Policies Index

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Welcome to the Policies & Procedures webpages for students. These webpages list the relevant academic policies and other materials that help support students throughout their time at Strathclyde.

These pages mainly focus on policies that are to do with learning and teaching, however you can find a full list of all the University’s policies on the Policies and Procedures webpages.

You will find a brief overview of each policy in each section. This will help you to understand what is within the actual documents. There is also a guide on the right-hand side of the page, which will indicate the following:

Status: This box will indicate if the policy or procedure is new or currently being reviewed. If it is currently being reviewed, this means that it is still relevant and should be adhered to, but there may be a new policy or procedure within the next couple of months, so keep checking the pages!

Audience: This will highlight who the policy or procedure is relevant to e.g. undergraduate students, postgraduate taught students, postgraduate research students or all students.

Important: This box will emphasise that you need to read the policy carefully, and not to just rely on the brief overview that has been provided. (You can find the actual policy document at the bottom of each page).

Useful Docs: This will provide any useful documents, such as forms, that may be relevant to the policy.

Please note that these webpages are for all students (undergraduate, postgraduate taught and postgraduate researchers). Staff will also refer to these webpages in order to help support students with understanding the University’s Academic Policies and Procedures.




For absences of seven days or less:
If you have been absent from the University for seven days or less you should record a self-certification online via PEGASUS using the Personal Circumstances link under the Services tab.

For absences of more than seven days: 
Where sickness results in absence of more than seven days, you are required to submit a medical certificate (signed by a medical practitioner who is not a member of your family) to Student Business.

For absences from an examination:
The self-certification convention does not apply and if you are absent from an examination due to sickness you must submit a formal medical certificate. All certificates that are submitted to Student Business are kept in the your file, and details are recorded on computer. Student Business informs the relevant departments and, if the absence continues for 14 days or more, the SAAS or relevant grant awarding body may be notified. The departments and Board of Examiners are informed of certificates which are relevant to a diet of examinations or the corresponding period of study, including, where appropriate, the relevant details.

The University's policy on Mitigating Circumstances that have affected a student’s performance in assessments leading to the final mark for a class can be found by clicking on the 'Mitigating Circumstances' link on the Academic Policies & Procedures webpage.

Voluntary Suspension

If you need to interrupt your studies for part of a session, you should contact your Advisor of Studies/Counsellor. In certain circumstances you may be recommended to apply for voluntary suspension. This application will be considered by the Head of Department/ School (or nominee) and is subject to approval by the Vice Dean (Academic). If approved, your registration will be amended to show a student in voluntary suspension and some tuition fees may be refunded. You should also notify your Local Education Authority or grant awarding body of this change to your academic status.


If you need any advice or support filling out your application please contact your Advisor of Studies/Personal Development Advisor.


Voluntary Suspension Guidelines

Voluntary Suspension Form (PDF)  



Admissions Policy

The Admissions Policy underpins the University’s approach to the admission of all students, to both undergraduate and postgraduate programmes, and aims to provide clear detail on the key principles that guide this approach. This policy also covers the University’s Clearing Policy, Dealing with Applications from Students with Criminal Convictions, Provision of Feedback to Unsuccessful Applicants and the Policy and Procedure on the Widening Participation Policy in the Context of Admissions.

This revised policy was approved by Senate in September 2014.

Policy on Operating Tier 4 of the Points Based System for Immigration

The purpose of this policy is to outline the University’s commitment and overall approach to working effectively within Tier 4 of the Points Based System for Immigration (PBS) to support the recruitment, admission and teaching of international students who require a visa to study in the UK. The policy and procedures are mandatory and apply to the work of all existing staff within academic departments and professional services involved in the recruitment, admission, and/or teaching of students and the administration of their studies.


Admissions Policy


Useful information

Academic Policies and Procedures web page


Academic Appeals Procedure


An appeal is defined as a request for a review of a decision by an academic body charged with determining student progression, assessment and awards. The Procedure details how students may pursue an appeal against a progress or award decision of a General Board of Examiners, an Honours Board, an Integrated Masters Board, a Postgraduate Taught Board or a Research Examining Committee and how the appeal will be heard by the University.


Faculty Appeals:

Appeals against a decision of a Board of Examiners must be made on at least one of the following grounds:

  • Procedural irregularities in the assessment process
  • Inadequate assessment, prejudice or bias on the part of the examiners
  • You were adversely affected by illness or other relevant factors, of which you were previously unaware, or which for a good reason you were unable to disclose to the examiners in advance.

Senate Appeals:

You have the right of appeal to the Senate following unsuccessful or only partially successful appeal to the relevant Faculty Appeals Committee on one or more of the following grounds:

  • Substantial new information which was not available, for good reason, at the Faculty Appeal stage;
  • Bias or prejudice on the part of those who dealt with the appeal at the Faculty Appeal stage;
  • Breach of the Student Appeals procedure

It is important to read the Procedures Document to fully understand the process.


For advice and support in submitting Personal Circumstances or lodging an Appeal, you are advised to discuss the issue with one or more of the following:

All of the above are able to advise you on the process/procedure and the Advice Centre and the Advice Hub can advise on the best way to formulate an appeal and/or the supporting evidence which might help the student’s case. Any such decisions will be confidential and so cannot prejudice the appeal. Students who wish advice on the process may also consult Strategy & Policy or the relevant Faculty Office.



Academic Appeals Form - Faculty (PDF)


Academic Appeals Form - Senate (PDF)

Academic Appeals Form - Senate (Word)      


Personal Circumstances Procedure


The Personal Circumstances procedures have been developed to ensure that all students are treated fairly, and are not disadvantaged by circumstances beyond their control. 


Personal circumstances are defined as circumstances beyond a student’s control which may adversely affect their ability to study or their performance in assessment.

If you feel that your academic performance has been affected by personal circumstances, you must inform the University as soon as you are aware of these circumstances, by recording them on Pegasus under ‘Personal Circumstances’ and submitting a Personal Circumstances Form to Student Business with supporting evidence.

You must notify Student Business within five working days of the latest affected exam/assessment or deadline.  If an entire semester or exam diet has been affected, you need to submit the form at least one working day before the relevant meeting of the Pre-Board or Personal Circumstances Board. (You can find out when this is via your department/ School). 


In order to be considered, personal circumstances must have significantly affected your academic performance, attendance (including exams) or ability to meet a submission deadline. Board and appeal committees will consider the following factors when considering circumstances:

  • The evidence presented to support the claim;
  • The possible effect of the circumstances on the studies in question; and
  • Your overall performance on the programme and specific performance in assessments affected by the circumstances

Based on the information that you submit, the Boards will make recommendations to the appropriate Board of Examiners as to whether any academic dispensation should be granted. The Board of Examiners will then take into account the recommendations of the Pre-Board or Personal Circumstances Board, normally by discounting all or part of an assessment, not by raising a mark. 


For advice and support in submitting Personal Circumstances or lodging an Appeal, you are advised to discuss the issue with one or more of the following:

All of the above are able to advise you on the process/procedure and the Advice Centre and the Advice Hub can advise on the best way to formulate an appeal and/or the supporting evidence which might help the student’s case. Any such decisions will be confidential and so cannot prejudice the appeal. Students who wish advice on the process may also consult Strategy & Policy or the relevant Faculty Office.


See Academic Appeals Procedure section above.



Student Discipline Procedure


The purpose of the procedure is to regulate student behaviour in order to secure the proper working of the University in the broadest sense. In support of this goal, students are expected to conduct themselves at all times in a manner which:

  • Demonstrates respect for staff, fellow students, and University property;
  • Enhances the reputation of the University;
  • Is sensitive to a culturally diverse environment; and
  • Demonstrates active engagement in the learning process, a commitment to university-level study, and determination to succeed.


The following list of behaviour which might be considered a disciplinary offence is illustrative only and in no way limits the breadth of definition of a disciplinary offence or prevents the University thereof from considering and adjudicating upon any other conduct or action which appears to constitute a breach of discipline.

a) Failure to adhere to the requirements of any policies, notices or codes of conduct that the University may, from time to time, introduce;
b) disruption of, or improper interference with, the academic, administrative, social or other activities of the University, including offensive behaviour, whether on University premises or elsewhere;
c) obstruction of, or improper interference with, the functions, duties or activities of any student, member of staff or other employee of the University or any authorised visitor to the University;
d) persistent failure to attend classes, tutorial or laboratories in the curriculum;
e) falsification or serious misuse of University records, including degrees, diplomas or certificates;
f) behaviour which brings the University into disrepute;
g) intentional or reckless damage to, or defacement of, University property (including property on loan to the University) or the property of members of the University, including an institution or organisation attended as part of a University course;
h) misuse or unauthorised use of University premises, facilities or items of property;
i) failure to disclose name and other relevant details or to show identification to an officer or employee of the University in circumstances when it is reasonable to require that such information be given;
j) failure to comply with a previously-imposed penalty under these procedures;
k) failure to treat others (students, staff, visitors and other people in the community) fairly and in accordance with the University‟s Dignity & Respect Policy;
l) acts of dishonesty, including theft, fraud, deceit, or deception in relation to the University, its staff or students;
m) acts of academic dishonesty, including plagiarism, collusion and examination irregularities;
n) actions likely to cause injury, impair safety or raise false alarm on University premises;
o) harassment (of any kind) of any student, member of staff, or any authorised visitor to the University;
p) violent, disorderly, threatening or offensive behaviour or language whilst on or off University premises whether directed towards a member of staff, another student or member of the public
q) conduct which constitutes a criminal offence where that conduct:

  • takes place on University premises, or
  • affects or concerns other members of the University community, or
  • damages the good name of the University, or
  • itself constitutes a disciplinary offence within the terms of these procedures.

For the avoidance of doubt, the University may proceed under student disciplinary procedures notwithstanding the instigation of any criminal proceedings. However, the University reserves the right to defer action pending any criminal investigation or prosection.

r) any other act or behaviour which may be reasonably interpreted as a disciplinary offence notwithstanding the lack of equivalent examples above.


The University shall have the right to investigate any allegation of misconduct against a student and may take disciplinary action where it decides, on the balance of probabilities, that a disciplinary offence has been committed.

In all cases, an investigation will be undertaken. If a disciplinary offence is later deemed to be a major offence then the Chief Operating Officer or nominee may appoint an appropriate person to undertake further investigations. Any investigation will include an interview of the student(s) concerned.

For cases where a student withdraws from the University whilst a disciplinary investigation is on-going, the disciplinary case shall be concluded in the student’s absence, if necessary. 


Impartial advice about this procedure may be sought from the Advice Hub, the Advice and Support Service of the University of Strathclyde Students’ Association. 




Academic Dishonesty Guidance


The guidance is intended to facilitate a fair and consistent approach to dealing with alleged instances of academic dishonesty.

As members of the academic community, it is important to note that you are responsible for ensuring that your work abides by the conventions and rules of the community. The integrity of your final award depends on adhering to these conventions. It is expected that all staff will ensure that you are aware what constitutes appropriate academic scholarship and the importance of this in the context of maintaining the quality and standard of awards within the University.

Given this context, the University regards academic dishonesty as a serious matter and it can, in some cases, lead to formal proceedings being brought against a student under the University’s Student Discipline Procedure. As such, it can carry heavy penalties and it is therefore important that staff inform you about what is expected (or not expected) of you as part of the academic community and about what constitutes academic dishonesty.

Examples of Academic Dishonesty

Cheating in written exams:

  • Illicit copying and communicating;
  • Possession of prohibited materials; and
  • Unapproved use of electronic devices to store and retrieve information.

False candidature or impersonation:

  • Impersonating another student in an examination or engaging someone else to take one’s place in an examination;
  • Undertaking a piece of coursework for another student or engaging someone else to undertake a piece of coursework in one’s place.

False declaration:

  • Making a false declaration in order to retrieve special consideration by an Examination Board/Committee or Appeals Committee or to obtain extensions to deadlines or exemption from work.

Fabrication or falsification of data/experimental results/statistics/references:

  • Presentation of data, experimental results, statistics or references in laboratory reports, essays, projects, presentations, dissertation, theses or other assessed work which have been invented or altered by the student


  • Using someone else’s work (ie words, ideas, results, tables  or diagrams) whether taken from print, electronic or internet sources without acknowledging whether by direct copying, paraphrasing or summarising.


  • Submitting the same piece of work for two different assignments/degree programmes – even though it is the student’s own work which is being reproduced, is a form of plagiarism and should be treated as such.


  • Agreeing with another student either to submit work produced collaboratively or to copy the other student’s work. This is a form of plagiarism in which the individual whose work is being plagiarised gives consent for this to happen. In such cases both parties are committing an offence.


Information about academic dishonesty and how to avoid it should be included in your relevant handbooks and materials that have been provided to you.

If you have any questions, or concerns about academic dishonesty please consult your Department.


Guidance on Dealing with Instances of Possible Academic Dishonesty by Students

Good Academic Practice and the Avoidance of Plagiarism - Guide for Students  


Complaints Handling Procedure

What is a complaint?

For the purpose of this procedure, a complaint may be defined as:

'An expression of dissatisfaction by one or more individuals about the standard of service, action or lack of action by or on behalf of the University.'

A complaint may relate to:

  • the quality and standard of service
  • failure to provide a service
  • the quality of facilities or learning resources
  • treatment by or attitude of a staff member, student or contractor
  • inappropriate behaviour by a staff member, student or contractor
  • the failure of the University to follow an appropriate administrative process
  • dissatisfaction with the University’s policy, although it is recognised that policy is set at the discretion of the University.

Complainants should note that, if you raise a complaint:

  • you will not suffer any disadvantage as a result of making the complaint;
  • everyone who responds to or investigates complaints is required to do so impartially and will not be permitted to act in any matter in which they have a material interest or in which any potential conflict of interest may arise;
  • your privacy and confidentiality will be respected as far as possible at all stages of the process, but you should note that limited disclosure of some complaints will be necessary in order to take your complaint forward; and
  • your complaint will be considered on its own merits and on its particular facts and circumstances so that natural justice may be done.


The process for making a complaint and the timescales involved can be found in .


Assessment and Feedback

Assessment and Feedback

The Assessment and Feedback Policy and Procedures were revised and endorsed by Senate in 2014.








Assessment and Feedback Policy (18-19)


Useful information

For further useful information about assessment and feedback see http://www.strath.ac.uk/learnteach/informationforstudents/.