Disciplinary appeals

How to appeal against a decision made as a result of disciplinary procedures.


Making sure you have grounds for appeal

You may only appeal against a decision based on one or more of the following grounds:

  • There was a material irregularity that rendered the process leading to the original decision unfair.
  • The penalty imposed was disproportionately severe to the charge.
  • Material that you could not reasonably have been aware of at the time of the initial decision casts substantial doubt upon the appropriateness of that decision.

The appeal process

You should inform the Student Conduct and Appeals Team of your intention to appeal within 15 working days of being notified of the disciplinary body reviewing your case.

The Student Conduct and Appeals Team may refer the case to the disciplinary appeals committee of the Senate, which may

  • confirm or quash the original decision
  • substitute a different penalty
  • refer the matter back for a rehearing by a different disciplinary committee, or a different procedure under the discipline regulations

Advice for students

The Student Advice Centre can offer independent advice to students who want to appeal a decision made by a disciplinary committee.


To read the regulations for disciplinary appeals, look for the relevant academic year in the University Calendar.

External review

The Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education (OIA) runs an independent scheme to review student complaints. The University of Sheffield is a member of this scheme.

If you are unhappy with the outcome of your appeal, you may be able to ask the OIA to review your case. Information about making a complaint to the OIA, what it can and cannot look at, and what it can do to put things right is available on the OIA website.

You will normally be required to have gone through the student complaints procedure at the University before you can refer to the OIA. Once you have reached the end of the procedure, and there are no further steps they can take internally, you'll receive a 'completion of procedures' letter.

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