15.2 Criminal Convictions, Police Investigations, and Temporary Action

1. Students are required to inform the University if they are convicted of a criminal offence (with the exception of motoring offences for which the penalty was no greater than a fine and/or three penalty points) before entry to the University or whilst registered at the University. Details of the offence and the penalty (pre-entry and post-entry) should be sent to the Academic Registrar either by email to arconf@aber.ac.ukor by post to Academic Registrar, Academic Registry, 1.02 Cledwyn Building, Aberystwyth University, Penglais, Aberystwyth, SY23 3DD.

2. Any student who is convicted of a criminal offence whilst registered at the University must inform the Academic Registrar immediately (see Rule 28.2). Students are not required to report any motoring offence for which the penalty was only a fine and/or three penalty points.

3. The Academic Registry, in consultation with the Pro Vice-Chancellor as appropriate, will determine on the basis of the information received (or will contact the student for further information and/or permission, as necessary, to approach others for further details) whether to recommend further action by the University in the interest of its students and staff.

4. An assessment of risk will include the following:

(i) whether the criminal offence has any bearing on the student's suitability to be a member of the University (e.g. violent, sexual or racial crimes, drug dealing);

(ii) whether the student has re-offended, and, if so, whether there is a pattern to the re-offences;

(iii) whether the criminal behaviour has any bearing on the safety, rights and freedom of other students and staff at the University.

5. Based on the assessment of risk, the matter may be referred to the Temporary Action Panel.

6. The Temporary Action Panel will be required to establish the level of potential risk to the University community (as far as it is possible to ascertain).

7. Where the Temporary Action Panel decides in the words of the Human Rights Act that it is 'necessary in the interest of ... public safety ... for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of rights and freedoms of others' to recommend that conditions should be set, then these conditions will be made clear in writing, and compliance monitored by the University.

8. Where the Temporary Action Panel concludes that the student poses a continued threat to others in the University community and that a clear case for suspension or expulsion exists, the matter shall be referred to the University Disciplinary Panel (see 5.3.57, 5.4 and 5.5 of Rules and Regulations).

Criminal behaviour and misconduct allegations

9. Criminal behaviour may also be a breach of the University’s Rules and Regulations for students. Where a student is acquitted of a criminal offence, the University may still take action by conducting an investigation under the student disciplinary procedure.

10. If the police or courts are involved, the University will normally await the outcome of those proceedings before conducting an internal investigation, maintaining contact with the police and with the students involved during this period.

11. Temporary action may be required while a police investigation is underway, which may involve temporary suspension from the University. Further details are provided under section 15.2 Temporary Action

12. Temporary Action by the University is usually associated with Student Discipline or Fitness to Practise investigations, or where a police investigation is on-going. It is not a penalty, does not imply a breach of Rules and Regulations, and does not imply that a student is unfit to practise.

13. Temporary Action is only taken where the University considers it to be necessary to safeguard students, staff, or the wider community. This includes the safeguarding of students who are under investigation.

14. Where a concern is raised by students, university staff or members of the public, a member of the University Executive may:

(i) Impose an immediate Temporary Action for a period of up to 10 working days, to be reviewed by a temporary action panel;

(ii) Refer the case to a Temporary Action panel, where immediate action is not deemed necessary.

15. The Academic Registrar or Director of Student Services may refer a case to the Temporary Action panel on the basis of a risk assessment.

16. Temporary Action may include one or more of the following: This list is not exhaustive and others forms of temporary action may be imposed:

(i) Suspension of student registration;

(ii) Suspension from attendance at teaching and assessment activities on campus;

(iii) Suspension from specified placements or other academic activities;

(iv) Suspension from specified research activities;

(v) Suspension from campus, specified areas of campus, or other university premises;

(vi) Suspension or requirement to leave University Accommodation (with alternative accommodation to be provided in accordance with the accommodation licence agreement);

(vii) Suspension from attendance at University events including Graduation ceremonies;

(viii) Suspension from specified non-academic student activities;

(ix) Suspension from other university activities, including employment;

(x)  Restricted contact with named individuals (though it should be noted that responding / reporting students are required to avoid contact as a standard precaution for the duration of student discipline investigations).

(xi) Restricted access to electronic resources.

17. Responding students will have access to advice and representation from the Students’ Union during the Temporary Action process. They will also have access to advice and support from the University’s Student Services.

18. The Academic Registrar and the Director of Student Services will be informed of all Temporary Actions which are implement by members of the University Executive.

Temporary Action Panel

19. The Temporary Action panel will be convened by Academic Registry for the following purposes:

(i) To review Temporary Actions imposed by members of University Executive;

(ii) To consider new temporary action on the basis of risk;

(iii) To review existing cases in light of new developments or additional evidence.

(iv) To consider further action following a criminal conviction.

20. Panel members will include:

(i) Academic Registrar or nominee;

(ii) Director of Student Services or nominee.

21. Students will be invited to attend meetings of the Temporary Action panel, and documentary evidence shall be provided where available.

22. Students may be represented by an advisor from the Students’ Union. Representation by other persons will be at the discretion of the Chair, and any requests for such representation should be made in writing to the Chair in advance of the panel meeting. Legal representation at the meeting will not normally be permitted.

23. Where students, without good reason, fails to attend a panel meeting, the meeting may proceed in their absence.

24. Students will have the right to hear information relating to the Temporary Action and to make a response in person to the Panel.

25. Following students’ response, all persons, other than members of the Panel, and the secretary if present, will withdraw.

26. The panel may confirm one of the following:

(i) To end temporary action;

(ii) New temporary action;

(iii) Amend existing temporary action;

(iv) Confirm existing temporary action.

(v) To refer cases involving criminal convictions to the Student Disciplinary Panel for further consideration.

In all cases other than (v) a review date will be confirmed and the student informed of the panel’s decisions. The panel secretary will inform students of decisions.


Chapter updated: September 2023