Student Conduct Process

chess piecesThe student conduct process focuses on student development by encouraging responsibility and by fostering a respect for the rights of all University community members. The University's student conduct system has two main objectives: to hold students accountable for inappropriate behavior as described in Code of Student Conduct and to modify those behaviors in order to maintain a safe environment conducive to living and learning.

In keeping with its student development approach, the Office of Student Conduct has taken the lead in helping Binghamton University develop a dual level approach to addressing allegations that the Code of Student Conduct has been violated.

Level l cases are those cases for which possible sanctions do not include more than 3 years of disciplinary probation, final probation, suspension, expulsion or removal from University housing are designated as Level I cases. Information regarding sanctions can be found in the University Sanctioning Guidelines.

Level ll cases, on the other hand, are those cases for which possible sanctions do include more than three years' disciplinary probation, final probation, suspension, expulsion or removal from University housing. Information regarding sanctions can be found in the University Sanctioning Guidelines.

In both instances the process flows as follows:

• The student receives a letter to meet with a staff member to discuss the incident.
• The staff member conducts an investigation to determine if student conduct charges are warranted. The length and nature of an investigation vary based on the complexity of the case.
• If the staff member determines that student conduct charges are warranted, the student is offered the opportunity to resolve the case by signing an Administrative Agreement (AA). By opting to sign an AA the student admits responsibility and accepts the sanctions as outlined on the agreement. Once signed, Administrative Agreements can not be appealed.
• If the student opts not to sign the AA then the case is forwarded for review by a student conduct board.
• Following the hearing the student is notified of the board's decision.
• Decisions of Level ll hearing boards may be appealed. Level l cases may only be appealed based on procedural error.

Student Conduct Level I Hearing Outline

Prior to the start of the hearing the board reviews all written materials submitted for the hearing.

Hearings generally proceed as follows:

Opportunity for student to object to any board members

Reading of Charges

Review of Documents

Statement from student (optional)

Questions by the hearing board

Witness participation (if applicable)

Final statement from the student (optional)

At the conclusion of the hearing, the board goes into a closed session to weigh all evidence before them and ultimately determine responsibility. Decisions regarding responsibility are made based on the Preponderance of the Evidence standard. If the board finds the student responsible, they then determine the appropriate sanction based on consideration of the University's sanctioning guidelines,

consideration of mitigating and aggravating factors, and the student's prior conduct record.

Students are electronically notified of the board's decision within 72 hours (3 business days).

Student Conduct Level II Hearing Outline

Prior to the start of the hearing the board reviews all written materials submitted for the hearing.

Hearings are conducted in two phases and generally proceed as follows:

Phase 1 - Finding

Opportunity for student to object to any board members
Reading of Charges
Review of Documents
Investigator statement summarizing investigative process and findings
Statement from student (optional)
Questions by the hearing board
Questions from investigator and student
Witness participation as deemed appropriate by the board
Final statement from the student

At the conclusion of this phase of the hearing the board goes into a closed session to determine responsibility. Decisions regarding responsibility are made based on the Preponderance of the Evidence standard. Once the board reaches a decision the student is notified. If the board finds the student responsible, the hearing reconvenes and moves into the sanctioning phase. Whenever possible this will occur on the same day.

Phase 2 – Sanctioning

Statement from the student
Questions from the board
Information from others as deemed necessary by the board

At this point in the process the student may provide the board with character statements, though character witnesses will not be needed in person at the hearing.

Upon conclusion of the sanctioning phase the board again goes into a closed session do deliberate on sanction. The board completes a summary report of its findings and recommendations. This report is reviewed by the Director of the Office of Student Conduct or designee who will assure that the sanction is appropriate based on the sanctioning guidelines. Adjustments may be made as appropriate.

The student will be notified, in writing, of the hearing outcome including sanctions and rational for the board's decision.

Note: For cases involving sexual assault, sexual harassment, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking BOTH parties are afforded all of the same rights and opportunities to participate in the hearing. For detailed information regarding the procedures for these cases see the Code of Student Conduct and the Participant Guide.


For more complete information refer to the Code of Student Conduct (.pdf, 300KB)

Last Updated: 10/5/15