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Harassment, discrimination and bullying for HDR students

You have the right to study and work at the University in an environment that is free from harassment, discrimination and bullying.  

Harassment is behaviour towards another person (or a group of people) that could reasonably be expected to make them feel offended, intimidated, or humiliated.  

Unlawful direct discrimination occurs when a person is treated less favourably than others in a similar situation because they possess a certain attribute protected by law, such as race, gender, or disability status.  

Bullying is repeated, unreasonable behaviour that is directed towards a person or a group of people, that may create a risk to their health and safety. For research students this can include undermining research performance by deliberately withholding information vital for effective performance. 

Find out more about harassment, discrimination and bullying, including cyberbullying. 

What is unlikely to constitute harassment, discrimination or bullying?

As a research student, you will receive feedback on your progress. Legitimate comments and advice – including relevant negative, or full and frank feedback on your research, ideas, writing, progress, work performance or work-related behaviour – will not necessarily constitute harassment, discrimination, or bullying. 

If you feel uncomfortable or unsure about feedback you have received, or any behaviour towards you, you can contact us to discuss it confidentially.  

Further assistance

If you think you or someone you know is being harassed, discriminated against, or bullied at the University, whether by another student or staff member, or you are the subject of a complaint, contact us for assistance from our legal or casework services

To speak with a counsellor about an incident of harassment, discrimination, or bullying, contact the University’s Student Counselling Service for free and confidential assistance. They also offer a 24/7 mental wellbeing support line

Find more on-campus student support services.  


This information is current as at December 2023 and is intended as a guide to the law as it applies to people who live in or are affected by the law as it applies in NSW. It does not constitute legal advice. 

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Written by SUPRA Legal Service December 2023.


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