What is Fitness to Practise? Apart from the academic requirements, some professional courses also have requirements in relation to your standards of behaviour, your health and professional conduct relevant to your future employment in the associated profession. For example, you would expect a doctor to be honest and professional in all dealings with you; or you would expect a nurse not to forge patient records; or a teacher not to cross the professional boundaries with their pupils.

Where do I find the University Fitness to Practise procedures?

You should receive information regarding fitness to practise when you start your course as part of your induction. You will also find the guidance in your student handbook, through your academic or pastoral tutor, online on Blackboard, or in University Quality Handbook.

I’ve received a letter telling me about an investigation into my fitness to practise, what do I do?

First of all, don’t panic! Read the Fitness to Practise policy and procedures so you know where you are in the process and make an appointment with a SUSU Advice Centre Student Adviser, who will support you throughout the process and clarify the procedures. It is good to draft a statement before you come to the appointment, so the Adviser knows the outline of your case. Make sure you list all facts and dates and gather evidence that may be useful to your statement.

What are the top tips in preparing for the Fitness to Practise investigation or hearing?

Preparation is the key, so make sure you devote appropriate time to writing the statement and getting help from the Advice Centre before the Fitness to Practise hearing.

  • Read the fitness to practise policy and procedures, so you understand the process.
  • Be honest
  • Take responsibility for your actions
  • Show you have an insight into your behaviour and can reflect on what happened
  • Demonstrate awareness of the fitness to practise requirements associated with your profession (e.g. Medicine, Nursing, Teaching, Podiatry etc.; it is advisable you read their code of conduct)
  • Express genuine regret for your actions, but don’t plead to the panel
  • Highlight any rehabilitative or corrective steps you have already taken
  • Outline action plan for the future to avoid repeating
  • Give examples of some strategies you will employ to prevent repeated incidents

How do I write a good statement?

A good starting point is reading through our short guide here and asking one of the SUSU Advice Centre Advisers for feedback and comments. Also, consider our top tips section on this page.

What help can the SUSU Advice Centre offer?

We can explain the process for you and guide you through the regulations. Your Advice Centre Student Adviser can give you honest feedback on your statement and help you prepare for the meeting. We can also attend the meeting with you, if you wish.

Who else can help?

You can ask your personal academic tutor for support. You can also contact a professional membership body, or your trade union organisation if you are a member.

Other sources of information and useful links

You will find useful information on the professional conduct and behaviour from the following sources:

Further guidance

For further guidance on the Fitness to Practise process, contact the Advice Centre.

You can also visit us in Building 40, Highfield campus. Our opening hours are Monday–Friday 09.00–17.00