It's important to know that student conduct processes are not the same as courts. Colleges are determining if a policy has been violated. Courts are determining if a law has been broken.
SUNY Oswego ensures that every student – those harmed by others and those who are accused of causing harm to another person or the community – is guaranteed due process. Due process is emphasized in the effort to ensure that all involved parties receive equitable and fair treatment.
Every student has the right:
- To be notified in writing of the allegations against them;
- To respond to the allegations and have an opportunity to share their perspective of the incident
- in question;
- To be notified in writing of the outcome, and
- In cases where Suspension or Expulsion has been imposed, at least one level of appeal.
|Student Conduct||Court of Law|
|Conduct/Hearing Officer or Hearing Board
A college administrator or panel who will meet with students, review information and determine an outcome.
Charge Letter or Outcome Letter|
|Standards of Evidence
Preponderance or more likely than not is the standard of evidence used at SUNY Oswego.
Beyond a reasonable
|Responsible or Not Responsible
findings of policy violations
Reporting Party, Victim or Complainant
1. Reviewing Incident Reports
Once a complaint has been reported and/or filed and received by the Office of Student Conduct, a preliminary review into the nature of the incident, the evidence available, and the parties involved will be initiated.
The preliminary review may lead to:
• A determination that there is insufficient evidence or no indicated policy violations;
• Further investigation when it is clear more information must be gathered;
• An Alternative Resolution and bypass the conduct process, or
• An Informal or Formal Resolution and referred to the appropriate Student Conduct Officer or Hearing Body.
2. Notification of Alleged Violations
A notice of alleged violation(s) is the document that a student, student organization, or student group will receive if they have allegedly violated the Student Code of Conduct. This notice will include the date, time, and location to attend an information session which will discuss the alleged violations as well as the student conduct process. Failure to respond to the notice of the charges by the time designated in the charge letter shall result in the hearing scheduled without the benefit of the respondent's choice of hearing option.
3. Resolution Options
If an investigation reveals the need for disciplinary action there are multiple resolution options depending on the severity of the allegation.
When the Director of Student Conduct determines that outcomes are not likely to include College Housing Removal, Suspension, or Expulsion, the matter will be referred for an Informal Resolution.
When cases are referred for Informal Resolutions, the following opportunities are available for students to respond to the allegations against them:
By accepting responisbility, a student is admitting responsibility for the alleged violation(s), agree to the prescribed sanctions outlined their Charge Letter and waive their attendance to meet with a Student Conduct Officer.
By denying responsibility, a student is contesting responsibility for the alleged violation(s) outlined in their Charge Letter and agree to attend a Disciplinary Conference.
Disciplinary Conferences are one-on-one meetings with a Student Conduct Officer to resolve incidents when a potential sanction does not rise above disciplinary probation.
In cases where the Director of Student Conduct determines that outcomes could reasonably include College Housing Removal, Suspension, or Expulsion, the matter will be referred for a Formal Resolution.
When cases are referred for Formal Resolutions, the following opportunities are available for students to respond to the allegations against them:
By accepting responsibility, a student is admitting to the alleged violation(s) and the Director of Student Conduct will convene an Administrative Hearing.
Administrative Hearings are typically conducted by the Dean of Students or a designated Hearing Officer when a student has accepted responsibility for allegations of violating policy or when a student has violated the terms and conditions of their Disciplinary Probation or Deferred Suspension status.
Typically, a hearing will consist of one Hearing Officer but at times may require two Hearing Officers.
By denying responsibility, a student is contesting the alleged violations(s) and the Director of Student Conduct will convene a hearing before the Student Conduct Board.
Student Conduct Board Hearings are panels comprised of 3-5 trained faculty, staff and students who hear disciplinary cases when a student is contesting responsibility for allegations of violating policy.
By waiving right to appear, a student is neither admitting or contesting responsibility for the alleged violation(s) and declines their attendance at a hearing. The Director of Student Conduct will present all information in support of the alleged violations to the Dean of Students, and a decision will be made In Absentia.