Academic Manual

Support to Study Policy

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10.1 Support to Study Policy

1. UCL is committed to maintaining high standards of performance for its students in terms of teaching, learning and assessment and to ensuring that the quality of its awards is not undermined or compromised.
2. UCL is also committed to supporting its students’ academic abilities as well as their wellbeing, recognising a positive approach to the management of physical and mental health issues that may affect student learning, academic achievement and the wider student experience.
3. UCL is mindful of its duty of care and its obligations to students under the Equality Act 2010, to make reasonable adjustments, where possible and where appropriate. It is also aware that there may be occasions where a student’s physical or mental health may give rise to concerns about the student’s fitness to study and capacity to engage with his/her studies and/or the appropriateness of their behaviour in relation to the UCL community as a whole.
4. UCL is aware of its responsibility to maintain a safe and positive environment for all students and staff but expects students to study, work and live co-operatively and in close proximity with each other as well as conduct themselves in a manner which does not impact negatively on those around them. However, UCL also has to balance the needs and rights of an individual student against the need to protect the wellbeing of fellow students and staff.
5. In order to assist students to meet their academic obligations and maintain the quality of its degrees, whilst at the same time supporting the students’ welfare needs, UCL has a range of procedures in place including:
  - Special assessment arrangements, such as additional writing time, rest breaks and/or ergonomic aids
  - Extensions to deadlines for assessed coursework
  Suspensions of regulations to facilitate a student’s studies, although such suspensions would be considered carefully on a case by case basis, but would not automatically be approved
  Variation of a programme of study or a module, although such variations would be considered carefully on a case by case basis, but would not automatically be approved
  Advice and guidance from UCL professionals, including Student Disability Services, Student Psychological Services, the UCL Student Mediator, UCL Hall Wardens, and other resources such as the Gower Place Practice and the chaplains appointed to UCL
  Support from academic staff, such as Faculty Tutors, Faculty Graduate Tutors, Departmental Tutors, Personal Tutors, Supervisors
  Student Learning Agreements
  Defined periods of interruption from studies or delaying the start of studies or a change of degree programme
  Student Cause for Concern referrals
  Student Support and Wellbeing welfare appointments.
6. Students with physical and/or mental health concerns should be encouraged to make contact with the available support services as early as possible in order to facilitate reasonable adjustments and to sustain their academic obligations and their wellbeing. Students should maintain regular engagement with the support services as recommended.
7. When studying away from UCL, including students on a period of study abroad, electives, placements, postgraduate research activities, students have an obligation to ensure their health and wellbeing. They should plan for their time away from UCL, seeking advice from their academic advisers and other UCL professionals, as appropriate. There may be occasions where a student may be deemed fit to study at UCL but not more remotely. In these cases, consideration would be given for a variation of the programme of study or a given module, or to a transfer from one degree programme to another.
8. Students, who are returning from a period of interruption or where permission has been given to delay the start of studies, may be required to provide medical information to indicate that their studies will not be detrimental to their health and their health to their studies, as well as have a welfare appointment with the Director of Student Support and Wellbeing. Students may also be required to sign up to a Student Learning Agreement.
9. Where a student has been unable to maintain the levels of academic engagement required and/or where UCL considers that the needs, rights, safety and security of the UCL community outweigh those of an individual student, UCL may take action in a number of ways:
  - For cases of non-attendance and academic insufficiency Section 9: Learning Agreements, Barring, Suspensions and Terminations of Study applies.
  - For straightforward cases of misconduct Section 11: Student Disciplinary Code and Procedures applies.
  - For cases of serious mental ill-health requiring early intervention the UCL Student Mental Health Policy applies.
  - For cases of MBBS students and other students in the School of Life and Medical Sciences where there is a concern of fitness to practise, the Medical School Fitness to Practise Policy applies.
  - For cases where a student’s health, wellbeing or behaviour is having a detrimental effect on the ability of an individual student to meet the academic requirements of study or impacting on the wellbeing of other students and staff, Section 10.2 Fitness to Study Procedure applies.
10.  There may be instances where a student has exhibited behaviour which would normally be handled under Section 11: Student Disciplinary Code and Procedures, but this may be (or is suspected to be) the result of an underlying physical and/or mental health difficulty. Depending on the individual circumstances, this may be considered under Section 10.2 Fitness to Study Procedure.
11. The Support to Study Policy will be regularly reviewed by the Director of Student Support and Wellbeing.
12. Cases considered under Section 10.2 Fitness to Study Procedure will be monitored and reviewed on an annual basis to identify where any improvements are required in the Policy, or in the procedures of the support services offered within UCL or on which UCL draws significantly.