Uniarts Helsinki’s ethical guidelines for education and studies and procedures for misconduct and disciplinary cases

Ethical guidelines for studying, information on good study practice and examples of violations of these practices. Procedures for suspected misconduct and disciplinary cases.

Background and aim

This document contains ethical guidelines, information concerning good study practices and good artistic practices and responsible conduct of research in a study context, examples of violations of these practices and procedures for suspected misconduct and disciplinary cases.

The aim of the guidelines is to increase understanding of good artistic practices and responsible conduct of research in studies and to prevent possible misconduct and disciplinary cases.

Good artistic practices and responsible conduct of research increase outsiders’ trust in Uniarts Helsinki and contribute to creating a safe learning and workplace community for all members of the university.

Scope of application

These guidelines state how to comply with good artistic practices and responsible conduct of research in education, teaching and studies and how to deal with misconduct and disciplinary cases at Uniarts Helsinki. The applicable parts of these guidelines are applied to the Sibelius Academy’s Junior Academy, all the while taking into account students’ age and maturity as well as regulations and guidelines that are applicable to Junior Academy students. In addition to this, the rules and regulations of the Open University are applied in cases of inappropriate behaviour involving Open University students.

There are separate ethical guidelines concerning research, and that document, in addition to these guidelines, is applied to licentiate and doctoral students.

Staff-related cases are handled in accordance with labour law processes and the related guidelines that apply.

Ethical conduct

Effort to engage in ethically sustainable activities

The operations of Uniarts Helsinki are guided by the general Code of Conduct and an awareness of a shared foundation of ethical values. The values that have been stated in Uniarts Helsinki’s strategy guide all operations of the university.

The activities of the Uniarts Helsinki community are also steered by policies and guidelines established for promoting equality and diversity and for preventing bullying, harassment and inappropriate treatment.

Members of Uniarts Helsinki

  • promote ethical, critical, creative, open and inclusive ways of operating at Uniarts Helsinki
  • treat other people with equality, impartiality, fairness and respect
  • respect everyone’s viewpoints, work and peace to work
  • promote a positive, encouraging and inclusive work environment
  • base their actions on honesty
  • commit to the ethical practices of arts, research and pedagogics.

Uniarts Helsinki’s Ethical Guidelines concerning Education and Studies concern the entire study path of a student on all fields of Uniarts Helsinki. The purpose of the ethical guidelines is to safeguard students’ learning, with respect for the student’s personal achievements as well as those of others.

The goal is that Uniarts Helsinki’s students are successful in their studies and when working professionally, all the while complying with good artistic practices and responsible conduct of research as well as the professional practices of their respective fields.

Ethical norms of regulations

The purpose of the laws, regulations and guidelines that steer the university’s activities and studies is to ensure that students have uniform and equal access to information and that they are treated and legally protected in a uniform and equal manner. 

The universities “shall arrange their activities so as to assure a high international standard in research, artistic activities, education and tuition in conformity with research integrity” (Universities Act, section 2, subsection 2).

Students must adhere to good artistic and academic practices in their studies (Education Regulations, section 51).

Uniarts Helsinki is committed to complying with the Finnish Code of Conduct for Research Integrity and Procedures for Handling Alleged Violations of Research Integrity in Finland, i.e. the RI guidelines, published by the Finnish Advisory Board on Research Integrity (TENK) (https://tenk.fi/en/research-misconduct/responsible-conduct-research-rcr). In addition to research, the applicable parts of the RI guidelines also concern teaching and studies. The guidelines for responsible conduct of research also steer artistic activities at Uniarts Helsinki.

Good artistic practices and responsible conduct of research in education and studies require awareness of the content of applicable and valid legislation in the context of thesis projects and taking various measures to comply with the obligations. This entails compliance with safety guidelines both in physical facilities and online environments, as well as compliance with data protection legislation and copyright legislation. Studies may also require the acquiring of agreements and consents (e.g. consent for photography and recording and permission to publish) and compiling of information bulletins and notices (e.g. privacy notices). The thesis supervisor, the teacher and other staff members support students in study-related situations, including in how to comply with various obligations and guidelines.

The aim is to prevent violations of responsible artistic and research practices by verifying the originality of study attainments before the study attainment is approved. Unintentional misconduct can be avoided by carefully familiarising oneself with guidelines concerning studies and thesis projects. In an ambiguous situation, the student is recommended to ask a teacher, thesis supervisor or other expert for help in choosing the right course of action.

Safety and wellbeing in a learning and workplace community 

Right to a safe learning and work environment

Students have the right to a safe learning environment (Universities Act, section 41a). The right of the university’s staff to a safe work environment is also protected by law (Universities Act, section 45). The Education Regulations specify that students and staff have the right to a safe, non-discriminatory and equal learning and work environment. Good order and discipline must be followed at the university, and the safety or wellbeing of others must not be put at risk. (Education Regulations, section 55). Uniarts Helsinki’s Code of Conduct, Treat Me Well guidelines – and other internal guidelines, such as Uniarts Helsinki’s Rules and Regulations, supplement the list of obligations derived from legislation, the Education Regulations and guidelines issued by the Finnish Advisory Board on Research Integrity. 

Teacher’s responsibility to inform about responsible conduct of research

It is the duty of teachers to support students’ learning and development of artistic and research-oriented thinking and to address misconduct if they observe it. Students must be provided information on source reference practices in their respective fields of art or research right from the beginning of their studies. It is important that teachers engage in a discussion on the principles of good artistic practices and responsible conduct of research on a regular basis with students. The teacher must bring up source reference practices on their own courses before students are assigned written works or to give them appropriate instructions for making references. Particular attention must be paid to guiding international students, because the code of academic integrity in other countries may differ from the existing guidelines in Finland. It is a good idea to also remind students of these guidelines and the fact that suspected cases of misconduct are always investigated.

Student’s responsibility to comply with responsible conduct of research

The student has the obligation to look into what kind of conduct in studies should be pursued and what constitutes misconduct. The student must carefully familiarise themselves with TENK’s Finnish Code of Conduct for Research Integrity and Procedures for Handling Alleged Violations of Research Integrity in Finland, Uniarts Helsinki’s Code of Conduct and these Ethical Guidelines. If the student is unsure of what kinds of activities are acceptable and what constitutes misconduct, they must ask a teacher or their teacher tutor for advice.

System for checking the originality of thesis projects

Ensuring the originality of study attainments and to-be-published research results is part of the quality assurance of education and research. Uniarts Helsinki uses a shared system, Turnitin, for verifying the originality of study attainments. The system recognises similarities between written texts, which helps in detecting plagiarism. In addition to checking the originality of texts, the system can also be used in supervision and assessment processes in connection with studies.

Before all written theses completed at Uniarts Helsinki are approved, they are electronically checked for originality using a system used by Uniarts Helsinki for verifying originality. The originality check of a thesis is done using a system currently in use at the university, and the version must be the final one that is submitted to the examiners of the thesis. The student personally uploads their thesis to the electronic originality checking system and sends the same version to the thesis examiners and for the Taju database. After the thesis check, it is no longer possible to edit the thesis. The academic supervisor of the thesis or some other Uniarts Helsinki employee designated by the degree programme is responsible for the check and for interpreting the results.

An electronic originality checking system is recommended for use in various stages of students’ studies to the extent that is deemed necessary in terms of the goal of ethical conduct. The electronic originality checking system can also be used for checking learning material that is compiled at the university.

Using the system only on some part of the group in group teaching is not allowed. If the teacher has a reason to suspect that a student of their group has engaged in misconduct in the form of plagiarism, the written works of the entire teaching group must be checked using the electronic system for verifying originality.

Use of artificial intelligence applications in studies

The rapid development of artificial intelligence (AI) has led to a situation where the universities must review the role of AI on a wide scale, not only as part of a learning process but also as a career skill, and reflect on the responsible use of AI in research, teaching, learning and artistic activities. GPT (Generative Pre-trained Transformer) and other similar AI-based text editors or text generators, so-called large language models, are interactive AI applications that produce text on the basis of prompts given by a user. AI that is based on a language model can be asked questions, and it can be asked to formulate a text that has been entered or to make the solution it has provided more concise or better. Language models are new technologies and using them offers many learning opportunities.  

AI systems are constantly evolving future tools of working life, which is why it is important that both teachers and students learn about the use of ChatGPT or other similar AI applications and about the related terms of use and data protection. At the same time, both teachers and students must be committed to noting that nobody is obligated to use online applications in studies or to register as users of applications provided by third parties. Nobody is allowed to enter anyone’s personal data or other material (e.g. material covered by copyrights, trade secrets) that one does not have rights of use to in applications. 

The ethics of using AI at universities is determined based on responsible conduct of research and good artistic practices. The following matters must be taken into consideration when using AI applications:

  • When using AI, responsible conduct of research and copyright practices as well as scientific writing practices must all be observed. Works must be made by the authors themselves, and they cannot present other people’s ideas, information, works or other material without a sufficient reference. AI cannot be cited as a source for research. 
  • If the teacher wants to limit the use of AI as part of studying artistic content or as part of artistic work, the teacher must explicitly state this in the briefing that they give to the student for an assignment.
  • If the student uses AI for an assignment or for a thesis project for editing purposes, for example, they must always mention this. Using a language model for language revision is justified for compiling a grammatically correct and structurally smooth text (cf. proofreading and translation tools and other similar tools), for example.
  • The student is always personally responsible for the content of the text that they have submitted. At the time when these guidelines are being compiled, the big challenge connected to language models is that they produce text that seems competent but still contains factual errors, contradictions or even biased and harmful content or content that reinforces harmful stereotypes.

Uniarts Helsinki will follow the ongoing debate concerning AI and change its guidelines, if deemed necessary. The recommendations issued by the Jyväskylä University School of Business and Economics and the Rectors’ Conference of Finnish Universities of Applied Sciences Arene, in particular, have been utilised when compiling the above-mentioned text.

Violations against responsible conduct of research

General information

In an academic context, misconduct is a dishonest act or failure to act, with the purpose of providing a false image of one’s own or another person’s competence. Negligence to comply with established work practices and methods is also misconduct.

Forms of misconduct include plagiarism i.e. unauthorised borrowing, autoplagiarism, fabrication, falsification of observations and misappropriation. Misconduct can also happen in examinations and other exam situations, and examples include cheating, talking, taking the examination on behalf of another student or completing other students’ studies. Study attainments cannot violate another person’s copyrights or privacy, and they cannot reveal another person’s trade secrets.

The characteristics of misconduct have been described in detail in the guidelines issued by TENK, titled Finnish Code of Conduct for Research Integrity and Procedures for Handling Alleged Violations of Research Integrity in Finland. In the guidelines, TENK discusses actions that deviate from responsible conduct of research and violations of ethical norms, but it does not specify any ethically recommendable artistic or pedagogical practices. The following paragraphs intend to describe research-related, artistic and pedagogical disregard and misconduct in more detail, using the research practice as the basis, and supplementing it when necessary. 

Misconduct requiring disciplinary measures can also entail disrupting of teaching or violent or threatening behaviour. Harassment of another person, inappropriate treatment and negligence to comply with regulations on order and safety, for example, usually lead to disciplinary measures.

Examples of various forms of misconduct

Unauthorised borrowing i.e. plagiarism

Plagiarism refers to copying of a work, output, part of text, artistic expression or translation authored or published by another person and presenting it as one’s own. Plagiarism can also refer to the unauthorised borrowing of an image, pattern, diagram, software code or any visual, auditory or other work.

Plagiarism can be complicated to assess due to the fact that in research, artistic and pedagogical work, another person’s work is used as a sign of expertise and as intertextual references. Plagiarism deviates from these practices in that the origin or extent of the borrowing or reference is hidden, for example by omitting the reference entirely, referring to a source in a misleading manner or presenting a work entirely as one’s own. Plagiarism can entail both direct copying and adapted copying.

It must be noted that not all borrowing is unauthorised. As concerns works, legal borrowing is subject to the Copyright Act’s section 25 on the right to quote. The purpose of the right to quote is to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to comment and criticise a published work, but the quotation must be appropriate, i.e., be associated with criticism of the quotation’s source or support for one’s own arguments, for example. The right to quote also grants permission to use visual or auditory works or parts thereof for demonstrative purposes in education, texts related to education, theses, or assignments. However, the source and author of the quoted work must always be mentioned. Plagiarism of an unpublished work is also prohibited. The same applies to non-copyrighted works created by another person.


Autoplagiarism refers to reusing one’s own works for new study attainments. In that case, the student is not presenting another person’s work as their own but using their own earlier study attainments without being explicit about it. Doing so constitutes misconduct if the borrowing is not trivial and the deed is intentional. If a student reuses their works (text or images, for example), they must cite their earlier work in addition to the original sources, in which case the matter does not involve autoplagiarism.


Misappropriation refers to the unauthorised presentation of another person’s work or material or presenting another person’s work or material as one’s own, and it may happen in group work or the work of a research group, for example. In artistic work, misappropriation may manifest itself as the presentation of another person’s work contribution or original idea as one’s own.


Fabrication means the presentation of fictitious works, observations or results to the research and artistic community. In study attainments, fabrication may entail, for example, including fictitious material or presenting an erroneous conclusion as a correct one. Artistic fiction cannot be considered fabrication, in this sense. In artistic activities, an example of fabrication could be presenting fictitious material as documentary.

Misrepresentation, i.e. falsification of observations

In research, falsification of observations refers to modifying and presenting original observations in a manner that distorts the research results. Falsification of observations might also manifest itself as a case in which the results of research and artistic work are presented in a manner that gives a misleading picture on the suitability of the solutions applied. Fabrication and falsification of observations might also occur in investigation and research associated with studies and pedagogical development work.

Dealing with misconduct and disciplinary cases

Applying the RI guidelines to master-level thesis projects

According to the RI guidelines updated by the Finnish National Board on Research Integrity TENK in 2023, dealing with suspected violations is the responsibility of the higher education institution in question in the context of master-level thesis projects. According to TENK, students must follow practices of responsible conduct of research, as described in the RI guidelines, in their studies at higher education institutions and related bachelor’s, master’s and licentiate thesis projects. Introducing students to these guidelines must be an integral part of education on all levels at higher education institutions. However, allegations of misconduct concerning bachelor’s and master’s studies and thesis projects are not handled according to the process described in the RI Guidelines, and instead, the university follows its own internal processes and guidelines in these cases. Suspected study-related violations of good artistic practices and responsible conduct of research are processed in accordance with sections 45–45a in the Universities Act and these guidelines.

The student has the right to have a matter concerning them handled in an appropriate manner and without undue delay. Investigation of misconduct and disciplinary cases must be conducted in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act (434/2003) and good administrative practice. Before decision-making, the suspected act or negligence must be individualised, and a proper investigation must be conducted in the matter. The student must be provided with an opportunity to be heard before making a decision on the sanction. The student must have the opportunity to bring a support person to the personal hearing, reprimand or other meeting arranged at the initiative of the university in connection with the processing of the case. If necessary, the hearing may be arranged in some other manner that ensures the legal rights of the student, such as in writing.

The processing of suspected misconduct and disciplinary cases is not public, but the decision-making documents are, in principle, public. During the processing, the matter is only revealed to those people who are professionally involved in the case or who can offer further information on it. The student must be informed of the progress of the investigation. In disciplinary cases, the student is given an appealable decision that they can appeal to the Administrative Court.

If the student finds that they have unduly been suspected of violating the ethical guidelines, but no investigation has been initiated on the matter in accordance with these guidelines, the student has the right to request an investigation. The investigation request is delivered in writing to the head of academic affairs who has been designated as the person responsible for investigations at the academy. Unfounded suspicion or unwarranted report of suspected violation is a violation of the study-related ethical guidelines in itself and can be considered misconduct.

Roles when dealing with the student’s misconduct and disciplinary cases

The following paragraphs describe the general roles when dealing with the student’s misconduct and disciplinary cases. The procedure in matters regarding revocation of the right to study and disciplinary actions is pursuant to section 45a in the Universities Act. The rector and a member of the teaching and research staff and the practical training instructor may work together or separately in a matter referred to in section 45, subsection 3. The measures must be recorded.


In this context, a teacher refers to a teacher of a course or an assessor of a study attainment.

It is the teacher’s duty to support and promote students’ studies, learning and growth into experts through versatile teaching methods that take different kinds of learners’ abilities into consideration and through feedback that motivates them to learn new things. Each teacher provides study-related counselling and guidance. Students must be treated in an equal, non-discriminative, encouraging and appreciative manner.

The teacher reports their suspicion of misconduct and violation to the investigator if the possibility of misconduct or disregard towards responsible conduct of research cannot be excluded. In unclear cases, the teacher first reports the suspicious observation to the student and reserves them an opportunity to give a written or oral explanation. If, in the teacher’s opinion, the case involves merely minor carelessness or a lack of understanding on the student’s part, the teacher instructs the student about the correct procedures and returns the work to the student for corrections. In this case, the matter is not referred to an investigator, but the teacher may choose to consult the investigator.

The teacher cannot fail a study attainment due to misconduct, if the misconduct has not first been confirmed in accordance with an investigation described in these guidelines (cf. the possible special procedure for examination situations in lecture halls, described below). When the teacher finds it justified to report their suspicion of misconduct to the investigator, they provide their own written account of the matter. 

The assessment of the study attainment will then wait until the matter is resolved. If the investigation’s conclusion is that the student has engaged in misconduct, the teacher must fail the study attainment that has been returned to them for assessment. It is possible to apply for rectification for a study attainment failed due to misconduct, just like for a normal assessment of a study attainment. When the investigation of a student’s suspected misconduct is ongoing, the teacher must nevertheless assess the study attainments of other students within the time limit prescribed.

Besides suspected misconduct, the teacher must also report possible situations of inappropriate behaviour to the investigator.

Pursuant to section 45a, subsection 3 in the Universities Act, disciplinary measures must be recorded.

The following information, for example, is needed to record the incident and to provide a clear account of the situation and the circumstances: 

  • Contact information of the person reporting the case
  • Time of the incident
  • Place of the incident
  • Academy
  • Study unit / course / circumstances
  • Person suspected of misconduct
  • Description of the incident
  • Parties involved
  • Some other informal account of the situation, information on the circumstances, preliminary views and possible appendices.

Supervisor of an examination session

The supervisor of an examination session must intervene if they observe alleged cheating, other misconduct or other actions that violate the rules for examination sessions. In obvious misconduct cases, the supervisor reports their observation to the student immediately, asks the student to leave the examination and the student’s examination is failed. If the student does not deny misconduct in these obvious cases, the matter does not require an investigation procedure, and a notification to the investigator is sufficient. To ensure the student’s legal protection, the student has the right to apply for rectification in the assessment of the examination according to the normal procedure after the examination results have been published in these cases, too. If there is a suspicion of misconduct, the supervisor of the examination tells the student about it after the examination and reports it to the teacher-in-charge of the study unit. In their report, they must record what they saw, the student’s possible explanation and the measures taken as well as their own written account of what happened.


The investigator is the academy’s head of academic affairs. In the context of teaching at the Open University, the investigator is an academy’s head of academic affairs or the Open University’s academic affairs specialist who is tasked with investigating misconduct cases. The head of academic affairs is the investigator when the teaching in question is integrated into degree studies.

The investigation consists of advising the teacher and other parties about the procedures, collecting reports and other documents, arranging the student’s hearing and discussion, informing the parties and preparing the matter to the dean.

The investigation is conducted at the academy where the suspected violation has taken place.

After having received a notification of suspected misconduct from a teacher-in-charge or a supervisor, the investigator looks into the matter and gives the student the opportunity to be heard by requesting a written response from them.  If the investigator finds that it is likely that misconduct has occurred, they prepare the matter to the dean, who will assess the situation and decide on possible further actions. The legal counsel providing support for the academic affairs administration helps, if needed, in conducting the investigation, initiating the hearing and recording the events.

The investigator records all measures in the minutes that are compiled of the case in question, and if needed, more information will be added to the minutes as the process moves forward. The minutes provide an informal description of the stages in the process.


The dean decides on further actions based on the investigator’s report. After the pre-investigation, the dean makes an assessment on whether the student has disrupted teaching, behaved violently or threateningly, acted under false pretences or otherwise caused disorder at the university, as referred to in section 45 in the Universities Act.

If, after reviewing the misconduct report, the dean is of the opinion that the suspicion is unfounded or that the violation is a minor one, the study attainment will be returned to the teacher for assessment. In connection with returning the study attainment, the dean comments on whether the attainment can be assessed or whether it has to be failed due to misconduct. If the dean is of the opinion that the student has engaged in misconduct and that the violation cannot be considered minor, the dean will decide on the initiation of a disciplinary procedure. Repetition and the severity of the act is taken into account.

The disciplinary procedure will start with the dean notifying the student about the specifics of the suspected violation in accordance with the Universities Act. The notification must also state the possible disciplinary measures. The student must be provided with an opportunity to be heard regarding the notification. If the dean decides to initiate a disciplinary procedure, the matter must be presented to the rector for a decision even in cases in which the dean, based on the collected material, does not suggest a sanction.

The dean can have a talk with the student regardless of other measures that might be taken.

Misconduct investigation can also be initiated after a decision on the approval of a study attainment has already been made, if a suspicion of misconduct arises only at this stage.

Rector and the university board

The procedure begins when the dean proposes taking measures to the university’s rector.

The decision to give a written warning in accordance with the Universities Act is made by the rector. If a mere warning is not considered a strict enough sanction, the rector may suggest to the board that the student be temporarily suspended from the university.

The decision on suspending a student for a fixed period is made by the university board.

After processing the matter, the rector or the university board refers the matter back to the academy, where the study attainment is assessed or failed, and other necessary measures are taken.

The senior head of academic affairs and the university’s legal team support misconduct and disciplinary procedures, when needed.

Pursuant to section 45, subsection 3 in the Universities Act, the rector and a member of the teaching and research staff and the practical training instructor may work together or separately in a matter referred to in section 45, subsection 3. 

The measures must be recorded.

Reporting conduct that violates the ethical guidelines

If the student suspects that the Ethical Guidelines have been violated, they must inform the teacher-in-charge of the course, the academy’s head of academic affairs or, as regards the Open University, the Open University’s academic affairs specialist. 

If some other person suspects a violation, they are asked to report it to the academy’s head of academic affairs or, as regards the Open University, the Open University’s academic affairs specialist. Reports concerning employees must be made in accordance with HR practices, however.

Uniarts Helsinki also has a channel for reporting misconduct, so that a person who detects or suspects activities that conflict with the general interest can safely report the matter. In this context, misconduct refers to an act or omission that leads to criminal sanctions based on law or that violates the general interest and conflicts with the protection of public procurement, privacy, personal data or the safety of network and information systems, for example.

Sanctions due to misconduct and disciplinary cases

General information

Sanctions imposed due to violating the guidelines must be proportionate to the quality and severity of the violation. Severity is assessed based on whether the deed was pre-planned and international and based on how extensive and serious the negligent conduct is and whether it is recurring. When deciding on the sanction, the following aspects must be taken into consideration: what stage of studies the student is at, has the student been aware of responsible conduct of research and have they been given an introduction to the matter as part of their studies and have they been provided instructions for compiling research-oriented texts.  

Failing a study attainment in cases of misconduct 

In accordance with section 51 in the Education Regulations, a study attainment is failed if the student is found guilty of plagiarism, research misconduct or other misconduct in connection with studies. Decisions on failed studies are made by the assessor or assessors of the study attainment after hearing the student. A student’s performance may also be failed if misconduct is discovered only after the examination.

After the study attainment is failed, the student must talk to the teacher and agree how to recomplete the study unit in question.

In accordance with section 82, subsection 4 in the Universities Act, a student dissatisfied with the grading of a study attainment, other than a thesis, may lodge a rectification request orally or in writing to the teacher who decided on the grade. The rectification request must be made within 14 days of the date on which the information about the grades or the application of the assessment criteria to the student’s study attainment became accessible to the student. A student dissatisfied with the decision on the rectification request may seek rectification from the Academic Appeals Board of Uniarts Helsinki within 14 days of the receipt of the notification of the teacher’s decision.

A student dissatisfied with the grading of a doctoral dissertation, a licentiate thesis or a thesis may lodge a rectification request directly with the Academic Appeals Board of Uniarts Helsinki.

In some cases, a decision on an approved study attainment can be cancelled and reconsidered in a correction procedure in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act (434/2003). If the misconduct suspicion arises only after a study attainment has been approved or a degree has been conferred, the correct procedure applicable to the case must be negotiated with the legal staff before the misconduct investigation is initiated. 

Written warning

According to section 45 in the Universities Act, the student may be given a written warning if they:

  1. disrupt teaching;
  2. behave violently or threateningly;
  3. act under false pretences or otherwise break order at the university;
  4. refuse to present the drug test certificate referred to in section 43d, or
  5. based on the account referred to in section 43d, have used narcotics for purposes other than medical treatment in a way which undermines their functional capacity.

The decision to give a student a written warning is made by the rector of the university. Before any such decision can be taken, the deed or negligence resulting in the disciplinary measure must be specified and a relevant investigation must be carried out, and the student must be given an opportunity to be heard (Universities Act, section 45a, subsection 2).

If the misconduct or disciplinary case is serious or recurring, the academy’s dean makes a proposal on the disciplinary measures that should follow after the hearing with the student and the investigation, after which the processing of the matter is referred to the university’s rector for possible disciplinary measures, as defined in section 45 in the Universities Act.

Suspension from the university for a fixed period of one year most

If the student’s deed or negligence is serious in nature or if the student continues to behave inappropriately after having been given a written warning, they may be suspended from the university for a fixed period of one year at most.

The decision on suspending a student for a fixed period is made by the university board. Before any such decision can be taken, the deed or negligence resulting in the disciplinary measure must be specified and a relevant investigation must be carried out, and the student must be given an opportunity to be heard (Universities Act, section 45a, subsection 2). A matter concerning suspension is discussed by the university board on the basis of the rector’s presentation.

The decision on the enforcement of an appealable decision and on the date on which the enforcement is implemented must be made at the same time as the decision to suspend the student or to ban the student from studies. A decision on suspension may be implemented despite an appeal, unless otherwise stipulated by the university or Administrative Court.

During the suspension, a student cannot register for studies or complete them. Suspension is recorded in the student register and the university’s case management system.

Order to leave the premises

According to section 45 in the Universities Act, a student who disrupts teaching, behaves threateningly or violently or endangers the life or health of another person may be ordered to leave the premises where teaching takes place or an event organised by the university. 

A student may be banned from attending teaching for a maximum of three days where there is a risk that the safety of another student or a person working in the university or some other teaching facility is threatened as a result of the student’s threatening or violent behaviour or where the disruptive conduct of the student makes teaching and associated activities unduly difficult.

If the student has been ordered to leave the premises, the matter must be reported to the academic affairs administration without delay to launch support measures / or a disciplinary measure. The measure that is taken is recorded.

Documentation, implementation and archiving

The stages of investigating the suspected violation are documented in writing. A memo is drawn up of oral hearing events, and the memo is signed by the dean and the academy’s head of academic affairs and by the student suspected of violation. If the student does not sign the memo, the matter is recorded in the memo. It is possible to use encrypted email and give the approval via email instead of signatures.

The memo must include the following information

  • the student’s alleged violation and grounds for the suspicion,
  • whether the student admits the suspicion is justified,
  • whether the student finds that they have received sufficient teaching and guidance in order to know the correct conduct, and
  • the result of the hearing event.

The documentation of a hearing that has been organised in some other way than as a hearing event must state the equivalent matters. The student refusing to attend the hearing or to sign the memo does not prevent the procedure. A copy of the memo or similar documentation is delivered to the student.

The language of administration at Uniarts Helsinki is Finnish. The language of administrative decisions and the minutes compiled in connection with misconduct is Finnish. In accordance with the service principle of administration, a student who does not speak Finnish will hear about the content and process progress of the decision and preparatory documents in Swedish or English. The student can submit their own documents in Swedish or English, and communications with them can be had in Swedish or English.

In addition to the student, the minutes and possible decisions on further measures are provided also to the relevant teacher, dean and, if necessary, possible other parties participating in the process. If the student studies at another academy, the decision is also sent to the dean and head of academic affairs of the student’s academy. As regards exchange students, the staff member responsible for the academy’s international cooperation is expected to contact the student’s home university.

Documents related to the processing of the suspected violation are stored in the university’s case management system as their own case. Documents that must be stored include, for example, memos for hearing events, emails related to the procedure, text similarity report from the originality checking system, possible decisions related to the procedure, other documents related to the violation investigation and material related to appeal. Only persons who deal with the suspected misconduct are given access rights to the case and documents.

The dean makes a decision on each suspected violation case that is reported to them, even if the suspicion does not lead to measures. After the case is resolved, the related documents are archived only in the case management system. Documents are stored in Uniarts Helsinki’s archive in accordance with the Archival Records Management Plan. All data that is stored elsewhere is destroyed.

Data in the case management system can be used not only for investigating the original suspected misconduct but also for finding out whether the student suspected of misconduct has previously violated ethical guidelines.

Decisions, along with the appendices, are archived in the university’s archive, and in principle, they are public documents. The parts that are not public must be marked in the document.

A decision concerning a student may be appealed to the Administrative Court.

A decision may be implemented despite the appeal, unless otherwise stipulated by the appellate authority.

Notifications to a partner university

If an exchange student or another student studying at Uniarts Helsinki based on a contract is sanctioned according to the Universities Act, the student’s home university is notified of the matter, even if there are no such provisions in the contract.

Likewise, if a student studying for a double or joint degree is sanctioned, the partner university is informed of the matter.