The panel consists of a Chair, another academic member of staff, someone taking minutes and yourself (along with a student or member of staff if you want to have someone with you).
If you receive an invitation to a misconduct panel, the Advice Centre can prepare you for your panel meeting and accompany you to the meeting itself. Contact the Union Helpdesk and ask for an appointment with the Academic Advisor.
The panel is your opportunity to respond to the allegation and explain how or why you think there may have been similarities in your work. The panel will ask you questions but will also give you space to say what you have prepared. Students are always given the chance to let the panel know if they have any mitigating or extenuating circumstances which could explain their actions. If they are accepted by the panel (who will need evidence) their circumstances will not excuse the misconduct but may be taken into account to reduce the level of any sanction. They will then outline the possible sanctions and next steps.
The panel meeting will last around 20 minutes. Following this, they will send you a copy of the meeting minutes and ask you to confirm if you agree that the minutes are correct. Once you have sent your response back, you will be given an outcome via email in around seven days.
If the panel find that misconduct has occurred, there are a range of penalties they can impose, from a deduction of 10% from the mark to failure of the entire course. The panel’s decision will depend on things like the seriousness of the misconduct, your level of study and, whether there was any obvious intention to cheat. They will take all these factors into account, as well as any individual circumstances you have disclosed. As a guide, typically a first offence of clear plagiarism or duplication will mean that you are given a zero grade for the assignment. If it is a second offence your case will be referred to a Senior Vice-Principal to make a decision.
You do have the right to appeal the outcome within a limited time frame on certain grounds. See the academic advice pages of our website for more information on what you can and can’t appeal and how you submit this. Similarly, our Academic Advisor can help you with submitting an appeal where you meet the criteria.
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