Criminal records

We do not wish to prevent those with criminal records from benefitting from higher education. This has to be balanced with providing a safe environment in which to work and study.

The policy on applicants and students with criminal records (PDF), located on the Student Cases webpage, explains the process we will use in considering applications from those with criminal records and how applicants can appeal against the decision made. 

The obligations on applicants and students to declare criminal records are also described.

What to do when an applicant declares a criminal conviction

For PGT and UG applications, where the applicant has answered “Yes” to the criminal conviction question(s), admissions tutors are obliged to follow this up by sending out the questionnaire (see below) if you would otherwise have made the applicant an offer. On return of the completed questionnaire, please send it to Sofia Hepworth (s.c.hepworth@leeds.ac.uk) for further advice with a recommendation on making an offer to the applicant.  The recommendation will then be considered in consultation with Secretariat and you will subsequently be notified of the decision. Where the course dictates the requirement of a full DBS disclosure, please follow your set procedure.

 Applications through UCAS

There are two questions on the UCAS application form referring to criminal convictions for applicants to answer when they complete their application.

1- is for all applicants and asks them to declare that they have a relevant criminal conviction.
2- refers to courses leading to professions or occupations such as (but not limited to) teaching, medicine, dentistry, law, accountancy, actuarial, insolvency, healthcare, social work, veterinary medicine, veterinary science, pharmacy, osteopathy, chiropractic, optometry and those involving work with children or vulnerable adults, including the elderly or sick people. These professions or occupations are exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (1974). It is possible for institutions to use web-link to flag individual courses if they require applicants, who apply for these courses, to declare that they have spent or unspent convictions.

If you feel that your course should be flagged and this has not already been done, please email ug_enquiry@leeds.ac.uk and this can be set up.


For a more detailed explanation, including help text that applicants see in UCAS Apply see pages 60 to 63 of the UCAS Undergraduate Admissions Guide 2018.