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3 Important Things to Know About Working with a Student Advocate

Blog by Katrina Peacock| Student Advocate

Have you received an Invitation to Respond to an Allegation of Academic Misconduct, Behavioural Misconduct or Show Cause?

Do you need to apply for Remission of Fees or Emergency Financial Assistance?

If you do, then you’ve come to the right place. Your independent student advocate is here to guide you through a whole range of tricky situations. It could be assisting with a  response that you are required to provide, or helping you prepare an application  to be submitted.

We are here to help you understand the processes which you need to follow and to make sure that you feel confident about responding to your situation. While we are here to help, it is important to remember that there are some things  that remain your responsibility and that we cannot handle on your behalf.

With that in mind, here are 3 important things to know when working with a Student Advocate:

1. You’re the boss! You are responsible for how you manage your case

  • You are free to decide whether to accept our help. While we provide a free, independent and professional service, we would never do anything without your consent. It’s up to you whether you reach out for support, accept support, or accept our feedback. If you’d rather go it alone, that’s ok.


  • You need to decide how to respond or what to apply for. Advocates support, and give advice, information and feedback. We don’t take over or take responsibility away from you.


  • You are responsible for meeting your deadlines. While we inform you of, and highlight, timeframes, you are responsible to know and meet your deadlines. Failing to complete things on time can have consequences.


2. You’re in charge of submitting your completed application or response to the correct place.

  • A common misconception we encounter with students, is that once a document has been sent to us that means they have fulfilled their requirements and have successfully responded or applied. This is not the case. While we may have a lot of involvement to advise and support you with your case, you need to be aware of where to submit your application or response once it’s ready to go. So, where does it go?


  • The answer to this question is different depending on what it is you are submitting. Typically, there will be instructions on the application form or in correspondence you have received from the University. Read these carefully and if you’re not sure, just ask us and we’ll take a look and advise you, although ultimately it still is your responsibility.


  • Remember that simply explaining your case to a Student Advocate does not mean that you have dealt with the situation. Processes need to be followed, and often times seeking out the support of a Student Advocate is only the first step. If you’re not sure what you need to do next, we can explain official processes  to you.


3. We don’t decide your case.

  • We’re not the judge and jury. Occasionally students assume that Advocacy & Welfare are the people who make the decisions. We don’t.


  • We help you put your best foot forward. We can help you write, and often re-write your application or response. We will let you know the kind of information that needs to be included and how to format it. The purpose of giving you feedback is to enhance the likelihood that you will have a positive outcome.

Now that you know some more about what you can expect when you work with a student advocate, don’t hesitate to each out to us whenever you need support with a study or personal issue. You never have to feel like you’re on your own. Your independent student advocates are always available to help you.

 Get in touch with a Student Advocate, here.