Code of Practice

Students walking on campus.

Code of Practice

Introduction

The Advice Service is part of the Falmouth & Exeter Students’ Union (‘the Students’ Union’).

The Students’ Union is its own charitable organisation so that the Advice Service is independent of all external and third-party organisations, including the University of Exeter, Falmouth University and the latter’s partner institutions (e.g. the Fashion Retail Academy).

The Advice Service aims to support and empower students to make informed decisions about their situation.

Contacting us and opening hours:

  • The Advice Service operates the following regular opening hours: Monday-Friday, 09.00 to 17.00.
  • You can book an appointment here.
  • Email advice can be accessed by emailing us at advice@thesu.org.uk

 

What you can expect from us

 

Who do we advise?

The Advice Service is available to provide advice to current students of:

  • University of Exeter (Cornwall Campus)
  • Falmouth University (including the University’s partner institutions)

In addition:

  • The Advice Service is available to the Universities’ prospective students;
  • The Advice Service will continue to advise former students on ‘live cases’ (i.e. cases that commenced during their time as a student) – ordinarily for a period of not more than 12 months.
  • At the Advice Manager’s discretion, the Advice Service may be available to former students on new matters that relate directly to their former relationship with the University (e.g. complaints, appeals etc).

 

What issues do we advise on?

The Advise Service provides free advice on a range of issues, inlcuding though not limited to:

  • University-related matters (e.g. appeals, misconduct, disciplinaries, complaints)
  • Money matters (e.g. hardship, debt management, loans, grants, bursaries, welfare benefits)
  • Accommodation – housing rights and responsibilities

 

What forms of support and assistance can we provide?

We can advise you in appointments - in-person, phone or webchat (e.g. Teams, Skype) – or by email.  You can book an appointment here.

We can help with completing forms, drafting correspondence, statements and other documents.  We can also help you prepare for meetings.  In some circumstances, we can provide advocacy and representation services (e.g. in meetings or in exchanges of correspondence).  However, the extent of any advocacy and representation we can undertake on your behalf, may be limited by the rules governing the particular process.  For example, some University processes permit an adviser to accompany a student to a meeting, but not to be an active participant in that meeting.

Impartial: The Students’ Union’s independence means that the Advice Service can provide impartial advice to students (i.e. advice that has the student’s best interests at its heart and is not in any way influenced by the preferences, desires or prejudices of any third-party).

Non-judgemental: Irrespective of how a student’s situation arose, we will adopt a non-judgemental approach to assisting and advising students.

Equality and respect: We aim to provide equal access to all students and not to discriminate on any grounds including, but not exclusive to disability, gender, race, age, religion or belief, sexual orientation, pregnancy or maternity, or marriage and civil partnership.  You can find details of the Students’ Union’s Equality & Diversity Policy here.

Confidentiality: Save for the exceptions outlined below, other than with the student’s consent, we will not share any identifiable information regarding a case with any other organisation or individual. An adviser may share information with another adviser within the Advice Service.  
Exceptions: In circumstances of emergency or perceived risk of the student harming themselves or others, advisers may share information with appropriate third parties.

Record keeping: Where a case develops beyond a short exchange of emails, ordinarily we will open an electronic case file for the enquiry.  All case files and related documents are managed subject to the provisions of the Advice Service Privacy Notice and the Students’ Union Data Protection & Information Security Policy.

Conflicts of interest: A conflict of interest arises when the concerns or aims of two different parties are incompatible.  In the context of the Advice Service, where a conflict of interest arises between two or more students who have contacted the us in relation to the same issue, it is likely to lead us to cease advising and supporting some or all the students involved.  Where that occurs, we will notify the students involved and provide a written explanation for our decision.

 

What we expect from you

Respect: We expect students to treat our staff with respect.  In circumstances where a student is verbally abusive, threatening, discriminatory or violent towards a member of the Students’ Union’s staff or any other person accessing the Advice Service, we may withdraw our service.

Communication: Just as a student can expect us to update them, so too do we expect students to keep us up to date with any developments in their case.  

Appointments: It is important that all students arrive for appointments in good time. Failure to attend an appointment or arrive on time could result in the loss of the appointment. In circumstances where a student cannot attend a pre-booked appointment, they should notify the Advice Service in advance.

Feedback and Complaints: We are always looking at ways to improve the Advice Service and welcome feedback from students. Students can email with any comments or complete our online survey. Should a student want to complain about the Advice Service, they should do so under the provisions of the Students’ Union complaints procedure.


Getting advice – student checklist

Step 1: Identify what it is you need help with and consider what outcome you are hoping for. You may find it useful to read about the area of advice you need – visit our website to find out more about the type of issues we advise on.

Step 2: Gather information/evidence (it’s really helpful for us to see, so try putting together any documents/emails which relate to your situation).

Step 3: Get in touch with the Advice Service (email your information along with any documents and a brief summary of your concerns to advice@thesu.org.uk).

Falmouth & Exeter Students' Union logo

Falmouth & Exeter Students' Union
Penryn Campus
Penryn, Cornwall
TR10 9FE

© Falmouth & Exeter Students' Union 2021

Falmouth & Exeter Students’ Union is a charitable incorporated organisation (CIO) registered in England and Wales, charity number 1193045

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