Appeals against student discipline decisions
Student discipline appeals are initiated by the student in accordance with Regulation B1, section 15. The purpose of the appeals process is to allow all students to appeal against decisions of Authorised Officers and the Discipline Committee.
Appeals may only be made on one or both of the following grounds:
a) Procedural irregularity in the conduct of the case.
b) 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 your appeal in writing to the Student Appeals, Complaints and Conduct Manager within 14 calendar days (not including University closed days or Bank Holidays, but including weekends) from the date of the letter sent to you informing you of the decision of the Authorised Officer/Discipline Committee. Your appeal should specify the grounds and whether it is against a proven allegation or penalty, or both. Any supporting evidence should also be sent with your appeal.
Each appeal will be reviewed in the first instance by a Chair of the University Discipline Committee not previously involved with the case. The Chair will decide whether there are valid grounds for appeal or if there is some other compelling reason why the appeal should be considered.
If the appeal is against an outcome imposed by an authorised officer, the Chair can either accept the appeal and amend the previous outcome, or the appeal can be rejected. If the appeal is against the decision of the Discipline Committee and if the Chair agrees that there is a case to be heard, the case will be considered by the Discipline Appeals Committee. The members of the Discipline Appeals Committee considering the appeal will be different to the original Discipline Committee. You will be invited to attend the meeting and will given no less than 7 calendar days’ notice of the date, time and location of the Committee meeting.
Details about the Discipline Committee can be found on the student discipline web page.
The form for all students to submit an appeal can be downloaded here - Appeal Form Discipline Jan 24
Guidance for completing the form can be found in the concertina below.
If you require the form or any other materials in an alternative format, please let us know. On request, we can provide you with an electronic copy, enlarged print on coloured paper, audio recordings or Braille.
Guidance on how to complete the submission form for an appeal against a discipline offence.
Please complete the form by downloading it onto a computer and typing in the information required.
Privacy Notice and how we will process your information
The information that you give in your appeal, together with any supporting evidence, will be processed by the following:
- Members of the Student Appeals, Complaints and Conduct Team, who process your appeal;
- Authorised Officer who dealt with the case, who will be asked to provide information on the discipline investigation and to comment on any procedural irregularity. You will be allowed to see and comment on any information the authorised officer provides that you have not already seen.
- Any other person or service named in your appeal who we may need to contact to check the issue you have raised g., Finance, Disability Services, I.T. Services.
- A Chair of the Discipline Committee who has not had previous involvement with the case, who will consider your appeal at the filtering stage of the appeals process to decide whether your appeal should be upheld.
- Discipline Committee or Discipline Appeals Committee, if there is a case for the appeal to be heard.
Other than verification checks (see Supporting Documentation below), your data will not be shared with any third parties without your further consent.
Please see below for information on what to do if you do not wish certain personal information to be made known.
Our legal basis to process your appeals data
An appeals process is provided as part of the contract we have with our students, and as part of our public task as a university.
Where you have provided any sensitive personal data (Special Category*) we will need your explicit consent in order to process this information. If you do not consent to us processing your sensitive personal data, then we will remove this data from your submission, and this will not be considered. Please also see below for information on what to do if you do not wish certain personal information to be made known.
*This includes data related to your health, racial or ethnic origin, religious or philosophical beliefs, trade union membership, sex life, sexual orientation, or genetic/biometric data.
Personal data of others
Please do not submit any unnecessary personal information, particularly about third parties. For example, if your exceptional circumstances are based around the health of a family member, we do not need to see detailed information about that person. Instead, we need to see evidence about how the circumstances affected you. If you do decide to give information and any supporting evidence about another person, it is your responsibility to tell that person that you have done this and how the University will be processing their information.
How long we will retain your data
As stated in the University’s retention schedule, information regarding your appeal will be kept securely for 6 years following the last action on the case.
Further privacy information
The University’s full Student Privacy Notice, which contains further information and details your rights (including withdrawing consent), can be found at:
SECTION A - Personal and Programme Information
Please write your full name as shown on your Keele card.
Student Number: this is the 8-digit number that appears on your Keele card. e.g., 00987654
Please also state your programme of study, whether you are a postgraduate or undergraduate, and your year of study.
In this section you should also indicate if you are studying at Keele University campus or at one of our partner universities, the date of the outcome of your discipline investigation, and the date that you are submitting your appeal. If you are submitting your appeal after the 10-day deadline, you must state the reason why you are submitting your appeal late. If you submit the appeal late, without good reason, your appeal may not be accepted.
You also need to state whether you are appeal against the decision of an authorised officer or the Discipline Committee. If you are unsure where your outcome came from, please ask by emailing the following: email@example.com
SECTION B – Grounds of Appeal
You should tick the appropriate box to indicate on which grounds you are appealing. You should then indicate the date on which you were notified of your results and the date on which you are submitting your appeal.
SECTION C – Details of appeal case
Exceptional circumstances/new evidence
You should state in a clear and concise manner the details of the circumstances/new evidence and why you did not make these known to the Authorised Officer or the Discipline Committee at the time. Failure to give a valid reason will mean that your appeal will be rejected. You should also indicate the time period during which you have been affected by these circumstances and how this affected your actions. It is not the role of those considering your appeal to determine this. You must list all the relevant evidence in Section D that you are submitting in support of your claim. If you are not sure what to include please seek help from Advice and Support at Keele (ASK) in the Students’ Union. Their contact details can be found at: https://keelesu.com/advice/
This statement will be used to determine if you have grounds for appeal, so it is very important that you include everything that you wish to be considered in your appeal, even if it is very personal or embarrassing. In such cases, you can ask for the contents of your appeal only to be made known to those considering your appeal if necessary. Alternatively, in very exceptional circumstances where you do not wish the circumstances to be revealed, a letter from a doctor or counsellor confirming that the circumstances are very exceptional, and how these may have affected your ability to study, will be acceptable. However please note that under normal circumstances the Counselling and Mental Health Support service at the University will only provide evidence for those already accessing on-going counselling.
You should state in a clear and concise manner the details of the procedural irregularity, in the box provided. You should state what you believed went wrong during the discipline investigation, and how you believed this had an adverse effect on the decision. You should then list the supporting evidence that you are submitting to substantiate your claim in Section D and this should be submitted with your appeal form.
SECTION D - Supporting Evidence
You must have evidence to support your appeal and this should be submitted with your appeal form. Examples of appropriate evidence include:
- A medical certificate clearly stating why it should be considered in the appeals process.
- Letter from a counsellor (under normal circumstances the University Counselling and Mental Health Support service will only provide evidence for those already accessing on-going counselling).
- A death certificate; funeral director’s letter. You should also indicate your relationship to the deceased.
- Witness statement(s).
Detailed information on the exceptional circumstances criteria and evidence requirements can be found in the “Exceptional Circumstances Code of Practice” which can be found at: http://www.keele.ac.uk/ec/
Evidence is to be scanned and submitted via email; you must retain original copies of all your evidence. This is important as original copies may be required by those considering your appeal later. The evidence also needs to be relevant to the time that the circumstances occurred. For example, a doctor’s note saying that you were ill for one week will not be acceptable if you are claiming that you have had medical problems for a month. If the evidence is not in English, an authenticated independent translation must also be attached.
If your evidence is not available at the time of submitting the form, you should indicate that you have requested it and when you will be able to hand it in. DO NOT delay the submission of your form because you need to wait for a piece of evidence if this means that you will miss the submission deadline.
There will be circumstances where it is difficult or impossible to gain independent evidence. If this is the case, please indicate this on the form and say why you are unable to obtain any.
We may contact the organisation that has issued any supporting documentation to verify authenticity.
Please note that your appeal may be rejected if no evidence has been provided.
Appeals forms must be sent electronically from your Keele email account. You must tick the boxes relating to the sharing of your, or third parties’, personal data, without this consent, we may be unable to process your appeal.
You should note that submitting an appeal form that contains false information, e.g., a forged medical letter, will be regarded as a further disciplinary offence. This will be investigated under the terms of Regulation B1. If proven, it is extremely likely that the penalty will be permanent exclusion from the University. If you are registered on a programme that is subject to Regulation B5: Fitness to Practise, you should note that any proven discipline offence will also be referred to your Head of School so that any implications regarding fitness to practise may be considered.
Independent advice on making an appeal can be obtained from Advice & Support at Keele, Students’ Union
Tel: 01782 734800
If you have any questions about the process, please contact the Student Appeals, Complaints and Conduct Team.