As humans, we can all make mistakes from time to time. Here at UNSW we believe that students deserve the opportunity to learn from theirs. 

What is a Courageous Conversation ?

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If the University has concerns about your academic work, or your behaviour while a member of the UNSW community, you may be contacted by our Student Conduct and Integrity Unit to have a Courageous Conversation. A Courageous Conversation is a less formal process than a typical investigation, held one-on-one between you and one of our Case Managers. The purpose is to enable conduct concerns to be raised in a supportive environment, using an educational and integrity-driven approach

How does it work?

Courageous Conversations are held in accordance with the Student Misconduct Procedure.If a Courageous Conversation is required, a Case Manager will arrange a meeting to discuss the concerns that have been raised. You will usually be given 5 days notice of this meeting where:

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  • They will explain the reason for those concerns.
  • You will have the opportunity to ask any questions you wish about the process, or about the reasons for the concerns. 
  • The details of the meeting and any outcomes will be kept confidential
  • You will receive a written summary of the discussion. 

If your lecturer or course coordinator has some concerns about whether you have met the learning outcomes for their course, you may also be asked to meet with them. 

What support is available

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If you are contacted for a Courageous Conversation we encourage you to reach out for support. 

  • You are encouraged to bring a friend or other support person to the meeting.
  • You may also wish to contact Arc for advice, or to request an Arc officer attend the meeting with you as your support person. 


Outcomes and resolutions

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If you agree that your conduct did not meet your responsibilities under the Code, a decision maker will issue a determination, including any applicable penalties. 

If a you dispute the concerns, a decision maker may either a) proceed with a formal investigative process, or b) issue a determination if no further information may be found during an investigation.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)

UNSW Conduct and Integrity matters are strictly confidential, and we respect your right to privacy. No one external to the University will be advised of this matter without your explicit written consent (for example when applying to legal practice bodies, or other similar professional associations). 

ARC is a student body independent from the University. Anything you wish to speak to ARC about remains confidential to ARC, unless you wish otherwise.  

We view your time at university as a learning experience, on a number of levels including making mistakes such as misconduct. It is only in the case of the most serious breaches of the Student Code, for example repeated instances of cheating, that you won't be able to remain a member of the UNSW community.

We believe students deserve the opportunity to learn from their mistakes, and therefore UNSW does not consider misconduct matters when assessing applications for further study. 

Helpful information

UNSW holds its students and staff to the highest of standards. Here you can find out more about the standards enforced at UNSW and what to do if you suspect a breach of any of these codes has occurred.


At UNSW, we take all complaints very seriously and have dedicated complaint management systems and process in place to seek effective fast and effective resolutions.

Contract cheating is when a student engages another person to complete work for them, and then submits the work as their own, regardless if money was paid or not.