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Student Affairs - Inspiring Student Success

Overview of the Student Conduct System


A.    Administrators of Code:  Personnel with responsibility to enforce the Code include the following officials and groups:

 

1.     Student Conduct Administrator: The Student Conduct Administrator is appointed by the Vice President for Student Affairs. The Student Conduct Administrator or designated representative is responsible for meeting with members of the University community who have filed or wish to file a complaint of an alleged violation of the Code. The Student Conduct Administrator or designated representative advises students who wish to file a complaint and those who are charged with violating standards of the Code of their rights and responsibilities. The Student Conduct Administrator oversees the administration of the Code of Conduct and may serve in any role identified below. The Student Conduct Administrator coordinates the University’s mediation efforts.

 

2.     Student Conduct Officers: Student Conduct Officers are appointed by the Vice President for Student Affairs or designated representative. Student Conduct Officers conduct conferences and pre-hearing meetings with charged students; implement the restorative resolution process; conduct administrative hearings on cases accepted by the Student Conduct Administrator; serve as investigators to investigate cases and present findings to the Hearing Board; and chair Hearing Boards when directed by the Student Conduct Administrator.

 

3.     The Hearing Board Pools:

a.     Faculty: The faculty pool shall consist of 18 faculty members: five from the School of Liberal Arts; four from the School of Science and Engineering; two each from the A.B. Freeman School of Business and the School of Continuing Studies; and one each from the School of Architecture, the Law School, the School of Social Work, the School of Medicine, and the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. Members will be appointed by the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost or designated representative. All members of the faculty pool shall attend training on the standards of conduct, sanctions, and the student conduct system.

 

b.     Students: The student pool shall be constituted in parallel numbers to the composition of the faculty pool. Members will be appointed by the Vice President for Student Affairs or designated representative. All members of the student pool shall attend training on the standards of conduct, sanctions, and the student conduct system.

 

c.     Staff: The staff pool shall consist of at least nine staff members. Members will be appointed by the Vice President for Student Affairs or designated representative. All members of the staff pool shall attend training on the standards of conduct, sanctions, and the student conduct system.

 

B.    Confidentiality:  All participants in the process, including the charged student or group, the complainant, witnesses, hearing board members, and staff members are expected to keep confidential all proceedings and all documents under this Code. Any breach of confidentiality, unless required by law, may subject the responsible party to charges under this Code. However, the University cannot guarantee complete confidentiality to a complainant, notably where confidentiality would conflict with the University’s obligation to investigate or with the University’s obligations under any federal, state, or local law. Individuals who desire a more confidential setting to clarify whether to proceed with a complaint may want to consult with a counselor, therapist or member of the clergy, who is permitted by law to assure greater confidentiality. The University maintains conduct files as education records of both the complainant and the charged student in accordance with FERPA.

 

C.    Filing a Complaint. Any person or group of persons who are members of the University community may file a complaint with the Student Conduct Administrator or designated representative. Any person with information suggesting that a violation of the Code of Student Conduct has been committed may make a complaint.  The Complainant is either the person whose rights allegedly have been violated or an appropriate University official. The complainant must submit a written report with the name of the student alleged to be responsible and a specific description of the misconduct.

The Student Conduct Administrator, or designated representative, may refuse the complaint if there appears to be insufficient evidence to support it, or if the substance of the complaint falls outside the jurisdiction or parameters of the Code of Student Conduct. In the event that the decision is made to refuse the complaint, the individual or group bringing the complaint may request a discretionary review by the Vice President for Student Affairs or designated representative. If the Vice President for Student Affairs or designee does not accept the complaint within five working days of the request, the Student Conduct Administrator or designee’s decision to refuse the complaint shall be final.

Complaints that are accepted proceed through either the informal process or formal process set forth below.

D.    Notice of the Complaint and Hearing. When a complaint is accepted, the Student Conduct Administrator or designated representative will notify the charged student in writing of the charges and will inform the student of his/her rights. A pre-hearing conference with the accused student will take place three or more working days after the student or group is sent written notice of the charges or earlier in the discretion of the Student Conduct Administrator.  Unless agreed to by the charged student or group and the complainant, a hearing may be scheduled no less than five working days after the charged student or group is sent written notice of the charges and his/her rights. Nothing in this Code guarantees a hearing within a specific timeframe.

D.

E.    Processes for Resolving Cases: Cases may be resolved informally or formally.  The informal process includes resolution through a Restorative Resolution Process, Mediation, or Pre-Hearing Conference.  The formal resolution process includes resolution through an Administrative Hearing or the Hearing Board. 

In all cases, accused students or groups may elect to proceed through an informal process or to request that the matter proceed through the formal process. 

If the Student Conduct Administrator or designee determines that the charged conduct may result in a sanction of expulsion or suspension, either because of the nature of the conduct or the student or group’s conduct history, that matter generally shall be heard through a hearing board if it is not resolved informally.  At the Vice President for Student Affairs’ discretion and if the accused student and complainant consent, that case may be heard through an Administrative Hearing. 

F.     Process when Multiple Students Charged: Several students charged with the same misconduct occurring at the same time and place may be charged and their cases heard together. Each student in such a hearing shall be afforded all of the rights provided for in Sections II and VII, including, but not limited to, the right to identify witnesses and/or present evidence that supports the student’s claim that he or she did not violate the Code.  A request to have a separate hearing may be granted to any one or all the students charged, at the discretion of the Student Conduct Administrator or designated representative.  In the event the Student Conduct Administrator or designated representative denies the request for a separate hearing, the affected student(s) may appeal the decision to the Vice President for Student Affairs and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost  within three days of receiving the Student Conduct Administrator or designated representative’s decision.  Late appeals will not be considered.  In assessing the appeal, the only issue the Vice President for Student Affairs and the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost will assess whether or not the student lodging the appeal will be unfairly prejudiced by not having his or her case heard individually.

 

G.    Interaction with Local, State, and Federal Authorities: Students may be separately accountable to local, state or federal authorities and to the University or others for acts that constitute violations of the law and of the Code. Conduct action at the University may proceed during pending criminal investigations or criminal or civil proceedings involving the same incident charged as a violation of the Code, and conduct action will not be subject to change based on the outcome of external investigations or proceedings. Other than in a case involving an allegation of sexual misconduct, a charged student may request that the University hold any conduct action until a pending criminal investigation or proceeding is resolved. The Vice President for Student Affairs or designated representative has sole discretion and final authority to grant or deny the request. If the request is granted, appropriate interim action shall be imposed on the charged student as a condition of granting the request in the sole discretion of the Vice President for Student Affairs or designated representative. If the request is granted, no Tulane transcript will be released or degree awarded until the conduct charges are resolved. The University normally will resume the conduct process after a resolution in the trial court, but reserves the right to resume the conduct process at any time. All students accused of criminal conduct are advised to seek legal counsel.

 

H.    Transcripts:  Pending the resolution of a conduct proceeding, the Student Conduct Administrator or designated representative has sole discretion and final authority to determine whether the nature and severity of the charged conduct may result in a sanction requiring permanent notification on the charged student’s transcript. If the Student Conduct Administrator or designee determines that the charged conduct may result in a sanction requiring permanent notification on the charged student’s transcript, then the University shall withhold the student’s transcript and award of a degree until the charge is resolved; the Student Conduct Administrator or designee may authorize release of the transcript with a temporary notification of the pending conduct proceeding. Even if the charged conduct would not result in permanent notification on the student’s transcript, the Student Conduct Administrator or designated representative may require a charged student who is no longer enrolled at the University to resolve the charge and satisfy any sanction(s) before receiving a transcript or degree.


Division of Student Affairs, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-314-2188 studnaff@tulane.edu