Conduct Resolution Meeting & Hearing Procedure

Conduct Resolution Meeting

OSCCE uses Conduct Resolution Meetings to help reduce the need for unnecessary investigation, meetings, hearings, or other proceedings. Such a meeting is intended as a non-adversarial discussion between the Responding Party and a University Official designated by the OSCCE Director. Prior to or at the Conduct Resolution Meeting, the Responding Party will receive (a) written notice of the specific charges (and the surrounding circumstances) and (b) general information about the relevant evidence available at that time.

At a Conduct Resolution Meeting, the University shall consider evidence that is reasonably expected to have probative value, including documents and witness statements (including hearsay). OSCCE will provide access to this information so that the Responding Party has a reasonable opportunity to review it and respond. During the meeting, the Responding Party may also identify other evidence or witnesses they believe likely to have relevant information.

In the event the Student is not entitled to or waives their right to a Hearing, the University Official will consider the evidence, apply a Preponderance of the Evidence standard, and determine whether the Student is responsible for violating the Code. Following the meeting, the Student will receive an outcome letter outlining the finding, any sanction(s) imposed, and their right to appeal the decision and/or sanction(s). 

Hearing

After a Conduct Resolution Meeting, any Student (i) subject to Suspension, Expulsion, or Removal from On-Campus Housing or (ii) accused of violating the Sexual Misconduct Policy, is entitled to a Hearing. A Student may agree (in writing) to (i) waive their right to a University Hearing, (ii) waive their right to any of the procedural guidelines identified below, and/or (iii) admit responsibility for some or all of the alleged violations of the Code. In such cases, the Student may schedule a meeting with a University Official to discuss potential sanctions in advance of the imposition of any disciplinary action.

The following procedural guidelines apply to University Hearings:

a.  The Responding Party will be given notice of the hearing date and the specific charge(s) against them at least three business days in advance of the Hearing.
b.  The Responding Party will be given reasonable access to the evidence the University intends to consider, which shall be retained by OSCCE.
c.  The Responding Party may be present for the Hearing. If more than one Student is charged with the same incident, the University may hold a combined hearing. If the Responding Party fails to appear, this fact will be stated for the record and the Hearing will proceed.
d.  The Responding Party may be accompanied by a Support Person.
e.  The Hearing will be audio recorded.
f.  While formal rules of evidence do not apply to a Hearing, the Hearing Official will admit relevant information into evidence if a reasonable persons would accept it as having probative value.  (i) Relevant evidence may include, though is not necessarily limited to, documents, electronic records (e.g., email, photographs, videos, texts, social media posts, etc.), and witness testimony.  (ii) Repetitious or irrelevant evidence may be excluded.  (iii) Documentary evidence not made available to the Responding Party in advance of the Hearing will not be admitted or considered.
g.  A Hearing Board, made up of individuals designated by OSCCE, will hear the evidence and make a determination whether a Responding Party is responsible for violating the Code. The Hearing Board will be composed of at least three individuals. The Hearing Board may question witnesses (including the parties), review evidence, and participate in deliberations.
h.  OSCCE will designate one member of the Hearing Board to act as the Hearing Officer and preside over the matter. The Hearing Officer exercises control over the proceedings and makes decisions necessary to avoid needless consumption of time and achieve orderly completion of the Hearing. They may order the removal of any person (including the Responding Party) who disrupts a Hearing.
i.  If a case is particularly complex or involves multiple parties, the OSCCE Director may appoint a Special Hearing Panel. Members of such a panel act as additional members of the Hearing Board throughout the Hearing.
j.  After a Hearing concludes, the Hearing Officer will submit the Hearing Board’s report to the OSCCE Director. The report should summarize the facts, identify the evidence considered (including witness testimony), and provide a rationale for the Board’s conclusion(s) whether a Code violation occurred.
k.  The Responding Party may view the Hearing Board's written report by appointment with the OSCCE Director.
l.  The Responding Party will receive an outcome letter from the Vice President for Student Affairs or designee. This letter identifies the basis for the determination of responsibility for a Code violation and the sanction(s) imposed.

This information about Hearing procedures is published in the Code of Student Conduct.

Preparing for Your Hearing

A Hearing is a meeting with the “Hearing Board.” The Hearing Board is made up of the faculty, students, and staffs authorized by the OSCCE Director who meet with you to discuss alleged policy violation(s) and what happened from your perspective. This is your opportunity to have your side of the story heard and to add information to the investigation of the incident.

  1. Read your charge letter carefully and take note of the charges you have been presented with prior to the hearing.
  2. Read through the Code of Student Conduct. This will provide a greater understanding of the University’s process.
  3. Write down any questions you may have regarding information you have read.
  4. As the incident will be discussed at this hearing, you may want to think back over the details of the event and make note of information you feel is important.
  5. You may be accompanied by a support person. Discuss his/her role with your observer prior to the hearing.
  6. You will be asked if you would like to present a final statement during the hearing, which is in addition to your version of the events during the incident. You may wish to write your thoughts down to refer to them during your statement.
  7. The standard of evidence in a Hearing is different than in a court of law. Here, the standard is preponderance of evidence, and the question becomes, “is it more likely than not that policy was violated?”
  8. The entire proceedings of the Hearing will be explained to you before the hearing begins, allowing you an opportunity to ask any questions you may have.
  9. You are encouraged and expected to be honest about what happened and to take responsibility for your actions.
  10. Remember, the University cares about its students and wants them to make healthy and safe choices. Being a part of the university community carries with it responsibilities. It is important for each member of the community to think about how their actions not only impact themselves but others as well.

If you have additional questions regarding how to prepare for your Hearing please contact the Office of Student Conduct & Civility Education.

Prepare for Your Hearing (PDF)