Student Code of Conduct Procedures

All student conduct proceedings are closed.  The University reserves the right to audiotape any conduct proceeding or investigative interview.  Further, the student must obtain permission from the judicial officer to audiotape the conduct proceeding.  Any audiotape that is made by the University may be listened to by the charged student, but not copied, and will be kept for as long as described in section based on the nature of the case and its outcome.  The following procedures will be used for conduct proceedings, except those outlined in Section 2 of the Student Code of Conduct.

  1. Complaint
    A judicial officer may initiate the conduct process on the basis of a written complaint filed by anyone, a Residence Life Incident Report, or a police report. Upon receipt of the complaint or report, the judicial officer may conduct an investigation to decide whether there is substance to the allegations, whether the allegations fall within the jurisdiction of this policy, and whether conduct proceedings should occur.
    1. Notice
      1. The judicial officer shall initiate the conduct process by notifying the student who is the subject of the report or complaint. The student shall be contacted at the phone number or mailing address appearing in the university’s student information system. The student will also be contacted via email.  If the phone number or mailing address is no longer current or no phone number or  mailing address is given, the permanent address may be used.  Notice to the student will be considered furnished once the Office of the Dean of Students follows these mailing guidelines.
      2. The notice should include:

                                      i. A description of the alleged misconduct;

                                      ii. The conduct code provisions that are alleged to have been violated;

                                       iii. The requirement that the student must set up a conference with the judicial officer.       

    1. If the student does not schedule or attend a conference by the date specified in the notice, or if the student schedules a conference but does not attend, the judicial officer can decide the outcome of the case in the student’s absence.
    2. Unless unusual circumstances beyond the control of the student arise, a delay in the process will not be granted.

      1. Evidence

      In order to find that a student has violated a standard of conduct, the burden of proof required is a preponderance of evidence, i.e. does the evidence demonstrate that it is more likely than not that the conduct occurred?  The hearing need not be conducted according to technical rules of evidence.  Any relevant evidence may be considered if it is the sort of evidence on which responsible persons are accustomed to rely in the conduct of serious affairs.  No evidence other than that received in conjunction with the conduct process shall be considered.

      1. Pre-Conference

      A judicial officer will meet with the charged student to explain the conduct process, to answer any questions the student may have, and to offer the student an opportunity to express a preference for one of the three resolution options described below.  The judicial officer will decide on the most appropriate alternative after considering the charged student’s preference.

      1. Resolution Options
        1. After considering the charged student’s preference, the judicial officer shall decide on one of the following options.

                                  i.   An Administrative Review involving acceptance of responsibility.  In this process, the student accepts responsibility for having violated the Student Conduct Code.  The judicial officer will discuss with the charged student the facts alleged to have occurred and any aggregating or mitigating circumstances that might affect the sanction.  After considering what the student has said, the judicial officer shall decide on a sanction.  The student waives his/her right to appeal in accepting this option, unless the outcome is a sanction of suspension or expulsion.

                                  ii. An Administrative Review involving denial of responsibility.  In this process, the student denies responsibility for having violated the Student Conduct Code.  The judicial officer will conduct an informal review:

      1. To consider the facts alleged in the notice and the charged student’s version of the facts.

      2. To review any relevant documents that are contained in the file or presented by the charged student, alleged victim, or any other interested party.

      3.  To permit the charged student and the alleged victim to identify witnesses with relevant information, and to request to be present during the interview.

      4.  To discuss the matter with witnesses who have relevant information and who are willing to meet with the judicial officer.

      5.  To make determinations about the facts and the credibility of those providing information.

      6.  To determine whether the facts found to be true constitute a violation of the Student Conduct Code.

      7.  To determine any aggravating or mitigating circumstances.

      8. To decide a sanction.

                    iii.    Student Conduct Hearing Board (SCHB) Hearing

      The SCHB hearing involves a more formal and extended review in which the charged student may: dispute the facts; dispute that the facts establish a conduct violation; present   mitigating circumstances.

                   iv.     Expedited Administrative Review  

      When the judicial officer determines that a prompt review is essential (e.g. end of the semester, the student is graduating, or there is substantial concern for the health, safety, or welfare of a member of the university community), the judicial officer may require that the student meet with him/her within 24 hours if the student is a campus resident, or 48 hours if the student resides off campus.  In addition, notice may initially be given in these instances by an end of the semester contact form, by telephone, or by e-mail.  If the student fails to attend the conference in the time specified, the judicial officer can decide the outcome of the case in the student’s absence.