Skip to main navigationSkip to main content
The University of Southampton
Student Disability & WellbeingPart of Student Services

Bullying and abuse

Bullying, abuse and harassment can be very damaging to anyone's confidence, and especially at university where as a student you may feel less powerful than members of staff or you may be forced to have close contact with a fellow student who is making you feel uncomfortable.

The University of Southampton does not tolerate breaches of its codes: see our Dignity at Work and Study policy for more information.

Bullying or abuse

Bullying or abuse is offensive behaviour that violates a person's dignity in an subtle or aggressive way. It is any behaviour that makes the recipient feel upset, threatened, humiliated or vulnerable and undermines their self-confidence.

Examples of bullying:


Harassment encompasses many different types of physical, verbal and non-verbal conduct. It can occur as an isolated incident, many sporadic incidents, or on-going behaviour. Harassment that is related to an individual’s or group’s age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage or civil partnership, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation can constitute unlawful discrimination, for which staff and students can be held legally and personally liable.

Examples of harassment:


Report and Support

You can report bullying and harassment anonymously or report something and get support from an advisor.

Mediation Service

The University's free and confidential Mediation Service offers an opportunity to resolve any conflict between parties who may work, study or live together - it could be student/student or student/staff.

SUSU Advice Centre

If you need advice and support that is independent from the University you can contact the Students' Union Advice Centre, which is a service available to all students.

Harassment contacts

The University has a team of trained harassment contacts who provide a confidential service to students who feel bullied or harassed, and they also support those who have been accused of harassment.  

Formal complaints

The University Dignity at Work and Study policy gives further guidance on the procedures required to lodge a formal complaint and has information on University Disciplinary procedures.  

Victim Support

Give free and confidential help to victims of crime, regardless of when the crime happened or if it has been reported. You can contact them via a 24/7 helpline, by letter, or email.  


If you need an emergency response, call Hampshire Constabulary on 999. If you want to talk about how the police may be able to help call 101.  

Want to talk to someone?

If you would like to talk to someone about what you've been experiencing, and what support is available, find out what support services you can talk to.

Privacy Settings