Declaration of criminal convictions

The University of Surrey is a diverse and inclusive community of staff and students. On this page you will find further information regarding the declaration of Criminal Conviction(s) by applicants and students. Any capitalised terms used are defined at the bottom of this page.

Further information can also be found in the Criminal Convictions Policy (PDF).

Applicants

If you have a Criminal Conviction(s) you will only be asked to declare this at the point of application when applying to certain programmes which we consider to be Regulated Courses. We will require information for both Spent and Unspent convictions for these programmes. Programmes that have placements based within the National Health Service (NHS) will require a Disclosure and Barring Service check.

The majority of programmes at the University are considered Non-Regulated Courses. We will only ask applicants to declare Relevant Criminal Convictions(s) once an offer has been received and upon acceptance of this place.

For both Regulated Courses and Non-Regulated Courses, applicants should not declare convictions, cautions, warnings or reprimands which are deemed 'protected' under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 (as amended in 2013). A conviction or caution can become ‘protected’ as a result of a filtering process. Guidance and criteria on the filtering of convictions and cautions can be found on the Disclosure and Barring Service website.

As part of the registration stage of admittance, you will be asked to confirm your Criminal Conviction status. 

The University encourages and welcomes early disclosure of any Relevant Criminal Conviction(s) at any stage of the application process. Enquiries should be directed to headofadmissions@surrey.ac.uk.

Students

Once registered, all students are required to disclose any new Relevant Criminal Conviction(s) on an ongoing basis and as soon as a Relevant Criminal Conviction(s) is confirmed. Students should disclose any new Relevant Criminal Conviction(s) in writing by contacting the Office of Student Complaints, Appeals and Regulation (OSCAR) and are advised to seek advice before doing so.

Students will also be required to make an annual disclosure at re-registration.

Frequently asked questions

Please confirm this by logging into Surrey Self-Service when prompted to and selecting No from the dropdown options.

  • Written details of the nature and date of the offence and relevant criminal conviction(s) including the name of the court, date of conviction and the sentence/fine.
  • The name and contact details of any probation officer and/or social worker and written consent that the University may contact them.
  • Where a probation report is unavailable a reference from an employer which includes confirmation that they are aware of any relevant criminal conviction(s) (if appropriate), work history, confirmation that the applicant has informed their current employer of a relevant criminal conviction(s) (all requested on a case-by-case basis).
  • Any other information you wish to be taken into account.

Information you have provided will be passed to the relevant University panel for further consideration. Additional information may be requested in order to reach a decision.

All information is handled with the strictest of confidence. Only panel members and limited administrative staff involved in this process will have access to this sensitive information.

Please see the Student Applicant Privacy Notice and Student Privacy Notice for further information.

You will be informed of the outcome within five working days of a decision.

Yes you can. Guidance for the appeals process can be found in the Criminal Convictions Policy (PDF).

We may agree to admit a student with conditions placed upon them. This may be one or more of the following:

  • Restricted access to University premises, services and accommodation
  • A requirement not to directly or indirectly contact specific individuals or groups
  • Engagement with relevant internal or external support services
  • Any other reasonable and proportionate conditions.

Yes, all applicants admitted to the University of Surrey must complete this process.

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Yes, should the panel come to a conclusion that you are not able to study then the offer of a place will be withdrawn.

A failure to disclose any relevant criminal conviction(s) is taken seriously and could result in the withdrawal of any existing or subsequent offer of a place, or to the termination of any subsequent registration in accordance with the Student Disciplinary Regulations or Regulations for Fitness to Practise.

As a registered student you are required to disclose any new Relevant Criminal Conviction(s)on an ongoing basis and as soon as a Relevant Criminal Conviction(s) is confirmed. Disclosure should be made in writing by contacting the Office of Student Complaints, Appeals and Regulation (OSCAR) via oscar@surrey.ac.uk

During the re-registration to enter each subsequent year of the course, you will be asked to confirm the status of any Relevant Criminal Conviction(s).

For courses with placements linked to the NHS, this may start a fitness to practice investigation as students need to be checked for their suitability.

Key definitions

Criminal Conviction(s)

Any conviction, caution (including youth caution, verbal or written caution, conditional or unconditional caution), conditional discharge, youth rehabilitation order, warning, reprimand, bind over order, community order, community protection notice (CPN), restraining order, sexual offences prevention order, penalty notices for disorder (PND), anti-social behaviour order (ASBO) or violent offender order (VOO), or similar in the UK or any other jurisdiction.

Non-Regulated Courses

Any programme of study (including undergraduate, postgraduate and research programmes) which is not a Regulated Course.

Regulated Courses

Any programme of study (including undergraduate, postgraduate and research programmes) relating to and/or involving:

  • Teaching
  • Social work
  • Work with children and/or vulnerable adults
  • Some health care (including but not limited to all health science programmes) and veterinary programmes where these are subject to professional or regulatory oversight.

Regulated courses are those subject to the requirements of a regulated or professional body. Students studying these courses are subject to the Regulations for Fitness to Practise.

Relevant Criminal Conviction(s)

For both Non-Regulated Courses and Regulated Courses, the individual should not declare convictions, cautions, warnings or reprimands which are deemed “protected” under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 (as amended in 2013).  A conviction or caution can become “protected” as a result of a filtering process. Guidance and criteria on the filtering of convictions and cautions can be found on the Disclosure and Barring Service website. Any such “protected” convictions or cautions shall not be deemed Relevant Criminal Conviction(s) for the purposes of this policy.

Non-Regulated Courses: any Criminal Conviction(s) for any offence concerning one or more of the following:

  • Offences against the person or another offence concerning any kind of violence including (but not limited to) threatening behaviour, offences concerning the intention to harm or offences which resulted in actual bodily harm
  • Sexual offences, including those listed in the Sexual Offences Act 2003
  • The unlawful supply of controlled drugs or substances where the criminal conviction(s) concerns commercial drug dealing or trafficking (drug offences only involving possession are not relevant criminal conviction(s))
  • Offences involving firearms
  • Offences involving arson
  • Offences involving terrorism
  • Offences involving slavery or people trafficking.

A conviction that is Spent is not a “Relevant Criminal Conviction(s)” in the context of Non-Regulated Courses.

Regulated Courses: any Criminal Conviction(s), whether Spent or Unspent.

Spent

Any Criminal Conviction(s) that has become spent after a rehabilitation period as provided for under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. Please note that Criminal Conviction(s) in respect of whether there is or was a custodial sentence of more than four years can never become Spent.

Un-spent

Any criminal conviction(s) that has not yet become Spent.