Moderation policy

Here at The Student Room, the UK's largest student website, we always try to make the community the best it can be. Whether you're here to use the site for fun, discussion, getting help or helping others, we want everyone to enjoy their time on the site and to be able to access quality information, help and advice from their peers.

In order for the site to run smoothly, and for everyone to get the most out of our community, the site has a moderation policy, which guides what is okay to post, and how we deal with things when they’re not.

How is the site moderated?

The Student Room is constantly monitored and moderated by a team of trained professionals. These moderators read and aim to act upon all inappropriate content reported to us within 24 hours. It is their role to ensure the community guidelines are upheld and to help the community when required. Rule-breaking content is identified in two ways - our automated filter system, and our community.

Our automated system works by identifying certain terms or phrases to be reviewed by our moderators (for example, ‘suicide’ or anything that looks like spam). We also use a self-activating swear filter.

Additionally, we rely heavily on our members to report content that could be deemed inappropriate or which breaks our community guidelines by bringing it to the attention of the Community Team.

How you can help us

User reporting: By using the report system, you make it easier for our moderators to remove inappropriate comments, ensuring a better forum experience for other users. You can find the report button in the top right of all threads, posts and private messages.

Set a good example: Help keep TSR friendly by using the site appropriately, being friendly, polite and helping out other people. Show people how to behave by being a useful member and contributing positively to the community.

Your agreement with us

Each member that uses the site is required to accept our Terms & Conditions and the site rules and guidelines. These have been created to ensure that we provide the best platform for students wishing to use the site. All users have a community record and we utilise a warning card system to let users know if they’ve done the wrong thing. However, we always reserve the right to end someone’s membership without warning if we believe you have broken our Terms & Conditions and site rules.

Overview of site guidelines

  • No personal attacks or inflammatory behaviour.
  • Post in the correct forum and stay on topic.
  • No cheating.
  • No advertising or inappropriate links.
  • Post in the English language unless in an area where it is acceptable to do otherwise. No text speak.
  • Respect the privacy of other users.
  • Do not condone or encourage illegal activity.

This list is a simple overview of the rules on The Student Room. To read the rules in more detail, please click here.

Sensitive topics

The Student Room aims to be a place where young people can discuss the things that are important to them, within a safe and supportive environment, and without driving these conversations underground. Moderation decisions on topics like the ones listed below are made on a case by case basis, always with the best interests of young people at heart.

Suicide and self harm

When a thread or post is reported where a member of our community has spoken about current or imminent suicide ideation or self harm, the Peer Support process is enacted. The user will receive an automatic private message, with essential support information. In the meantime, the moderation team may move the thread/post to a private area of the site. This is both because these sorts of conversations can be triggering to other vulnerable young people visiting TSR, and because it’s important the individual gets the most helpful assistance. Then our team of Samaritans-trained volunteers, known as the Peer Support Volunteer (PSV) Team, will make direct contact with that person. The team are available to listen, but most importantly, to ensure that person has access to the best support systems to help them. The PSV team are not able to give these users personalised advice, as professionals in this area are best placed to help.

Illegal substances or misuse of controlled substances

It’s important there’s a safe place for young people to talk about things like drugs, so this sort of discussion is not prohibited on The Student Room. It’s okay to ask questions about people’s experiences with drugs, side effects, and the risks involved. However, any discussions encouraging the use of illegal drugs or the misuse of controlled substances (like ‘study drugs’), or recommending where to buy them, will be subject to moderation and the poster warned appropriately.

Sex and sexual practices

It’s normal for young people to want to ask questions and talk about sex. In TSR’s health and relationships forums, users can post anonymously and ask the questions they might not be comfortable in real life. Please remember, if a user is asking about a medical concern, they should consult their doctor. Please avoid posting any medical advice. If you see anything that concerns you, please report to our moderation team who will review and act accordingly.

Gender, sexuality, race and religion

It’s okay to share your opinion respectfully. However, it’s never okay to make mean or discriminatory comments, taunt, intimidate or use inflammatory language. If you see anything which is against our community guidelines, please do not respond, just report to our moderation team who will make a judgement.