My student grandmother's university staff always uselessly reminds her to consult the university's website, when she already did and could not find the necessary information there. She's been tactful with these staff, as they're not acknowledging the uselessness of their repetition:

Please do not worry about reminding me about the university's website that I already tried.

Please, no need to remind me about the university's website, which I already tried.

She's so bothered that she must withhold herself from grumbling brusquely::

Stop repeating, and asking me to refer to, the university's website: this is unhelpful and useless. I already consulted it and it does not answer my questions.


When attempting to contact them, she should start off with the fact that she's already checked the website. This skips past the suggestion. Maybe ask them to show her the exact information on the website in order to politely prove that it isn't there. (and if they manage to find it on there then even better!)

Hi, I've checked the website looking for x, but I can't seem to find any information on it? Could you maybe show me where this is on the website?

and if the staff member can't find it either then:

Is there anyone I can talk to about this that might be able to explain?

Of course, this will only really work in person.

It's worth mentioning that it's likely the member of staff she's talking to doesn't know any more than she does, and just knows that the website is meant to have all the information that anyone might need.


It sounds like there are layers of miscommunication. She should make clear exactly where on the website she has already checked. E.g.:

Could you please help me figure out what next semester's tuition will cost me in program X, with Y units? Below are more details about where I have already looked. If it is easier for you, perhaps we could meet to talk this through in person.


I looked at the student finance schedule, posted at XYZ.edu/finance/specifictable.htm. While it lists the fees for my program for this semester and winter 2019, fall 2018 seems to be inexplicably missing.

When I searched for this under help, the result at XYZ.edu/prospectivestudent/tuition.htm looked promising, but it turned out not to list the case of taking Y units in fall 2018.

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