Sexual assault is a criminal offence and contrary to the Student Dignity and Respect Policy and the University Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policy.

Sexual assault is any type of sexual activity or contact that you do not consent to. Sexual assault can happen through physical force or threats of force or if the attacker gave the victim drugs or alcohol as part of the assault. Sexual assault includes rape and sexual coercion.

A person commits sexual assault if they intentionally touch another person, the touching is sexual and the person does not consent.

It involves all unwanted physical contact of a sexual nature and ranges from pinching, embracing, groping and kissing, to rape and serious sexual assault which involves penetration without consent.


A person must have the capacity to give free agreement. Capacity is based on the person:

  • Being the right age
  • Being sober
  • Having the mental and physical ability to freely agree
  • Not being threatened or afraid of harm
  • Not being detained against their will

Tea and Consent

Thames Valley Police put together a video to highlight the issue of consent by comparing sex to drinking a cup of tea. The video is simple, effective and at times quite funny and provides clear instructions as to what constitutes sexual consent. Have a look at the video below:


Find out more

  • Citizens Advice. Provide information on rape and sexual assault
  • Rape Crisis. Provide information on the different types of sexual violence.

There are two ways you can report something