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Part 2 - Dealing With Alleged Misconduct

Statute 10 Student Conduct and Discipline


10.5 Situation of serious risk requiring urgent redress
10.6 Breach of academic honesty
10.7 Reporting alleged misconduct
10.8 Action by officer on receipt of report of alleged misconduct
10.9 Action by Designated Officer
10.10 Response by student
10.11 Advice to person who made original allegation
10.12 Procedural fairness and conduct of proceedings
10.13 Discipline Committee
10.14 Conduct of proceedings by Designated Officer or Discipline Committee
10.15 Penalties which may be imposed by Designated Officer or Discipline Committee
10.16 Notification of decision and, where relevant, of any penalty imposed


10.5 Situation of serious risk requiring urgent redress

10.5.1 The Vice-Chancellor or nominee may suspend a student on considering it necessary to avert a substantial risk of

  1. injury to a person; or
  2. serious damage to property; or
  3. serious detriment to the interests or good repute of the University; or
  4. serious disruption of a University activity.

10.5.2 Before imposing the suspension, the Vice-Chancellor or nominee must make a reasonable effort (having regard to the seriousness and urgency of the risk) to provide the student with an opportunity to explain why the suspension is not warranted.

10.5.3 A suspension takes effect immediately and the student must comply with such a decision.

10.5.4 The Vice-Chancellor or nominee must, within twenty-four hours, provide a written allegation notice to the student

  1. setting out the terms of the decision;
  2. setting out in summary form the reason for the decision; and
  3. advising the student of the provisions of this Statute.

10.5.5 Where the Vice-Chancellor or nominee has taken action to suspend a student under this Section, he/she must refer the matter to the Discipline Committee immediately. The Vice-Chancellor may, after investigation, institute other measures he/she considers necessary having regard to the circumstances of the student and the University.

10.5.6 A suspension ends if, ten working days after the allegation notice is given, the Discipline Committee has not held its first meeting.

10.5.7 If the Discipline Committee has held its first meeting as required, the suspension continues until the proceedings are finalised or it is lifted by the Vice-Chancellor or nominee, the Discipline Committee or the Discipline Appeals Committee.

10.5.8 The Vice-Chancellor or nominee must lift the suspension if satisfied that the risk that necessitated it has passed.

10.5.9 The Vice-Chancellor must provide a written report to the next meeting of Senate, setting out in summary form the terms of and reason for any action under this Section1.

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10.6 Breach of academic honesty

Any alleged breach of academic honesty falling within the Academic Honesty Policy must be dealt with in accordance with that Policy.

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10.7 Reporting alleged misconduct

10.7.1 A person may report possible student misconduct (other than that covered by Sections 10.5 or 10.6) to an authorised officer (refer to Section 10.7.2). Any such report should be made as soon as possible after the person reporting becomes aware of the misconduct in question and should be confirmed in writing.

10.7.2 The officers to whom any alleged act of misconduct may be reported are as follows:

Academic staff for any act or behaviour which causes serious disruption to any learning, teaching, research or assessment activity.

Head of School for any matter relating to the learning, teaching, assessment, research, community engagement or other activities conducted by the School or relating to the facilities of the School.

Head of an institute or centre for any matter relating to learning, teaching, assessment, research, community engagement or other activities conducted by that institute or centre or relating to the facilities of that institute or centre.

Executive Dean of Faculty

  1. for any matter relating to the learning, teaching, assessment, research, community engagement or other activities conducted by the Faculty or relating to the facilities of the Faculty; and
  2. for any matter within the power of a Head of School, if the student is pursuing a course administered by the Faculty.

Deputy-Vice-Chancellor (Academic) for any matter relating to the learning, teaching, assessment, community engagement or other activities conducted by a Faculty or relating to the academic facilities of the University.

Deputy-Vice-Chancellor (Research) for any matter relating to research students or any matter relating to research conducted within facilities of the University.

Deputy-Vice-Chancellor (Students, Learning and Teaching) for any matter arising in, or in connection with, the provision of services to students or Student Association activities.

Librarian for any matter arising in, or in connection with, the Universitys library facilities or services.

Director, Information Technology for any matter arising in, or in connection with, the Universitys computing and network facilities or services.

Academic Registrar for any matter arising in, or in connection with, any Student Centre or Student Administration office, facilities or services.

Manager of a residential facility for any matter arising in, or in connection with, that residential facility.

Associate Vice-Chancellor or Campus Dean for any matter occurring on a campus or site for which he/she has responsibility.

Designated Officer: for any matter occurring on a campus or site for which he/she has been designated to undertake that role.

Deputy-Vice-Chancellor (Administration and Resources) for any matter.

Vice-Chancellor for any matter.

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10.8 Action by officer on receipt of report of alleged misconduct

On receipt of any such report, the officer concerned will take action as follows:

  1. in the case of any conduct which requires immediate action (eg to avoid disruption of any lawful activity), the officer may take summary action to ensure that the conduct ceases. Such summary action may include (but is not limited to) excluding the student, requiring them to leave the class, examination, facility, premises, campus or site forthwith, provided that the period of such exclusion must not exceed:
    1. the duration of the class, examination or other activity during which any disruption occurred;
      or
    2. in any other case, a period of 24 hours;
  2. the exercise of any such authority must be reported to the Designated Officer within two working days of its exercise;
  3. in any other case, the officer will refer the matter to the Designated Officer.

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10.9 Action by Designated Officer

10.9.1 The Designated Officer (on his/her own initiative or in response to a report) may:

  1. make preliminary investigations to decide whether action should be taken against a student for alleged misconduct; in such preliminary investigations it may be appropriate for the Designated Officer to make contact with the student and/or others, in particular to ascertain whether there are any ameliorating circumstances or factors or whether remedial or supportive actions rather than procedures related to dealing with misconduct should be initiated;
  2. undertake investigations and determine the matter himself/herself or may refer the matter to a Discipline Committee. Where the matter is referred to the Designated Officer by the Deputy-Vice-Chancellor (Academic) under the Academic Honesty Policy, the Designated Officer will refer the matter to a Discipline Committee; and/or
  3. refer the matter to the Police or other appropriate agency external to the University.
10.9.2 If the Designated Officer considers it necessary or appropriate to progress the matter, he/she will, within ten working days of the allegation being brought to his/her attention:
  1. provide a written allegation notice to the student, setting out the alleged misconduct;
  2. advise the student whether it is intended that the Designated Officer investigate the alleged misconduct or refer the matter to a Discipline Committee;
  3. give the student the opportunity to respond to the allegation of misconduct, providing the date by which any such response must be submitted; such date must be no less than five working days after receipt or deemed receipt of the allegation notice by the student; and
  4. provide the student with a copy of this Statute.

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10.10 Response by student

10.10.1 The student must respond within the prescribed time and must indicate whether he/she admits or denies the alleged misconduct.

10.10.2 If the student does not respond within the prescribed time, the Designated Officer must proceed to consider and determine the matter or refer it to a Discipline Committee for consideration and determination.

10.10.3 If the student responds within the prescribed time and the Designated Officer considers that the response provides grounds for discontinuing action against the student, he/she will advise the student in writing accordingly and no further action will be taken and no record of the matter will be recorded on the students file.

10.10.4 If the student responds within the prescribed time and the Designated Officer considers that further investigation is required, he/she must proceed to consider and determine the matter or refer it to the Discipline Committee for consideration and determination.

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10.11 Advice to person who made original allegation

If the Designated Officer decides that no action be taken, he/she will communicate the decision in writing to the person making the original allegation, with a copy to the relevant Associate Vice-Chancellor or Campus Dean.

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10.12 Procedural fairness and conduct of proceedings

10.12.1 When dealing with a case of alleged misconduct, the decision-maker must proceed in a manner that is procedurally fair, subject to the provisions of Section 10.12.2 and, as applicable, section 10.14 and 10.21 . The decision-maker must also have regard to the general principles set out in Sections 10.1 and 10.2.

10.12.2 The decision-maker will:

  1. conduct any hearings as expeditiously as possible, consistent with the need to act fairly;
  2. determine the matter on the basis of evidence adduced by the parties or in their presence, act fairly, and proceed in a way that is appropriate, without being bound by legal technicalities or the laws of evidence;
  3. give the student a copy of, or an opportunity to inspect, all relevant evidence in relation to the alleged misconduct;
  4. give the student a reasonable opportunity to respond to the allegation in writing and to appear before the decision-maker to answer the allegation;
  5. give the student at least five working days written notice of the date, time and place of any hearing;
  6. permit the student to be accompanied by a support person;
  7. permit the student and any support person whom the student appoints to be present throughout the hearing, except when members of a Committee wish to confer privately among themselves or to consider their decision;
  8. conduct any hearing in closed session;
  9. decide, to the decision-makers reasonable satisfaction, whether the student has committed misconduct and, if so, given all the circumstances of the case, whether one or more of the penalties allowed should be imposed. The decision of the majority of Committee members present and voting (in the case of the Discipline Committee or Discipline Appeals Committee) will apply.

10.12.3 Failure of the student to appear at the notified time will not prevent the decision-maker from proceeding to investigate and determine the allegation or appeal.

10.12.4 The decision-maker has complete authority to keep order in any proceedings, including the authority to order the removal of any person, including a student and/or his/her support person, whose conduct is detrimental to the orderly conduct of proceedings.

10.12.5 When two or more students are alleged to have committed misconduct arising out of the same occurrence or series of occurrences, the decision-maker will decide whether their cases or appealsare to be heard separately or together.

10.12.6 A written record of all proceedings will be maintained. Such record will contain a summary of the matters considered or obtained by the decision-maker and other minutes of its proceedings necessary to show the way in which it conducted the inquiry.

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10.13 Discipline Committee

10.13.1 Each year there will be a Discipline Committee constituted for each campus.

10.13.2 The Discipline Committee will comprise:

  1. the relevant Designated Officer (chairperson);
  2. two members of staff selected by the Designated Officer from a panel of staff approved by the relevant Associate Vice-Chancellor or Campus Dean for the purpose; and
  3. two students selected by the Designated Officer from a panel of students nominated by the executive of the local Student Association and approved by the relevant associate Vice-Chancellor or Campus Dean for the purpose.

10.13.3 If the Designated Officer considers that, because of his/her preliminary enquiries, he/she is unable to hear the matter without bias, he/she may request the relevant Associate Vice-Chancellor or Campus Dean to appoint another person in his/her stead. In appointing a substitute member, the relevant Associate Vice-Chancellor or Campus Dean will also nominate the chairperson of the Committee.

10.13.4 A quorum of the Committee is three members, consisting of the chairperson and at least one member of staff.

10.13.5 The chairperson has a deliberative vote and, if required, a casting vote.

10.13.6 The relevant Associate Vice-Chancellor or Campus Dean may appoint a person to act as secretary to the Discipline Committee. The secretary will provide the Committee with administrative support but does not vote.

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10.14 Conduct of proceedings by Designated Officer or Discipline Committee

10.14.1 Subject to this Section, the provisions of Section 10.12 will apply to all hearings conducted by the Designated Officer and/or any Discipline Committee.

10.14.2 A support person accompanying a student at any hearing by a Designated Officer or Discipline Committee may not be a former or current legal practitioner or a person with a law degree.

10.14.3 The University may not have legal representation at any hearing by a Designated Officer or Discipline Committee.

10.14.4 A decision about the allegation must be made within twenty working days of receipt or deemed receipt of the allegation notice by the student.

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10.15 Penalties which may be imposed by Designated Officer or Discipline Committee

10.15.1 If the student admits the alleged misconduct or is found to have committed the alleged misconduct, one or more of the penalties listed below may be imposed.

10.15.2 One or more of the following penalties may be imposed by the Designated Officer:

  1. require the student to apologise formally to another party;
  2. reprimand the student, including the ability to direct that any reprimand be recorded on the students file and/or student record;
  3. fine the student;
  4. impose a campus service order.

10.15.3 One or more of the following penalties may be imposed by a Discipline Committee:

  1. require the student to apologise formally to another party;
  2. reprimand the student, including the ability to direct that any reprimand be recorded on the students file and/or student record;
  3. fine the student;
  4. impose a campus service order;
  5. require the student to pay compensation for damage to any person, or to property or facilities of the University;
  6. fine the student an amount equal to the amount determined by the Committee to be the reimbursement of costs arising from unauthorised use by the student of any service or facility provided by the University;
  7. require the student to refrain from having any or any specified contact with any particular student(s) or member(s) of staff for such period of time as deemed necessary or appropriate;
  8. award a fail grade for or annul all or part of the students result for the study period concerned;
  9. impose a maximum grade which the student may gain for the unit in relation to which the misconduct occurred and/or downgrade the final grade overall in the unit;
  10. require the student to do further work or repeat work in any unit;
  11. refuse or cancel credit for any unit;
  12. suspend the student from the University for any nominated period of time;
  13. suspend the students right to use a vehicle (motorised or non-motorised) on any campus or site for any nominated period of time;
  14. exclude the student either permanently or for such period and on such terms and conditions as are deemed appropriate from one or more of:
    1. the University, a Faculty or School;
    2. specified areas of a campus or site;
    3. a course, unit or non-award study; or
    4. use of any or nominated University facilities;
  15. where the student has intentionally submitted forged, false or falsified evidence of academic standing for the purpose of admission or re-enrolment, terminate the students enrolment.

Without limiting the range of penalties available, penalties which are academic in nature (namely penalties (h) to (k)) should normally be imposed only for misconduct under the Academic Honesty Policy.

In addition to or in lieu of the penalties above, the Committee may recommend that the student consult a counsellor, medical practitioner or specialist.

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10.16 Notification of decision and, where relevant, of any penalty imposed

10.16.1 The Designated Officer (or his/her substitute where applicable) must, within five working days of the decision being made, advise the student in writing of -

  1. the process undertaken;
  2. the decision reached;
  3. the reasons for the decision;
  4. any penalty imposed, the time within which any payment is to be made and/or remedial action taken by the student, and any conditions thereon;
  5. the right to appeal under Part 3 of this Statute.

10.16.2 A copy of the notification to the student will be provided to the Deputy-Vice-Chancellor (Administration and Resources), the relevant Executive Dean and the relevant Associate Vice-Chancellor or Campus Dean.

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1Note: The report to Senate would normally not include the names of the parties.