III. Student Conduct Procedures

These procedures have been authorized for use effective Aug. 15, 1998, replacing the procedures adopted in 1969 and revised in 1982, 1985, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 2011 and 2012.

A. Overview: Key Concepts and Definitions

The standards of conduct cited in the community expectations pertain to all students attending Marquette University. Students who are found responsible for violating these standards will receive one or more of the disciplinary actions noted above. To determine if a student is responsible for a conduct violation, the student conduct procedures described below will be followed.

In most cases an incident report will be filed by a Public Safety officer, another university staff member or a student. After an incident report is filed, it will be referred to a student conduct administrator. The student conduct administrator will review the case and decide whether the case will be handled through an administrative hearing or a student conduct review board hearing. In some cases, the student conduct administrator may offer the students involved in an incident the opportunity to substitute a student conduct hearing with a student conduct conference or residence hall policy violation conference (described below).

A respondent refers to the student who has been charged with a violation of university policy. A complainant refers to any person who reports an alleged policy violation. The respondent(s), victim(s), complainants and witness(es) identified in the incident report will be notified and will be asked to appear at the hearing. All parties will be asked to provide written and/or verbal testimony and to explain what happened. A determination of responsibility will be based on the evidence presented at the hearing. The standard used to determine responsibility is a preponderance of the evidence, whether it is “more likely than not” that the respondent has violated the policy.

This hearing shall follow the procedures outlined in Section III.H. During the hearing, a respondent will have certain rights and responsibilities. (These are described in Section III.H. 2.) An electronic or other verbatim record shall be made of all board and administrative hearings.

In board hearings, the board will submit its recommendations to a student conduct administrator. At the conclusion of the hearing process, a respondent will have the right to appeal the disciplinary decision based on the criteria listed in Section III.I.

B. Notification

  1. The respondent will be notified by the student conduct administrator at least three working days before the hearing of the date, time, location and nature of the hearing, including a description of the specific standards of conduct alleged to have been violated. The respondent may request a delay of up to five working days for the start of the hearing. (The procedure is described in Section III.H.3.) The first decision on the hearing date and location of a delayed hearing will be decided by the student conduct administrator. All communications to the student may be verbal but must subsequently be confirmed in writing.
  2. The written hearing notification may be sent to the student’s residence or may be communicated to the student via email to the student’s Marquette email account. Students are expected to check their email on a frequent and consistent basis and act in a timely manner as outlined in the official use of email to communicate with students policy. (See Policy on Official Use of E-mail to Communicate With Students.)
  3. The hearing notification letter will be accompanied by a description of the student conduct process, information about student conduct assistants, witnesses, advisers; and a listing of potential disciplinary actions, as well as a notice about whether the formal hearing will be held by a student conduct administrator or a student conduct review board.

C. Administrative Hearing

An administrative hearing is a formal hearing conducted by one (or two) student conduct administrators. The student conduct administrator(s) will review all of the evidence, decide responsibility and assign or recommend a disciplinary action as appropriate. The administrative hearing will follow the procedures outlined in Section III.H.

D. Student Conduct Review Board Hearing

The student conduct review board will conduct a formal hearing on all cases assigned to it for the purposes of reviewing the evidence and recommending a finding of responsibility and disciplinary actions to the student conduct administrator. The non-voting board chairperson will arrange for the hearing, chair the session(s), and develop a written statement of the findings and recommended action(s) from the student conduct review board. The board hearing will follow the procedures outlined in Section III.H. The respondent has the option of requesting that an administrative hearing be scheduled in place of the board hearing to resolve the case, if this request is made at least one working day before the start of a scheduled board hearing.

E. Student Conduct Conference

The student conduct administrator may offer the student(s) involved in an incident the opportunity to substitute a student conduct conference for a student conduct hearing. The student conduct conference can only take place if there is no victim in the incident, if the respondent accepts responsibility for the inappropriate behavior, and if the respondent elects the option of a student conduct conference and waives the right to a student conduct hearing. A student conduct conference involves the following elements: It replaces a conduct hearing; is not taped; usually does not involve in-person witness testimony; and can lead to the imposition of disciplinary action for inappropriate behavior. Following the conference, the student conduct administrator will determine appropriate disciplinary action (with consultation as appropriate) and communicate the action to the student in writing within five working days following the conduct conference.

F. Residence Hall Policy Violation Conference

When a residence hall student appears to have violated residence hall policy, the student’s hall director will contact the student within two days of the incident to discuss the incident. After discussion, the hall director will determine whether the student was responsible or not for the alleged violation and whether any disciplinary actions (e.g., restriction on visitation privileges) will be assigned. Information relating to this incident will be kept on file and may be considered if subsequent violations occur. Noncompliance with assigned disciplinary actions will result in further and formal conduct proceedings.

G. Organizational Hearing

An organizational hearing is a formal hearing conducted by one or more student conduct administrators. This type of hearing is conducted when there is a violation of the standards of conduct on premises owned, rented or operated by the organization; during an organization event; in any situation sponsored or endorsed by the organization; or in any event an observer would associate with the organization. The student conduct administrator(s) will review all of the evidence and decide responsibility or non-responsibility. If there is a decision of responsibility, the conduct administrator(s) will then assign or recommend a disciplinary action for the organization and/or individual member(s), as appropriate. An organizational hearing differs from an administrative hearing in that (1) the organization’s adviser (faculty, administrative, staff, alumni or other) is invited to attend the hearing; (2) the organization’s president and executive officers will usually officially represent the organization at the hearing, although additional officers and/or members of the organization may be invited to the hearing; and (3) the organization will be asked to submit a written statement about the incident and its members’ involvement that will be used during the hearing. Otherwise, the organizational hearing will follow the procedures outlined in Section III.H.

H. Student Conduct Hearing Procedures

This section describes the format of the hearing and the rights of the respondent in a hearing process. It also includes information about witnesses, student conduct assistants, the respondent’s adviser, the decision-making process and the communication process.

  1. Hearing Format
    1. An electronic or other verbatim record will be made of all hearings. This record will be retained for one month following the hearing or until the conclusion of any appeal process, whichever is longer. The record will then be destroyed, except in cases of suspension and expulsion, when the electronic record shall be retained with the student’s record.
    2. At the beginning of the hearing, the respondent will be introduced to others who are present. The respondent will be informed of standards alleged to have been violated and will be advised that he/she has rights specified in Section III.H.2.
    3. The student conduct administrator will read the incident report and ask the respondent to respond.
    4. The complainant/victim will be asked to describe what happened, and the respondent will have the opportunity to respond.
    5. Witnesses will be asked to describe what happened, and the respondent will have a chance to respond.
    6. All communication between the respondent, complainant, victim and witnesses will be directed to the
    7. student conduct administrator/board chairperson. The student conduct administrator/board chairperson will decide which questions to ask of each person.
    8. The student conduct administrator/board chairperson may reasonably limit the scope and time devoted to each matter or item of discussion during hearings, as well as the number of persons testifying.
    9. The student conduct administrator/board chairperson will decide the order of witnesses and when the complainant and witnesses will be in the hearing room.
    10. The student conduct administrator/board chairperson and/or members of the student conduct review board may ask questions of any respondent, complainant or witness during the hearing.
    11. At the conclusion of the hearing, the respondent, complainant, advisers and witnesses will be asked to leave the room. These individuals will not be present during the deliberations of a student conduct administrator or student conduct review board.

  2. Student Rights
    In the hearing notification letter and again at the beginning of the hearing, the respondent will be advised that he/she has the rights listed below. Students with any questions about their rights are encouraged to contact a student conduct assistant.
    • The student is entitled to be present throughout the hearing but not during the deliberation of the student conduct administrator or student conduct review board.
    • The student is entitled to remain silent (i.e., not to testify against him/herself), but must be informed that if silence is maintained, the case will be decided on the evidence presented.
    • The student may object to a member of a student conduct review board for reasons of official or personal conflict of interest.
    • The student is entitled to know all evidence and testimony presented against him/herself and to view pertinent materials supporting the case against him/herself.
    • The student is entitled to present pertinent evidence and the testimony of witnesses to substantiate his/her case and to comment upon and respond to the charges against him/herself.
    • The student is entitled to make a written appeal of the disciplinary decision within five working days of the date of notification of that decision. University disciplinary actions are appealed to the dean of students.

  3. Attendance
    All disciplinary hearings will be closed to everyone except those persons specifically provided for in this procedure or persons whose presence at the hearing is authorized by the student conduct administrator.

    A student who cannot attend the hearing scheduled for consideration of his/her case must submit a written statement to the student conduct administrator stating the reasons for the conflict and requesting a new hearing date. This statement must be presented to the student conduct administrator not fewer than two working days before the beginning of the hearing. At the discretion of the student conduct administrator, the hearing may be rescheduled. Only one change of hearing date and time may be granted.

    If a student fails to attend a scheduled hearing, the hearing may proceed in the absence of the respondent. Such an absence will not be considered grounds for an appeal. Where two or more cases involving common occurrences or the same student(s) are pending simultaneously, the student conduct administrator may decide to consolidate the hearing of such cases or hear them separately.

  4. Witnesses
    The respondent is responsible for arranging for witnesses testifying on his/her behalf to appear at the hearing. Victims, complainants and the student conduct administrator may also invite witnesses to appear at the hearing. In the exceptional event that a witness is unable to attend the hearing, the witness may write or record a statement and discuss the statement with the student conduct administrator before the scheduled hearing. The student conduct administrator is to be notified by the respondent, victims, complainants or witnesses not less than one (1) working day before the hearing of those persons intending to provide testimony, whether in person or in writing. The student conduct administrator/board chairperson may reasonably limit the scope and time devoted to witness statements. Witnesses are typically asked to comment only on the event(s) pertinent to the charges, not the character of the respondent(s).

  5. Evidence
    In all cases, the procedures will not be subject to limiting rules of evidence. Evidence will consist of oral and written testimony, incident reports and any other material directly related to the incident. Other evidence may also be considered and will consist of such things as secondhand reports and circumstantial evidence. The student conduct administrator/board chairperson may reasonably limit the scope of evidence considered in the hearing.

  6. Student Conduct Assistants
    Student conduct assistants, who may be Marquette students, faculty or staff, will be available to all students involved in student conduct proceedings to provide information about the conduct process and assist the student in preparation for the conduct hearing.

  7. Adviser
    The respondent, a complainant in a sexual misconduct case or any complainant who has received permission from the student conduct administrator, may have one adviser present at the hearing. If the student wants to have an adviser present, the student must notify the student conduct administrator of this fact in writing no later than two (2) working days before the beginning of the hearing. Advisers are normally members of the Marquette community (e.g., current full-time students, faculty, staff). This adviser serves as a support person and is intended to be of direct assistance to the student before and during the hearing. The adviser may not speak for the student or address the student conduct administrator or the conduct review board. If the adviser is an attorney, a law student or a Law School faculty member, the case will be heard as an administrative hearing and the conduct administrator may reschedule the time and/or date of the hearing so that Marquette University legal counsel may be present.

  8. Substitution of Members/Quorum
    If a member of the student conduct review board believes that he/she is not qualified to serve on the board for personal or official reasons, that member may disqualify him/herself. A student whose case is before the board may not object to the membership of the board except for reasons of official or personal conflict of interest. The board chairperson will determine the validity of such objections and his/her determination shall be final. If necessary, the board chairperson will replace the disqualified board member with a substitute.

    For the purpose of hearing any case that comes before the board, the presence of five voting members shall constitute a quorum. A decision agreed to by a majority of the sitting board shall be the decision of the board.

  9. Decisions and Communications
    At the conclusion of the conduct hearing, the respondent will be informed as to when the decision will be made and communicated. Disciplinary decisions that result in positive action, university warning or restitution will be made by the student conduct administrator and communicated to the respondent in writing within five (5) working days of the conclusion of the hearing. All other disciplinary actions will be made after consultation with and approval by the administrators indicated below:
    • Disciplinary actions of limitation on activities, residence life probation or termination of the housing contract will be approved by the dean of residence life for residence hall cases and by the associate dean of students for non-residence hall cases.
    • Disciplinary actions of university probation or suspension will be approved by the associate dean of students or dean of students.
    • Disciplinary actions of expulsion will be approved by the dean of students.

    The official receiving the recommendation may accept or lower the recommended disciplinary action. The final decision will be communicated in writing to the respondent by the student conduct administrator within five (5) working days of the conclusion of the hearing. In the event that the written notification is delayed, the respondent will be notified of the delay and informed when the decision will be communicated.

    All communications to students will be transmitted in the manner specified in the appropriate part of this procedure. Individual circumstances may permit or require communication by whatever means is necessary to reach the student promptly and reliably. Following reasonable efforts to deliver any communication to a student personally, an indirect or substituted mode of delivery may be attempted. Thus, any delay or failure to reach the student shall not impair the procedure.

I. Appeals

  1. Overview
    Students found responsible for a violation of the standards of conduct may request an appeal of the decision. Appeals are not rehearings, and they are not granted on the basis of disagreement with the original decision. The dean of students* will determine if there are grounds to warrant an appeal.

    *(Note — For cases in which the dean of students makes the disciplinary decision, the vice president for student affairs or designee will assume the appeal role described in this section.)

    The bases of appeals include only the following:
    • There was a denial of a fair hearing.
    • There was insufficient evidence to establish responsibility.
    • There is new information available that was not available at the time of the hearing which effects the disciplinary decision.

  2. Time Line
    A student has five (5) working days after receipt of the written notification of a disciplinary decision to file an appeal with the Office of Student Development. Failure to appeal within the five (5) working day period waives the right to appeal. Disciplinary actions will not be implemented while an appeal is under consideration unless emergency action has been taken.

  3. Documentation
    The appeal must be in writing and must contain the following:
    • The completed Request for Appeal Form, which can be obtained in the Office of Student Development, AMU, Room 329.
    • A statement explaining in detail why the student is contesting the findings or the action(s).
    • Copies of any documents that will substantiate or clarify the appeal request.

  4. Review of an Appeal Request
    Within five (5) working days of the receipt of the material pertinent to the appeal, the administrator hearing the appeal will notify the student in writing of his/her decision to 1) deny the request for an appeal, 2) to inform the student of the outcome of an administrative appeal decision or 3) to accept the appeal for review and indicate the timeline in which it will be reviewed, if it requires more than 5 business days. If a delay occurs, or additional time is needed, this administrator will notify the student of the delay.

  5. Administrative Appeal
    An administrative decision to grant or deny an appeal may be made at the discretion of the administrator hearing the appeal. This administrator may impose one of the following actions:
    • Affirm the disciplinary decision and thus deny the appeal
    • Modify the disciplinary decision
    • Return for a new or partial rehearing
    • Overturn the disciplinary decision.

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