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Unfair Practice Investigation Information for Staff

All students are given information during their induction regarding plagiarism, collusion and exam misconduct, however, occasionally staff may find themselves suspecting that students have committed unfair practice.

If a student’s assignment is suspected to contain material which is not the student’s own, the school’s Unfair Practice Co-ordinator will investigate the case.  The Chair of the Examining Board will then decide whether the allegation of unfair practice is substantiated and whether any penalty should be imposed or in serious cases, if the case should be referred to a University Committee of Enquiry.

The University has developed specific guidance, as well as template letters and records to help staff to ensure that all cases are managed in line with the Unfair Practice Procedure.

If you have any questions regarding unfair practice then please contact Student Cases on 02920 879429 or at  If students would like advice regarding this or any University procedure, then please refer them to the Students’ Union Advice and Representation Centre on 02920 781410 or

For information regarding the different steps that Schools need to undertake, please refer to the staff guide.  The template letters available can be used to invite a student to an investigation meeting, invite them to make a statement and to inform them of the decision .  There is also an Unfair Practice Case Record that will always need to be completed for each student suspected of unfair practice.

Where student’s cases are referred to a Committee of Enquiry for very serious or repeat offenders; the Unfair Practice Co-ordinator will normally represent the school at the hearing.

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