Discipline

Information on types and stages of disciplines

Discipline Stages

Discipline offences are separated into minor and major offences. Minor offences can usually be dealt with by an authorised officer but major offences and repeated/multiple minor offences must progress to a Discipline Committee.

You can find a list of minor and major offences in Regulation B1 5.2-5.3, and also on the Student Discipline page under 'what can I be disciplined for?'.

Please note if your case is being investigated by the police the university will not investigate until the police have finished their investigation. However, the university could still suspend you from parts of campus or from the university in the meantime - see Temporary Exclusion Panel.

Stage 1 - Authorised Officer

You can read full information about the Authorised Officer stage under 'Investigation of Minor Offences'.

An authorised officer is appointed by the university to investigate your case. In most cases this is someone from Student Services but you can find a full list of authorised officers here.

You are invited to attend a meeting with the authorised officer and at this point you are not normally given much detail of the allegation. During the meeting, you will be given all of the details and the opportunity to give your version of events. There may need to be follow-up meetings while the case continues to be investigated.

If you are accused of a minor offence the officer will decide whether the case is proven and, if so, what penalties are most appropriate (see the list of penalties below). You will either be told in the decision in the meeting or you will be informed in writing later. All decisions will be confirmed in writing.

If you are accused of a major offence or multiple minor offences the authorised officer will not make a decision and your case will instead go to Stage 2.

ASK can help prepare you for the meeting and attend with you if you would like support.

Stage 2 - Discipline Committee

You can read full information about the Discipline Committee stage under 'Investigation of Major Offences' and 'Discipline Committee'

If you are accused of a major offence or multiple minor offences there will be a longer investigation period and your case will go to Stage 2. The authorised officer, who has been investigating the case, will present their investigation to a Discipline Committtee. The investigation is supposed to be impartial and you can put forward evidence and witness names.

You are invited to attend the committee, normally with 7 days notice, and are asked to submit a statement and any evidence beforehand. You can also call witnesses to speak to the committee. You will have the chance to put forward your version of events and question the authorised officer about their investigation.

You will be given the committee's decision in writing - see below for a list of potential penalties the committee can impose.

ASK can help you prepare for the committee, advise you on what to expect on the day, and attend with you if you would like support.

 

Temporary Exclusion Panel (TEP)

You can read about temporary exclusions in full under 'Temporary Exclusion under Regulation B2'.

During the discipline investigation you may have restrictions imposed on you as temporary measure if the university thinks there is a threat of harm to yourself, other students and/or members of the university or to university property. These restrictions can include limited access or a total ban from areas of campus or from the entire university. 

This is done under a separate process, under Regulation B2. These temporary measures do not indicate that you have committed an offence; they are put in place as a precaution while the university investigates.

You will initially receive a letter outlining any restrictions that are immediately in place. You are then invited to attend a Temporary Exclusion Panel that will review these restrictions and decide whether they should remain as they are; be relaxed; or be extended. Please note, the panel is not part of the discipline investigation and their decision will not have any bearing on the final discipline outcome.

The Discipline Committee will decide at the end of the case whether the TEP restrictions need to be kept or can be lifted. 

 

Penalties

You will be given penalties if the university decides the allegation against you is proven. This is decided on a case-by-case basis and the greater penalties will only be applied for major offences if they are suitably serious or if there have been multiple offences during your time at Keele.

See the general list of potential penalties and the more specific list, which indicates what type of penalty you could expect from particular offences.

Stage 1- Authorised Officer

If your case is decided at Stage 1 there will be limits on the penalties you can get.

Potential penalties at this stage include:

  • A formal written reprimand, to be held on your university record.
  • A formal apology.
  • A reflective statement.
  • A restitution payment to cover the costs of any damage you caused.
  • A fine of up to a maximum of £200 - please note this fine would be separate to any restitution payment.
  • Community service.
  • Attendance at an appropriate course, e.g. if you tampered with fire equipment you would be required to attend a Fire Safety Awareness Workshop.

Stage 2 - Discipline Committee

Committees have greater powers than designated officers, including excluding or suspending you from the course or parts of campus. Potential penalties at this stage include:

  • A formal written reprimand, to be held on your university record.
  • A formal apology.
  • A reflective statement.
  • A restitution payment to cover the costs of any damage you caused.
  • A fine of up to a maximum of £500 - please note this fine would be separate to any restitution payment.
  • Community service.
  • Attendance at an appropriate course, e.g. if you tampered with fire equipment you would be required to attend a Fire Safety Awareness Workshop.

For the most serious offences:

  • Exclusion from certain areas of the University - either for a specified period, at certain times in the week, or permanently. This can include buildings such as Halls of Residence, the library and the SU.
  • Exclusion from the University - either a suspension for a specified period or a permanent withdrawal.

 

Appealing

You can submit an appeal against a discipline decision at either stage if you have grounds. The grounds are:

  • Procedural irregularity in the conduct of the case;
  • There is new evidence that can be substantiated, including exceptional circumstances, which was not known at the time, and may have affected the outcome had it been known to the Authorised Officer / Discipline Committee and that there is a valid reason for not making it known at the time. 

You must submit the appeal within 10 days of the date on the decision letter and use the correct form.

Full details about the appeal process, including a link to the form.

ASK can help you with an appeal.