation or internal verification in accordance with Eyediology’s requirements
  • Deliberate failure to adhere to Eyediology’s Student registration and certification procedures
  • Deliberate failure to maintain appropriate auditable records, e.g. certification claims and/or forgery of evidence
  • Fraudulent claim for certificates
  • The unauthorized use of inappropriate materials/equipment in assessment settings (e.g. mobile phones)
  • Intentional withholding of information from us which is critical to maintaining the rigor of quality assurance and standards of qualifications
  • Deliberate misuse of Eyediology’s logo and trademarks or misrepresentation of a Centre’s relationship with Eyediology and/or its recognition and approval status with Eyediology
  • Collusion(conspiracy) or permitting collusion in exams/assessments
  • Students still working towards qualification after certification claims have been made
  • Persistent instances of Maladministration within the Centre
  • Deliberate contravention by a Centre and/or its Students of the assessment arrangements as specified for Eyediology qualifications
  • A loss, theft of, or a breach of confidentiality in any assessment materials
  • Plagiarism by a student/staff
  • Copying from another Candidate
  • Personation- assuming the identity of another Candidate or having someone assume your identity during an assessment
  • Unauthorized amendment, copying or distributing of exam/assessment papers/materials
  • Inappropriate assistance to Students by Centre staff (e.g. unfairly helping them to pass a unit or qualification)
  • Deliberate submission of false information to gain a qualification or unit
  • Deliberate failure to adhere to, or to circumnavigate, the requirements of Eyediology’s Reasonable Adjustments and Special Considerations Policy
  • False ID used at the registration stage
  • Creation of false records
  • Impersonation of a Student for assessment
  • Inappropriate use of technology during assessments (e.g. mobile phone)
  • Cheating
  • Cash for certificates (e.g. the selling of certificates for cash)
  • Selling papers/assessment details
  • Extortion
  • Fraud
  • Failure to manage and prevent Conflicts of Interest

 

  1. Definition of Maladministration

Maladministration is essentially any activity or practice which results in non-compliance with Administrative Regulations and requirements and includes the application of persistent mistakes or poor administration within a Centre (e.g. inappropriate student records)

  1. Examples of Maladministration

The categories listed below are examples of Centre and Student Maladministration. Please note that these examples are not exhaustive and are only intended as guidance on Eyediology’s definition of Maladministration:

  • Persistent failure to adhere to Eyediology’s Student registration and certification procedures
  • Persistent failure to adhere to Eyediology’s Centre recognition and /or qualification requirements and/or associated actions assigned to the Centre
  • Late Student registrations (both infrequent and persistent)
  • Unreasonable delays in responding to requests and/or communications from Eyediology
  • Inaccurate claim for certificates
  • Failure to maintain appropriate auditable records, e.g. certification claims and/or forgery of evidence
  • Withholding of information, by deliberate act or omission, from us which is required to assure Eyediology of the Centre’s ability to deliver qualifications appropriately
  • Misuse of Eyediology’s logo and trademarks or misrepresentation of a Centre’s relationship with Eyediology and/or its recognition and approval status with Eyediology
  • Failure to adhere to, or to circumnavigate, the requirements of Eyediology’s Reasonable Adjustments and Special Considerations Policy
  1. Conflicts of Interest

Centres must ensure that assessments are not undertaken by any person who has a personal interest in the result of the assessment (e.g. Internal Verifiers signing off their own assessments; someone assessing the work of a family member; or someone whose salary is influenced by positive assessment results.)

Centres are not permitted to offer financial reward for any of their staff involved in the assessment of Students in respect of the assessment outcomes of those Students (other than normal pay associated with the role of Assessors, etc.) that may lead to doubts about the integrity of their decisions.

In addition, assessors will check this aspect when reviewing assessment arrangements at Centres and will record details of any such checks/conflicts recorded in the associated Centre engagement reports.

If such conflicts cannot be avoided (e.g. due to a lack of competent staff at the Centre) the assessor will decide to make arrangements for the relevant part of the assessment to be subject to scrutiny by another person and in doing so will seek approval for such arrangements with the Quality Manager.

 

  1. Process for Making an Allegation of Malpractice or Maladministration

If there is awareness of suspected or actual cases of Malpractice or Maladministration at any time, Eyediology must be notified within 24 hours of the suspected incident. It should be prepared in writing/email and enclosed with appropriate supporting evidence:

All allegations must include (where possible):

  • Centre’s name, address and number
  • Learner’s name and Eyediology registration number
  • Centre/Eyediology’s personnel details (name, job role) if they are involved in the case
  • Details of the Eyediology course/qualification affected or nature of the service affected
  • Nature of the suspected or actual Malpractice/Maladministration and associated dates
  • Details and outcome of any initial investigation carried out by the Centre, or anybody else involved in the case, including any mitigating circumstances

In addition, Eyediology would like to request, that people making allegations, declare any personal interest they may have in the matter to us at the outset.

If a centre has conducted an initial investigation prior to formally notifying us, the Centre should ensure that staff involved in the initial investigation are competent and have no personal interest in the outcome of the investigation. Eyediology expect that such investigations would normally involve the Head of Centre (if there is an investigation into allegation of Malpractice/Mal administration or irregularities against the Head of the Centre or the Management of the Centre, then such investigation should be carried out by the Chair of the centre or the Management of the Centre, then such investigations should be carried out by the Chair of the Governing Body of the Centre or his/her nominee.) However, it is important to note that in all instances the Centre must immediately notify us if they suspect Malpractice or Maladministration has occurred, as Eyediology has a responsibility to the Regulatory Authorities to ensure that all investigations are carried out rigorously and effectively.

In all cases of suspected Malpractice and Maladministration reported to us, Eyediology will protect the identity of the ‘informant’ in accordance with Eyediology’s duty of confidentiality and/or any other legal duty.

  1. Confidentiality and Reporting

Sometimes a person making an allegation of Malpractice or Maladministration may wish to remain anonymous, although it is always preferable to reveal your identity and provide us with your contact details. However, if you are concerned about possible adverse consequences that may occur should your identity be revealed to another party, then please inform us that you do not wish for us to divulge your identity and Eyediology will work to ensure your details are not disclosed.

Eyediology will always aim to keep a ‘’reporter’s’’ identity confidential where asked to do so although it cannot be guaranteed and Eyediology may need to disclose your identity should the complaint lead to issues that need to be taken forward by other parties. For example:

  • The police, fraud prevention agencies or other law enforcement agencies (to investigate or prevent crime, including fraud)
  • The courts (in connection with any court proceedings)
  • Other third parties such as the relevant Regulatory Authority

The Investigator/s assigned to review the allegation will not reveal the ‘’reporter’s” identity unless he/she agrees, or it is absolutely necessary for the purposes of the investigation. The Investigator/s will advise the ‘’reporter’’ if it becomes necessary to reveal their identity against their wishes.

A ‘’reporter’’ should also recognize that he or she may be identifiable by others due to the nature or circumstances of the disclosure (e.g. the party which the allegation is made against, may manage to identify possible sources of disclosure without such details being disclosed to them)

Once a concern has been raised, Eyediology have a duty to pursue the matter. It will not be possible to prevent the matter being investigated by subsequently withdrawing their concern as Eyediology are obliged by the regulators to follow-up and investigate allegations of Malpractice or Maladministration.

In all cases, Eyediology will keep you updated as to how the allegation has progressed (e.g. Eyediology have undertaken an investigation) and the ‘reporter’ will have the opportunity to raise any concerns about the way the investigation is being conducted with the investigator(s). However, Eyediology will not disclose details of all the investigation activities and it may not be appropriate for us to disclose full details of the outcomes of the investigation due to confidentiality or legal reasons (e.g. disclose full details on the action that may be taken against the parties concerned.) While Eyediology cannot guarantee all matters will be disclosed in the way that you might wish, Eyediology will strive to handle the matter fairly and properly.

Please see our ‘Reporting’ policy for further information in relation to our ‘reporting’ arrangements.

 

  1. Responsibility for the investigation

In accordance with Regulatory requirements, all suspected cases of Maladministration and Malpractice will be examined promptly by Eyediology to establish if Malpractice or Maladministration has occurred and we will take all reasonable steps to prevent any adverse effect from occurring as defined by the Regulators.

All suspected cases of Malpractice and Maladministration will be passed to the Eyediology Quality Manager and Eyediology will acknowledge receipt, as appropriate, to external parties within 2 working days.

The Eyediology Quality Manager will be responsible for ensuring the investigation is carried out in a prompt and effective manner and in accordance with the procedures in this policy and will allocate a relevant member of staff (e.g. a member of Eyediology’s Internal Quality Assurance Team) to lead the investigation and establish whether or not the Malpractice or Maladministration has occurred and review any supporting evidence received or gathered by Eyediology.

At all times Eyediology will ensure that our personnel assigned to the investigation have the appropriate level of training and competence and they have had no previous involvement or personal interest in the matter.

  1. Notifying Relevant Parties

In all cases Eyediology will inform the person who made the allegation who will be handling the matter, how they can contact  them, what further assistance Eyediology may need from them and timelines (see the above section on ‘Confidentiality and Reporting for possible limitations in relation to the feedback and the section below –‘Investigation timelines and summary process – for details of our anticipated response times)

In cases of suspected or actual Malpractice or Maladministration at a Centre, Eyediology will notify the Head of the Centre involved in the allegation (except when the Head of Centre or management is under investigation; in which case communication may be with the Chair of Governors, Local Authority officials or other appropriate authorities) that Eyediology will be investigating the matter.

In the case of Student Malpractice, Eyediology may ask the Centre to investigate the matter where we have confidence that the investigation will be prompt, thorough, independent and effective.

In all cases Eyediology may withhold details of the person making the allegation to avoid a breach of confidentiality or any other legal duty.

Eyediology may engage and communicate directly with members of Centre staff who have been accused of Malpractice if appropriate (e.g. the staff member is no longer employed by the Centre) and/or communicate directly with a Student or their representative (e.g. if there is a contradiction in the evidence provided during an investigation or where the Centre is suspected of being involved in Malpractice)

Where applicable, Eyediology’s Quality Manager will inform the appropriate Regulatory Authorities if they believe there has been an incident of Malpractice or Maladministration, which could either invalidate the award of a qualification, or if it could affect another awarding organization. Eyediology will keep them informed of progress in large and/or complex cases.

Where the allegation may affect another awarding organization and their provision, Eyediology will also inform them in accordance with the Regulatory requirements and obligations imposed on Eyediology by the Regulators and/or seek to undertake a joint investigation with them if appropriate. If Eyediology do not know the details of organizations that might be affected, Eyediology will ask the Regulators to help us identify relevant parties that should be informed.

If fraud is suspected and/or identified Eyediology may also notify the police.

  1. Investigation timelines and summary process

Where possible Eyediology aim to action and resolve all stages of the investigation within 20 working days of receipt of the allegation. Please note that in some cases the investigation may take longer; for example, if a Centre visit is required. In such instances, Eyediology will advise all parties concerned of the likely revised timescale.

The fundamental principle of all investigations is to conduct them in a fair, reasonable and legal manner, ensuring that all relevant evidence is considered without bias. In doing so, investigations will be underpinned by terms of reference and based around the following broad objectives:

  • To establish the facts relating to allegations/complaints in order to determine whether any irregularities have occurred
  • To identify the cause of the irregularities and those involved
  • To establish the scale of the irregularities and whether other qualifications may be affected
  • To evaluate any action already taken by the Centre
  • To determine whether remedial action is required to reduce the risk to current registered Students and to preserve the integrity of the qualification/course
  • To ascertain whether any action is required in respect of certificates already issued
  • To obtain clear evidence to support any sanctions to be applied to the Centre, and/or to members of staff, in accordance with Eyediology’s Sanctions Policy
  • To identify any adverse pattern or trends

In carrying out any investigation, Eyediology will be sensitive to the effect on and the reputation of, a Centre and/or those members of staff who may be the subject of investigation. Eyediology will strive to ensure that the investigation is carried out as confidentially as possible and the organization/person who is the subject of the allegation will have the opportunity to raise any issues about both the proposed approach and the conduct of the investigation with the Investigator(s) during the investigation.

The investigation may involve a request for further information from relevant parties and/or interviews with personnel involved in the investigation. Interviews will be recorded, dated and signed by all involved. The person/s accused of Malpractice/Maladministration may choose to be accompanied in the interview by a work colleague, trade union representative, or other party.

In addition, Eyediology will:

  • Ensure all material collected as part of an investigation is securely kept. All records and original documentation concerning a completed investigation that ultimately leads to sanctions against a Centre will be retained for a period of not less than five years. If an investigation leads to invalidation of certificates, or criminal or civil prosecution, all record and original documentation relating to the case will be retained until the case and any appeals have been heard and for five years thereafter
  • Expect all parties, who are either directly or indirectly involved in the investigation, to fully co-operate with us.

Either at notification of a suspected or actual case of Malpractice or Maladministration and/or at any time during the investigation, Eyediology reserves the right to impose sanctions on the Centre in accordance with Eyediology’s Sanctions Policy in order to protect the interests of Students and the integrity of the qualifications. Sanctions may be imposed but will be proportionate.

Eyediology also reserve the right to withhold a Student’s, and/or cohort’s results for all the Eyediology course/qualifications and/or units they are studying at the time of the notification or investigation.

If appropriate, Eyediology may find that the complexity of a case or a lack of co-operation from a Centre means that we are unable to complete an investigation. In such circumstances Eyediology will consult the relevant Regulatory Authority in order to determine how best to progress the matter. Where a member of Eyediology’s staff in under investigation Eyediology may suspend them or move them to other duties until the investigation is complete.

Throughout the investigation the Eyediology Quality Manager will be responsible for overseeing the work of the investigation team to ensure that due process is being followed, appropriate evidence has been gathered and reviewed and for liaising with and keeping informed relevant external parties.

  1. Investigation report

If Eyediology believe there is enough evidence to implicate an individual/Centre in Malpractice/and/or Maladministration Eyediology will:

  • Inform them (preferably in writing) of the allegation
  • Provide them with details of the evidence Eyediology found to support Eyediology’s judgment
  • Inform them of the possible consequences
  • Inform them that information in relation to the allegation and investigation may be, or has been, shared with the Regulators and other relevant bodies (e.g. police)
  • Provide them with an opportunity to consider and respond to the allegation and Eyediology’s findings
  • Inform them of Eyediology’s Appeals Policy, should they wish to appeal against Eyediology’s decision

After an investigation, Eyediology will produce a draft report for the parties concerned to check the factual accuracy (Centres will normally receive this via letter or email.) Any subsequent amendments will be agreed between the parties concerned and Eyediology. The report will cover the following areas:

  • Identify where the breach, if any, occurred
  • Confirm the facts of the case (and any mitigating factors if relevant)
  • Identify who is responsible for the breach (if any)
  • Contain supporting evidence where appropriate (e.g. written statements)
  • Confirm an appropriate level of remedial action to be applied

Eyediology will make the final report available to the Regulatory Authorities and other external agencies as required. If it was an independent/third party that notified us of the suspected or actual case of Malpractice/Maladministration, Eyediology will also inform them of the outcome- normally within 20 working days of making our decision. In doing so Eyediology may withhold some details, if to disclose such information would breach a duty of confidentiality or any other legal duty.

  1. Investigation Outcomes

If the investigation confirms that Malpractice or Maladministration has taken place, Eyediology will consider the action to be taken:

  • Minimize the risk to the integrity of certification now and in the future
  • Maintain public confidence in the delivery and awarding of qualifications
  • Discourage others from carrying out similar instances of Malpractice or Maladministration
  • Ensure there has been no gain from compromising Eyediology’s standards

The actions Eyediology may take include (this list is indicative only and is not meant to form an exhaustive list):

  • Impose actions in relation to the Centre with specified deadlines in order to address the instance of Malpractice/Maladministration and to prevent it from re-occurring
  • Undertaking additional/increased visits to a Centre to provide the Centre with a greater level of support and/or monitoring depending on their needs and performance
  • Requiring specific Centre staff to undergo additional training and/or scrutiny by the Centre if there are concerns about their ability to undertake their role in the delivery of Eyediology qualifications effectively
  • Not permitting specific Centre staff to be involved in the delivery or assessment of Eyediology qualifications (e.g. not permitting an individual to invigilate Eyediology examinations or assessments)
  • Altering the way and the period in which Centres receive examination/assessment materials from Eyediology if there are concerns around their ability to maintain the security and confidentiality of such materials
  • Appointing independent Invigilators to observe an exam at the Centre if there are concerns around the Centre’s arrangements and/or the Centre is unable to resource particular exams
  • Impose sanctions on the Centre-if so these will be communicated to the Centre in accordance with Eyediology’s Sanctions Policy along with the rationale for the sanction(s) selected
  • Take action against a Student (s) in relation to proven instances of cheating, plagiarism, fraud, such as some or all of the following (which will be communicated to the Student by Eyediology and/or the Student’s Centre)
    • Issuing a written warning that if the offence is repeated further action may be taken
    • Loss of all marks/credits for the related work/unit
    • Disqualification from the unit(s)/qualification
    • Placing a ban for a set period of time from taking any further qualification/course with us
    • In cases where certificates are deemed to be invalid, inform the Centre concerned and the Regulatory Authorities why they’re invalid and any action to be taken for reassessment and/or for the withdrawal of the certificates. Eyediology will also ask the Centre to let the affected Learners know the action Eyediology is taking and that their original certificates to Eyediology. Eyediology will also amend their database so that duplicates of the invalid certificates cannot be issued, and we expect the Centre to amend their records to show that the original awards are invalid.
  • Amend aspects of Eyediology’s qualification development, delivery and awarding arrangements and if required assessment and/or monitoring arrangements and associated guidance to prevent the issue from re-occurring
  • Inform relevant third parties (e.g. funding bodies) of Eyediology’s findings in case they need to take relevant action in relation to the Centre
  • Carry out additional, related investigations if we suspect the issue may be more widespread at the Centre and/or at other Centres

In proven cases of Malpractice and/or Maladministration by a Centre, Eyediology reserves the right to charge the Centre for any re-sits and re-issuing of certificates and/or additional quality assurance activities/Centre monitoring visits. The fees for which will be the current Eyediology prices for such activities at the time of the investigation.

In addition to the above, the Eyediology Quality Manager will record any lessons learnt from the investigation and pass these onto relevant internal colleagues to help Eyediology prevent the same instance of Maladministration or Malpractice from re-occurring.

If the relevant party/ies wishes/wish to appeal against Eyediology’s decision to impose sanctions, please refer to Eyediology’s Appeals Policy.

CONTACT US

If you have any queries about the contents of the policy, please contact Eyediology on 011-463 4320 or email us at info@eyediology.co.za