Investigating a student
If you make a complaint of sexual violence which involves another student, the University will consider whether it is appropriate to take action under the Code of Student Conduct.
Code of Student Conduct
While the criminal process will consider whether a crime has been committed, the University’s disciplinary process considers whether there has been a breach of the Code of Student Conduct. All students are expected to comply with the Code of Student Conduct.
Carrying out a risk assessment
The University will carry out a risk assessment. If the University considers that there is a significant risk to members of the University community, we may take precautionary action while the matter is investigated.
Taking precautionary action
Precautionary action can include restricting a student from accessing some (or all) University facilities or participating in University activities, or prohibiting a student from contacting named individuals.
Investigations under the Code of Student Conduct
Discussing an investigation with you
If the University is undertaking an investigation, a Conduct Investigator (an independent member of staff) will contact you.
They will discuss the investigation process with you to ensure that you understand what this will involve, and ask you how you would like to engage with the process.
Discussing an investigation with the student who has been complained about
The Investigator will need to provide the student who has been complained about with details of the complaint, and who is making the complaint, in order for them to respond.
The investigation may also involve speaking to any witnesses.
Limits of a University investigation
The investigation will be as thorough as reasonably possible, but will be more limited than a police investigation, since the University does not have access to forensics, and cannot compel witnesses to give evidence.
Determining a breach of conduct
At the end of the investigation, the Conduct Investigator will decide whether, on the balance of probabilities, there is evidence that a breach of the Code of Student Conduct has occurred.
Determining disciplinary action
If the Investigator finds that the Code has been breached, they will pass the case to either a Student Discipline Officer or the Student Discipline Committee for any disciplinary action to be taken.
Your engagement with the disciplinary process
If there is a meeting of the Student Discipline Committee, a member of staff will contact you to provide you with options for engaging with this stage of the process.
Make an in-person statement
You could choose to attend the meeting and make a statement to the Committee. The student you have complained about would not be present at the same time if you did not want them to be.
Provide a written statement
You might prefer not to attend the meeting in person, and instead to provide a further written statement to the Committee.
No further involvement
You will always also have the option of taking no further part in the process.
Timeline of an investigation
Student conduct investigations can be complex and involve speaking to multiple different parties.
It can also take time to arrange a meeting of the Student Discipline Committee, where this is required.
As such, it can take around two to three months from starting an investigation to conclude some student conduct cases.
If you have any questions about this process, please see the contacts section of the Investigations page.