Academic Discipline

 

1. Scope of Regulations

1.1 Defining Terms For the purpose of these procedures, “student” includes any person studying on an undergraduate course of study supplied by or in connection with Wycliffe Hall. It also includes Visiting Students following an undergraduate course of study at Wycliffe Hall.

1.2 Performance in Examinations, Modules & Papers In addition to these Regulations, students are expected to perform satisfactorily, i.e. pass, papers, modules and examinations where required by either the University of Oxford or Durham University. Precise requirements are dependent on the course of study undertaken and details of requirements for each course will be specified in course handbooks and in programme regulations, where applicable.

1.3 Oxford University students who fail the First Public Examination have an automatic right to resit, at the next available opportunity (normally September), the papers that are necessary to enable them to proceed to the Second Public Examination. Students will not be permitted to continue their course of study if they fail any paper of their first resit.

1.4 It should be noted that in addition to this policy, Common Award students should also refer to Durham University’s Academic Progress procedure. Durham University’s Core Regulations for Undergraduate Programmes in the Common Awards in Theology, Ministry & Mission Scheme specify conditions and regulations regarding resits of modules.

 

2. Academic Obligations of Students Undergraduates have the following academic obligations:

2.1 Attendance To fulfil all academic engagements (including registration, examinations, tests, tutorials, seminars, practical classes, professional placements, including those which may be held during vacations, meetings, interviews and lectures where applicable) to a standard satisfactory to the Subject Tutor(s), Course Director and ultimately, the Senior Tutor. Attendance requirements and absence reporting procedures are specified in each course handbook.

2.2 Submission Standard To submit all work required by the tutor(s) to a standard appropriate to the stage which they have reached in their course; and pay attention to Subject Tutors’ feedback on their work; to adhere to proper scholarly standards, for example by using academic conventions to give appropriate credit for quoted material and acknowledgment for any respect in which the work is not the student’s own or for any assistance received.

2.3 Submission Timeliness To submit all work on time, except where a tutor has explicitly given permission for it to be handed in late.

2.4 Collections To achieve an acceptable standard in all written Collections where relevant (i.e. the termly College examinations set by or on behalf of the Subject Tutor(s)) as defined by the Subject Tutor(s) and communicated to the student prior to the Collection. This will normally be 50% unless specified otherwise.

 

3. Initial Procedures Including First Formal Warning

3.1 In the case of alleged breaches of obligations under 2.1-4 above i) It is expected that Subject Tutors and students will initially attempt to resolve any perceived deficiencies informally, within the normal student-Tutor relationship. The intention is to help students to reach their potential without resort to the formal procedures laid down below. ii) If the perceived deficiencies persist, then the Subject Tutor will give the student a written warning (the first formal warning), with a copy sent to the Senior Tutor, but also will continue, where appropriate, to attempt to resolve the matter informally. iii) If the matter is not thereby resolved, the Subject Tutor may proceed to make a formal complaint to the Senior Tutor under the provisions of Section 4 below.

3.2 In the Case of an Alleged Breach of Obligations Under 2.4 The first formal warning consists of a written communication from the Subject Tutor to the student of the relevant Collection result, together with a clear written statement, copied to the Senior Tutor, that the result is unsatisfactory. The Subject Tutor should meet the student informally to discuss the Collection result. If the Subject Tutor does not feel that the informal meeting resolves the issues that may have led to the unsatisfactory result(s), then they may proceed to a formal complaint to the Senior Tutor under the provisions of Section 4 below. The decision to make a formal complaint may be based on a pattern of performance over a number of College Collections.

3.3 A Formal Complaint to the Senior Tutor A formal complaint to the Senior Tutor may be made as a result of a combination of alleged breaches of obligations, but only if all the relevant first formal warnings have been given.

3.4 The Lapsing of First Formal Warnings If the matter has not already been resolved informally, first formal warnings will lapse 16 term-time weeks after they have been issued if the matter has not been the subject of a formal complaint to the Senior Tutor in that time. The Subject Tutor may renew the first formal warning if they feel the circumstances require it.

 

4. Second Stage of Formal Procedures Including Second Formal Warning

4.1 Subject Tutor’s Formal Complaint to the Senior Tutor Where a Subject Tutor is of the view that an undergraduate is in breach of his or her academic obligations, after following the procedures in Section 3 that Tutor may make a formal complaint to the Senior Tutor. That complaint shall contain, in sufficient detail, written statements of: i) the nature of the student's failure to meet his or her academic obligations; ii) a record of when the matter was brought to the attention of the student (including copies of the first formal warning and/or the written notification of the unsatisfactory Collection result) and the student's response; iii) if appropriate, any other factors which the Subject Tutor believes should be taken into consideration.

4.2 Interview with the Senior Tutor The Senior Tutor will then consider the matter, and will conduct a special interview with the student, minuted by the Academic Registrar or designated deputy. In advance of the interview, the student will be given a copy of the complaint. The interview is not an adversarial proceeding and the student has no right to legal representation, but the Senior Tutor, in his or her discretion, the exercise of which shall not be withheld without reasonable cause, may allow the student to be assisted by any person. At the interview, the student will be given an opportunity for a full discussion so that they may put their case and make the college aware of any mitigating or complicating circumstances.

4.3 Action after the Interview with the Senior Tutor Following the interview, the Senior Tutor may decide to proceed in one of the following three ways: i) no further formal action is required; or ii) where relevant to the student’s programme of study, the student must sit a Special Collection or Collections, with a minimum of two weeks’ notice, and achieve a specified reasonable level of achievement, which may be set in consultation with the Subject Tutors and will be communicated to the student at the time of notification of the Collection. [A University public examination (or any individual paper or papers in the examination) for which the student is entered may take the place of a Special Collection in any requirements made, provided it takes place at least two weeks after the decision of the Academic Dean has been communicated to the student.]; or iii) the student is to be placed on informal special report for a period of no more than the remainder of the current term and the whole of the next term, with specific requirements related to performance in examinations, modules and papers in 1.2-4 and other academic obligations in 2.1-3 above. If the grounds of the complaint is a combination of obligations under 2.1-3 and 2.4, then the Senior Tutor may require both 4.3(ii) and 4.3(iii) above and these requirements may be concurrent. The Senior Tutor will convey the decision in writing to the student without unreasonable delay, sending a copy to the Subject Tutor. Any requirements under 4.3(ii) and/or 4.3(iii) will represent a second formal warning.

 

5. Third Formal Stage: The Academic Disciplinary Panel

5.1 Formal Complaint to the Academic Disciplinary Panel If the student does not fulfil satisfactorily the requirements of informal special report, then the Senior Tutor may form an Academic Disciplinary Panel to hear a formal complaint regarding the student’s continued lack of academic progress. The panel will comprise of at least three members, including the Senior Tutor and the Course Leader and minutes will be recorded by the Academic Registrar or nominated deputy. The Senior Tutor will make the formal written complaint and should state clearly the grounds for complaint and should include the full original complaint as made by the Subject Tutor. A copy of the complaint and all supporting documentation must be sent to the student, who must be informed that he or she is now the subject of the third stage of formal academic disciplinary procedures, which may result in their course of study being terminated if further requirements are not met.

5.2 Formal Disciplinary Hearing The Academic Disciplinary Panel in a Formal Disciplinary Hearing will hear the complaint as soon as is practicable, normally within one to three weeks of the Senior Tutor’ formal complaint. The student will have the opportunity to bring forward material considerations and mitigating circumstances. The student is allowed to take advice in advance of the hearing and should be adequately represented at the hearing, being given the chance either to make a written submission, or, if he or she prefers, to appear in person before the Panel. In the latter case, the student should be offered the opportunity to be accompanied by a person of his or her choice. 

5.3 The Role of the Academic Panel The Academic Disciplinary Panel’s duty is to establish all relevant facts and to decide to proceed in one of the following ways: i) to rule that the complaint is now resolved and that no further action is required; ii) where relevant to the student’s course of study, to rule that the student must sit a Final Collection or Collections and must achieve at least an Honours standard in each paper sat; a University Public Examination, or part of that Examination, may count for this purpose if it takes place at least two weeks after the Panel’s decision is communicated to the student; iii) to place the student on formal probation for a period of not less than four weeks and up to two terms, with specific requirements related to performance in examinations, modules and papers in 1.2-4 and other academic obligations in 2.1-3 above. If the formal complaint combines unsatisfactory performance in a Special Collection with failure to fulfil the requirements stipulated for the period of a special report, then it is open to the Panel both to require satisfactory performance in a Final Collection and also to place the student on formal probation for a specified period. In reaching its conclusion, the Panel may invite the Subject Tutor(s) to attend and make representations or give evidence relevant to the complaint. Exceptionally, it may invite other Wycliffe Hall representatives, staff or other students, to attend the hearing, answer questions, and provide information relevant to the complaint. All such further information that may be received being will be made available to the student who is the subject of the complaint as soon as possible, and the student will be entitled to call material evidence or make representations based on this additional evidence.

5.4 Communication of the Academic Disciplinary Panel’s Decision In communicating the Academic Disciplinary Panel’s decision to the student, it must be made clear that a failure to achieve the specified requirements will result in the student’s course of study being terminated.

 

6. Monitoring of Conditions Required by the Academic Disciplinary Panel

6.1 If the student is required to pass Final Collections to Honours Standard in each paper individually and does not do so, then he or she will be subject to a Principal’s hearing as specified below.

6.2 If the student has been placed on probation, the panel will nominate a member of the academic staff to monitor the student’s progress each week, and warn the student of any possible infringements. The Senior Tutor will also formally review the fulfilment of probationary requirements at intervals to be agreed by the Academic Disciplinary Panel and communicated to the student at the start of the probation period. If these requirements have not been fulfilled then the student will be subject to a Principal’s Hearing as specified below.

 

7. Final Stage: Hearing Before the Principal

7.1 In accordance with the Statutes, the final power to terminate the course of study of a student of Wycliffe Hall rests with the Principal. (In the Principal’s absence, his or her powers devolve, under the Statutes, to the VicePrincipal, who may therefore carry out the procedures of this section if the Principal is unavailable to do so.)

7.2 If a student fails to satisfy the conditions required by an Academic Disciplinary Panel, the Senior Tutor will bring the case to a Principal’s hearing, which must be held reasonably promptly, normally within the next 14 days.

7.3 The Senior Tutor will provide the Principal with the complaint and supporting evidence, and records of the previous stages of the disciplinary process, and a clear statement of the respect(s) in which the student has failed to fulfil the requirements laid down by the Academic Disciplinary Panel. The student will be given a full Academic Discipline Policy copy of all documents submitted to the Principal. The Principal will then invite the student to attend a formal hearing, giving at least one week’s notice. The student may provide, in advance of the hearing, any written statement of their own, or any other document (such as medical evidence) which they wish the Principal to consider. In response to the statements of the Senior Tutor and the student, the Principal may make written enquiries of any person, and copies of those enquiries and their responses will be immediately provided to the student.

7.4 At the hearing, the Senior Tutor will present the case. The student will have the opportunity to bring forward new material considerations and mitigating circumstances. The student is allowed to take advice in advance of the hearing and to be represented at the hearing, or, if he or she prefers, to appear in person before the Principal. In the latter case, the student may be accompanied by a person of his or her choice. The Principal, at his or her absolute discretion, may summon other persons to be present and may adjourn the hearing to be continued at a specified later date.

7.5 Following the hearing, the Principal will decide either that i) the complaint has now been resolved; or ii) that the student’s course of study is terminated, so that the student is dismissed permanently from Wycliffe Hall; or iii) that the student’s course of study is suspended, so that the student is under temporary suspension from Wycliffe Hall, subject to specified conditions for readmission.

7.6 In exceptional cases, the Principal may also proceed as follows: i) In the case of a student who has been placed on probation, the Principal may rule that the complaint has not been resolved but that the student should remain on probation and that the hearing with the Principal will be reconvened if there is any violation of the conditions set. ii) In the cases of a student who has failed Final Collections, he may rule that the student should re-sit all or part of those Collections (at a time of the Principal’s determination). Following this, the hearing with the Principal will be reconvened.

 

8. Right of Appeal to The Conference of Colleges Appeals Tribunal (for students on Oxford University courses only)

8.1 If the student wishes to appeal against the decision of the Hall, he or she may do so by referring the case to the Conference of Colleges Appeals Tribunal. The Conference of Colleges Appeals Tribunal considers appeals on disciplinary decisions imposing a substantial penalty.

8.2 The Conference of Colleges defines substantial penalty as including the penalties of expulsion, rustication or suspension, substantial fines and other penalties of similar severity. Substantial penalty does not include measures such as the imposition of probation or specially assessed collections.

8.3 Any student who wishes to bring before the Tribunal an appeal should file a written application with the Secretariat of the Conference of Colleges within 5 days of the date of the decision appealed against. The Chair shall have power to extend such time if he or she considers that there is good and sufficient reason for so doing. The application should include: i) a copy of the decision being challenged, ii) a brief statement of the facts, iii) a statement of the arguments on which the application is based, iv) the appellant’s request for a remedy, v) where applicable an application for a stay of the effects of the decision, vi) being challenged or for any other preliminary relief of an urgent nature, vii) the appellant’s address, telephone number and, where applicable, the electronic mail address at which he or she can be reached for the purpose of the proceedings.

8.4 Further information of the Conference of Colleges Appeals Tribunal’s terms of reference is available on the Conference of Colleges website at: https://weblearn.ox.ac.uk/access/content/group/test1-confcoll/Public%20D...

 

9. Right of Appeal to OIA (for students on Common Award programmes)

9.1 If the student wishes to appeal against the decision of the Hall, he or she may do so by referring the case to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator within 3 months of the Hall’s final decision and issue of a Completion of Procedures Letter. Further details concerning the operation of the Independent Scheme for the review of student complaints provided by the OIA may be found on the OIA website at: www.oiahe.org.uk. 10. Right of Appeal to OIA (for students on Oxford University courses)

 

10.1 If the student wishes to appeal against the decision of the Conference of Colleges Appeals Tribunal, he or she may do so by referring the case to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator within 3 months of the Tribunal’s final decision and issue of a Completion of Procedures letter. Further details concerning the operation of the Independent Scheme for the review of student complaints provided by the OIA may be found on the OIA website at: www.oiahe.org.uk.

Policy Gatekeeper Date of Approval SubCommittee Date to Take Effect Date of Next Major Review V.3 JER 24.11.14 Education 24.11.14 Michaelmas 2015

It is the responsibility of the Gatekeeper of each policy to check annually whether there have been any legislative and/or University policy changes that are relevant to Wycliffe Hall.

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