Breaches of Discipline

Breaches of discipline can be either academic or non-academic.

Examples of Academic breaches

  • Plagiarism
  • Noise pollution and disruptive conduct
  • Activities involving false pretences or dishonesty.
  • Failure to comply with Health and Safety regulations.

Non-Academic

  • Abuse of alcohol or other substances on the campus.
  • Conduct which is likely to interfere with any meeting, scholarly or other activity.
  • Forging of college documents.
  • Theft or vandalism of college property.
  • Interference with safety equipment.
  • Misuse of college property.
  • Bullying, or harassment, or sexual harassment.
  • Possession, or distribution, of illegal substances.
  • Misbehavior in the student village.

Procedures for dealing with breaches of discipline

  1. Breaches of the disciplinary code are brought to the attention of the  Registrar.
  2. The Registrar shall take steps once it is practicable to inform the student of the alleged offence.
  3. The Registrar shall explain to the student theirr rights and will ask them to respond to the accusation.
  4. The Registrar may then make any of the following decisions:
    1. Dismiss the complaint
    2. Request full compensation where property damage is done.
    3. Refer the matter to the Disciplinary Committee.
    4. Suspected criminal offences shall be referred to the civil authorities.
    5. Any report arising from a matter investigated under sexual harassment, or bullying or harassment, can be referred direct to the Disciplinary Committee.

Disciplinary Committee

  • Disciplinary Committees are chaired by one of two designated executive members, nominated by the Academic Council.
  • It is composed of four independent members from the Academic Council, having regard to conflict of interest..
  • The President shall appoint all members of the Disciplinary Committee.
  • Decisions of the Committee shall be by simple majority.
  • A written record of the proceedings shall be kept.

Pre-Hearing

  • The Registrar shall prepare a summary of the alleged offence and shall forward it to the Disciplinary Committee.
  • Notice is to the student at least three clear days before the date of the hearing .
  • The notice shall have a copy of the summary and a note of any documents on the Institute proposes to rely at the hearing.
  • The student in entitled:
    • To call the attendance of witnesses for the purpose of the hearing
    • to inspect all relevant documents
    • To be represented or accompanied at the hearing by a person of the student’s choice
  • Where a dispute involves two students, both should be asked to make written submissions to the committee.

Procedures

  • The Registrar shall present the allegation to the Committee.
  • If the student is not present, the hearing continues in their absence.
  • The student shall be asked to respond the allegation
  • If the student denies the alleged charge, the registrar may provide evidence to the allegation.

In particular the following practices shall be observed:

  1. All the evidence shall be heard in the presence of the student/their representative and they shall be given the opportunity to examine all witnesses or challenge any evidence called by the Registrar.
  2. The student shall be given the opportunity of offering evidence/witnesses
  3. All members of the committee are entitled to question the Registrar, student or any witnesses.
  4. The relevant Head of Department or School may be invited to make a submission.
  5. The Registrar and the student shall be given the opportunity to make submissions after evidence.
  6. The Committee shall deliberate in the absence both parties but shall be entitled to seek legal advice if deemed necessary. The Committee may also seek further information before arriving at a decision.
  7. If the Committee is required to reconvene at a future date, the Committee shall remain the same.

Disciplinary Committee Penalties

Where a student is found guilty of the offence, the Committee can impose a penalty.  The Disciplinary Committee has discretion to impose penalties other than those listed, as may be deemed appropriate.

Academic

  • A reprimand.
  • To decide that no mark shall be given in that exam and, if appropriate, all the exams at that session.  The Committee can also decide that the student would not be allowed re-sit for twelve months.
  • Exclusion from examinations for a specified period.
  • Deprivation of award of degree.
  • Suspension from the Institute for a stated period.
  • Expulsion from the Institute in exceptional circumstances where no other penalty is deemed appropriate.

Non-Academic

  • A fine not exceeding €500.
  • An order for the reparation of any property damage
  • Exclusion from specific Institute facilities.
  • The Committee may, having regard to all the circumstances of the case decide not to impose any penalty.

Appeal

An appeal may be made to the Governing Body within two weeks from the date of issue of the decision of the Disciplinary Committee. The date of issue is the date on which the decision is posted to the student. The appeal should be addressed to the Secretary of the Institute.

Governing Body Appeals Committee

Committee is made up of:

  • Three members of the Governing Body
  • The President of the Students’ Union
  • One neutral Head of College/School/Department
  • A member of the administrative staff may be appointed as a secretary to the Committee.

The chairperson shall be a member of the Governing Body other than a staff member or student.

Decisions of the Governing Body Appeals Committee shall be taken by a simple majority, with the chairperson having a casting vote in the event of a tie.

Procedures of Governing Body Appeals Committee

A copy of the appellant’s grounds of appeal including his/her submission, if any, shall be provided to the Committee.

  1. A copy of the relevant record of the Disciplinary Committee of the Academic Council shall be provided.
  2. The appellant, or appellant’s representative, and the Registrar, his/her nominee, or other Institute representative may make oral submissions to the Governing Body Appeals Committee.
  3. In exceptional cases, where in the opinion of the Governing Body Appeals Committee, the requirements of justice so dictate, the Committee may consider evidence which was not tendered at the hearing before the Disciplinary Committee but provided always that the intention to adduce such fresh evidence has been notified to the student and to the Registrar or other Institute representative, as the case may be, in sufficient time to enable the student or the Registrar or other Institute representative to consider properly the said fresh evidence and to deal therewith adequately at the hearing of the appeal.
  4. The Governing Body Appeals Committee may:
    1. Allow the appeal.
    2. Decrease or increase the penalty, or vary the nature of the penalty.
    3. Reject the appeal.

If any party to a dispute is dissatisfied with any decision of the Governing Body Appeals Committee, he/she shall have the right to appeal to the Ombudsman as per the Ombudsman (Amendment) Act 2012, within 12 months of the action occurring.

External appeal

If any party to a dispute is dissatisfied with any decision of the Governing Body Appeals Committee, he/she shall have the right to an external appeal to such independent person or persons as the President of the Institute shall nominate to hear the dispute. The nominee ideally should be acceptable to both parties. The member(s) of the Institute who referred the dispute to external appeal shall be bound by the decision of such independent person or persons, save that either party may avail of any legal remedy available.