Main Content

5.5. Formal Conduct Process

5.5.1 Although procedural requirements in the conduct process are not as formal as those existing in a court of law, the procedures outlined in section 5.5 generally apply to all conduct cases not resolved through the informal conduct process or alternative dispute resolution with the exception of suspected acts of academic misconduct (for specifics regarding academic misconduct definitions and procedures, consult the University’s Academic Conduct Policy Details) and Title IX Complaints, as defined by federal Title IX law (for specifics regarding Title IX procedures and Complaint resolution, consult Policy 1.009 and section 5.7).

5.5.2 If, after completing an investigation, there is reasonable cause to believe that the Responding Student violated the Code, but the student does not waive their right to a PCB or formal Conduct Panel hearing, the assigned Student Conduct Administrator will prepare a Complaint against the Responding Student or proceed with a Complaint issued and investigated by the Office of Institutional Equity. If there is insufficient evidence through the investigation to support reasonable cause, the Report will be closed with no further action.

5.5.3 The Responding Student shall be allowed to attend the entire portion of the PCB or formal Conduct Panel hearing at which information is received excluding Panel deliberations unless permitted under section 5.5.14.

5.5.4 In PCB or formal Conduct Panel hearings involving more than one Responding Student, the hearing will be conducted separately for each student.

5.5.5 In the formal conduct process, the Responding Student:
a. May speak on their own behalf;
b. May submit a written statement;
c. May invite witnesses to attend the formal hearing on their behalf;
d. May ask questions of witnesses called by themselves or others by submitting their questions to the PCB or formal Conduct Panel chair, who will review and ask each question, as deemed appropriate in the chair’s discretion; and
e. Will be notified of witnesses to be called and documents to be presented at least twenty-four (24) hours prior to the scheduled hearing.

5.5.6 Any questions between the Reporting Party and Responding Student must be submitted to the PCB or formal Conduct Panel chair, who will review and ask each question, as deemed appropriate in the chair’s discretion. This method is used to preserve the educational tone of the hearing and to avoid creation of an adversarial environment.

5.5.7 The University, through the PCB or formal Conduct Panel, may present and question witnesses, as well as question those witnesses presented by the Responding Student.

5.5.8 Character witnesses and/or statements will not be permitted unless they have information directly related to the Code allegations under consideration.

5.5.9 University notification of the date, time, and location of a PCB or formal Conduct Panel hearing will be given to the Responding Student no less than seven (7) days prior to the hearing.

5.5.10 Three (3) days prior to the scheduled formal Conduct Panel hearing, at the discretion of the assigned Student Conduct Administrator, the Responding Student will be given electronic or in-person access to review the hearing packet, including related conduct documentation and statements. For Complaints issued and investigated by the Office of Institutional Equity, a copy of the final Investigative Report from the Office of Institutional Equity, all related statements and documentation, and any written party responses to the investigation materials, including the preliminary Investigative Report, will be included as part of the hearing packet. No hearing packet or packet review is provided for PCB hearings.

5.5.11 To ensure the orderly administration of the hearing process, the assigned Student Conduct Administrator must be notified at least twenty-four (24) hours prior to a scheduled hearing of any documents to be introduced or witnesses who will attend the hearing on behalf of the Responding Student.

5.5.12 The PCB or formal Conduct Panel may accommodate concerns for the personal safety, well-being, and/or fears of confrontation of the Reporting Party, Responding Student, and/or other witnesses during the hearing by providing hearing participation while in separate facilities or locations through videophone, video conferencing, or other digital means, as determined to be appropriate in the judgment of a University Conduct Officer or their designee.

5.5.13 After a hearing before the PCB or formal Conduct Panel has been completed and all pertinent information has been received, the PCB or formal Conduct Panel, in closed session, will deliberate and determine, by majority vote, whether the Responding Student has violated each section of the Code in which an allegation is made against the student. The PCB or formal Conduct Panel chair will only participate in the vote to determine whether the Responding Student is in violation of this Code to break a tie by the other panelists. The assigned Student Conduct Administrator will be available to act as a resource during all deliberations of the PCB or formal Conduct Panel. The assigned Student Conduct Administrator has no decision-making authority in a PCB or formal Conduct Panel hearing.

5.5.14 The existence of past and/or current Code violations and/or outcomes will not be shared with the PCB or formal Conduct Panel until after a finding that the student is in violation of the Code has been made. After such a finding is made by the PCB or formal Conduct Panel, the assigned Student Conduct Administrator will provide the PCB or formal Conduct Panel with written information regarding past and/or current Code violations and/or outcomes for consideration. The PCB or formal Conduct Panel will then deliberate and determine, by majority vote, an appropriate educational, conduct outcome(s) to be imposed against the Responding Student. The PCB or formal Conduct Panel chair will only participate in the vote to determine an appropriate educational, conduct outcome(s) to break a tie by the other panelists. When appropriate, the assigned Student Conduct Administrator may permit the participation of the Responding Student and the Reporting Party/victim of the misconduct in the panelists’ outcome deliberation to enhance the educational opportunities of the conduct process and help repair the harm caused by the misconduct.

5.5.15 For all PCB hearings, the PCB chair will prepare a written PCB report detailing the finding and outcome(s) determinations made by the PCB and the PCB’s rationale for both determinations. The written PCB report shall be the property of the University and maintained as part of the University’s disciplinary records. It should not exceed three (3) pages in length and must be submitted to the assigned Student Conduct Administrator within three (3) days of the end of PCB deliberations.

For all conduct hearings with a formal Conduct Panel, the formal Conduct Panel chair will prepare a written deliberation report and deliver it to the assigned Student Conduct Administrator, detailing the finding made by the panel, the information cited by the panel in support of its finding, and any information the panel excluded from its consideration and why. This deliberation report should conclude with the outcome(s) determination and information cited in support of the outcome(s). The deliberation report shall be the property of the University and maintained as part of the University’s disciplinary records. It should not exceed three (3) pages in length and must be submitted to the assigned Student Conduct Administrator within three (3) days of the end of formal Conduct Panel deliberations.

5.5.16 The University shall audiotape and/or digitally record all PCB and formal Conduct Panel hearings; however, PCB or formal Conduct Panel deliberations will not be recorded. No other recordings of PCB or formal Conduct Panel hearings will be permitted. The tape and/or digital recording shall be the property of the University and maintained as part of the University’s disciplinary records. The Responding Student may obtain access to review the audiotape and/or digital recording by submitting a written request to the assigned Student Conduct Administrator.