During your time as a student, you may be unhappy with the experience you have received from the University, its departments, faculties, services or staff member(s). If so, you may wish to raise this experience with the University through the University Student Complaints procedure. You may raise issues such as, but not limited to:
issues with the course content or information provided about the course;
issues accessing resources and facilities and/or the standards of service from the University;
issues with postgraduate supervision and University teaching;
inappropriate behaviour from a staff member such as bullying, harassment, racism, discrimination around disability, sexual misconduct and physical misconduct.
If you wish to report racism, you can access information on the reporting options available to you on our Anti-Racism page.
ANONYMOUS REPORTING FOR STUDENTS AND STAFF
If you wish to report something so that the University knows about it but you do not wish to be identified, fill in this form to anonymously report inappropriate behaviour from staff, students or members of the community, including harassment, bullying, discrimination and sexual misconduct. As the report is anonymous, no action will be taken. The information is recorded for monitoring purposes.
STUDENT COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE
If you have experienced any of the above-mentioned issues (Supervisor issues, course issues, or bullying, harassment, discrimination, racism, sexual or physical misconduct by a staff member, etc.), you can submit a complaint via the Student Complaints Procedure (the Procedure). The Procedure has three stages: Local Resolution, Formal Resolution and Review. You might also find helpful information in this Quick Guide to the Student Complaint Procedure.
STAGE 1: LOCAL RESOLUTION
You are expected to raise the issues experienced as soon as possible and within 28 days of the matter arising. You should raise your concerns with the responsible officer/person for the service provided. For example, if you experienced an issue relating to the delivery of your course, you may raise this with the Course Director, Supervisor, the Director of Undergraduate or Postgraduate Education, the Head of the Department, etc. This information is usually available in the Course Handbook. If you do not know who to contact, speak with your College Tutor or the Student Advice Service.
There might be instances where a late complaint is accepted and a response is provided at the Local Resolution stage. In such cases and where the student wishes to escalate the complaint to the Formal Resolution stage, OSCCA might reject the complaint. It would be helpful for you to provide your reasons for not raising the issue within the specified timeframe and, if available, provide evidence to support the late submission. You can do so in the Student Complaint Form. OSCCA will consider your reasons for late submission and will let you know if your complaint will be considered.
Once you have raised a complaint locally, the responsible officer should respond to the complaint within 21 calendar days. They should also update you if they expect a delay in providing a response. The investigation might involve inviting you to a meeting, although this may not be necessary. The response should include information about the next step if you remain dissatisfied with the response.
STAGE 2: FORMAL RESOLUTION
Full information about the Procedure is available on the University website.
There is a strict 28-day deadline for raising complaints. This is either from:
Depending on your circumstances, the University might consider a complaint submitted after the deadline. The Formal Complaint Form includes an option for students to provide reasons and evidence for their late submission and the Case Handler will consider this.
Circumstances that might be accepted as valid reasons could include:
illness or difficult personal circumstances that prevented you from engaging with the procedure, such as mental or physical health, bereavement, separation;
you have a disability that causes you to take longer to do things and you need a reasonable adjustment to process time;
the impact of the matter was such that you felt unable to come forward until now.
Seeking advice or not knowing the process will not usually be accepted.
Our understanding is that complaints relating to staff behaviour submitted after the deadline would usually be accepted, although we cannot guarantee this.
Who is this process for?
This process can be used by current and past students who wish to complain to the University about circumstances that relate to their time at Cambridge.
Although the University will only accept complaints from the Complainant, in some cases, a complaint submitted by a representative might be accepted. This might be the case when the student needs a representative as a reasonable adjustment, where the complainant is negatively impacted by communication about the complaint, etc. If you wish to appoint a representative, you need to let OSCCA know, and any communication about the complaint will only be shared with the representative. It is then their responsibility to share the information with you.
Students can make a complaint as a group and a group representative needs to be identified. For the purposes of this process, the University will only communicate with the group representative who will be responsible for liaising with the other students. Where students seek different outcomes or they were impacted differently, the University might suggest separating the complaint and submitting it individually.
The Formal Resolution and the Review stages will normally be completed within 90 calendar days. If this timeframe needs to be extended, OSCCA will keep you updated.
Any information and evidence submitted in the complaint will be shared with members of staff on a strictly need-to-know basis in order to process, investigate and consider the complaint. More information can be found in the Policy on the use of personal
information under the Student Complaints Procedure, available on page 9 in the Procedure.
Your complaint should be presented clearly and concisely and should be supported by evidence if available. Evidence could include medical letters, reports, financial statements or other financial documents, written communication by email or letter, witness statements, etc. You could submit audio or video recordings, although please note that OSCCA might not accept these as evidence. They may accept these as evidence if you have the permission of the individual you are recording to record them.
An OSCCA Case Handler will make an initial consideration of the complaint and make one or more of the following decisions:
the whole or part of the complaint is eligible to be investigated under this procedure;
the whole or part of the complaint should be referred to another procedure;
whole or part of the complaint is ineligible to be investigated by the University;
Local Resolution should be attempted before Formal Resolution. Where the decision is to refer the complaint to another procedure, not to investigate or that Local Resolution should be attempted prior to submitting the formal complaint, the Case Handler will make a decision within 7 calendar days and provide reasons for the decision. If you are unhappy with the decision, you can write to the Head of OSCCA providing your reasons for the disagreement within 7 calendar days. Details will be provided to you in the Case Handler’s decision letter. The Head of OSCCA will provide a response within 14 calendar days and where a complaint cannot be considered further, you will also be provided with a Completion of Procedures (COP) letter.
Where the complaint is investigated, the Case Handler will ask for written statements and evidence from witnesses and institutions (e.g. departments, support services, other University offices, etc.) concerning the events and applicable procedures. The Case Handler has the discretion of whether to gather further evidence or information. They also have the discretion of whether to meet individually with the complainant, the responsible officer or witnesses.
The Case Handler will prepare a report outlining the process followed, the information gathered, the conclusions reached and any recommendations. They can also consider if mediation or conciliation might be appropriate at this stage. The report will be shared with a Complaint Officer who can make one or more of the following decisions:
that further steps should be taken to resolve the matter informally through, for example, mediation;
to uphold the complaint in whole or in part and make appropriate recommendations to resolve the matter;
to dismiss the complaint in whole or in part.
The information considered in reaching a decision will be shared with the student within 45 calendar days of submitting the formal complaint.
Guidance on filling in the Formal Complaint Form to help you fill in your Student Complaint Form.
STAGE 3: REVIEW
If you are dissatisfied with the decision made at the Formal Resolution stage, you can request a review of that decision within 14 calendar days. The Review will not usually consider matters afresh or conduct a new investigation. The grounds for requesting a Review are:
there were procedural irregularities that occurred during Formal Resolution, which were material or potentially material to the decision reached; and/or
the Formal Resolution decision is unreasonable, in that no reasonable person could have reached the same decision on the available evidence; and/or
the availability of new evidence, which materially impacts the complaint outcome and which, for valid reasons, could not have been submitted at an earlier stage.
If you are dissatisfied with the decision made at the Formal Resolution stage and consider that your Review does not meet any of these grounds, you can request a Completion of Procedures letter.
OFFICE OF THE INDEPENDENT ADJUDICATOR (OIA)
Whether you have used the University or your College’s procedure, if you are unhappy with the final outcome of your complaint or appeal, you may be able to ask the OIA to review your complaint. The OIA provides an independent scheme to review student complaints within higher education. If you wish to ask the OIA to review your complaint, you will need to do this within 1 year of receiving your Completion of Procedures (CoP) letter. The OIA website also provides useful resources and information for students and higher education providers on raising and handling complaints and appeals.
INDUSTRIAL ACTION COMPLAINTS
If your studies have been affected by industrial action or the Marking and Assessment Boycott, you may wish to raise your concerns as soon as possible with your department or faculty, such as a Course Director, the Chair of the Faculty or the Head of the Department. Information from the University about the formal complaint procedure can be found here.
There are two deadlines for submitting your complaint and these are:
• Tuesday, 1 August 2023 for strikes that impacted scheduled teaching and learning opportunities;
• 28 days after the publication of your formal examination results for complaints relating to the Marking and Assessment Boycott.
If industrial action had an adverse impact on your examination results, please use the Examination Review Procedure to raise this with the University. Please note that submissions have a strict 28-day deadline from receiving your examination results. Guidance on the procedure and filling in the Examination Review Form can be accessed on our Exams page.
If you have any questions or wish to discuss your situation with an Advisor, please contact the Student Advice Service.
It is advisable to keep a record of any incidents or actions related to the complaint: cancelled lectures or other teaching provisions; any mitigation or lack of mitigation taken by the department or faculty; the impact this had on your student experience and/or your assessments, etc. If you seek financial compensation as an outcome of your complaint, the University will expect to see evidence of the material impact the industrial action had on your studies.
If the issue relates to a service provided by your College or a College staff member, you will need to follow your College’s complaints procedure. You should be able to obtain a copy of the procedure from the tutorial office or in your student handbook. If you need help finding that information, contact the Student Advice Service which can assist you to identify the correct procedure, understand your options and support you through the process should you wish to make a complaint.
Use this form to anonymously report inappropriate behaviour from other students. As the report is anonymous, no action will be taken. The information is recorded for monitoring purposes.
This is a mechanism to reach a behavioural agreement by limiting student interactions. It will not investigate the behaviour and it will not make any findings.
Outcomes would include a list of proposed actions. If all or some are agreed to, these will become a formal behaviour agreement. You can refer the case to a student disciplinary concern at any time.
You can submit a concern form if you want the University to investigate the incident formally. If the University finds that there has been a breach of the rules of behaviour, outcomes could include:
an apology if wanted;
a written warning;
an educational or reflective session;
restrictions or conditions on the right to use University premises, facilities or services;
permanent or temporary exclusion from the University.
Details about the procedure can be found in our section on Student Discipline.
In some instances, after a Concern form is submitted, precautionary measures could be implemented to limit the Reporting Person’s interactions with the other student while a Police or formal University investigation is ongoing. The measures would vary from removing the other student from the University, suspending their attendance, to restricting their access to certain University and/or College premises. Further information can be found in the Statutes and Ordinances, Special Ordinance on Precautionary Action D (v).
Complaints about a student member of your College
If your complaint is about the behaviour of a student member of your College, you can report the incident to your College using its procedures. Such complaints are usually investigated through the College’s disciplinary procedure. Information on the reporting process can usually be found on the College’s website, in the College Student Handbook, or in the College’s intranet. The Student Advice Service or a member of your College can help you find this information and support you through the process. In some circumstances, such as where the complaint amounts to sexual misconduct, the College might suggest you report the incident to the University and a member of OSCCA can help you understand your options.
Report to the Police
To report a crime to the Police, please follow this link.
To report hate crime to the Police, please follow this link to access the options available.
To report rape, sexual assault and other sexual offence, please follow this link.
If you wish to report antisocial behaviour to the Police, please click here.
Working relationships between students and their Supervisors come in many different forms. Many students have helpful and constructive relationships, while others may feel that the relationship is unhelpful and negative. If the latter is the case, we can help you explore what options may be possible to resolve the issue you are experiencing.
My Supervisor isn’t responding to my request to meet or to provide me with feedback, what can I do?
If you have been contacting your Supervisor only via email, try to see them in person and ask them to commit to a date for a meeting.
If you are still finding it difficult to get a response or commitment from your Supervisor to meet or to look at your work, consider speaking to the Director of Graduate Education or equivalent within your department.
You can also contact the Student Advice Service and discuss with one of our advisors the difficulties you are experiencing. The Advisor can help you consider strategies and ideas which may help you improve your situation.
The University Counselling Service runs a termly workshop on ‘How to Get the Best Out of Your Supervisory Relationship’. This interactive workshop explores what can contribute to making the relationship between a postgraduate student and their Supervisor a successful one. It covers the common difficulties that arise in this particular relationship by looking at how to manage expectations; how to develop awareness of personal relationship styles; and how to develop assertive communication skills. More information about the course and how to book a place can be found here.
If you haven’t already done so, familiarise yourself with the Code of Practice for Research Students which outlines the role of a Supervisor as well as your role as a student.
I want to change supervisor, can I do this?
It is possible to apply to change Supervisor. Your current Supervisor will be one of several contacts that will have to approve this application so it will be necessary to raise this matter with them at some point. Some students find it helpful to identify in advance any potential supervisors who may be able to work with them while other students prefer to discuss the matter first with their current Supervisor; the reasons you have for wanting to change Supervisor, as well as the working relationship you have with them, will help dictate which approach may best suit your situation.
However you decide to handle the initial stages, before you actually apply to change Supervisor, it is important that you discuss this application with your current Supervisor as well as any potential supervisors you have identified.
It is also recommended that you discuss the situation with your postgraduate tutor.
Further information can be found on the University’s website here.
My Supervisor is leaving, who is going to supervise me?
Check with your Supervisor why they are leaving; is it for retirement or a new position at another university? It is often possible for them to continue to supervise you even if they are no longer at the University of Cambridge.
If it is not possible for them to continue to supervise you, can they recommend anyone else? If your Supervisor is unable to help, you and/or your department should identify new potential supervisors. The search for a new Supervisor does not need to be limited to your department; it is possible to be supervised by someone in another department with a similar research area to yours. If there isn’t anyone suitable within the University then discuss with your department the option of searching for someone outside of the University who could act as an external Supervisor.
Refer to the Code of Practice for Research Students which highlights the Degree Committee’s responsibility in assigning a Supervisor when a student’s initial Supervisor is absent.
How do I go about making a complaint against my Supervisor?
Due to the close working relationship between student and Supervisor, when/if problems arise with this working relationship or supervision arrangements, these can be upsetting and disruptive. As such, it is often helpful to address any concerns you may have as soon as possible. In the first instance, you may wish to raise your concerns directly with your Supervisor. If this is not possible or you have done so already with little or no impact, you may wish to raise your concerns informally with your department; you can discuss this with the Director of Graduate Education (or
equivalent), the Head of Department or the Degree Committee. These individuals may be able to help resolve the issues and/or provide some advice and guidance.
You can also contact the Student Advice Service for independent support and guidance. It is usually helpful to seek advice as soon as problems arise to increase the chances of resolving the issues. Failing any unsatisfactory outcome from raising your concerns with the department, you can then make a formal complaint through the University’s Student Complaint Procedure.
Further details about the University’s Student Complaint Procedure can be found here and in our 'Student to University' section on this page.
The Student Advice Service can guide you through the complaint process, including helping you present your complaint as comprehensively as possible.
If you are finding that the difficulties you are experiencing are having a negative impact on your mental health, you can seek support from the University Counselling Service. You can also speak to your college tutor, nurse, chaplain or anyone else on the pastoral team in your College.
You can also access this information in our Supervisor Issues Information Guide.
When studying at Cambridge, you are required to behave in accordance with the University and your College's regulations and Rules of Behaviour. If it appears you have not behaved in accordance with the regulations and rules, your behaviour could be investigated by using either the College or the University’s Student Discipline Procedure. Where it is concluded there has been a breach of the regulations and rules, penalties or sanctions may be imposed. Not knowing or forgetting about the rules or their consequences is not a justification for not following them.
This section describes the University’s Student Disciplinary Procedure (from 1 October 2023) which is overseen by the Office of Student Conduct, Complaints and Appeals (OSSCA). Details of the procedure and the Rules of Behaviour can be found here.
This information might be useful whether you are reporting another student or whether the report is about your behaviour.
If you have experienced or been accused of sexual misconduct, you can find more information about support available to you here.
IF YOU ARE A STUDENT ACCUSED OF INAPPROPRIATE BEHAVIOUR
The information on this page provides advice and information on support available to you; explains what sexual misconduct, abusive behaviour and physical misconduct mean and provides information on the Informal Complaint Procedure for Student Misconduct and when the Student Disciplinary Procedure will be used.
The Student Advice Service can help navigate a College or University process, including providing support to students who might need to respond to allegations of harassment, sexual misconduct and/or any other behaviour that breaches the University or College Rules of Behaviour. Students can expect to receive support from the Advisor in an independent, impartial, confidential, non-directive and non-judgemental way.
STUDENT ADVICE SERVICE 'STUDENT DISPUTES' POLICY
We would advise students who come to the Service to read our Code of Practice, which outlines how we work with students, particularly the ‘Student Disputes’ section. This explains that all students involved in a dispute, complainant, respondent or others, are eligible to access the Service. We will provide the same level of support to all parties involved, maintaining confidentiality and impartiality throughout. As always, all support provided will be non-judgmental and non-directive. Where possible, communication between the staff members representing opposing sides of the dispute will be limited.
STUDENT DISCIPLINARY PROCEDURE
The University Flowchart of Discipline Procedure provides an overview of all steps in the procedure from the reporting stage through to raising a complaint to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA).
Behaviour that may be investigated under this procedure varies from:
physical damage to University or College property;
interfering or attempting to interfere with any University or College activity;
engaging or attempting to engage in physical misconduct, sexual misconduct or abusive behaviour towards a member of the Collegiate University;
engage in any form of academic misconduct (e.g. plagiarism, collision, falsifying data, etc.).
This procedure considers whether a current or past student has breached the Rules of Behaviour and allows the University to impose sanctions or measures where it is found that the Rules have been breached. The Rules of Behaviour are available in the Procedure.
Although this procedure allows the University to investigate and impose sanctions even when a student has graduated, the University will assess whether it is practicable and necessary to do so, considering the limitations on the measures and sanctions available.
REPRESENTATION AND SUPPORT
As this is not a legal process, the University does not recommend students access legal advice or representation. Although, if you wish to have legal advice or representation you can do so at your own cost.
You can seek representation from your College Tutor, a friend or another trusted person or from an Advisor at the Student Advice Service.
If you are responding to a concern, the University expects to communicate with you directly. However, if for good reasons such as disability, you wish communication to be directed through a representative, you may request this.
Whether you are reporting, responding or a witness and you need reasonable adjustments to the process, please let the Investigating Officer know so they can put these in place.
The University will only accept and investigate anonymous complaints in exceptional circumstances and where the Student Discipline Officer considers that there is a compelling case.
Although there is no deadline for submitting and investigating concerns, it is preferable that these are raised as soon as possible. Delays in submitting your concern may have an impact on the investigation, decisions and potential sanctions and measures.
The University aims to complete the initial investigation and Discipline Committee decisions within 60 days of informing the respondent of the concern. Where there may be delays, the reporting person, the respondent and any witness will be kept updated.
NO CONTACT FROM THE RESPONDENT
While the investigation is ongoing, the Respondent must not contact or attempt to contact the Reporting Person or any Witnesses either directly or through another person.
NO RECOURSE FOR A REPORTING PERSON OR WITNESS TO CHALLENGE A DECISION
The Reporting Person and any Witnesses cannot challenge the following decisions:
Not to proceed with a disciplinary case under this procedure;
The decision of the Student Discipline Officer;
The decision of the Discipline Committee.
If there are concerns about how the case was handled or the process used in reaching a decision, a Reporting Person or Witness can make a complaint via the Student Complaint Procedure.
Generally, any information relating to the investigation will be shared on a need-to-know basis and in line with the University’s Data Protection Policy. Further details about this can be found in the Procedure on pages 11 - 12.
Anyone who has been impacted by a student’s behaviour, witnessed the behaviour or has become aware of that behaviour through other means, can submit a concern. Concerns relating to academic misconduct in examinations may be submitted by a supervisor, invigilator or other persons involved in the examination. For any other forms of academic misconduct, the Reporting Person may be a person involved in the assessment process. The Reporting Person may also be any other person (e.g. a student) who becomes aware that academic misconduct took place.
Prior to submitting a concern, you can request a meeting with OSCCA to discuss the procedure.
The Reporting Misconduct Form can be accessed here.
Following submission of the Reporting Misconduct Form, the Investigating Officer will contact you to acknowledge receipt, to request further information if needed and to offer a preliminary meeting if one has not already taken place.
The Investigating Officer will present the Reporting Misconduct Form to the Student Discipline Officer who will assess whether the following criteria are met:
there is an allegation that, on the face of it, would appear to breach the Rules of Behaviour;
this procedure is the most appropriate procedure to use to investigate the matter; and
the Concern has not already been investigated using this procedure.
If all the criteria are met, the Student Discipline Officer will commission an investigation into the complaint.
If at least one of the criteria has not been met, the Student Discipline Officer will not commission an investigation under this procedure and may refer the matter to be investigated under another University procedure.
The Student Discipline Officer will provide reasons for the decision whether to commission an investigation and the Investigating Officer will communicate that decision to the Reporting Person within 7 days of receiving the decision. If the Reporting Person is a student and they are dissatisfied with the decision to not commission an investigation or the scope of the proposed investigation, they can submit a Review of Decisions of University Bodies within 14 days of receiving the decision.
The Respondent will also be informed of the Student Discipline Officer’s decision normally within 7 days.
INVESTIGATING A CONCERN
If an investigation is conducted, the Investigating Officer will inform the Respondent:
that a concern has been received;
the alleged behaviour;
the Rules of Behaviour that have allegedly been breached;
the decision of the Student Discipline Officer to proceed with an investigation;
a brief summary of the concern;
name the Reporting Person unless an anonymous complaint has exceptionally been accepted;
describe the investigation process, the possible outcomes and who might need to be informed of the possible outcome;
the support available and the possible consequences if the allegation may constitute a criminal offence.
The Investigating Officer will conduct an investigation which may require written statements, meetings and evidence from any members of the Collegiate University Community or outside of it, if relevant to the investigation. At the meeting, students can present written information, evidence and the names of any witnesses.
The Investigating Officer will usually meet with the Reporting Person and the Respondent to receive an oral account of the circumstances leading to the concern, receive evidence relating to the concern and the names of any witnesses. The Reporting Person or the Respondent should not attempt to investigate the matter themselves. The Investigating Officer may also meet with any witnesses or request a written statement. The Reporting Person, the Respondent and the witnesses can provide an Impact Statement if they wish so. They may also bring a supporter with them to any meetings during this process.
In addition to investigating the concern itself, the Investigating Officer may also consider the following:
gather information about and consider the seriousness of the concern;
mitigation provided by the Respondent and any previous breaches of the Rules of Behaviour by the Respondent;
records of correspondence;
medical evidence from qualified medical professionals;
records of online activity.
The Investigating Officer may require the Respondent to engage in expert assessments to assess the level of risk they may pose to themselves or others. The Respondent is expected to fully engage with the process and failure to do so may lead to disciplinary action being taken against them.
The Investigating Officer will produce an Investigation Report presenting the findings of the investigation which will be shared with the Student Discipline Officer.
STUDENT DISCIPLINE OFFICER DECISION
The Student Discipline Officer will consider the Investigation Report and evidence from the investigation and will make one of the following decisions:
Where appropriate, to impose a minor sanction or measure;
To refer the case to the Discipline Committee;
To take no further action or to refer the case to another University procedure.
When deciding to impose a minor sanction or measure, the following factors will be considered:
The seriousness of the breach;
The harm or damage caused;
The advantage gained or the advantage that could have been gained by the Respondent as a result of the breach;
The intent and planning involved in the breach;
The impact on the Collegiate University Community, including the content of any Impact Statement;
Whether the Respondent has admitted to the breach and when such an admission took place;
Whether the Respondent has expressed remorse and/or shown insight into the impact of the breach;
The evidenced personal circumstances of the Respondent.
The sanctions and measures available to the Student Discipline Officer are:
A written warning, which will be placed on the Respondent’s record and will make any subsequent breaches of the Rule of Behaviour more serious;
To require the Respondent to pay the cost of material damages up to the amount of £250;
To require the Respondent to provide a written apology;
To require the Respondent to engage with an educative or reflective session;
To require the Respondent to complete a written reflection;
To require the Respondent not to contact a Reporting Person or Witness.
The Investigating Officer will communicate the Student Discipline Officer’s decision in writing and the Respondent will have 7 days to confirm whether to accept this outcome or to have the case referred to the Discipline Committee.
The case will be referred to the Discipline Committee when the Respondent does not accept the sanction imposed by the Student Discipline Officer, when the Respondent does not comply with the minor sanction or when the Student Discipline Officer considers that a minor sanction is not appropriate.
DISCIPLINE COMMITTEE CONSIDERATION
The Discipline Committee will consider the case at a meeting where the Respondent, the Investigating Officer and the Respondent’s representative if they have one, will be invited to attend. The Respondent may choose to not attend the meeting in which case this will take place in their absence.
Before the meeting, the Respondent will be provided with the Investigation Report and evidence. They will have an opportunity to present a written statement and/or an oral presentation. They can also ask the Chair for permission to call on witnesses. This request will be considered by the Chair who will let the student know if witnesses will be called on and the format in which they will provide evidence (e.g. attending the meeting or a written statement).
If the Respondent wishes to admit the alleged misconduct prior to the meeting, the Committee will focus on what, if any, sanction or measure to apply.
During the meeting, the Discipline Committee members will usually ask questions of the Investigating Officer and the Respondent. The Respondent and the Investigating Officer may also ask questions. The Respondent has the opportunity to make a final statement if they wish so.
The Reporting Person and the whiteness will not normally be invited to attend the meeting as their evidence will be provided in the Discipline Committee papers.
The Discipline Committee will consider all of the information provided and will make one of the following decisions:
Where the Discipline Committee has found that there has been a breach, the Respondent or their representative will have an opportunity to make a statement in relation to mitigating circumstances. The Investigating Officer may also provide further information and the Committee member may ask questions. The Respondent or their representative can make a final statement.
The Discipline Committee will consider whether a minor measure or sanction shall be imposed or, where this is not appropriate, to choose from the following sanctions:
Restrictions or conditions on the right to use University or, with the permission of the relevant College, College premises, facilities or services;
The amendment of academic results or the temporary or permanent removal of academic awards;
Temporary or permanent exclusion from membership of the University with accompanying temporary or permanent removal of academic awards;
Any penalty considered by the Discipline Committee to be lighter.
The Respondent will receive the decision in writing within 7 days of the meeting. This will include the reasons for the decision, any sanctions or measures applied and the right of appeal.
The Respondent will also receive a copy of the notes of the meeting within 14 days of the meeting.
The Reporting Person and Witnesses will only receive information about the Committee’s decision and any measures or sanctions imposed where they have been personally affected by the original incident or the disciplinary process.
If the Respondent fails to comply with the measures or sanctions imposed, the University may take further disciplinary action.
THE APPEAL COMMITTEE
The Respondent can appeal the Discipline Committee’s decision within 14 days of receiving the decision.
The appeal can be submitted on the following grounds:
The procedures were not followed properly;
The Discipline Committee reached an unreasonable decision;
The Respondent has new material evidence that the Respondent was unable, for valid reasons, to provide earlier in the process;
There is bias or reasonable perception of bias during the procedure;
The penalty imposed was disproportionate, or not permitted under the Procedures.
To appeal, the Respondent will submit an Appeal Form to OSCCA including the evidence they wish to be considered by the Appeal Committee. A decision will usually be provided within 30 days of receiving the appeal.
The Appeal Committee will consider the Respondent’s appeal and any evidence provided, the Discipline Committee outcome, the notes of the Discipline Committee and the material considered by the Discipline Committee. They may request further information from the Respondent and this is usually submitted in writing.
The Appeal Committee can either:
Dismiss the appeal;
Uphold the appeal.
Where the appeal was upheld for reasons of new evidence, the matter will usually be sent to be considered by a Discipline Committee.
Where the appeal is upheld on other grounds, the Appeal Committee can choose to send the matter to be considered by a Discipline Committee or it may decide to impose its own sanctions or measures. This may include more or less significant sanctions or measures than were imposed by the Discipline Committee for the same breach.
While the Respondent waits for a decision from the Appeal Committee, any sanctions or measures imposed by the Discipline Committee will be paused until a decision is reached.
This is the final stage in the process and the Respondent will be issued a Completion of Procedures letter. If they are dissatisfied with the outcome, they may submit a complaint to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA).