Fitness to Practise

Fitness to practice (FFP) refers to any course of study which may result in a professionally recognised qualification for Nursing, Teaching, social work etc.


Fitness to Practice could include the physical health, mental health, moral or behaviour matters in relation to the person studying.


There are however, other potential routes that may lead to a FFP investigation, including criminal convictions during studies and Academic Malpractice decisions.




If you have been informed that you may be being investigated under the FFP procedure, the normal procedure would be an initial investigation meeting.


Prior to this meeting, you would be formally invited to meet with faculty staff who would present the issue that has caused concerns. You would then be invited to present your case in response.


The faculty’s Investigating Officer may also have to speak to potential “witnesses,” such as placement staff in schools or hospitals, mentors and whistle-blowers.


After the investigation is completed you will either be allowed to progress (potentially with a formal warning, or with no penalty) or you could be referred to a Fitness to Practise Panel. If a student’s behaviour is considered to be extreme and a serious risk, then the student may be referred directly to a Fitness to Practise Panel


A Fitness to Practice Panel will consist of:

  • The chair of the panel
  • One member of teaching staff who is not associated with the teaching of the student
  • An elected representative of the Students' Union
  • A representative of the profession concerned
  • A member of the Academic Registry will act as Secretary to the Panel


Prior to the hearing

You will have the opportunity to write a statement to the Secretary of the Panel admitting or disputing the findings of the panel. You will also be asked to inform the Secretary of any witnesses that you will be calling upon to be considered by the Panel.


During the hearing

During the hearing, you will be given the opportunity to present your case and to call on any witnesses.

The Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning (or nominee) will present the case on behalf of Edge Hill and call witnesses. The Dean will be entitled to question you and any of your witnesses.

You will be informed of the Panel’s decision within 5 working days. You also have the right to appeal the decision made by the panel.




The Fitness to Practise procedure can be one of the most daunting procedures for students as it could potentially lead to being withdrawn from their course and could affect a student’s opportunity to progress in their chosen profession.


As such, it is vital that you seek help and advice from the SU Advice Centre at the earliest opportunity.


Prior to any Fitness to Practise panel meeting, there will be an investigation meeting to determine if a referral to a formal FFP panel is required.


If you receive a letter or email (or an invite to a DP meeting) advising that you are invited to an investigation meeting, we would recommend that you contact us immediately to arrange an appointment.


We can;

  • Advise about the procedure
  • Review the documents you have been sent
  • Help you prepare for the meeting

We may also be able to attend the investigation if we are given enough notice and a staff member is available.


It will be helpful to yourself and to the adviser if we are involved in the process as early as possible


If you would like to speak to an adviser about a Fitness to Practice issue, you can now book a 30 minute appointment online here or here.  



Additional Resources

Further information about the procedure can be found here: