rules & regulations - Abertay Intranet

Rough Guide to University
September 2014
The purpose of rules and regulations
By enrolling at Abertay University, you agree to abide by our rules and regulations. The University
tries to avoid unnecessary rules, but some are needed so that we can live and work together to the
benefit of everyone.
Rules are also there to protect our community against individuals whose behaviour does not reach
the standard that we expect and to safeguard the University’s name and reputation.
We therefore ask all students and staff to observe certain standards of behaviour and to meet
certain obligations. In the main, you are unlikely to encounter problems if you use your common
sense, have a sensible appreciation of what is right and wrong, show respect for other students and
staff, do not misuse the facilities available to you and respect the University and its property.
About this booklet
The purpose of this booklet is to provide a Rough Guide to some of the most important areas
covered by the University’s regulatory policies and procedures.
It is important that you familiarise yourself with the policies themselves and are aware of the
consequences of infringing them.
This Guide also contains information on what to do in situations where you feel that your educational
experience has been unfairly affected by the actions of one or more individuals, be they staff or
fellow students.
This booklet is not intended to take the place of all of the University’s regulatory policies and
procedures. Rather, it aims to ensure that you are aware of the broad areas in which we have rules
and regulations and to let you know where you can find more detailed information on them.
Nigel Seaton
Principal & Vice-Chancellor
August 2014
Further information & advice
Absences & other personal difficulties
Academic appeals
Academic deceit & plagiarism
Academic regulations
Bullying & harassment
Children in the University
Computer systems & facilities
Data Protection Act
Disclosure Scotland
Equality and Diversity Policy
Fees & other charges
Health & safety
Intellectual Property Policy
The Bernard King Library
Matriculation cards
Security & lost property
Further information & advice
Throughout this Guide, where a detailed policy or procedure document exists on a particular topic,
it is highlighted in bold typeface. The full text of each of these documents is available from the
‘Abertay Knowledge’, the area of the University’s online portal which is the information source for all
regulations, policies and procedures.
If you have any problems accessing them, would like a paper copy, or need further information and
advice, please contact the Support Enquiry Zone (SEZ) in The Bernard King Library.
Absences & other personal difficulties
Most students encounter few major problems during their studies, but the unexpected can
happen and you may experience a change in circumstances which affects your ability to study or
attend classes. Health, relationships, family and financial problems are the most common. If you
experience difficulties, it is important that you speak to your Programme Tutor or Student Services
as soon as possible. Contact can be made by email, by telephone, or in person via SEZ in the
Library, who can arrange an appointment for you.
If the problem is related to your health, you must consult a doctor at the time, because medical
evidence may be required later on if you need to defer assessment.
Academic appeals
Under certain circumstances you have the right to submit an appeal against an adverse decision
you have received from an Assessment Board. These circumstances are explained in the
University’s Academic Appeals Procedure and you have to prove that either:
(a) your performance was affected by illness or some other reason which you were unwilling
or unable to divulge prior to the Board; or
(b) your assessments were not conducted in accordance with the relevant regulations or an
administrative error or other irregularity occurred.
If you think you have grounds for appeal, contact Student Services or the Students’ Association for
advice and help.
After your results are published, there are clearly defined and very strict timescales within which
you must submit notice of your intention to appeal.
Academic deceit & plagiarism
The University takes very seriously its responsibilities for ensuring that all work submitted by
students is a result of their own unaided efforts. It therefore deals severely with incidences of
copying, plagiarism and other forms of cheating in coursework and examinations. Such ‘academic
deceit’ is an offence under the University’s Student Disciplinary Code and is dealt with either
through School arrangements or the Student Disciplinary Committee.
You will receive detailed advice and guidance about what constitutes academic deceit from
academic staff at the beginning of your course. However, it is important that you understand this and
that you read the University’s Academic Deceit Policy and Procedures.
Academic regulations
There are detailed assessment regulations in the University’s Academic Regulations.
A useful introduction to the main points that are relevant to students can be found in the Rough
Guide to the Modular Scheme.
In particular you should note that you must complete registration for all modules in which you expect
to be assessed by the end of the third week of each term. Any requests for amendments thereafter
must be submitted to the Registrar in writing and will only be accepted in exceptional circumstances.
It is vital that you ensure that your module registrations are correct, because you will only receive
credit for those modules for which you are properly registered, regardless of which modules you
have attended or submitted assessments for.
You must familiarise yourself with the University’s rules for the conduct of examinations, which are
be aware that you may only use a calculator if the examination paper specifically allows you to.
Any electronic devices capable of displaying text or being used for communicating outside the
examinations room (such as mobile phones, ipods and tablets) must be switched off before you
enter. During your exam, these items must not be placed on your desk or in your bag, but must be
left where indicated by the exam invigilator. The University has no responsibility for the safekeeping
of your personal property.
Once you have enrolled at the University, you must attend regularly, carry out the work
assigned to you and sit any exams that are required.
Students whose attendance record is poor are much more likely to fail than those who attend
The University has systems in place to monitor attendance and will take action to follow up
students whose attendance record is poor.
Bullying & harassment
The University seeks to ensure that all individuals are treated with dignity and respect. It regards
harassment as unacceptable and has a Personal Harassment Policy designed to protect its
students and staff. Harassment can take many forms, but is generally regarded as behaviour which:
• is unwanted by the recipient;
• and/or is hostile and/or offensive to the recipient or to others who have been exposed to it;
• and/or would be regarded by any reasonable person as harassment.
Such behaviour may be physical, psychological, verbal or non-verbal and can also be carried out in
written form or electronically. It may be based on sexual, racial, age or disability grounds, and can
include bullying or other forms of harassment that result from personal dislike or incompatibility.
If you feel that you are being subjected to harassment you are encouraged at the earliest possible
stage to tell the person concerned that their behaviour is unwelcome and ask them to stop. You
should be polite but firm, advise them that their conduct is unacceptable and unwanted, and indicate
that you consider it to be in breach of the University’s Policy and therefore a serious matter.
If you feel unable to speak to the person concerned, you may wish to seek assistance from the
Students’ Association or from Student Services.
If the harassment is serious or if it is impossible to resolve on an informal basis then you should
make a formal written complaint to the University Secretary.
Your complaint will be acknowledged in writing and will be fully investigated. As a result of the
investigation, the University Secretary may decide to refer the case for disciplinary action.
Where a student or member of staff is found guilty of the bullying or harassment of another student
or member of staff, the University will treat the matter extremely seriously.
Children in the University
Children are not normally permitted within any part of the University other than in public areas, where
they must be accompanied at all times by a parent or other responsible adult.
We hope that you will never need to complain about the way you have been treated by
the University or the level of service that you have received. However, if you encounter a problem
and have reason to complain, the University has a Student Complaints Procedure that provides
details of how to go about doing so.
The procedure aims in the first instance to resolve your complaint at the earliest possible stage on an
informal basis.
Should it not be possible to do so, the procedure outlines how to raise a more formal complaint.
Should you remain dissatisfied having exhausted the internal University process, the procedure
tells you how to approach the Scottish Public Ombudsman.
Computer systems & facilities
As a student you are given access to our computer systems and network facilities, which provide a
very powerful information, communication and learning resource. You must only use these facilities
for appropriate authorised purposes and must accept certain responsibilities and obligations. These
are detailed in the University’s ICT Facilities: Regulations for Acceptable Use, which is available
through Abertay Knowledge.
Breaching these regulations may result in the withdrawal of access to our facilities or to disciplinary
action under the Student Disciplinary Code. Under the Regulations you are prohibited from:
attempting to gain unauthorised access to computer held information
attempting to decode passwords or bypass other security restrictions
degrading system performance by deliberately consuming excessive computer resources
storing, creating or propagating viruses or similar types of software
disrupting services by damaging files or equipment
damaging any part of the computer systems
gaining unauthorised access to the system by obtaining extra unauthorised resources
using another user’s password whether to deprive that user from authorised
access or to make unauthorised use of the facilities
sharing passwords with unauthorised users and
monitoring network communications.
In addition, you must not use the University’s facilities to access the Internet or other networks
for purposes reasonably considered by us to be illegal, immoral, for financial gain, for political or
other campaigning purposes or for the purposes of causing harassment. You must also not use our
facilities to send or store offensive or obscene material, annoy, harass, intimidate, threaten or offend
others, disrupt or damage the academic research or administrative pursuits of others, invade the
privacy of others, send material which a recipient reasonably deems to be unwelcome, obscene or
defamatory or to bring the University into disrepute.
You are responsible for the security of your own passwords, and should ensure that you never leave
computers logged on and unattended.
The University has a licence which enables its students and staff to photocopy materials subject to
certain permissions and restrictions imposed by the Copyright Licensing Agency. All staff and
students are responsible for copyright and for remaining within the law. There can be serious
implications in breaching the copyright licence for both you and the University.
Detailed information on the permissions and restrictions applicable to photocopying is provided on
posters next to photocopiers around the University and in the Copyshop. It is important that you read
this and that you seek further guidance if you are at all uncertain about what you may copy.
Data Protection Act
The University treats all student records as confidential and the strictest control is exercised over the
release of any information relating to students. The records are maintained in accordance with the
terms of our registration under the Data Protection Act.
Any student holding or intending to keep personal data of any kind must comply with the provisions
of the Act, under which it is a criminal offence to process personal data on computers without being
a registered user. This is an individual responsibility. Further details are available in the University’s
Data Protection Policy.
While thankfully relatively uncommon, from time to time problems of student behaviour do arise. The
University’s Student Disciplinary Code sets out the processes by which allegations of misconduct
(a) improper interference with the proper functioning or activities of the University or with
those who work or study in the University; or
(b) action which otherwise might damage the University.
Examples of the types of behaviour which constitute misconduct can be found in the Code.
When an allegation is made against a student, the University Secretary carries out an investigation.
Where this indicates that formal disciplinary procedures are necessary, the matter is referred to the
Student Disciplinary Committee, which hears the case.
In the event of misconduct being admitted, or found proven, the Code specifies a range of
disciplinary sanctions. Depending on the level of seriousness of the offence, these include
If you find yourself involved in a disciplinary matter, you are strongly advised to seek confidential and
impartial help and advice from the Students’ Association or an advisor in Student Services.
The Students’ Association regulates its own internal affairs in a similar way and has separate
disciplinary procedures.
Disclosure Scotland
Disclosure Scotland provides criminal history information on anyone seeking employment or
voluntary posts which involve positions of trust such as working with children and vulnerable adults.
The University seeks Disclosures from its undergraduate, postgraduate and research students
where, as a result of the programme on which they are enrolled, they will:
be involved in regular contact with children and young people under the age of 18, elderly,
sick and handicapped people; and/or
be seeking to gain admission to professional groups in health, pharmacy and law
The University prospectus clearly indicates those programmes for which we seek Disclosures. In the
case of research students, decisions as to whether a Disclosure is required will be made on a case
by case basis depending on the nature of their research.
We also seek Disclosures for students involved in a paid or voluntary basis with school children.
When receiving a Disclosure that shows a conviction, the University may decide that this provides
grounds for requiring a student to de-register from a programme or for refusing permission for a
student to be involved in certain activities. In reaching such a decision, the person considering the
Disclosure will take into account a number of factors, including the relevance of any conviction to the
programme, the seriousness of the offence, the time since it took place and whether or not it has
been spent.
Equality and Diversity Policy
The University believes that equality of opportunity is fundamental to the achievement of its
Mission and its Strategic Plan.
The University’s Equality and Diversity Framework, available through the external website, aims
to ensure that staff and students are selected and treated on the basis of their relative merit and
abilities, and that unlawful and unfair discrimination is not tolerated. Implementation of the Policy is
the responsibility of the whole University community.
Amongst other things, the Policy outlines the University’s commitment to ensuring that students are
treated equitably and fairly in relation to their selection, teaching and assessment, that we monitor
this can be achieved, and that serious breaches of the Policy are dealt with through the University’s
disciplinary procedures.
Fees & other charges
You are responsible at all times for any tuition fees or other amounts owed to the University, and
should be aware that we will take action to follow up on non-payment. Depending on the level of debt,
such action might range from withdrawal of access to facilities (for example computer facilities or
library facilities) to de-registration from your programme. Non-payment of accommodation fees may
lead to you being asked to leave the University’s halls of residence. If you do not clear your debts to
the University at the completion of your studies, you may not be permitted to graduate or receive your
If you encounter financial problems, you are strongly urged to contact Student Services to seek help
and advice at the earliest possible stage.
Health & safety
It is vitally important that you pay careful attention to the briefing on health and safety that you receive
as part of induction, along with any further information you receive in terms of individual elements of
available through the external website, provides specific aspects of health and safety and on the
respective responsibilities of students, staff and the University.
You must familiarise yourself with the procedure for evacuating the University in the case of the fire
alarm being sounded. Failure to obey an alarm, even if you believe it to be a false alarm or test, not
only places yourself and others at risk but will lead to disciplinary action being taken against you.
Tampering with the fire safety equipment or deliberately triggering fire alarms are serious disciplinary
offences under the Student Disciplinary Code.
Intellectual Property Policy
“Intellectual Property” (IP) is the ownership of ideas and the control over tangible or virtual
representation of these ideas.
The University encourages the development of IP and our Intellectual Property Policy provides a
framework for the development of IP and its commercialisation where appropriate.
In order to enable IP generated by students carrying out research, or projects, or other University
work (whether or not in conjuction with members of University staff) to be adequately protected and
developed, it is assigned to the University.
One of the main reasons for the University taking this approach is to protect the many industrial and
business partners who either sponsor research or provide access to their assets for student projects.
It is the University’s policy to share any returns from the commercialisation of IP with the students
who have developed it and, in the case of IP generated entirely by the student or graduate without
third party involvement, to assign it fully with no requirement for a return to Abertay.
Students wishing to record (audio and/or video) any part of a lecture or other meeting must first seek
the permission of all those attending through the presenter of the lecture, etc. Recording has no IP or
copyright benefit and it is a disciplinary offence to employ any recording for other than private and
personal use.
The Bernard King Library
The University Library is a place for students to study and to use learning resources. You must
therefore respect the right of other students to pursue their studies quietly and in a scholarly
environment. In particular, you should adhere to the zoning policy and refrain from talking in silent
study areas.
All Library materials must be issued before leaving the Library building. No hot food is
permitted in the building. Failure to comply with Library policies may result in you being asked to
leave and ultimately could lead to Library and IT facilities being withdrawn from you and to further
disciplinary action under the Student Disciplinary Code.
Matriculation cards
For safety and security purposes, the University requires students to carry their matriculation (ID)
cards at all times and to display them, or surrender them, if asked to do so by a member of staff. You
will not obtain access to certain laboratories, computer facilities or the Library if you do not have your
card with you.
The University has a separate Guide to Staying in Halls of Residence on the external website. This
document includes information about the standards of service you can expect to receive from us, as
well as our expectations of your behaviour when living in residences. Breaking these rules could lead
to you being subject to disciplinary procedures under the Student Disciplinary Code and ultimately
to you being suspended or excluded from residences.
There is a copy of the Guide in every bedroom in the halls of residence. However if you lose your
copy, or you find that it is not available in your hall room, you can obtain a further copy from Student
Security & lost property
The University operates a Campus Security Service which maintains a 24 hour Contact Point on the
ground floor of the Kydd Building (telephone Dundee 01382 308008). This can be contacted for help
and advice, or to report an incident or emergency, at any time around the clock. The Contact Point
also maintains a store of lost property that has been recovered from across the University. The
University has no responsibility for the safe-keeping of your personal property.
The University has a No Smoking Policy which extends to all academic and research premises
Smoking may be permitted in certain areas within some halls of residence, but you are advised to
check the detail of the arrangements that apply to your specific hall of residence.
Students who have been accused of misconduct may be suspended from all or part of the University
and its property (including student residences) if the Principal decides that their continued access is
likely to be detrimental to the interests of other students, staff, or University property.
Suspension remains in effect until the investigation has been completed and, where appropriate,
until the outcome has been determined by the Student Disciplinary Committee (or in the case of a
student who is the subject of a Police investigation, by the Courts).
The University has a Whistleblowing Policy which enables students and staff to raise concerns (or
‘blow the whistle’) about, for example, matters such as impropriety, financial misconduct, or the
behaviour of a senior officer. The Policy enables staff and students to raise such concerns in a way
that protects their status and protects their confidentiality, providing such a concern has not been
raised maliciously or frivolously.
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