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Student Rights and Responsibilities: A Code of Student Behavior

2.0 Jurisdiction

Students at the University/College are provided a copy of the Student Rights and Responsibilities annually in the form of a link on the University/College website. Students are responsible for having read and abiding by the provisions of the Student Rights and Responsibilities.

The Student Rights and Responsibilities and the student conduct process apply to the conduct of individual students, both undergraduate and graduate, and all USI-affiliated student organizations. For the purposes of student conduct, USI considers an individual to be a student when an offer of admission has been extended and thereafter as long as the student has a continuing educational interest in the University of Southern Indiana.

The University of Southern Indiana retains conduct jurisdiction over students who choose to take a leave of absence, withdraw, or have graduated for any misconduct that occurred prior to the leave, withdrawal, or graduation. If sanctioned, a hold may be placed on the student’s ability to re-enroll and/or obtain official transcripts and/or graduate and all sanctions must be satisfied prior to re-enrollment eligibility. In the event of serious misconduct committed while still enrolled but reported after the accused student has graduated, the University of Southern Indiana may invoke these procedures and should the former student be found responsible, the University of Southern Indiana may revoke that student’s degree.

The Student Rights and Responsibilities applies to behaviors that take place on the campus, at USI-sponsored events and may also apply off-campus when the Dean of Students or their designee determines that the off-campus conduct affects a substantial University interest. A substantial University interest is defined to include:

  • Any situation where it appears that the student’s conduct may present a danger or threat to the health or safety of themselves or others; and/or
  • Any situation that significantly impinges upon the rights, property or achievements of self or others or significantly breaches the peace and/or causes social disorder; and/or
  • Any situation that is detrimental to the educational mission and/or interests of the University of Southern Indiana;

The Student Rights and Responsibilities may be applied to behavior conducted online, via email or other electronic medium. Students should also be aware that online postings such as blogs, web postings, chats and social networking sites are in the public sphere and are not private. These postings can subject a student to allegations of conduct violations if evidence of policy violations is posted online. USI does not regularly search for this information but may take action if and when such information is brought to the attention of USI officials. However, most online speech by students not involving USI networks or technology will be protected as free expression and not subject to this Code, with two notable exceptions:

  • A true threat, defined as "a threat a reasonable person would interpret as a serious expression of intent to inflict bodily harm upon specific individuals";
  • Speech posted online about the University of Southern Indiana or its community members that causes a significant on-campus disruption.

The Student Rights and Responsibilities applies to guests of community members whose hosts may be held accountable for the misconduct of their guests. The Student Rights and Responsibilities may also be applied to resident non-students, campers, and high school bridge/extension/partner/dual-credit and continuing education programs by contractual agreements. Visitors to and guests of University of Southern Indiana may seek resolution of violations of the Student Rights and Responsibilities committed against them by members of University/College community.

There is no time limit on reporting violations of the Student Rights and Responsibilities; however, the longer someone waits to report an offense, the harder it becomes for USI officials to obtain information and witness statements and to make determinations regarding alleged violations.

Though anonymous complaints are permitted, doing so may limit the University of Southern Indiana's ability to investigate and respond to a complaint. Those who are aware of misconduct are encouraged to report it as quickly as possible to the Dean of Students Office, Public Safety, or Housing & Residence Life.

University of Southern Indiana email is the USI's primary means of communication with students. Students are responsible for all communication delivered to their USI email address.

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This Student Rights and Responsibilities was approved on August 14, 2023, by Dean Laurie Berry, and implemented on August 15, 2023.