Probably expelled from Oxford, what can I do now? Watch

BonsaiColony
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#21
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(Original post by quinq)
yeah exactly - i've already got a treatment plan in place cos i was supposed to go back to oxford in 2020, so assuming that goes well (and we think it will), i'll be ready to go back to studying.

my hope is that they throw out this crap due to the medical evidence, but if they don't, it's so good to know that it won't like, end my whole academic career
Did you initially enjoy oxford?
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Xanimede
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That's honestly quite sad. (Assuming that this is true, not that I'm doubting you, but it's important to stick to the evidence provided).

Do you want some form of retaliation? If you care about that, and you are willing to suffer any consequences, then I would try to find entities that would be interested in damaging Oxford's reputation. There are definitely some out there, it just depends on how far you want to go with this.

There also ought to be lawyers that are not very keen on Oxford. I would not contact anyone before hiring a reputable lawyer.

You just have to go to the right person with this, and portray it for what it truly is; An antiquated society which led to the mental collapse of a student through its ableist policies, isolating him and eventually punishing him for its own mistakes through bullying and intimidation tactics.
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BonsaiColony
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(Original post by quinq)
tbh my priorities are currently:
- my health
- hope they dont expel me in the first place (unlikely)
- make sure i can go somewhere else (likely)
- see whether i can pursue legal action against oxford/queen's, and whether their decision would be overturned
- see whether i can even be bothered fighting oxford beyond that or whether i wanna get on with my life
and only then, whether i can pan them in the press.

behind my wellbeing, the most important thing to me right now is securing my education - i hope oxford don't expel me and decide to listen to the medical evidence, because sadly i can't afford a lawyer of any sort, whether reputable or not. if they do, i can appeal to the governing body for the sake of it, but knowing i can go elsewhere anyway and it won't ruin things for my chances at other universities is more important to me than getting back at queens or oxford. obviously, i'd like the individuals responsible for this to be held accountable and the systems to be changed, but i want my own life to be stable more. does that make sense?
Yes you need stability and a less stressful environment for now. Focus on yourself once you’re abit better you can decide if you want to put up a fight
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Xanimede
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(Original post by quinq)
tbh my priorities are currently:
- my health
- hope they dont expel me in the first place (unlikely)
- make sure i can go somewhere else (likely)
- see whether i can pursue legal action against oxford/queen's, and whether their decision would be overturned
- see whether i can even be bothered fighting oxford beyond that or whether i wanna get on with my life
and only then, whether i can pan them in the press.

behind my wellbeing, the most important thing to me right now is securing my education - i hope oxford don't expel me and decide to listen to the medical evidence, because sadly i can't afford a lawyer of any sort, whether reputable or not. if they do, i can appeal to the governing body for the sake of it, but knowing i can go elsewhere anyway and it won't ruin things for my chances at other universities is more important to me than getting back at queens or oxford. obviously, i'd like the individuals responsible for this to be held accountable and the systems to be changed, but i want my own life to be stable more. does that make sense?
Yes, that makes sense. Also consider that publicly fighting Oxford might dissuade other universities from accepting you.
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username4316350
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u gotta take responsibility. if you were having problems etc you should have told them not make 'atrocious decisions' and plagiarised peoples work. oxford says this or that is meaningless cos you shouldnt have cheated in the first place
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username4316350
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(Original post by quinq)
here are some quite legalese quotes that i would hugely appreciate any advice on, since i'm not great at parsing this kind of thing:


"Where a student is subject to disciplinary proceedings (whether academic or nonacademic) and makes or proposes to make a defence of a kind that also discloses a possible medical ground of intermission (which may be supported by evidence from a consultation with a doctor of the student’s choosing), the disciplinary proceedings may be temporarily stayed at the initiative of the Tutorial Review Committee and the Student may be required to attend the College Doctors for an assessment of fitness to study according to the special procedure laid out in 3.3 below. If the Student is then certified unfit to study by the College Doctors an intermission may be imposed upon the Student by the Tutorial Review Committee with or without the Student’s consent."

"If the verdict is that the Student is not unfit to study, any stayed disciplinary proceedings will be resumed. If the verdict is that the Student is unfit to study, then a report on the case will be made by the Tutor for Undergraduates to the Tutorial Review Committee in writing recommending that the Student be intermitted under this procedure, the intermission to take effect upon ratification by the Tutorial Review Committee at its next available meeting, which may be a special meeting called for the purpose of ratifying the Tutor for Undergraduates’ recommendation. The Tutorial Review Committee is required to ratify the recommendation of the Tutor for Undergraduates except in cases in which, in the judgment of the Tutorial Review Committee, the special procedure set out here was not correctly followed."


so as far as i can tell:
- i'm attempting to make a defence which discloses medical reasons for being unfit to study
- i've already been assessed as unfit to study by the college doctors and suspended my studies voluntarily

if i wasn't already suspended, it seems like what would happen is they would make me suspend, and not pursue further action. but since i'm already suspended - and that suspension happened after the decision of the committee to look into all my previous work, that occurred while i was unfit to study - they're not going to do that, and instead are going to expel me, as decided in the previous tutorial review committee meeting.But, given that i was unfit to study the whole time, surely they shouldn't be imposing disciplinary proceedings on things that happened in that period?
why did u go to uni if you had such bad mh problems. didnt u think studying one of the most intense unis in world is gonna trigger it all
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QueenTbiomed
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(Original post by quinq)
So, this is a v long story, but here's the tl;dr first:
I had a very serious mental health crisis in the autumn term, made some awful decisions, and plagiarised some work. I had a meeting, admitted it fully and suspended myself for a year to work on my mental health. They're now expelling me.

So the long version:

I have C-PTSD. Last term, **** happened, and I spent the whole 8 weeks in a dissociative state with no idea what I was doing, completely incapable of proper work, etc. This lead to some atrocious decision making, including getting some Greek from the internet rather than doing it myself. I had a disciplinary hearing for this and admitted it fully, even though I didn't remember it at all. During that hearing, I agreed to have all my work thenceforth checked for plagiarism, and all my work from that term. They asked me if there were any other instances of plagiarism that term and I tried to explain that I wasn't aware of any, but I had huge gaps in my memory and awareness. They took this as me saying, unequivocally "this didn't happen in any other case" which I can't possibly assert.

Then, after that meeting, I met with my doctor and agreed I would suspend for health reasons. I couldn't have done that before the meeting as if I had, I wouldn't have been allowed to attend the meeting as suspended students aren't allowed on college grounds at Oxford. It also meant I wasn't allowed to make a defence explicitly on the grounds of my mental health during the meeting - I had to leave it in vague terms like "I don't recall that day" or "I was experiencing high stress and upsetting memories" rather than "I was completely dissociated" and "I was in a hyperrealistic flashback"

After the meeting, they gave me their decision, and the tutor for undergrads said some horrid things, including "I don't care for student welfare" and said he wanted to expel me, and was barely outvoted. He said I wasn't the kind of student they accept at the college and not the kind of student they keep. They also sent round a document detailing the meeting that I had to either sign or be expelled. This was explicit. I was not allowed to make any edits or disagree with anything they said happened in the meeting.

So, I got an email from the ******* tutor for undergrads today saying they found more evidence of plagiarism and will be meeting in 2 weeks to discuss it. He also said "we stressed the importance of honesty to Quin. He stated unequivocally that there were no other instances of plagiarism, and agreed that he would be expelled from the College if any were discovered." This isn't true. But sadly, you're not allowed a witness in these meetings so it's his word against mine.

So, I have a report from my psychiatrist saying I can't be held accountable for my actions last term because I was in such mental distress that my actions were not conscious or my own. I sent this to the aforementioned tutor, and he said he would read it at the meeting, but "wanted to stress that post hoc arguments are not admissible." I'm not allowed to attend the meeting, nor to send anyone on my behalf.

So, I'm gonna be expelled. Once they decide this, I can appeal to the governing body of the university but there has never been a successful appeal.

What are my options now? If I apply to another university, will they know I was expelled from Oxford? Will they care?
Is there no way you can discuss this with the dean?
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Moments
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While they may decide on leniency in light of medical evidence, they are within their right not to admit it.

An important thing to note is whether you have an “alibi” for the second accusation of plagiarism. If you did it while of sound mind to study then I’m afraid you have no defence.

However, I’d have to say going through this rigmarole (along with everything else you described) is not worth it just to have the name “Oxford” on your CV. Work wise It’s more like “oh he went to Oxford, must be clever” .... then it’s down to your personality and fit for the role, just like any other Tom **** and Harry they interview. Plenty of other universities offer a better education (in certain fields) and have better industry reputation.

Wish you the best for a successful outcome, but I’d seriously reconsider handing over thousands of pounds to an entity that isn’t run on pragmatic application of it’s rules.
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nulli tertius
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(Original post by quinq)
thanks!

i can't really afford legal advice (just my psych bills are cleaning me out) but i'll see if there's anything i can find pro bono

honestly i'm resigned to the idea of being kicked out, i just hope it wont stop me getting something else elsewhere
OUSU isn't good for much but they do give advice on this sort of thing and might get you some help from a friendly don.

Through inexperience, you have handled this badly from the start of the disciplinary process and you need to put your case on a sounder footing.

However, I do wonder if you wouldn't be better giving up on Oxford, getting yourself well and starting again.
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ageshallnot
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(Original post by quinq)
once i've left anyway - the clause in the student contract says you won't discuss them negatively in the press or online, so i'm already breaching it partially...
Given that you have identified the college, the fact that you're in a wheelchair and (presumably) part of your name then I think you have quite clearly breached this completely, not partially. You have also made negative comments about, and attributed certain comments to, the undergrad tutor. Careful...
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username4316350
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(Original post by quinq)
Cool that’s fun did you read the post I made about how seeking help at my college leads to disciplinary action? And about how I was unable to access support at college? And do you have any understanding of how mental health works???

P unhelpful thing to say
you cheated you copied others work. now trying to blame everyone else but yourself
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ageshallnot
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quinq What have Oxford's Disability Advice Service said about all this, including your allocation to Queen's?
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Xanimede
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(Original post by quinq)
Cool that’s fun did you read the post I made about how seeking help at my college leads to disciplinary action? And about how I was unable to access support at college? And do you have any understanding of how mental health works???

P unhelpful thing to say
Dont bother responding. Hes either a troll or just jealous you got into Oxford. No point in wasting time on him.
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ageshallnot
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(Original post by quinq)
sadly very little.

the DAS is largely there to get you disabled students allowance, and write you a student support plan (whether that plan is followed or not is basically luck). beyond that, there's very little they can say or do. my advisor agreed that i should move college but wasn't able to help with that at all; she was lovely, but they have very little influence at the DAS
It's curious. I know of someone with a physical disability who couldn't cope with the Cambridge college to which she had been pooled - yet the authorities dealt with her case speedily, transferring her to another college after one term.
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nexttime
  • TSR Support Team
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Yeah as mentioned, the lesson here is to make sure you inform others at the time you have a problem so that its on record later. That applies to MH but to lots of other things too.

If I'm 100% honest I do think that trying to argue that a mental health problem forced you to serially plagiarise was always going to be a difficult defence, and I'm actually kind of surprised they only suspended you in the first instance.

It sounds like regardless of the outcome a fresh start would be useful for you OP.

Edit: Also re disability, just going to point out that my college made tens of thousands of pounds of really very unsightly building adjustments for a single wheelchair-bound student when i was there - plenty of colleges do very much care about students with disabilities.
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(Original post by quinq)
it's also worth noting that the punishments they're dealing out are more severe than the university punishments for unintentional plagiarism on a dissertation, thesis, or submitted coursework.
Aren't they arguing that it was intentional?
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Retrodiction
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(Original post by SJW-)
you cheated you copied others work. now trying to blame everyone else but yourself
^^^^ This guy definitely frequents r/The_Donald
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law001x0
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If I remember correctly, there have been cases where the Higher Education Ombudsman has found in favour of the student. Furthermore, in the event that this is unseccessful, try and speak to a lawyer that specialises in Education Law, as there is the possibility of judicially reviewing the university's decision.

But before then, gather as much medical evidence as possible, and make the strongest possible case in your favour- I think your strongest point is to highlight that they refused to look at your medical evidence during the initial hearing, which sounds completely unreasonable.
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ageshallnot
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(Original post by quinq)




so the system for changing colleges at oxford is such that you, the student, have to do it all yourself, you have to contact another college and beg them to take you. if they say yes, you have to get your current college to agree. if they say yes, you have to get the proctors to agree. the proctors can reject the application for any reason and aren't required to give their reason when rejecting it either. you can't appeal their decision, and you can't apply again for the same move.

i didn't even get to that stage though, because even though two other colleges were happy to take me, my current college wouldn't let me leave. it was down to the same guy as this all is - mr "i don't care about student welfare". so, i'm not totally surprised.
Did your college give you written reasons as to why they were refusing your transfer?

It's not true that you can't appeal the proctors' decision - see https://www.admin.ox.ac.uk/examregs/...rfreadandmigr/ section 4.
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