10.3 Appeals and complaints

A complaint is not the same as an appeal - it cannot affect the result of your assessment or examination. 

You should make an appeal if you are concerned that something in the administration or the running of an assessment (at a Stage One or Stage Two visit) or an examination (OSCE) has had a negative impact on your performance. 

Appeals

If you believe that a procedural and/or administrative irregularity may have occurred during your work-based assessment or OSCE, you may make an appeal. 

You can only make an appeal if you believe that there were procedural or administrative irregularities, or mistakes in the conduct of the examination or assessment, which cause reasonable doubt about whether the examiners or assessor would have reached the same conclusions had the irregularities not occurred. 

An appeal cannot be made against examiner judgment.

Appeals must be made within 28 days of the results date of the examination and can include supporting documentary evidence.

In the first instance, the appeal will be considered by the examinations panel. In some cases, the examinations panel will decide to refer a more complex appeal to the appeals panel.

Fees

The administrative fee for each appeal is £100. An appeal submitted against the decisions in two sections/stations or more, constitute separate appeals, and will incur additional charges. 

If the examinations panel or appeals panel upholds an appeal, the appeal fee will be returned to the Trainee.

Future examinations and appeals panel meeting dates.

To submit an appeal, go to the My College area. You will be required to submit any supporting evidence.

Complaints

We treat any expression of dissatisfaction with the College’s handling of any part of the Scheme for Registration as a complaint. We listen to your complaints, treat them seriously, and learn from them so that we can continuously improve our service. We want to help you resolve your complaint as quickly as possible.

A trainee or supervisor who wishes to make a complaint about any aspect of the work-based assessment must submit it in writing to the lead assessor within 28 days of the event. The lead assessor will investigate and respond to the complainant as soon as possible. The lead assessor will have the right to contact the supervisor(s), assessor(s) and/or the store manager or director of the trainee’s work-based assessment placement in relation to the complaint. A complaint will not result in a reconsideration of the work-based assessment result.

All other complaints should be made in writing and addressed to the Head of Assessment.

Email your complaint to education.help@college-optometrists.org.

  • We will acknowledge receipt of your complaint within three working days.
  • We will provide you with the name of someone at the College who will deal with your complaint, let you know how your complaint will be handled, and in what timeframe.
  • Once we have acknowledged your complaint, we will aim to provide you with a full, helpful and honest response within 28 days.
  • If you are unhappy with our response, we will let you know how you can take your complaint further.
  • If your complaint is urgent, or you would like to talk to someone before submitting a complaint in writing, then please call the education department on 020 7766 4354 to discuss this.

Supervision concerns

While the College cannot get involved with issues between an employee and their employer, such as contractual disputes, if you feel that you are not being supervised in accordance with College guidelines and GOC standards, we may be able to offer you some support. 

You must give your supervisor or employer the opportunity to investigate and respond to your concerns first. Approach your supervisor, practice manager or line manager initially. Depending on where you are employed, you may also be able to contact your employer or pre-registration coordinator to discuss your concerns. 

If you need further support on talking to your supervisor or employer, or to clarify what you can expect from your supervisor, your Stage One assessor or the College’s lead assessor or deputy lead assessor will be happy to talk with you. To contact the lead or deputy lead assessor, email lead.assessor@college-optometrists.org.