School of Education

Safeguarding Children and Vulnerable Adults

The cost of the Disclosure and Barring Service application is paid by the School of Education for all those students who are required to obtain a DBS check.

The School of Education fully implements The University of Nottingham's Safeguarding Policy in relation to children and vulnerable adults. The school has a strong and extensive partnership with local and regional schools, colleges and other institutions and therefore a central part of the policy focuses on the need for many students in the school to apply for, and receive, a satisfactory check.

Who should apply for a DBS check?

Any student whose study involves them in contact with children or vulnerable adults. That means:

  • all students on Initial Teacher Education programmes
  • all students on undergraduate and postgraduate counselling programmes
  • all undergraduate, masters and research students whose research involves interviewing, and/or working with, children or vulnerable adults
  • all undergraduate, masters and research students whose research involves working in schools

International and EU students

If you are a student based at The University of Nottingham then you need to apply for a DBS check if the above applies to you. This applies whether your research is conducted inside, or outside, the UK. It is essential that you have a passport when you come to the UK as you will need this to provide evidence of your identity. An identity card is not sufficient to prove identity for this purpose.

Additionally you need to provide a Certificate of Good Conduct from your home country. This should be brought with you to the induction event. If you cannot obtain it before this point then it will need to be provided before conducting any form of work in external institutions. If your country does not issue these then please contact the appropriate administrator. For further information please see the Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure's information on overseas criminal record checks.

How to apply for a DBS check

Initial Teacher Education and undergraduate and postgraduate counselling students are sent a DBS application at an appropriate stage of the application process or during their course.

Masters and research students should discuss with the tutor/supervisor whether they need to apply. Additionally, they should read the School of Education's ethics information.

A DBS application form can be requested from the contacts listed above right. Once the application is completed you should take the form and necessary documents to the appropriate administrative assistant for checking.

In addition to the DBS application you are also required to complete an additional form from The University of Nottingham on which you should disclose ALL previous convictions, cautions, reprimands or final warnings that are not filtered or protected as defined by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 (as amended in 2013). View details of these.

This form is compared to your DBS disclosure once received. If the required information is not provided and details of an offence subsequently emerge during a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check, it is likely that the offer of a place will be withdrawn.

Offences/Cautions on the Disclosure

Most offences that appear on a DBS disclosure do not prevent a student taking up, or remaining, on course. The School of Education operates a policy that all students with an offence on the disclosure will be invited to meet with the appropriate Taught Courses Manager and a Course Leader/Director. The purpose of the meeting is to support the student in any future job application, discuss any placement implications and the background of the offence. The meeting is confidential unless the offence is of a nature which affects placement on the course.

The Disclosure


  • As the DBS no longer provides the University with a copy of your certificate you must send your copy to the University as soon as possible unless you are registered for the on-line service (see below). The certificate will be returned to you at the induction event.
  • The date and disclosure number only, are logged on your student record.
  • If you already have a disclosure from another institution you do need to apply for a new one. This is a University requirement.
  • If you are a teacher conducting research in the school in which you are employed and have a DBS issued for that institution then you do not need to apply for another disclosure. 
  • If you are registered to the DBS on line service you will be asked for your permission for the University to access your details. If you give your permission you need to provide us with the number and date of issue.
  • A disclosure normally takes 4-6 weeks to be processed once it is received by the DBS. If you have lived in a number of places the process could take longer.
  • Schools and Institutions may not ask to see your DBS disclosure and it is a criminal offence for the University to share a student's DBS number and/or date of certificate outside of our organisation. You may be asked for proof of identity (your university card) and the University will confirm to schools and institutions that a criminal record check has been completed and that a student is adjudged suitable to work with children and vulnerable adults.
  • Any offence committed during the duration of a course should be disclosed to the appropriate Taught Courses Manager or appropriate Course Leader. A failure to disclose may result in the suspension of your course.
  • If you have any concerns about your application then you may talk to your supervisor, tutor or course leader.  

Other information

  • Any offence committed during the duration of a course that requires a DBS disclosure should be disclosed to the Taught Courses Manager or appropriate Course Leader. A failure to disclose may result in the suspension of your course.
  • A copy of the disclosure is sent to the applicant only.


For confidential enquiries please contact:

Student Services Centre
telephone: +44 (0)115 748 6500

Useful links


School of Education

The University of Nottingham
Jubilee Campus
Wollaton Road
Nottingham, NG8 1BB

telephone: +44 (0)115 951 5559