This document serves as an extension of the Community Standards for Students, and provides an overview on Carleton’s student conduct process, with special emphasis on social misconduct. For more detailed information about student conduct, social misconduct, sexual misconduct, or academic honesty and personal integrity, please review the community policies in the Campus Handbook

Student Conduct Philosophy

Carleton students, as members of a residential community dedicated to learning, should act responsibly and respectfully, and hold themselves and others accountable. The student conduct system at Carleton is guided by the community standards policy and addresses violations through a private, consistent, yet individualized process. Education and the development of the whole person is a guiding principle and recognizes students are developing skills and knowledge that should assist them to make positive life choices. Therefore, follow-up and sanctions associated with violations of community standards encourage students to reflect intentionally on incidents, identify areas for personal growth, and use campus and/or community resources to support this growth.

Responses to Alleged Violations of College Policy      

Incident reports are typically made by Security Officers and Residential Life staff. However, any member of the Carleton College community may file a report by filling out a Community Concern Form. The Dean of Students Office determines who will follow up with the student(s). As part of the investigation the staff member determines whether the alleged violation is an act of academic dishonesty and personal integrity, sexual misconduct, or social misconduct.

Informal Response

The system of response to allegations of student misconduct is an educational one. The very nature of a residential college creates opportunities and challenges for young adults living in community, some for the first time. It is not unusual for young adults in this situation to, on occasion, exercise poor judgments, act insensitively or without thinking, or engage in inappropriate behaviors. Consequently, many minor incidents (e.g., excessive noise, roommate conflicts) are handled informally through conflict resolution, mediation, restorative justices, or simple agreements that the parties involved will cease and desist a certain conduct. Many minor incidents are resolved with the assistance of peer leaders or Student Life staff. Such cases usually do not result in official disciplinary records or sanctions, but may be introduced at a later date if patterns of unacceptable behavior emerge.

Formal Disciplinary Action

When it is neither possible nor appropriate to resolve a conflict or disciplinary matter informally, the alleged violation is forwarded to the Dean of Students Office for action by Student Life staff (e.g., Area Director, Assistant Dean of Students & Director of Community Standards, Title IX Coordinator, and/or Security). There are three major categories of violations, each with a separate and distinct method of resolution: social misconduct, academic honesty and personal integrity, and sexual misconduct.

The rest of this document will only focus on social misconduct. Please review the complete Community Standards for Students for more detailed information about the processes of both academic honesty and personal integrity and sexual misconduct.

As mentioned previously, when an incident is forwarded to the Dean of Students Office, a member of the Student Life Staff is assigned to follow-up with the incident. This will most likely require all students involved in the incident to meet with a member of the Student Life Staff serving as a conduct officer to discuss the incident and provide information leading to its resolution. The role of the Student Life staff member is to determine if the incident has violated any tenets of the Community Standards for Students. If a student is found responsible for a violation, sanctions may be imposed. Many instances of social misconduct occur in or near the residence halls. For most incidents that occur in these locations, the Assistant Dean of Students & Director of Community Standards will assign a member of the Office of Residential Life (e.g., Area Director, Associate Director of Residential Life, or Director of Residential Life) to review and make a determination of responsibility. 

Sanctions for Social Misconduct

Disciplinary sanctions may be administered to students in violation of Community Standards for Students. Disciplinary sanctions may also be imposed upon groups and organizations as well as individuals. More than one sanction may be imposed at one time. Please note that when determining sanctions, every case is viewed individually, and any prior violations of Community Standards for Students will be taken into consideration.

  • Written Warning: A written notification to a student that their behavior violated campus policy and that continuation or repetition of such conduct may result in more severe disciplinary action.
  • Residential Probation: Residential probation means that any additional policy violations that take place during the probationary period will result in further disciplinary sanctions. Students are put on residential probation status when found responsible for violations of the alcohol and drug policy, after repetitive violations, and/or for actions that show disregard for the broader residential community. Social benefits, such as hosting privileges of social gatherings, may be denied to students on residential probation. In some circumstances, students on residential probation may be relocated within or be removed from campus housing. Written confirmation of residential probation is retained in a student’s record until graduation, and may be taken into account in judging the seriousness of any future violation, but is thereafter expunged.
  • Disciplinary Probation: Disciplinary probation means that any additional policy violations that take place during the probationary period will result in further disciplinary sanctions. It implies that any future violation, of whatever kind, during that time, may be grounds for suspension, or in especially serious cases, expulsion from the College. Students are put on disciplinary probation status when found responsible for violations they were already on residential probation for, after repetitive violations, and/or policy violations of a more serious nature. Generally this change of status will be determined by the Dean of Students Office or a Hearing Board. Disciplinary probation is retained in a student’s record until graduation, and will be taken into account in judging the seriousness of any future violation even if the probationary period has expired, but is thereafter expunged.
  • Interim Suspension: Immediate separation from the College for a period defined by the Dean of Students to: (1) ensure safety and well-being of people and property, or (2) prevent disruption or interference of normal operations of the College.
  • Suspension: Termination of a student’s enrollment at the College for a specified period of time. A suspension is recorded on a student’s transcript. Relevant information remains on the student’s record for five years after graduation and may be disclosed by the Dean of Students Office in response to request for which the student has given permission or as otherwise legally required. The Dean of Students (or their designee) may bar suspended students from campus or limit their access to campus facilities or College events during the period of suspension. There may also be requirements the student needs to fulfill in order to return after the suspension period, which will be detailed in the determination letter.
  • Expulsion: Permanent termination of enrollment with no further opportunity to study at the College. An expulsion is recorded on a student’s transcript. Relevant information remains on the student’s record at the College for ten years following the expulsion and may be disclosed by the Dean of Students Office in Response to request for which the student has given permission or as otherwise legally required. Expelled students are barred from campus and College events absent express written permission from the Dean of Students.
  • Restitution: Reimbursement for damage to or misappropriation of college or individual property.
  • Life Safety Fines: Fines assessed in response to violations of community standards that could pose a threat to individuals’ lives.
  • Chemical Health Assessment: Performed by a qualified chemical dependency counselor for the purpose of determining possible patterns of abuse. The student is encouraged to follow the treatment recommendation(s) provided by the counselor.
  • Revocation of Privileges: May include exclusion from College housing, the loss of hosting privileges, or restricted access to College activities and programs on or off campus.
  • Educational Sanctions: Assignments at the discretion of the conduct officer aimed at further education or reflection around a behavior or choice made by the student.
  • Other: Student Life Staff may choose to administer a sanction not mentioned above, in line with the student conduct philosophy.

Appeals for Social Misconduct Violations

In the appeal process, the appealing student is denominated the “respondent.” The respondent may appeal the finding of responsibility or the sanction or both. The respondent must state all grounds for appeal in writing to the Assistant Dean of Students/Director of Community Standards within seven (7) days of receipt of the original disciplinary decision. After seven days the right of appeal is no longer available and the conduct officer’s decision is final.

The Assistant Dean of Students/Director of Community Standards will review appeals by students who were found responsible for violations of the Community Standards which were adjudicated by a member of the Residential Life Staff. 

In cases where the Assistant Dean of Students/Director of Community Standards serves as the conduct officer, the appeal will be referred to the Judicial Hearing Board (JHB). 

For more information about the appeals process, please view the Community Standards for Students

Accommodations for Students with Disabilities

Carleton College is committed to providing appropriate accommodations to students with disabilities so that all students have meaningful access to all College programs and services, including a hearing process.

Students with disabilities involved in a hearing process, including complainants, respondents, witnesses, or a support person, may be entitled to reasonable accommodations. Accommodation requests generally should be made at least five working days before the accommodation is needed. Requests will be considered on shorter notice whenever possible. The request will be reviewed by the Director of Accessibility Resources (or designee) who will determine whether the accommodation(s) will be granted. The Director may require the student to provide appropriate documentation from a qualified health care professional to support the request. The student will be provided with an interactive process to discuss the need for the accommodation. Contact Accessibility Resources with requests for accommodations.