University of Arkansas at Little Rock
Policy Name: Code of Student Rights, Responsibilities, and Behavior
Policy Number: LR 516.3
Effective Date: November 1, 2023
Revised Dates: October 30, 2023; October 15, 2019; April 10, 2010
Most Recent Review Date: October 30, 2023
Reason for Policy:
Policy LR 516.3 outlines the rights, responsibilities, and behavioral expectations for all students of UA Little Rock, as they live, study, work, and pursue their educational goals. This Policy, known as the Code of Student Rights, Responsibilities, and Behavior, reflects expectations based on values essential to a flourishing academic environment, such as honesty, integrity, respect, and fairness.
Definition of Terms:
All of the terms of this Code of Student Rights, Responsibilities, and Behavior (“the Code”) have their common dictionary meaning unless otherwise specified. The following terms, however, should be interpreted to have the specific meanings listed below. Any question of interpretation will be determined at the sole discretion of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs or designee.
An action that violates a rule regarding academic work required to obtain an academic degree or certificate. Examples include, but are not limited to, using unauthorized materials, information, study aids, or artificial intelligence programs; cheating; plagiarism; forgery; falsification of information; receiving unauthorized assistance on coursework; providing false information to receive an extension to complete work; any violation of a campus, departmental, program, or faculty rules relating to an academic matter that may lead to an unfair academic advantage; or complicity with another individual who has engaged in an act of academic dishonesty. Faculty members shall establish standards in such matters as attendance, seating arrangements, class decorum, submission of assigned work, regular and make-up examinations, and grading. Faculty members shall make their standards known to each class at the earliest opportunity.
The student or student organization accused of violating this Code, a University policy, a major governing group policy, or a Campus Living policy.
Any member of the Campus Community who alleges that the accused violated the Code.
All documents and evidence in the University’s possession or control that is relevant to an alleged violation of the Code and the University’s investigation into the alleged violation.
- The Administrative File does not include privileged documents, internal communications, or communications from non-parties that the University does not intend to introduce as evidence at a disciplinary proceeding.
- The Administrative File includes, without limitation, the following:
- Exculpatory evidence;
- Statements by an accuser or an accused student or a student organization;
- Third-Party witness statements;
- Electronically stored information;
- Written communications;
- Social media posts;
- Demonstrative evidence;
- Documents submitted by any participant involved in disciplinary proceedings; and
- The University’s choice of a video recording, an audio recording, or a transcript of any disciplinary Hearing ultimately held on the matter.
The proceeding by which a complaint is brought from a lower to a higher disciplinary committee or authority for re-examination, review, or rehearing.
Student Conduct Hold
The University may place a Student Conduct Hold, also referred to as Flag, on a Student’s University account. The Student Conduct Hold prohibits the Student from registering for classes until the disciplinary proceedings described in this Code, including appeal procedures, have been completed. A Student Conduct Hold may also be placed if a student fails to complete Sanctions issued under this Code, in which case the Student Conduct Hold will not be removed until all Sanctions are successfully completed. A Student Conduct hold shall be placed on a student’s account if they receive a Sanction of suspension, prohibiting the Student from registering for classes until the suspension period is over, all terms of the suspension have been met, and the Student has reapplied and has been readmitted. A Student Conduct hold is also placed on the record of a Student who receives a Sanction of expulsion, prohibiting the Student from enrolling at the University indefinitely.
All land, buildings, facilities, and other real property owned by or leased to the University.
All persons affiliated with the University, including students, faculty, administrators, staff, and volunteers.
The chief executive officer of the University.
A summons calling for an appearance at the Department of Public Safety or the Office of the Dean of Students. A UA Little Rock police officer may issue a citation if he or she has reasonable grounds to believe the person committed a minor violation of the Code of Student Conduct or federal, state, and local laws.
Sunday through Saturday when classes are in session, not including final exam periods or holidays.
Students may not disturb normal classroom procedures by distracting or disruptive behavior.
This Code of Student Rights, Responsibilities, and Behavior
An oral or written request for the University to initiate its procedures to address alleged violations of this Code.
Any member of the Campus Community who alleges that a Respondent violated the Code.
Documentation of a Hearing Panel or Student Conduct Administrator’s final decision finding a student responsible for violating one or more sections of this Code. Disciplinary records are maintained in the Office of the Dean of Students.
Free Speech Rights
Means the expressive rights protected by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution; Section 2, Section 6 of the Arkansas Constitution; or an applicable statute.
The forum in which the Respondent is given an opportunity to be heard, following adequate notice, and which results in a decision concerning responsibility and sanctions.
A single, impartial individual who conducts a Hearing, decides whether an Accused Student is responsible for violating the Code, and imposes sanctions.
An impartial body of at least three members convened for the purpose of conducting a Hearing, deciding whether an Accused Student is responsible for violating the Code, and imposing sanctions. A Hearing Panel’s determination of responsibility shall be made by majority vote.
Documentation submitted by a person or persons with direct knowledge of an alleged violation of the Code. An Incident Report will not in all instances lead to a Complaint that initiates a University investigation to address alleged violations of the Code.
Written documentation of a pending or resultant disciplinary proceeding, directed to a Party or a witness. directed. .
The Complainant(s) and Respondent(s) in a case under the Code. The Complainant(s) and Respondent(s) shall have similar rights regarding the right to be present and participate in disciplinary proceedings, representation by an advisor, access to the Administrative File, and the right to appeal.
Post-hearing Information Form/Letter
The form used by a disciplinary committee or administrative official to notify concerned parties of the results of a hearing and notice of appeal.
Pre-hearing Information Form/Letter
The form used by a disciplinary committee or administrative official to notify concerned parties of an impending hearing and give preliminary information.
Related to the allegations of a violation of this Code that are subject to an investigation. Questions are relevant when they seek evidence that may aid in showing whether the violation occurred, and evidence is relevant when it may aid a decisionmaker in determining whether the alleged violation occurred.
Intimidation, threats, coercion, or discrimination against any person by a Student, employee, or person authorized by the University to provide aid, benefit, or service under the University’s program or activity, or the University for the purpose of interfering with any right or privilege secured by this Code or a state or federal law, or because the person has reported information, made a complaint, testified, assisted, or participated or refused to participate in any manner in an investigation, proceeding, or hearing, including an informal resolution process, grievance procedures, and in any other appropriate steps taken by a University in response to an allegation of a violation of this Code.
A consequence or action that is imposed on a Respondent following a determination that the Respondent violated the Code. Sanctions are not designed to be punitive. Rather, they are intended to be educational measures that hold students and student organizations accountable for their behavior and protect the campus community. Sanctions may range from a verbal warning to suspension and/or expulsion from the University.
A person who has gained admission to the University.
Student Conduct Administrator
A University employee who is responsible for the implementation of this Code, including Title IX coordinators, investigators, and decisionmakers.
A group or association of at least five (5) students who have complied with the formal requirements for official university registration and recognition.
Means any non-Student member of the University administration; or a Student if the Student is authorized to act by a member of the University administration, and the Student is acting within the scope of that authority.
No person may be present in any class, lecture, laboratory period, orientation session, examination, or other instructional session, or in any room or office without the consent of an authorized university official, staff, or faculty member. A person shall be deemed present without consent in any of the above mentioned places if such person is not then enrolled and in good standing as a member of the instructional session or such person refuses to provide identification and refuses to leave on request of a person in charge. Any person found in violation of this regulation may be subject to disciplinary action.
Any activity on university premises or at an off-campus location that is initiated or supervised by the university. This definition includes fraternity and sorority organizations, club events, study abroad experiences, sporting events, and riding in university-operated or contracted vehicles—even if such things occur somewhere other than university premises.
Prohibited Conduct that may not result in suspension or expulsion from the University law.
Means Prohibited Conduct that may result in suspension or expulsion from the University, such as conduct that constitutes a substantial threat to the safety or property of a member of the Campus Community or other individual; persistently disrupts the University community; or involves multiple such violations of the Code.
Section 1: Introduction
Policy LR 516.3 outlines the rights, responsibilities, and behavioral expectations for all Students as they live, study, work, and pursue their educational goals. This Policy, known as the Code of Student Rights, Responsibilities, and Behavior, reflects expectations based on values essential to a flourishing academic environment, such as honesty, integrity, respect, and fairness. It is expected that all Students have a serious educational purpose, and that they value the rights of each member of the Campus Community. Some, but not all, policies pertaining to Students’ rights and responsibilities are included in this Code. Students are subject to other University policies, in addition to certain federal, state, and local laws. Other University policies applicable to Students may be found in the Student Affairs section of the University’s Policy Library, https://ualr.edu/policy/index/, as well as through the Office of the Dean of Students, https://ualr.edu/deanofstudents/. This Code and other policies may be provided in alternate forms upon request.
Section 2: Definition of Terms (see Definitions Above)
Section 3: Interpretive Principles
1. The Board of Trustees of the University of Arkansas has designated the Chancellor as the chief executive of the University. The Chancellor is responsible for ensuring that the University applies this Code in an impartial and consistent manner. Student Conduct Administrators are responsible for overseeing the disciplinary proceedings and imposing sanctions for violations of the Code.
2. Nothing in this Code shall be interpreted to abridge the constitutional or statutory rights of any person. To the extent that a provision in this Code is inconsistent with a constitutional or statutory provision, the legal provision will control.
3. This Code and related policies and procedures are not intended to create contractual rights, property rights, or liberty interests.
Section 4. Applicability of the Code
1. Students must follow the Code during the time they are enrolled in the University. The Code shall apply to a student’s conduct while enrolled in the University, even if the student withdraws while a disciplinary matter is pending.
2. The Code shall apply to the following:
a. Conduct that occurs at a University-Sponsored Activity;
b. Conduct that occurs off-campus under the following conditions:
c. Conduct that occurs off-campus under the following conditions:
i. The University exercises substantial control over both the location and the Respondent (including any building owned or controlled by a Student Organization that is officially recognized by the University); or
ii. The conduct adversely affects the Campus Community or the pursuit of the University’s objectives; and
d. Conduct that constitutes academic dishonesty, regardless of location, even if the academic dishonesty is not discovered until after a degree is awarded. However, LR Policy 501.13, Academic Offenses, shall apply to any conduct defined as an Academic Offense under that policy. See also LR Policy 512.2 for a description of Classroom Disruptions; the process due to Students accused of creating a Classroom Disruption; and the sanctions for students found to have committed a Classroom Disruption.
3. If necessary to protect the rights and safety of the campus community, the University may suspend any student charged with a felony in any jurisdiction until the charges are dropped, the case is dismissed, or a judgment of conviction or acquittal is secured. The University must provide an administrative hearing under Section 11.2 before taking this action, where the issue to be decided is the existence and nature of the charges
4. If necessary to protect the rights and safety of the campus community, the University may expel any student who has been convicted of a felony while enrolled. If the student’s conviction is overturned on appeal, the University shall allow the student to re-enroll. The University must provide an administrative hearing under Section 11.2 before taking this action, where the issue to be decided is the existence and nature of the conviction.
5. The University may discipline students for the violation of any law involving drugs or alcohol on its property or as part of its activities. A student who tests positive for a controlled substance while representing the University may be subject to disciplinary action under this Code.
6. A student-athlete who violates team rules may be subjected to disciplinary action in accordance with the policies and procedures of the team and the Department of Athletics. The procedures set forth in this Code, however, will be utilized prior to the imposition of a sanction of suspension or expulsion from the University.
7. The University’s separate Title IX grievance procedures shall apply to alleged conduct that constitutes Sex-based Harassment (including sexual assault) and that falls within the scope of the University’s Title IX jurisdiction.
8. Other committees and boards established under University policy may pertain to Student discipline. See, e.g., LR Policy 512.5, Student Appeals to the University Judicial Appeals Committee. The procedures set forth in this Code, however, control to the extent of any conflict with the procedures applicable to other committees and boards, including the finality of appeals as to a Serious Violation.
Section 5: Applicability of the Code to Student Organizations
Student organizations and their officers and members, in their capacity as such, are subject to sanctions only upon a showing of actual participation in, or actual authorization or ratification of, a violation of the Code. In making this determination, the University shall consider whether the organization’s members were acting in accord with its practices and policies, or with the knowledge or approval of a substantial number of its members or leadership.
Section 6: Prohibited Conduct
Members of the Campus Community should report misconduct and potential alleged violations of the Code by Students and Student Organizations to the Dean of Students or designee. Students residing in campus housing should report any concerns to the Resident Assistant, Hall Director, or Director of Campus Living. Reports may be made in the form of an Incident Report or a Complaint. Reports will be taken for appropriate action pursuant to the sections of the Code on Student Rights and Responsibilities in Misconduct Proceedings, and Procedures in Disciplinary Proceedings, below.
1. Abuse of Campus Access: Students shall not abuse their access to Campus by engaging in any of the following:
Unauthorized entry to, or use of, University facilities, property or resources; or
Misuse of University or personal property to create a safety hazard, or unauthorized use of safety equipment.
2. Abuse of Computer Facilities: Abuse of computer facilities and resources is prohibited, namely:
a. Unauthorized access or transfer of an electronic file or files;
b. Unauthorized use of another individual’s identification or password;
c. Use of computing facilities and resources to materially interfere with the work of another student, faculty member, or University official;
d. Sending a large volume of unsolicited emails and other data with the intent to severely impair the functionality of the University’s computer network;
e. Repeated use of the University’s network to send unsolicited emails with the primary purpose of proposing a commercial transaction;
f. Use of computing facilities and resources to knowingly share copyrighted materials in violation of state or federal law;
g. Use of computing facilities and resources to transmit unlawful obscenity or abusive messages; or
h. Any violation of the University’s policy on using technology resources.
3. Abuse of Student Conduct System: Failure to participate in the proceedings in good faith, including:
a. Misrepresentations to a Student Conduct Administrator;
b. Interference with an orderly Hearing or other proceeding;
c. Attempting to discourage another individual from participating in the Student conduct system;
d. Attempting to influence the impartiality of a Hearing Officer or panelist prior to, and/or during the course of, a proceeding;
e. Influencing or attempting another person to abuse the student conduct system; and
f. Failure to comply with sanctions imposed under the Code.
4. Alcohol Use: Consumption, possession, distribution, manufacture, sale, and serving alcoholic beverages on University premises or at University-Sponsored Activities is prohibited, regardless of age, unless permitted by a University policy.
5. Classroom Disruption: Students may not disturb normal classroom procedures by distracting or disruptive behavior. See also LR512.2 – Classroom Disruptions and Steps Toward Redress.
6. Deception: Deception is deliberately deceiving any University official, faculty member, or administrative officer by knowingly providing false information in connection with the discharge of the person’s duties. Deception includes filing false reports or giving false information in connection with a misconduct proceeding. However, a determination regarding responsibility, alone, is not sufficient to conclude that any Party has made a materially false statement in bad faith.
7. Discrimination: Discrimination is taking a materially adverse action against any member of the Campus Community or visitor, or in connection with any university-sponsored activity, through behavior of a biased or prejudicial nature related to an individual’s legally protected status or characteristic (such as race, color, national origin, sex, marital or parental status, religion, disability, age, genetic information, or veteran status). Discrimination on the basis of sex includes discrimination on the basis of sex stereotypes, sex characteristics, pregnancy or related conditions, sexual orientation, and gender identity. Discrimination occurs when the adverse action results in an individual suffering less favorable treatment than others because of the protected status or characteristic.
8. Discriminatory Harassment: Discriminatory harassment on the basis of a legally protected status or characteristics (such as race, color, national origin, sex, marital or parental status, religion, disability, age, genetic information, or veteran status) is prohibited. Sex-based harassment (including sexual assault) is a particular type of discrimination that is covered by the University’s separate Title IX grievance procedures. Discriminatory harassment includes unwelcome conduct based on an individual’s legally protected status or characteristic that is sufficiently severe or pervasive that—based on the totality of the circumstances and evaluated subjectively and objectively—denies or limits a person’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s education program or activity (i.e., creates a hostile environment). Whether a hostile environment has been created is a fact-specific inquiry that includes consideration of the following:
a. The degree to which the conduct affected the accuser’s ability to access the university’s education program or activity;
b. The type, frequency, and duration of the conduct;
c. The parties’ ages, roles within the University’s education program or activity, previous interactions, and other factors about each party that may be relevant to evaluating the effects of the alleged unwelcome conduct;
d. The location of the conduct, the context in which the conduct occurred, and the control the University has over the accused; and
e. Other discriminatory harassment in the University’s education program or activity.
9. Disorderly Conduct: Conduct that is disorderly, lewd, or indecent; breach of peace; or aiding, abetting, or procuring another person to breach the peace on campus or at a University-Sponsored Activity. Disorderly conduct includes (but is not limited to) the unauthorized use of electronic or other devices to make an audio or video recording when such a recording is likely to cause injury or distress; large gatherings or excessive noise that disturbs the peace of campus residences or off-campus neighborhoods; and surreptitiously taking pictures of another person in a gym, locker room, or restroom, and any violation of Ark. Code Ann. § 5-71-207 (Disorderly Conduct).
10. Disruption of University Operations: Disrupting the normal operations of the university, or inciting others to do so, is prohibited. Students shall not intentionally disrupt any of the following activities:
a. Teaching or research;
b. Administrative functions;
c. Disciplinary proceedings;
d. Other University-Sponsored Activities (on or off-Campus); or
e. Other authorized or permissible activities that take place on Campus.
11. Drug Use: The act or intent to illegally use, possess, sell, distribute, cultivate, or manufacture any state or federally controlled substance or paraphernalia. Inhaling or ingesting any substance that will alter a Student’s mental state is also prohibited, unless done pursuant to a valid prescription. The possession and/or use of marijuana (even for medicinal purposes) on Campus is prohibited.
12. Endangering Health, Safety, or Privacy: Intentionally endangering the health, safety, or privacy of others is prohibited, including:
a. Illegal or unauthorized possession of firearms, explosives, other weapons, or dangerous chemicals;
b. Unnecessarily placing oneself or others in danger of physical harm; or
c. Physical assault of another person.
13. Failure to Comply: Students shall comply with lawful directions from University Officials or law enforcement officers acting in the good faith performance of their duties, including directions to follow emergency evacuation procedures, and shall identify themselves to these persons when requested to do so. Students must also respond to a summons from the Student Conduct Administrator or designee to discuss a potential violation of this Code.
14. False Reports: Deliberately giving a false report of a crime or emergency to a University Official, including a campus law-enforcement officer.
15. Fire Safety Violation: Misuse or unauthorized use of fire extinguishers, safety equipment, warning devices (including fire alarms, fire equipment, fire chairs, or escape mechanisms and elevators).
16. Forgery: Forgery is the false making or material alteration of a University document, record, or form of identification. Forgery may involve admission and registration records, Student Organization records, Student identification cards, and University parking decals.
17. Gambling: Gambling for money or other things of value on Campus or at a University-Sponsored Activity, except as permitted by law.
18. Hazing: Students may not engage in hazing or encourage, aid, or assist any person in hazing. In addition, students shall not knowingly acquiesce in the commission of hazing or fail to promptly report his or her reasonable knowledge or any reasonable information within his or her knowledge of the presence and practice of hazing to an appropriate university official. Hazing means:
a. A willful act on or off the property of the University by one Student, alumnus, or volunteer or employee of a fraternal organization if the volunteer or employee is acting on behalf of, or in the name of, the fraternal organization, acting alone or acting with others when the conduct is directed against any other Student and done for the purpose of intimidating the student attacked by threatening him or her with social or other ostracism or submitting such student to ignominy, shame, or disgrace among his or her fellow students, and acts calculated to produce such results;
b. The playing of abusive or truculent tricks on or off property of the University by one Student, alumnus, or volunteer or employee of a fraternal organization if the volunteer or employee is acting on behalf of, or in the name of, the fraternal organization, acting alone, or acting with others, upon another Student to frighten or scare him or her;
c. A willful act on or off the property of the University by one Student, alumnus, or volunteer or employee of a fraternal organization is the volunteer or employee is acting on behalf of, or in the name of, the fraternal organization, acting alone, or acting with others which is directed against any other Student done for the purpose of humbling the pride, stifling the ambition, or impairing the courage of the student attacked or to discourage him or her from remaining in that school, college, university or other educational institution, or reasonably to cause him or her to leave the institution rather than submit to such acts; or
d. A willful act on or off the property of the University by one Student, alumnus, or volunteer or employee of a fraternal organization if the volunteer or employee is acting on behalf of, or in the name of, the fraternal organization, acting alone, or acting with others in striking, beating, bruising, or maiming; or serious offering, threatening, or attempting to strike, beat, bruise or maim; or to do or seriously offer, threaten, or attempt to do physical violence to any Student of any such educational institution; or any assault upon any such Student made for the purpose of committing any of the acts or producing any of the results to such student as defined in this section.
e. The term “hazing”:
i. Does not include customary athletic events or similar contests or competitions; and
ii. Is limited to those actions taken and situations created in connection with initiation into or affiliation with an organization, extracurricular activity, or sports program.
19. Intimidation: Intimidation is physical conduct threatening specific individual(s) with the intent to place those individuals in fear of bodily harm or death and would be so construed by a reasonable person.
20. Misconduct Abroad: Any student who undertakes study or represents the University in any foreign country remains subject to this Code. The University retains discretion as it considers appropriate to apply disciplinary action under the Code if a student violates any law, rule, or regulation in that country or any institution where that student undertakes study.
21. Obstruction: Impeding the free flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic on University premises at University-Sponsored Activities, or during emergency evacuations.
22. Unauthorized Reproduction of Materials: Without specific advance approval from a University Official, Students may not reproduce, in whole or in part, any classroom lectures or study materials presented by a professor without specific approval in advance by the professor. See also LR Policy 501.13, Academic Offenses.
23. Retaliation: The University prohibits retaliation as defined in Section 2. Prohibited retaliation includes (but is not limited to):
a. Initiating a disciplinary process against a person for a violation that does not involve sex discrimination but arises out of the same facts and circumstances as a Complaint or information reported about possible sex discrimination, for the purpose of interfering with the exercise of any right or privilege secured by Title IX; or
b. Peer retaliation, which is retaliation by a Student against another Student.
24. Stalking (other than stalking as a form of sex-based harassment covered under Title IX): Stalking is (1) a course of conduct committed with an intent to kill, injure, harass, or intimidate another person that (2) places that person in reasonable fear of death of, or serious bodily injury to (3) that person, an immediate family member, a spouse, or an intimate partner of that person or (4) causes, attempts to cause, or would be reasonably expected to cause substantial emotional distress to a person listed above.
25. Starting Fires or Other Acts of Arson: Any student starting fires or committing other acts of arson in or on university-owned or university-controlled property, facilities, and equipment without authority, will be subject to disciplinary action, up to separation from the university.
26. Theft, Vandalism, and Destruction: Theft, attempted theft, unauthorized possession of University property, vandalism, and destruction of property owned by the university or any other person or group are prohibited. Students may be sanctioned with Restitution for the value of the property.
27. Tobacco Use: The use of any tobacco product is prohibited on campus is prohibited. The tobacco-free environment includes all University property. Electronic cigarettes and vapor products are also prohibited.
28. True Threats: A true threat is (1) a serious expression of intent to commit an act of unlawful violence against a particular individual or identifiable group, if (2) the individual or group would reasonably fear the threatened violence.
29. Unauthorized Soliciting, Advertising, Selling, and Distribution of Material: A student, student organization, or group of students may not solicit, advertise, sell, or distribute material of any nature on university owned or controlled property without approval. Requests for approval should be made to the dean of students or designeeExpressive Activities) or 703.4 (Use of University Facilities). Students should direct questions to the Dean of Students or designee.
30. Weapons: Possessing, using, or storing firearms, explosives (including fireworks), weapons, or dangerous chemicals on University property or in the course of any 29. University-Sponsored Activity is prohibited. This prohibition extends to stun guns, tasers, brass knuckles, and pocket knives longer than four inches. Exceptions include:
a. Weapons possessed by a licensed law enforcement officer and directly related to their current professional position;
b. Weapons, replicas, or related items for educational or ceremonial purposes, approved in advance of the event by the Chancellor or Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs;
c. Weapons possessed or used for the purposes of authorized firearm competitions sponsored or hosted by the university;
d. Firearms locked inside a vehicle; and
e. Weapons possessed lawfully under Ark. Code Ann. § 5-73-322 regarding the carrying of concealed handguns on university campuses.
31. Violation of Law: A violation of any Arkansas state and/or federal criminal law is prohibited.
32. Violation of Sanctions: A violation of the terms of sanction(s) issued to a Student by the Student Conduct Administrator or designee, as the result of Prohibited Conduct under this Code, is prohibited.
33. Incorporation of Other Rules: This Code incorporates all other rules regarding Student conduct contained in University policies. A violation of the rule constitutes a violation of this Code.
Section 7. Selection of Decision Makers
The student conduct administrator shall undertake reasonable efforts to ensure that hearing officers and members of a hearing panel have received adequate training on conducting a fair hearing under this Code, free of bias and inappropriate presumptions.
Section 8. Administrative Actions
1. Supportive Measures:
a. The University may, at any time, provide one or more individualized services to a party that is non-disciplinary, nonpunitive, reasonably available, and without fee or charge to the party.
b. An individualized service offered to a party shall be designed to restore or preserve equal access to the University’s education programs or activities without unreasonably burdening the other party.
c. An individualized service offered to a party may be designed to protect the safety of all involved Parties or the university’s educational environment, which may include without limitation:
ii. Extension of deadlines or other course-related adjustments;
iii. Campus escort services;
iv. Mutual restrictions on contact between the parties;
v. Modification of class schedules or housing locations;
vi. Increased security and monitoring of areas of the University’s campus; and
vii. Other similar services.
d. Supportive Measures that burden a Respondent may be imposed only during the pendency of the disciplinary proceedings under this Code, and they must be terminated at the conclusion of those proceedings. These measures must be no more restrictive of the Respondent than is necessary to restore or preserve the Complainant’s access to the University’s education program or activity. The University shall not impose such measures for punitive or disciplinary reasons.
e. For Supportive Measures other than those that burden a Respondent, the University may, as appropriate, modify or terminate Supportive Measures at the conclusion of the disciplinary proceedings or at the conclusion of the informal resolution process, or the University may continue them beyond that point.
f. A Complainant or Respondent affected by a decision to provide, deny, modify, or terminate Supportive Measures may seek modification or reversal of the decision by appealing the matter to the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs or designee within 3 business days of the Student Conduct Administrator’s decision. If the supportive measure burdens the Respondent, the initial opportunity to seek modification or reversal of the University’s decision must be provided before the measure is imposed or, if necessary under the circumstances, as soon as possible after the measure has taken effect. The Complainant and Respondent affected by a supportive measure may also seek additional modification or termination of such supportive measure if the circumstances changed materially.
g. The University will not disclose information about any supportive measure to persons other than the Complainant or Respondent unless necessary to provide the supportive measure. The University may inform a Party of Supportive Measures provided to or imposed on another Party only if necessary to restore or preserve that Party’s access to the education program or activity.
2. Emergency Removal:
a. The university may remove a Respondent from its programs or activities on an emergency basis if the University:
i. Undertakes an individualized safety and risk analysis;
ii. Determines that an immediate threat or the safety of a Student or another individual arising from the allegations of misconduct justifies removal of the Respondent; and
iii. Provides the Respondent with notice and an opportunity to challenge the decision immediately following his or her removal.
b. Within 24 hours of the emergency removal, the University shall provide written notice to the Respondent that explains the university’s reasons for removing the Respondent on an emergency basis.
c. Within 3 business days of the written notice, unless otherwise waived by the removed student, the University shall convene an interim hearing before a student conduct administrator to determine whether there is substantial evidence that the removed Respondent poses a risk to the health or safety of any student or other individual and that the emergency removal of the Respondent is appropriate to mitigate the risk.
d. At the interim hearing, the removed student and the accusing student may be represented by an attorney or a non-attorney advocate who may fully participate to the same extent as in a hearing to determine responsibility.
e. A Respondent’s waiver of his or her right to be represented by an attorney or non-attorney advocate shall not constitute an admission of guilt or waiver of additional rights under the Code.
f. The decision following the interim hearing is subject to appeal to the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs or designee within 3 business days after the decision. The decision may remain in effect during the pendency of the appeal.
g. The emergency-removal decision shall remain in effect until a final decision has been made on the pending Complaint or until the Student Conduct Administrator determines that the reason for imposing the emergency-removal decision no longer exists. The decision shall be immediately withdrawn if the Respondent is found not responsible for the violation in a final, unappealable decision.
Section 9. Student Rights and Responsibilities in Misconduct Proceedings
1. Equal Treatment: The University shall treat the Complainant and the Respondent equitably.
2. Notice: A Party whose participation is invited or expected shall receive written notice of the date, time, location, participants, and purpose of all meetings, investigative interviews, or Hearings with sufficient time for the party to prepare to participate.
3. Access to Administrative File:
a. The University shall maintain an Administrative File of all disciplinary proceedings.
b. The Parties may have reasonable continuing access to the Administrative File and the ability to review all documents and evidence in the Administrative File by contacting the Student Conduct Administrator to schedule a reasonable date and time for the inspection.
c. Individual portions of the Administrative File shall be redacted if confidentiality of the evidence is required by law.
4. Presumption of Innocence: Respondents are presumed innocent. They shall not be deemed guilty of a violation of the Code until (1) a Student or Student organization acknowledges responsibility for a violation of the Code or (2) the conclusion of all disciplinary proceedings during which the University has established every element of an alleged violation by the Student or Student Organization.
5. Notice of Allegations: The Respondent shall be afforded sufficient notice of allegations to enable a meaningful response.
6. Consideration of Evidence: The University shall make good-faith efforts to include relevant evidence and exclude evidence that is neither relevant nor probative. The university will not, however, follow formal rules of evidence or other rules of court. An objective evaluation of the evidence must include both inculpatory and exculpatory evidence, and credibility determinations must not be based on a person’s status as a Complainant, Respondent, or witness. However, all evidence (including relevant evidence) of the following types will be excluded, and evidence seeking that evidence will be disallowed as impermissible (i.e., not accessed, considered, disclosed, or otherwise used):
a. Evidence that is protected under a privilege as recognized by federal or state law, unless the person holding such a privilege has waived the privilege voluntarily in a manner permitted in Arkansas;
b. The University’s records that are made or maintained by a physician, psychologist, or other recognized professional or paraprofessional in connection with the provision of treatment to the Party, unless the University obtains the Party’s voluntary, written consent for use in the University’s disciplinary proceedings;
c. Evidence that relates to the Complainant’s sexual interests or prior sexual conduct, unless evidence about the Complainant’s prior sexual conduct is offered to prove that someone other than the Respondent committed the alleged conduct or is offered to prove consent with evidence concerning specific incidents of the Complainant’s prior sexual conduct with the Respondent. The fact of prior consensual sexual conduct between the Complainant and Respondent does not demonstrate or imply the Complainant’s consent to the alleged sex-based harassment or preclude determination that sex-based harassment occurred.
7. Right to Appeal: A Party may appeal an adverse decision regarding a finding of responsibility to the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs or designee, and the decision on appeal shall serve as the final institutional decision on the matter.
8. Standard and Burden of Proof: The burden is on the University—not on the Parties—to conduct an investigation that gathers sufficient evidence to determine whether a violation occurred. The decision maker shall not find the Respondent responsible unless the preponderance of the evidence establishes each element of the offense. The decision maker shall evaluate relevant evidence for its persuasiveness; if the decision maker is not persuaded under the foregoing standard by the evidence that a violation occurred, whatever the quantity the evidence is, the decision maker should not determine that a violation occurred.
9. Admission of Responsibility: The Respondent may admit in writing to violating this Code at any time. A hearing will then be held to determine an appropriate sanction, unless the accused student waives such a hearing and accepts a sanction determined by the Student Conduct Administrator.
10. Nonappearance: The University will not make any negative inferences against a Party solely for the party’s failure to answer questions or otherwise participate in the Student conduct process. However, a Party’s failure to participate does not preclude the University from conducting the disciplinary process in that Party’s absence.
11. Obligation to Provide Truthful Information: Parties and witnesses shall, to the best of their abilities, provide truthful and accurate information in their written submissions and during investigatory interviews and hearings.
12. No Retaliation: A Party shall not be subjected to retaliation because he or she exercised the Party’s rights under the Code.
13. Weapons: Individuals may not carry a concealed handgun into any disciplinary Hearing, provided that they have been notified at least 24 hours prior to the Hearing, the meeting will last no longer than 9 hours, and the meeting space has been marked with appropriate signage.
14. No Conflicts or Bias: The Student Conduct Administrator shall not have a conflict of interest or bias for or against the complainants or respondents generally or an individual Complainant or Respondent. A Party may raise a concern regarding a potential conflict or bias with the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs.
15. Extensions of Time: The Parties may obtain reasonable extensions of timeframes on a case-by-case basis for good cause with written notice to the Parties that includes the reasons for the delay.
16. Role of University Counsel: At all stages of the proceedings, a Student Conduct Administrator, Hearing Officer, member of a Hearing Panel, or other administrators may seek advice from the University’s Office of General Counsel on questions of law, policy, and procedure. An attorney from the General Counsel’s Office may attend proceedings for the purpose of giving such advice.
17. Additional Rights in Cases Involving Non-Academic Violations with the Possibility of Expulsion or Suspension from the University: In cases involving a Serious Violation, in which a sanction of expulsion or suspension from the University may be imposed for a violation of the Code, the parties shall have the following additional rights:
a. The Parties shall have an equal opportunity to present relevant fact witnesses and other inculpatory and exculpatory evidence. The process shall enable the decisionmaker to adequately assess the credibility of the Parties and witnesses to the extent credibility is both in dispute and relevant to evaluating one or more allegations.
b. A Party shall have a right to be present and advised by an attorney or non-attorney advisor during the party’s investigatory interview, the Hearing to determine responsibility, and the appeal. The advisor may fully participate in the proceedings. A Party may be represented by an advisor until the conclusion of the appellate process. The following principles also apply to advisors:
i. An advisor may provide discreet advice to the represented Party during an investigatory interview but may not interfere with the information-gathering process.
ii. In cases that do not involve allegations of Sex-based Harassment, the University is not responsible for selecting, training, or arranging for the participation of advisors or for paying a party’s advising costs.
iii. The Hearing Officer or Chair of the Hearing Panel may disallow the attendance of a particular advisor if, in the discretion of the Hearing Officer or Chair, such person’s presence becomes disruptive or obstructive to the process. Advisors will not be permitted to question a witness in an abusive or threatening manner.
c. Both Parties shall receive a written notification of the decision within a reasonable period of time after the Hearing.
d. The Parties shall have the right for the disciplinary proceedings to be carried out free from conflicts of interest by ensuring that there is no commingling of administrative or adjudicative roles. During the disciplinary proceedings, there shall be no commingling of the roles of (1) attorney or non-attorney advisor, (2) investigator, (3) adjudicator, and (4) appellate adjudicator. The investigator may, however, present evidence at a Hearing.
Section 10: Procedures in Disciplinary Proceedings
1. Procedures that apply to all cases involving an alleged violation of the Code of Conduct (other than acts of Academic Dishonesty)
a. Preliminary Procedures
i. General Requirements: Upon being notified of conduct that may constitute a violation of the Code, the Student Conduct Administrator shall:
1. Notify the Parties of the procedures set forth in this Code;
2. Notify the Parties of the informal resolution process under this Code if available and appropriate;
3. Offer and coordinate Supportive Measures under this Code, as appropriate, to restore or preserve a Party’s access to the University’s education program or activity;
4. In response to a Complaint, initiate the disciplinary proceedings or informal resolution process set forth in this Code;
5. In the absence of a Complaint or informal resolution process, determine whether to initiate a Complaint that complies with the procedures set forth in this Code if necessary to address conduct that may constitute a violation; and
6. Take other appropriate, prompt, and effective steps to ensure that the violation of this Code does not continue or recur within the University’s education program or activity, in addition to the remedies provided to an individual Complainant.
ii. Written Complaint
1. A form for a written Complaint is set forth in Appendix B.
2. The following persons have the right to make a Complaint under this Code, requesting that the University initiate disciplinary proceedings:
a. A Complainant;
b. A person who has a right to make a Complaint on behalf of a Complainant, such as an authorized legal representative; or
c. A third party participating or attempting to participate in the University’s education program or activity when the alleged violation of this Code occurred.
3. Complaints submitted orally or submitted by the Student Conduct Administrator shall be memorialized in writing at the time of submission.
4. The Complaint should be submitted as soon as practicable. Unreasonable filing delays could result in the dulling of memories and a loss of relevant evidence and witness testimony. Delays in filing shall not, however, affect the Complainant’s eligibility for Supportive Measures from the University.
5. Because the University is bound by its obligation to provide a fundamentally fair process, anonymous Complaints may be filed, but anonymity may limit the University’s ability to respond and may preclude disciplinary action.
iii. Notice of Allegations and Initial Communications to the Parties
1. Upon initiation of the procedures set forth in this Code, the University shall provide written notice to the Parties whose identities are known. This notice shall include:
a. A copy of this Code, along with the appendices (which will include Act 470 of 2023 as set forth in Appendix A);
b. Sufficient information, available at the time, to allow the Parties to respond to the allegations. Sufficient information includes:
i. The identity of the Parties involved in the incident;
ii. The date and location of the alleged incident; and
iii. The conduct allegedly constitutes a violation of the Code, with sufficient time for the Parties to prepare a response before any initial interview;
c. A statement that the Respondent is presumed not responsible for the alleged conduct until a determination of whether a violation of the Code occurred is made at the conclusion of the disciplinary proceedings under this Code;
d. A statement that, in cases involving allegations of a Serious Violation for which a sanction of expulsion or suspension from the University may be imposed, the Parties are entitled to an advisor of their choice during the disciplinary proceedings (i.e., investigatory interview, Hearing, and appeal), and the advisor may be (but is not required to be) an attorney. The statement must be provided no later than 24 hours before the Respondent may be questioned regarding an alleged violation. The statement shall further explain that:
i. In non-Title IX cases in which a sanction of expulsion or suspension from the University may be imposed, the Party will be responsible for securing an advisor at the Party’s own expense;
e. A statement that the Party is entitled to receive access to the Administrative File;
f. A statement that the Code prohibits knowingly making false statements or knowingly submitting false information during the grievance procedure; and
g. A statement that retaliation is prohibited.
2. If, in the course of an investigation, the Student Conduct Administrator decides to investigate additional allegations about the Respondent’s conduct toward the Complainant that are not included in the original notice or that are included in a Complaint that is consolidated as set forth in this Code, the Student Conduct Administrator must provide notice of the additional allegations of the Parties whose identities are known.
iv. Student Conduct Administrator’s Screening and Dismissal Decision
1. After receiving a Complaint, the Student Conduct Administrator shall promptly decide two threshold issues: (1) whether the Complaint should be dismissed and (2) whether, in the Student Conduct Administrator’s discretion, the allegations could result in a sanction of expulsion or suspension from the University. The Student Conduct Administrator’s discretionary decision should be guided by factors such as the severity of the alleged conduct, prior offenses, the impermissible possession of weapons, and the negative impact on the Campus Community. The Student Conduct Administrator shall make this initial determination within 10 business days after the Complaint is filed or as soon as practicable thereafter.
2. The Student Conduct Administrator shall dismiss a Complaint if:
a. The Student Conduct Administrator determines the conduct alleged in the Complaint, even if proven, would not constitute a violation of the Code; provided, however, that before dismissing the Complaint under this paragraph, the Student Conduct Administrator shall make reasonable efforts to clarify the allegations with the Complainant;
b. The Code does not apply to the alleged facts under Section 4 (pertaining to applicability of the Code); or
c. The alleged conduct constitutes a protected exercise of the Student’s Free Speech Rights.
3. The Student Conduct Administrator may dismiss a Complaint if:
a. The University is unable to identify the Respondent after taking reasonable steps to do so;
b. The Respondent is not participating in the University’s education program or activity; or
c. The Complainant voluntarily withdraws any or all of the allegations in the Complaint, and the Student Conduct Administrator determines that, without the Complainant’s withdrawn allegations, the conduct that remains alleged in the Complaint, if any, would not constitute a violation of the Code even if proven.
4. If the Student Conduct Administrator dismisses the Complaint, the investigation shall end immediately. The Student Conduct Administrator shall promptly communicate the basis for the dismissal to the Parties simultaneously. If the dismissal occurs after the Respondent has been notified of the allegations, then the Student Conduct Administrator must also notify the Respondent of the dismissal and the basis for the dismissal promptly following a notification to the Complainant, or simultaneously if notification is in writing.
5. The Student Conduct Administrator shall notify all Parties that a dismissal may be appealed. Each Party may appeal the matter to the Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs or designee within 5 business days after the Student Conduct Administrator’s dismissal decision. During the appeal of a dismissal decision:
a. Each Party shall be notified when an appeal is filed, and the procedures shall be implemented equally for the Parties;
b. The University shall ensure that the decision maker for the appeal did not take part in an investigation of the allegations or dismissal of the Complaint
c. The University shall ensure that the decision maker for the appeal has been appropriately trained;
d. The University shall provide the Parties a reasonable and equal opportunity to make a statement in support of, or challenging, the outcome as follows:
i. The appealing Party’s submission shall consist of a concise written statement as to why the dismissal decision should be reversed; and
ii. The other Party may submit a concise counter statement within 5 business days of receiving the appealing Party’s submission; and
e. The University shall simultaneously notify the Parties of the result of the appeal and the rationale for the result.
6. Notwithstanding a decision to dismiss the Complaint, the University shall provide Supportive Measures to the Complainant and Respondent as appropriate.
7. If the Student Conduct Administrator decides that the Complaint should not be dismissed but the sanctions will not be expulsion or a suspension from the University, then the Parties shall be notified that the matter will be handled under the procedures set forth in Section 11.3.
b. Consolidation of Complaints: The Student Conduct Administrator may consolidate Complaints against more than one Respondent, or by more than one Complainant against one or more Respondents, or by one Party against another Party when the allegations arise out of the same facts or circumstances.
c. Informal Resolution
i. At any time prior to determining whether a violation of this Code occurred, the University may offer to a Complainant and Respondent an informal resolution process, unless such a process would conflict with federal, state, or local law.
1. The Student Conduct Administrator has discretion to determine whether it is appropriate to offer an informal resolution process and may decline to offer informal resolution despite one or more of the Parties’ wishes.
2. Circumstances when the Student Conduct Administrator may decline to allow informal resolution include but are not limited to when the University determines that the alleged conduct would present a risk of future harm to others.
ii. The University will not require or pressure the Parties to participate in an informal resolution process. The Student Conduct Administrator must obtain the Parties’ voluntary consent to the informal resolution process and must not require waiver of the right to an investigation and adjudication of a Complaint as a condition of enrollment or continuing enrollment or exercise of any other right.
iii. Before initiation of an informal resolution process, the Student Conduct Administrator must provide the Parties written notice that explains:
1. The allegations;
2. The requirements of the informal resolution process;
3. That, prior to agreeing to a resolution, any Party has the right to withdraw from the informal resolution process and to initiate or resume the University’s grievance procedures under this Code;
4. That the Parties’ agreement to a resolution at the conclusion of the informal resolution process would preclude the Parties from initiating or resuming grievance procedures arising from the same allegations;
5. The potential terms that may be requested or offered in an informal resolution agreement, where such potential terms include (but are not limited to):
a. Restrictions on contact; and
b. Restrictions on the Respondent’s participation in one or more of the University’s programs or activities or attendance of specific events, including restrictions the University could have imposed as remedies or disciplinary sanctions had the University determined that a violation of this Code occurred;
6. Which records will be maintained and could be shared;
7. That if the University initiates or resumes the procedures under this Code, the University or a Party must not access, consider, disclose, or otherwise use information, including records, obtained solely through an informal resolution process as part of the investigation or determination of the outcome of the Complaint; and
8. That, when applicable, and if the University resumes the disciplinary proceedings under this Code, the informal resolution facilitator could serve as a witness for purposes other than providing information obtained solely through the informal resolution process.
iv. The facilitator for the informal resolution process must not be the same person as the investigator or decisionmaker in the University’s procedures under this Code. Any person designated by the University to facilitate an informal resolution process must not have a conflict of interest or bias for or against complainants or respondents generally or an individual Complainant and Respondent.
v. In order to encourage an open exchange of views and maximize the chances of agreement, mediation sessions may not be recorded, unless the Parties agree to a different arrangement.
vii. Any informal resolution shall be in writing and shall represent the final resolution of the case, unless one of the Parties fails to adhere to the terms of the agreement.
If the Parties do not agree to an informal resolution, the process is unsuccessful, or informal resolution is not appropriate due to the nature of the Complaint, then the formal disciplinary proceedings will commence or resume.
i. After the Student Conduct Administrator provides the Parties with the information described above, the Student Conduct Administrator shall promptly meet with the Complainant and Respondent separately to discuss the following:
1. The allegations in the Complaint, including the Party’s version of events, the nature and location of evidence, and the identity of witnesses;
2. Supportive Measures; and
3. The Party’s interest in resolving the matter through informal resolution, unless the Student Conduct Administrator determines that informal resolution would be inappropriate under the circumstances.
ii. A Party and his or her advisor are not permitted to attend interviews other than his or her own interview.
iii. In addition to meeting with the Parties, the Student Conduct Administrator shall take other investigatory steps, as necessary. Such steps may include:
1. Interviewing witnesses (including expert witnesses, if any) and summarizing such interviews in writing;
2. Visiting, inspecting, and taking photographs of relevant sites;
3. Collecting and preserving relevant evidence (potentially in coordination with law-enforcement agencies); and
4. Obtaining any relevant medical records, provided that the subject of the records has voluntarily authorized the release of the records in writing.
iv. The investigation shall ordinarily be completed within 30 calendar days after the Complaint is filed or as soon as practicable thereafter.
e. Investigation by Law Enforcement: Nothing in this Code should be construed as restricting the ability of campus law enforcement to investigate a possible criminal violation. If a law enforcement investigation has been initiated, the University will take reasonable measures to avoid undue interference with the law enforcement investigation. In most cases, the University’s investigation will not be halted due to the fact that a parallel law-enforcement investigation has commenced.
2. Additional procedures for allegations of a Serious Violation that could result in a sanction of expulsion or suspension from the University.
a. Administrative File
i. At the conclusion of the investigation and at least 7 business days before the Hearing, the Student Conduct Administrator shall remind the Parties of their right to review the Administrative File to the extent allowed by law.
ii. The Parties shall have an opportunity to respond to the evidence contained in the Administrative File at a live Hearing.
b. Hearing Officer or Hearing Panel
i. At least 3 business days before the Hearing date, the Student Conduct Administrator shall select a Hearing Officer or Hearing Panel and disclose the individuals’ identities to the Parties.
ii. A Party may challenge a Hearing Officer or Hearing Panelist for bias or any conflicts of interest with the potential to undermine the integrity of the disciplinary process. The Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs or a designee who is not a factfinder in the case shall promptly resolve the challenge and designate a substitute as appropriate.
iii. Persons who serve as Hearing Officers or Hearing Panelists may not be the same individuals who investigated the alleged misconduct.
c. Hearing Procedures
i. The Hearing Officer or Hearing Panel may pose questions to the witnesses before affording the Parties an opportunity to ask questions.
ii. The Hearing Officer or Chair of the Hearing Panel will make all determinations regarding the order of witnesses, relevancy of questions, and the evidence to be considered or excluded during the Hearing and decision-making process. The Hearing Officer or Hearing Panel may, in its discretion, choose to call a Student Conduct Administrator for the purpose of explaining the investigation and findings.
iii. The Hearing Officer or Hearing Panel must determine whether a proposed question is relevant and not otherwise impermissible prior to the question being posed, and must explain any decision to exclude a question as not relevant. If a decisionmaker determines that a Party’s question is relevant and not otherwise impermissible, then the question must be asked except that no questions that are unclear or harassing of the Party being questioned will be permitted.
iv. The Hearing Officer or Chair of the Hearing Panel has discretion to determine whether the Parties may present expert witnesses as long as the determination applies equally to both Parties.
v. At the Hearing, the Parties may:
1. Make an opening and closing statement;
2. Present relevant evidence; and
3. Cross-examine adverse witnesses.
iv. The Respondent may waive the right to be present at a disciplinary proceeding by providing to the Student Conduct Administrator a signed waiver as set forth in Appendix C. The waiver shall be signed by the Respondent and the adjudicator. The Student Conduct Administrator shall provide one copy to the Respondent and place another copy in the Administrative File. If the Respondent waives the right to be present at a disciplinary proceeding, the Respondent shall not have the right to appeal the University’s initial decision.
vii. Hearings may be conducted through a live Hearing with the Parties physically present in the same geographic location. At the University’s discretion or upon the request of either Party, it will conduct the live Hearing with the Parties physically present in separate locations with technology enabling the decisionmaker and Parties to simultaneously see and hear the Party or the witness while that person is speaking or communicating in another format.
viii. The University shall create an audio, audiovisual, or transcript of the Hearing.
ix. The Parties may pose relevant questions to witnesses under the following conditions:
1. In cases in which a Party is represented by an advisor, the advisor may pose questions to the witness directly.
2. In cases in which a Party is not represented by an advisor, the questions may be asked through the Hearing Officer or Hearing Panel. A Party may not, however, question a witness directly. The Party may tender an initial set of proposed questions before the Hearing and propose follow-up questions, including questions challenging credibility, that a Party wants asked of any Party or witness.
x. If a Party does not respond to questions related to their credibility, the decision maker must not rely on any statement of that Party that supports that Party’s position. The decision maker must not draw an inference about whether misconduct occurred based solely on a Party’s or witness’s refusal to respond to questions related to their credibility.
d. Written Decision
i. As soon as practicable after the Hearing, the Hearing Officer or Chair of the Hearing Panel shall simultaneously distribute to the Parties a written decision of the result that contains the following:
1. A description of the alleged Code violation;
2. Information about the policies and procedures the University used to evaluate the allegations;
3. The decision maker’s evaluation of the relevant evidence and determination of whether a violation occurred;
4. When the decision maker finds that a violation occurred, any disciplinary sanctions the University will impose on the Respondent, and whether remedies other than the imposition of disciplinary sanctions will be provided by the University to the Complainant and, to the extent appropriate, other Students identified by the University to be experiencing the effects of a violation; and
5. The University’s procedures to appeal the result of the disciplinary Hearing.
ii. If there is a determination that a violation occurred, as appropriate, the Student Conduct Administrator shall provide and implement remedies to a Complainant or other affected person(s) and take other prompt and effective steps to ensure that a violation does not continue or recur within the University’s education program or activity.
iii. The determination regarding responsibility becomes final either on the University providing the Parties with the written determination of the result of the appeal, if an appeal is filed, or if an appeal is not filed, the date on which an appeal would no longer be considered timely.
i. A Party may appeal a decision or sanction by submitting a written statement to the Student Conduct Administrator within 25 calendar days of receiving the Hearing Officer or Hearing Panel’s written decision. An Appeal Form is set forth in Appendix D.
ii. An appeal may be initiated after the deadline if the Party shows that new, previously unavailable evidence came to light or that there is a compelling reason for the delay.
iii. The appeal shall be heard by the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs or designee.
iv. The appeal shall be decided based on the record and without deference to the decision of the Hearing Officer of Hearing Panel.
v. A Party may only appeal based on one of the following grounds:
1. A procedural irregularity that would change the determination of whether a Code violation occurred;
2. The discovery of new evidence that would change the outcome of the matter and that was not reasonably available at the time the determination of whether a Code violation occurred or dismissal was made;
3. A Student Conduct Administrator had a conflict of interest or bias for or against complainants or respondents generally or the individual Complainant or Respondent that would change the outcome of the matter; or
4. The sanctions are grossly disproportionate to the severity of the offense.
vi. The Student Conduct Administrator shall promptly notify the other Party of the appeal and provide a copy of the Party’s written statement. The other Party may submit a written counter statement within 5 business days thereafter.
vii. The decision on appeal may uphold the decision, modify it, or remand the matter to the Hearing Officer or Hearing Panel for further factual development.
viii. The Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs or designee shall inform the Parties of the decision in writing within 5 business days of the last Party’s written submission or as soon as practicable thereafter.
ix. The Parties may challenge the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs’ (or designee) involvement for bias or a conflict of interest with the potential to undermine the integrity of the appellate process. The Chancellor may decide any such challenge and replace the administrator with an appropriate substitute.
f. Certification of Compliance
i. At the conclusion of the disciplinary proceedings, the Chancellor or Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs shall certify, on a form similar to Appendix E, that the substantial rights of the Complainant and Respondent as established in Act 470 of 2023 have been followed.
ii. The certification shall be maintained in the Administrative File.
3. Disciplinary procedures in non-Title IX cases in which neither expulsion nor suspension from the University will be imposed
a. If the Student Conduct Administrator determines, in his or her discretion at the inception of the case, that a sanction of expulsion or suspension will not be imposed in a non-Title IX case involving an alleged violation of the Code (other than an act of Academic Dishonesty), then the alleged violation of the Code shall be resolved through an administrative Hearing before the Student Conduct Administrator or designee.
b. An attorney or non-attorney advisor may not participate at any stage of the disciplinary proceedings.
c. The Student Conduct Administrator or designee shall ensure that the Respondent receives:
i. Written notice of the charges;
ii. An opportunity to inspect the Administrative File;
iii. An opportunity to be heard at a meeting with the Student Conduct Administrator or designee;
iv. A written decision on whether the Respondent has violated the Code and the sanctions that will be imposed; and
v. An opportunity to appeal to the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs or designee, within 5 business days of the decision, based on one of the following grounds:
1. A procedural irregularity that affected the outcome;
2. The discovery of new evidence that was not reasonably available when the determination of responsibility was made that could affect the outcome;
3. The University investigator or decisionmaker had a conflict of interest or bias that affected the outcome; or.
4. The sanctions are grossly disproportionate to the severity of the offense.
vi. A reasonably prompt, written decision from the Vice for Student Affairs regarding the appeal.
vii. An opportunity to challenge the involvement of any decisionmaker due to bias or a conflict of interest.
Section 11: Amnesty
The University offers amnesty in its discretion to anyone who may be hesitant to report an incident because of fear that they personally may be accused of minor policy violations, such as underage drinking, at the time of the incident. Educational options may be explored for those offered amnesty, but no conduct sanctions or records will result.
Section 12: Sanctions
1. Student discipline is a functional aspect of education and Student development at the University. Sanctions for Prohibited Conduct are designed to assist Students in their cognitive, ethical, and interpersonal growth. This approach emphasizes assisting the Student to understand and accept responsibility for his or her behavior as a member of the Campus Community. Both the interests of the Student and the University are taken into account in determining the appropriate Sanction. Sanctions must be reasonable and proportionate to the seriousness of the violation. The Student Conduct Administrator must accurately advise the disciplinary body of sanctions that have been imposed for similar violations in the past in order to ensure consistency and equity across time.
2. A Student’s conduct history shall not impact the finding of responsibility, but it may be used as information in determining appropriate sanctions.
3. Ordinarily, sanctions will not be imposed until the resolution of an appeal. However, if it is deemed necessary to protect the welfare of the victim or the University community, the Hearing Officer or Hearing Panel may recommend to the decision maker on appeal that any sanctions be imposed immediately and continue in effect until such time as the appeal process is exhausted.
4. Any sanction imposed on a Respondent—including those based on a finding that sex-based harassment occurred—will take on the following forms:
a. Verbal warning;
b. Written reprimand or disciplinary warning;
c. Disciplinary probation and/or suspension in abeyance;
d. Loss of privileges for a specified period of time;
e. Restitution through community service or fine;
f. Research assignments;
g. A requirement to receive certain training;
h. Community service;
i. Removal from campus housing, including terms for readmission;
j. Suspension from the University, including terms for readmission; and/or
k. Expulsion from the University
5. The University may withhold a Respondent’s degree for a reasonable amount of time to resolve any pending charges under this Code and to make sure that related sanctions are satisfied. The University may also revoke a degree if it is shown by a preponderance of the evidence that it was obtained by any form of Academic Dishonesty.
6. Student organizations and their officers and members, in their capacity as such, are subject to the same sanctions as other Respondents if a preponderance of the evidence shows actual participation in, or actual authorization or ratification of, a violation of the Code.
a. In making this determination, the University shall consider whether the organization’s members were acting in accord with the organization’s practices and policies, or with the knowledge or approval of a substantial number of its members or leadership.
b. The University may impose upon a Student organization any of the sanctions that apply to individuals (including a loss of privileges), suspension for a period of time, or a permanent loss of University recognition.
7. Effective Date of Sanctions for Sanctions Other Than Expulsion and Suspension
a. In cases where the decision is other than to expel or suspend the student, the sanction shall take effect only after:
i. The Respondent has been notified of the decision.
ii. The deadline for appeal has expired.
Section 13: Confidentiality
1. When conducting an informal resolution process under this Code, implementing disciplinary proceedings, or requiring the Student Conduct Administrator to take other appropriate steps under this Code, the University must not disclose the identity of a Party, witness, or other participant except in the following circumstances:
a. When the Party, witness, or other participant has provided prior written consent to disclose their identity;
b. When permitted under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, 20 U.S.C. § 1232g, or its implementing regulations, NPRM 34 C.F.R. Part 99;
c. As required by law; or
d. To carry out the purposes of Title IX, including action taken to address conduct that may constitute sex discrimination under Title IX in the University’s program or activity.
2. To protect the privacy of all Parties and in accordance with FERPA, the Hearing will be closed.
3. Educational records related to any aspect of discipline against a Student will not be released by the University without the Student’s authorization. This prohibition does not apply to Students in possession of their own educational records. Only exceptions authorized under will be permitted. For instance, the University may release records:
a. To comply with a judicial order or a lawfully issued subpoena;
b. To inform the Complainant in a case involving allegations of a crime of violence or a non-forcible sex offense of the final results of a related disciplinary Hearing;
c. To inform any third party, including other educational institutions, of the final results of a disciplinary proceeding related to a crime or violence or non-forcible sex offense if Respondent is found responsible;
d. To any Student’s parents:
i. If the parents claimed the Student as a dependent on their tax returns; or
ii. To inform the parents if the Student is found responsible for an offense related to drugs or alcohol and the Student is under the age of 21 at the time of the disclosure; or
e. To address a health or safety emergency.
4. For cases involving allegations of Sex-based Harassment under Title IX, the University shall keep confidential the identity of any Complainant, Respondent, and witness, except as permitted by FERPA, required by law, or necessary to conduct any investigation, Hearing, or judicial proceeding arising under the Title IX grievance process.
5. Disclosure of final results to third Parties, if permitted, shall include only the name of the Responsible Student, the violation committed, and any sanction imposed. The disclosure must not include the name of any other Student, including a victim or witness, without the written consent of that other Student.
6. The University may take reasonable steps to protect the privacy of the Parties and witnesses during the pendency of disciplinary proceedings under this Code, but it will not restrict the ability of the Parties to obtain and present evidence, including by speaking to witnesses; consulting with a family member, confidential resource, or advisor; preparing for a Hearing (if one is offered); or otherwise defend their interests.
7. Except as allowed by the Parties’ Free Speech Rights, the Parties and their advisors may not disclose information and evidence obtained solely through the process set forth in this Code without authorization.
Section 14: Effective Dates of Sanctions for Sanctions Other Than Expulsion and Suspension
1. In cases where the decision of the committee or board is other than to expel or suspend the student, the sanction shall take effect only after;
a. The accused has been notified of the decision.
b. The deadline for appeal has expired.
Source: Student Handbook
Approved By: Chancellor Christina Drale
Originator: Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs
Custodian: Office of the Dean of Students