Student disciplinary procedure

During your time at SOAS, you have the right to complain if you are dissatisfied with any aspect of your experience at SOAS. However, you also have a responsibility to follow the rules and regulations of the School whilst studying here.

The rules and regulations that are in force are made available via this website and in Student Handbooks. You have an obligation to familiarise yourself with all the rules that affect you. If you fail to follow the School’s rules, or behave unjustifiably in a way that adversely affects other students, the School’s employees or contractors, or other individuals or organisations, or bring the School into disrepute through your actions, you may be subject to the School’s Student Disciplinary Procedure.

1. What does the procedure consist of?

As with the School’s complaints procedures, the aim is to resolve disciplinary cases at the earliest possible stage, so not all of these stages will be necessary in every case.

  • If you wish to report misconduct by a student, you should complete the Form for Reporting Serious Student Misconduct on the Student Information Desk (SID). In the portal, click on "Student Complaints and Appeals", and in the dropdown box select "Reporting Student Disciplinary Misconduct".
  • If a report is made about you, you will be told, and kept informed throughout the process.
  • The Director will appoint a senior member of staff to investigate the allegation.
  • There are three stages to the School’s disciplinary procedure:
    • Stage 1 – Investigation by a senior member of staff, such as a head of an academic department or professional service directorate
    • Stage 2 – Formal disciplinary hearing in front of a Panel composed of two members of Academic Board and a Students' Union Co-President
    • Stage 3 – Appeal Panel composed of a lay member of the Board of Trustees, a member of the standing panel nominated by Academic Board, and a Students' Union Co-President.

Following the Appeal Panel, the student concerned will be issued with a Completion of Procedures letter. If they are dissatisfied with the outcome of the School’s procedures, they may appeal to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) within 12 months of receiving their Completion of Procedures letter.

At each stage, the School can choose to either dismiss the allegations or find that some or all of the allegations are justified and suggest a penalty.

2. What penalties can the School impose?

Penalties could include (but are not limited to):

  • Exclusion temporarily, or in serious cases, permanently from the School;
  • Restricting access to specific facilities for a fixed period;
  • Making a financial charge for damage caused;
  • Imposing a fine;
  • Requiring a written apology;
  • Issuing a warning with conditions;
  • Adding a note to a student’s academic record which may be made available to potential employers who request references for the student.

3. Where can you go for advice?

Student Advice and Wellbeing can provide impartial advice to students on any matter relating to their experience at SOAS. This can include advice and support to students subject to, or involved in, the disciplinary process.

The Information Compliance Manager can provide advice on any aspect of the Student Disciplinary Procedure.

A full list of sources of help for students involved with disciplinary matters is available in the Downloads section of this page. 

4. Where can you see the procedure in full?

The full Student Disciplinary Procedure is available to download:

SOAS Student Disciplinary Procedure (PDF)

PDF document, 323.26KB

Other materials