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Admissions Policy

3.18. Applicants with Criminal Convictions

3.18.1 To assist in the reduction of risk of harm or injury to their students and staff caused by the criminal behaviour of other students, we must know about any relevant criminal convictions that an applicant has.

3.18.2 If you have a relevant criminal conviction that is not spent, please declare this in your application;

3.18.3 In so declaring you will not be automatically excluded from the application process

3.18.4 Spent means that if a person does not re-offend during their rehabilitation period, their conviction becomes ‘spent’ (as defined by The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974). Convictions that are spent are not considered to be relevant and should not be revealed.

3.18.5 It should be noted that certain offences are never spent and for certain courses, you are required to declare all convictions whether spent or unspent. These do not have to be declared in answer to this question which relates only to relevant, unspent criminal convictions but you must reveal them if a course has been denoted as requiring a criminal records check. Please see the entry requirements for your course choices to see if this requirement applies to you. For more information on offences and rehabilitation periods, www.justice.gov.uk/downloads/offenders/rehabilitation-offenders.pdf

3.18.6 Relevant criminal offences include convictions, cautions, admonitions, reprimands, final warnings, bind over orders or similar involving one or more of the following:

i. 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.

ii. Offences listed in the Sex Offences Act 2003.

iii. The unlawful supply of controlled drugs or substances where the conviction concerns commercial drug dealing or trafficking.

iv. Offences involving firearms.

v. Offences involving arson.

vi. Offences listed in the Terrorism Act 2006.

3.18.7 If your conviction involved an offence similar to those set out above, but was made by a court outside of Great Britain, and that conviction would not be considered as spent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, this should be declared.

3.18.8 Warnings, penalty notices for disorder (PNDs), anti-social behaviour orders (ASBOs) or violent offender orders (VOOs) are not classed as convictions for the purpose of disclosure, unless you have contested a PND or breached the terms of an ASBO or VOO and this has resulted in a criminal conviction.

3.18.9 Some programmes are exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act and you may be required to disclose information regarding any convictions even if they are spent. Some courses in respect of professions or occupations such as those which include work with children or vulnerable adults may involve an integral work placement and you may not be able to undertake such placement and complete your studies if you have criminal convictions. Further, while you may be permitted to study for one of the above professions or occupations, you may not be able to register and practise upon completion of your course.

3.18.10 Further checks may also be required under the Disclosure and Barring Service. Depending on the type of check, different levels of information will be revealed. The information revealed may include unspent convictions and spent convictions (including cautions, reprimands and final warnings or similar). Information about minor offences, penalty notices for disorder (PNDs), anti-social behaviour orders (ASBOs) or violent offender orders (VOOs) and other locally held police information may be revealed where it is appropriate to the course for a particular occupation or profession. The information will be disclosed irrespective of when it occurred.

3.18.11 This means that if you have a criminal conviction (spent or unspent) or, in certain circumstances, any minor offence, this information may be made known to the university as part of the check.

3.18.12 If the check reveals that you have had a conviction, (including any caution, reprimand, final warning, bind over order or similar) or any other relevant information including (in certain circumstances) any minor offence, PND, ASBO or VOO, the university or college will need to assess your fitness to practise in the profession or occupation to which your course relates.

3.18.13 If you have spent or unspent convictions from a court outside Great Britain, additional checks may be carried out depending on the records available in respect of the applicable country. A criminal records check may show all spent and unspent criminal convictions including (but not limited to) cautions, reprimands, final warnings, bind over orders or similar and, to the extent relevant to this course, may also show details of any minor offences, fixed penalty notices, penalty notices for disorder, ASBOs or VOOs.

3.18.14 Applicants to courses exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act  may also be subject to further checks (before and/or after you complete your course) by prospective employers who will make their own assessments regarding your fitness to practise in the relevant profession or undertake the relevant occupation.

3.18.15  If these issues are in any way relevant to you, you should obtain further advice from appropriate bodies. The University will not be able to assist you in this respect.

3.18.16 In England and Wales you may also be required to complete documentation and maintain a registration with the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS). The DBS scheme is designed to allow appropriate third parties to identify any individual that is barred from working with children and vulnerable adults, including elderly or sick people.

3.18.17 Applicants for University programmes of study are asked to disclose criminal convictions on the UCAS or UTT application form or on the University Direct Application form as relevant as per the guidance above.

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