iStudent Complaints Annual Report Released for 2018-2019!

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Recently, we released our annual report, here are some of the key facts & figures that we think our blog readers will be interested in.

1. Even enquiries split across ways to get in touch with us
Most of the enquiries we received were closely split between; online form (36%), email (32%) and verbal (31%). With 93 of the total 94 enquiries throughout the year coming via these methods (the other 1% was through NZQA referral).

2. Most claims were resolved at the facilitation stage.
Facilitation is a flexible and open-ended dispute resolution process. It involves an impartial, professionally qualified facilitator helping the parties to resolve a dispute through communication. This meant that many claims this year were resolved between the parties, with the facilitator not issuing a binding decision, but assisting conversation for the two parties to resolve their dispute.

3. The majority of iStudent Complaints claims involve refund requests.
This varies from refunds due to course withdrawals, to refunds expected when courses closed before students could finish them. Our objective is to encourage swift settlement of contractual and financial disputes between international students and their providers in New Zealand – and the report shows that we are continuing to work with international students and providers to ensure that:

  • an alternative to the costly and time-consuming court process is accessible
  • relationships between disputing parties are preserved
  • their contractual and financial disputes are swiftly and effectively resolved, preferably through voluntary settlements.

4. Over 90 percent of registered claims in 2018/19 involved Private Training Establishments (PTEs).

After receiving enquiries from Intermediate Schools, Secondary Schools and ITP’s last year, the main claims we received in 2018-19 were from students at PTE’s (91%). The other 9% of claims were from students at Universities in New Zealand.

5. We provide three case studies from the year.

These were examples of cases that our mediators have helped with in the reporting period. Examples include; a student who had returned to China who felt that the refund offered by the provider was insufficient, a student who had an illness in the family and had tried to withdraw but their request was declined by their provider, and a student that was enrolled in a course but discovered after commencing her studies that other students in the same course as her were paying lower fees.

You can also find feedback about our services and satisfaction levels about iStudent Complaints in the Annual Report. If you would like to find out more about what we have outlined above and see the diagrams in full, you can read the report by clicking this link.

Who are iStudent Complaints and what can we help you with?
iStudent Complaints is an independent dispute resolution scheme established by the New Zealand Government. Our objective is to encourage swift settlement of contractual and financial disputes between international students and their providers in New Zealand. As an independent and impartial service, we are not affiliated with any Education providers.

Why did we do this blog?
Even if we need to step in one day to help you resolve a dispute, we want you to enjoy studying and living in our amazing country as much as we do. To that end, we’ve created this content so that you may continue to explore and experience the best New Zealand can offer.