Disclosure and Barring Service checks

Disclosure and Barring Service checks

This information is for applicants or students who have been asked to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check.

We will tell you if you need one of these checks. You might need one if you are undertaking regulated activity with vulnerable adults or children as part of your placement, or as part of your learning, assessment or work placement activity on a particular module.

DBS checks are a two-step process, but depending on your circumstances you may need to follow some of the additional steps below.

Step one: online application

You will receive an email telling you how to complete your online application.  The email will come from the following address : shudbs@ebulk.teammatrix.com.  Please check your junk folder to ensure you access this.  You will need your SHU ID number which can be found in your offer email.

Step two: ID check

Within 10 days of your application, you will get an email about completing an online digital ID check. You will need an in-date biometric passport to do this. 

If you do not have a valid biometric passport, you must attend one of the drop-in sessions below at the University to complete a face-to-face ID check.


10:00-12:00 or 14:00-16:00

Robert Winston Building, Room F409, Collegiate Campus, S10 2BP


10:00-12:00 or 14:00-16:00

Oneleven 1-11 Arundel Gate, S1 2PN


10:00-12:00 or 14:00-16:00

Robert Winston Building, Room F409, Collegiate Campus, S10 2BP


You need to bring three forms of ID to the face-to-face session, and we can only accept Government approved documents. One of the documents must be from Group 1. The other two documents can be from any of the three groups.

You can access the full Government ID checking guidelines on Gov.uk's criminal record check page.

If you have lived or worked abroad

You must apply for criminal record certificates from countries where you have lived or worked if you:

  • lived or worked abroad in the last 10 years,
  • lived abroad for 12 months or more, continuously or in total,
  • were 18 or over at the time you lived or worked abroad.

For guidance on how to do this, check the Gov.uk pages on criminal record checks for overseas applicants.

Overseas applicants

If you are joining the University from overseas, you do not need a DBS ID check until you arrive in the UK. 

You must also follow the guidance above under the heading 'If you have lived or worked abroad'. 

DBS Update Service

If you already have a DBS certificate and have subscribed to the DBS Update Service, you may not need another DBS check depending on what level of certificate you already hold. Please contact professionalchecks@shu.ac.uk for advice.

If your current DBS check is sufficient for the activity you are undertaking, you will need to attend a face-to-face ID check at the University. You can book this via SHU Store. You must bring your current DBS certificate plus one form of photo ID.

Positive disclosures

If your DBS check contains a positive disclosure, this does not necessarily prevent you from undertaking the regulated activity, unless the incident indicates that you are unable to work with children or vulnerable adults.

We will ask you to send us the DBS certificate and a statement about the offence or incident. The University Criminal Convictions Panel will consider your case and notify you of the outcome.

All certificate information will be handled in the line with the University’s DBS Handling Policy.

Change in circumstances likely to impact on DBS clearance

If an incident occurs which is likely to change your DBS clearance following a satisfactory DBS check, you are required to inform the University immediately.

If you have any queries regarding the DBS process, please contact us at professionalchecks@shu.ac.uk.