Student Rights and Responsibilities

Section 1.

Purpose

In carrying out its mission, the University has an obligation to maintain conditions under which the work of its students can freely go forward in accordance with the highest standards of institutional integrity and freedom of expression. These policies defined herein address the rights and responsibilities of students to maintain university-wide standards that are designed to protect and promote the rights of its community members, and prevent interference with university functions or activities to assure compliance with all applicable University policies.

The Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities is set forth in writing to provide students with general notice of their rights and responsibilities at the University of Louisville. Further rights and responsibilities are set forth in other University rules and policies, including the Code of Student Conduct, Student Handbook, Residence Hall contracts, graduate and undergraduate catalogs, and academic unit websites. It is the students' responsibility to be aware of all University rules and policies; students should check with the Dean of Students Office and with their academic units if they have any questions about the purposes or intent of these policies.

The University is a public educational institution for adults rather than a custodial institution. Consistent with the role of the University to educate its students and to stimulate student autonomy and independence, University regulation and supervision of student life on and off campus are limited. The University does not assume responsibility or liability for the conduct of its students; responsibility and liability for student conduct rests with the student as inherent attributes of the student's adult status, along with the student's freedom of choice regarding presence at the University and the student's individual conduct and associations.

Section 2.

Definitions

When Used in this Code:

A. The term "academic dishonesty" means obtaining or seeking to obtain an unfair academic advantage for oneself or for any other student; it includes lying, cheating, stealing, or engaging in otherwise dishonest conduct in the course of or related to any academic exercise.

B. The term "academic exercise" means any test, quiz, examination, speech, presentation, paper, field or laboratory work, or any other academic activity on which a student is evaluated in a course.

C. The term "group" means a number of persons who are associated with each other and who have not complied with the University requirements for recognition as an organization.

D. The term "organization" means a number of persons who are associated with each other and who have complied with the University requirements for recognition.

E. The term "student" means any person taking courses at the University, either full time or part time, pursuing undergraduate, graduate or extension studies on a regular quarter, semester, or summer term basis.

F. The term "student broadcast" means oral material published on a student operated radio or television station.

G. The term "student press" means either a student publication or a student broadcast.

H. The term "student publication" means written material published by a student organization.

I. The term "instructor" means any person hired by the University to conduct classroom activities. In certain situations, a person may be both "student" and "instructor." A person's status in a particular situation shall be determined by the circumstances under consideration.

J. The term "University" means the University of Louisville and, collectively, those responsible for its control and operation.

Section 3.

Admission and Financial Aid

All applicants for admission and financial aid to the University shall be considered without regard for race, sex, age, color, national origin, political beliefs, ethnicity, creed, religion, disability, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity and expression, marital status, pregnancy, or veteran status– except where sex, age, or ability represent bona fide educational qualifications.

Section 4.

Classroom Rights and Responsibilities

A. A student shall be evaluated on demonstrated knowledge and academic performance, and not on the basis of personal or political beliefs or on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, or handicap not affecting academic performance.

B. A student has freedom of inquiry, of legitimate classroom discussion, and of free expression of the student's opinion, subject to the instructor's responsibilities to maintain order and to complete the course requirements.

C. A student is responsible for fulfilling the stated requirements of all courses in which he or she is enrolled.

D. A student has the right:

  1. to be provided, at the first or second class meeting, with a syllabus explaining the course requirements, assignments, standards and methods used in evaluating the student's academic performance and classroom rules and expectations;
  2. to be informed in writing of any necessary changes in assignments, requirements, or methods of grading during the semester with the reasons for such changes.
  3. to be provided a substantive academic evaluation before the course withdrawal deadline.

E. A student has the right to confidentiality in the student/instructor relationship regarding the student's political beliefs. However, if there is a potential violation of law, University policy, or a safety concern for self or others, then an instructor can disclose such information. Barring such circumstances, disclosures of a student's political beliefs, expressed in writing or in private conversation, shall not be made public without explicit permission of the student.

F. A student has the right to know how course fees are allocated and provide feedback on its classroom impact.

Charges of violations of these classroom rights and responsibilities shall be handled through the appropriate academic unit level procedures.

Section 5.

Academic Dishonesty

The University of Louisville pursues excellence in its work to educate and serve its community with integrity. Academic dishonesty is prohibited at the University of Louisville because it diminishes the quality of scholarship, prohibits independent thought that is essential to intellectual growth and development, makes accurate evaluation of student progress impossible, and defrauds those in society who must ultimately depend upon the knowledge and integrity of the institution and its students and faculty.

Academic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to, the following:

A. Cheating:

  1. Using or attempting to use books, notes, study aids, calculators, or any other documents, devices, or information in any academic exercise without prior authorization by the instructor.
  2. Copying or attempting to copy from another person's paper, report, laboratory work, computer program, or other work material in any academic exercise.
  3. Procuring or using tests or examinations, or any other information regarding the content of a test or examination, before the scheduled exercise without prior authorization by the instructor.
  4. Unauthorized communication during any academic exercise. Except when otherwise explicitly stated by the instructor, examination questions shall become public after they have been given.
  5. Discussing the contents of tests or examinations with students who have not yet taken the tests or examinations if the instructor has forbidden such discussion.
  6. Sending a substitute to take one's examination, test, or quiz, or to perform one's field or laboratory work; acting as a substitute for another student at any examination, test, or quiz, or at a field or laboratory work assignment.
  7. Conducting research or preparing work for another student, or allowing others to conduct one's research or prepare one's work, without prior authorization by the instructor.

B. Fabrication:

Inventing or making up data, research results, information, or procedures, including a record or any portion thereof regarding internship, clinical, or practicum experience.

C. Falsification:

Altering or falsifying information, such as:

  1. Changing grade reports or other academic records.
  2. Altering the record of experimental procedures, data, or results.
  3. Altering the record of or reporting false information about internship, clinical, or practicum experiences.
  4. Forging someone's signature or identification on an academic record.
  5. Altering a returned examination paper in order to claim that the examination was graded erroneously.
  6. Falsely citing a source of information.

D. Multiple Submission:

The submission of substantial portions of the same academic work, including oral reports, for credit more than once without prior authorization by the instructors involved.

E. Plagiarism:

Representing the words or ideas of someone else as one's own in any academic exercise, such as:

  1. Submitting as one's own a paper written by another person or by a commercial "ghost writing" service,
  2. Exactly reproducing someone else's words without identifying the words with quotation marks or by appropriate indentation, or without properly citing the quotation in a footnote or reference.
  3. Paraphrasing or summarizing someone else's work without acknowledging the source with a footnote or reference.
  4. Using facts, data, graphs, charts, or other information without acknowledging the source with a footnote or reference. Borrowed facts or information obtained in one's research or reading must be acknowledged unless they are "common knowledge." Clear examples of "common knowledge" include the names of leaders of prominent nations, basic scientific laws, and the meaning of fundamental concepts and principles in a discipline. The specific audience for which a paper is written may determine what can be viewed as "common knowledge:" for example, the facts commonly known by a group of chemists will differ radically from those known by a more general audience. Students should check with their instructors regarding what can be viewed as "common knowledge" within a specific field or assignment, but often the student will have to make the final judgment. When in doubt, footnotes or references should be used.

F. Complicity in Academic Dishonesty:

Helping or attempting to commit an academically dishonest act. The academic units may have additional guidelines regarding academic dishonesty. It is the student's responsibility to check with their instructors and academic units to obtain those guidelines.

Section 6.

Discipline Procedures for Academic Dishonesty

Charges of academic dishonesty shall be handled through the appropriate academic unit level procedures.

An academic unit that determines that a student is responsible for academic dishonesty may impose any academic punishment on the student that it sees fit, including suspension or expulsion from the academic unit. A student has no right to appeal the final decision of an academic unit. However, a student who believes that he or she has been treated unfairly, has been discriminated against, or has had his or her rights abridged by the academic unit may file a grievance with the Unit Academic Grievance Committee, pursuant to the provisions of the Student Academic Grievance Procedure; the Unit Academic Grievance Committee may not substitute its judgment on the merits for the judgment of the academic unit.

An academic unit that suspends or expels a student from the academic unit because the student has been found responsible for academic dishonesty may recommend to the University Provost or designee in writing that the student also be suspended or expelled from all other programs and academic units of the University. Within four weeks of receiving such a recommendation, the Provost shall issue a written decision. Neither the student nor the academic unit shall have the right to appeal the Provost's decision.

Section 7.

Freedom of Expression

A. Students or student organizations have the right of freedom of expression to the extent allowed by law.

B. Students or student organizations may picket or demonstrate for a cause, subject to the following conditions:

  1. The students or student organizations must act in an orderly and peaceful manner.
  2. The students or student organizations must not in any way interfere with the proper functioning of the University.
  3. When students or student organizations demonstrate in an area not traditionally used as an open public forum, the University reserves the right to make reasonable restrictions as to time, place, and manner of the student demonstrations.

C. Students or student organizations may distribute written material on campus without prior approval, providing such distribution does not disrupt the operations of the University or violate University rules.

D. Students or student organizations may invite to campus speakers of their choice on subjects of their choice; approval will not be withheld by any University official for the purpose of censorship. The student or student organization must be present with the guest speaker during the event. The University reserves the right to make reasonable time, place and manner restrictions to activities that pose a risk to personal safety, university property, or facility security.

Section 8.

Student Press

A. The student press is a vehicle to express and discuss news that occurs on campus and globally, student concerns, and student opinions. The student press is free to deal openly, fearlessly, and responsibly with issues of interest and importance to the academic community. There shall be no prior approval of student press content by the University.

B. The student press is responsible for adhering to the canons of responsible journalism and for complying with the law. Student publications and broadcasts shall not publish libelous or slanderous matter, or any other content that violates the law.

C. All student publications and broadcasts shall explicitly state that the opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the University or its student body.

D. Students may not be disciplined by the University for their participation with the student press except for violations of University rules that are not inconsistent with the guarantees contained herein.

Section 9.

University Facilities

Appropriate University facilities shall be available to organizations within the University community for regular business meetings, for social programs, and for programs open to the public.

A. Reasonable conditions may be imposed to regulate the timeliness of requests, to determine the appropriateness of the space assigned, to regulate time and use, and to insure proper maintenance. The University reserves the right to make reasonable restrictions to activities that pose a risk to personal safety, university property, or facility security.

B. Events must be registered with the Office of Student Involvement. The registration form is located on the Office of Student Involvement website at https://louisville.edu/studentactivities/forms/reservation/.

C. Preference may be given to programs designed for audiences consisting primarily of members of the University community.

D. Allocation of space shall be made based on priority of requests and the demonstrated needs of the organization.

E. Charges may be imposed for any unusual costs for use of facilities.

F. Physical abuse of assigned facilities may result in reasonable limitations on future allocation of space to offending parties and will require restitution of damages.

G. The organization requesting space must inform the University of the general purpose of any meeting open to persons other than members and the names of outside speakers.

Section 10.

Use of University Name and Insignia

No individual, group, or organization may use the University of Louisville name or insignia without the express authorization of the University except to identify its affiliation with the University.. University approval or disapproval of any policy or issue may not be stated or implied by any individual, group, or organization.

Section 11.

Campus Residence Facilities

Students have the right of privacy in campus residence facilities.

A. Nothing in the University relationship or residence hall contract may expressly or implicitly give the institution or residence hall officials authority to consent to search of a student's room or residence by police or other law enforcement officials unless they have obtained a search warrant.

B. The University reserves the right to enter a student's room in a residence hall or a student's apartment in a campus residence:
in emergencies where imminent danger to life, safety, health, or property is reasonably feared;
to make necessary repairs, improvements, or alterations in the facility;
to provide necessary pest control services; or
to inspect the facility as deemed necessary by the University.

Section 12.

FERPA/Privacy Guidelines

The confidentiality of all student records shall be preserved in accordance with privacy rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Section 13.

Recognized Student Organizations

Organizations and groups may be established within the University for any legal purpose. Affiliation with an extramural organization shall not, in itself, disqualify the University branch or chapter from University privileges. A student group shall become a formally recognized student organization through procedures established by the Student Government Association, upon approval of the Dean of Students.

A. Groups of a continuing nature must institute proceedings for formal recognition if they are to receive benefits from the University.

B. Recognition of an organization by the University confers neither approval nor disapproval of the aims, objectives, and policies of the organization, nor liability for the actions of the organization.

C. Membership in all University-related organizations shall be open to any member of the University community who is willing to subscribe to the stated aims and meet the stated obligations of the organization, provided such aims and obligations are lawful.

D. Names and addresses of current organization members shall be reported to the University as a condition of continuing University recognition.

E. Whether on or off campus, any organization that engages in activities either that are illegal or contrary to any University policy may have sanctions imposed against it, including withdrawal of University recognition.

Section 14.

Promulgation of University Rules Affecting Students

Rules and policies affecting students shall be published in the Student Handbook, in the appropriate University website, or in any other appropriate publication prior to their enforcement. Included in the Student Handbook are the following: Academic Grievance Procedure, Code of Student Conduct, Student Sexual Misconduct Policy, Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities, Policy on Consumption of Alcoholic Beverages for Recognized Student Organizations, Hazing and Initiation Activities Policy, Non-academic Grievance Policy and the Sexual Harassment Policy. The Student Handbook is available online at: https://louisville.edu/dos/students/studentpoliciesandprocedures/student-handbook.

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