Student Judicial Programs

Code of Student Conduct


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Approved 9/3/15


Western Illinois University values academic excellence, educational opportunity, social responsibility, and personal growth. The University educates students intellectually as individuals and socially as citizens of the global community. Each member of the Western Illinois University community shares responsibility for maintaining conditions which support these institutional values. The Code of Student Conduct is designed to provide basic guidelines to advance the University’s mission as a community of individuals dedicated to learning that will have a profound and positive impact on our changing world through the unique interaction of instruction, research, and public service as we educate and prepare a diverse student population to thrive in and contribute to our global society.

As citizens of the larger community in which the University is located, students retain the rights and responsibilities common to all citizens; affiliation with the University does not diminish the rights and responsibilities held by a student or any other community member as a citizen of the State, the nation, or the world. Students are subject to the behavioral prescriptions promulgated by each of these entities. Therefore, the University as well as civil authorities have jurisdiction over violations of law that occur on University property.

The Code of Student Conduct outlines the standards of behavior expected of every student at Western Illinois University. The policies and procedures outlined have been designed through a representative process by students, faculty, and administrators to further the institution’s educational purposes and to assist students in their pursuit of knowledge and personal development.

A student voluntarily joins the Western Illinois University community and thereby assumes the obligation of abiding by the standards prescribed in the Code of Student Conduct. The University, through the Office of the Vice President for Student Services, maintains the exclusive authority to impose sanctions for behaviors that violate the Code of Student Conduct.

All students enrolled at Western Illinois University have access to the Code of Student Conduct. Printed copies are available through Student Judicial Programs and the Office of the Vice President for Student Services. The Code, along with other helpful information, may be accessed online at

A. Definitions

  1. The term "Board" means Board of Trustees of Western Illinois University.
  2. The term "University" means Western Illinois University.
  3. The term "student" includes all persons registered for and taking courses at the University, either full-time or part-time, pursuing undergraduate, graduate, or professional studies. Persons who withdraw after allegedly violating the Code of Student Conduct, who are not officially enrolled for a particular term but who have a continuing relationship with the University or who have been notified of their acceptance for admission are considered "students" as are persons who are living in University residential facilities, although not enrolled in this institution.
  4. The term "faculty member" means any person hired by the University to conduct classroom or teaching activities or who is otherwise considered by the University to be a member of its faculty.
  5. The term "University official" includes any person employed by the University, performing assigned administrative or professional responsibilities.
  6. The term "member of the University community" includes any person who is a student, faculty member, University official, or any other person employed by the University. For the purpose of administering this Code, a person’s status in a particular situation will be determined by the Director of Student Judicial Programs.
  7. The term "complainant" refers to the person(s) alleging that a student or student organization has violated the Code.
  8. The term "respondent" refers to the person(s) who is accused of violating the Code.
  9. The term "University premises" includes all land, buildings, facilities, or other property in the possession of or owned, used, or controlled by the University, including adjacent streets and sidewalks.
  10. The term "student organization" means any number of students who have complied with the formal requirements for University recognition.
  11. The term "judicial body" means any person or persons authorized by the Director of Student Judicial Programs to determine whether a student has violated the Code of Student Conduct and to recommend sanctions that may be imposed when a rules violation has been committed.
  12. The term "judicial officer" means the Director of Student Judicial Programs. Other judicial officers may be authorized by the Director of Student Judicial Programs to assist in determining whether a student has violated the Code of Student Conduct and to impose sanctions.

B. Authority

  1. The University has established these regulations regarding standards of conduct in order to protect its educational mission, provide for the orderly conduct of its activities, and safeguard the interests of the University community.
  2. The Vice President for Student Services retains ultimate responsibility for the administration of this Code (policies, procedures, sanctions, and processes). The Vice President or designee expressly retains final authority to determine the following:
    1. jurisdiction of any judicial board/panel in any given case where ambiguity exists
    2. whether a violation of this Code will be adjudicated administratively or by a judicial board/panel.
    3. whether a violation or serious criminal act, occurring off campus, will be adjudicated by the University judicial system.
    4. the selection, training, and eligibility standards for being a judicial board/panel member, advisor, or judicial officer.
    5. the removal, for cause, of any judicial board/panel, judicial board/panel member, advisor, or judicial officer.
    6. how violations of this Code are to be adjudicated at the end of the academic year and during the summer session.

C. General Provisions

  1. These regulations are set forth in writing in order to give students general notice of prohibited conduct and are not designed to define misconduct in all-inclusive terms.
  2. All students, regardless of their status in the University community, will be afforded the rights and privileges of due process when accused of violations of this Code.
  3. The provisions of the Code of Student Conduct are not to be regarded as a contract between the student and the University. The University reserves the right to amend any provision herein at any time in accordance with established University procedures. Communication of any changes will be made to the University community in an appropriate and timely fashion.
  4. This Code of Student Conduct will apply to conduct which occurs on University property, at University sponsored activities, and to off-campus conduct that adversely affects the University community and/or the pursuit of its objectives. Each student shall be responsible for his/her conduct from the time of application for admission through the actual awarding of a degree, even though conduct may occur before classes begin or after classes end, as well as during the academic year and during periods between terms of actual enrollment (and even if their conduct is not discovered until after a degree is awarded). The Code of Student Conduct will apply to a student’s conduct even if the student withdraws from school while a disciplinary matter is pending.
  5. The actions of a student organization involved in University-related activities or University-sponsored activities that are in violation of University regulations may result in disciplinary action against the organization.
  6. University disciplinary proceedings may be instituted against a student charged with conduct that potentially violates criminal law or city ordinance and this Code of Student Conduct, without regard to the pendency of civil or criminal litigation in court or arrest and prosecution. Proceedings under this Code of Student Conduct may be carried out prior to, simultaneous with, or following civil or criminal proceedings off campus. Determinations made or sanctions imposed under the Code of Student Conduct will not be subject to change because criminal charges arising out of the same facts giving rise to the violation of University rules were dismissed, reduced, or resolved in favor of or against the criminal law defendant.

    When a student is charged by federal, state, or local authorities with a violation of law, the University will not request or agree to special consideration of that individual because of his or her status as a student. If the alleged offense is also being processed under the Code of Student Conduct, the University may advise off-campus authorities of the existence of the Code of Student Conduct and how such matters are typically handled within the University community. The University will attempt to cooperate with law enforcement and other agencies in the enforcement of criminal law on campus and the conditions imposed by criminal courts for the rehabilitation of student violators provided that the conditions do not conflict with campus rules or sanctions. Individual students and other members of the University community, acting in their personal capacities, remain free to interact with governmental representatives as they deem appropriate.
  7. Any behavior which may have been influenced by a student’s mental state (regardless of the ultimate evaluation) or use of drugs or alcoholic beverages will not in any way limit the responsibility of the student for the consequences of his or her actions.

D. Regulations For Student Conduct

Any student found to have committed or to have attempted to commit the following misconduct is subject to the disciplinary sanctions, including separation from the University or a lesser sanction authorized by the Code.

  1. Violating any University policy, rule, or regulation published in hard copy or available electronically on the University web site.
  2. Violating any federal, state, or local law.
  3. Committing acts of sexual misconduct including sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual abuse or other unwelcomed behavior of a sexual nature committed without consent and/or by force, intimidation, coercion, or manipulation. Consent is defined as an informed, voluntary and freely given agreement between participating individuals to the sexual conduct in question. Consent to engage in mutually agreed upon sexual activity is clearly communicated in words and/or actions. Consent must be acquired prior to and contemporaneously with sexual activity. Consent cannot be given by an individual who is asleep; unconscious; intermittently conscious; under threat, duress, coercion, or force; under the age of 18; or otherwise legally unable to provide consent.1 (Refer to Policy Statement A at the close of this document for the Western Illinois University policy on sexual assault.)
  4. Engaging in harmful or potentially harmful behaviors, including, but not limited to, the following:
    1. acts of physical or verbal abuse.
    2. actions which intimidate, harass, threaten, coerce, or otherwise endanger the health or safety of oneself or others.
    3. driving while under the influence of alcohol, cannabis, or other controlled substances.
    4. stalking defined as two or more acts, including, but not limited to, acts which the stalker directly, indirectly, or through third parties, by any action, method, device or means follows, monitors, observes, surveils, threatens, or engages in conduct that causes a reasonable person to suffer emotional distress or to fear for his/her safety.2
    5. dating violence defined as violence committed by a person who has been in a relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim. Violence includes, but is not limited to, sexual or physical abuse or the threat of such abuse.3
    6. domestic violence defined as physical, mental, or emotional abuse committed by a current or former spouse, a person sharing a child in common, or a person who is or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse. Any person who physically abuses, harasses or interferes with the personal liberty or another family or household member is also covered under this definition.4
    7. gender harassment defined as subjecting a person to adverse treatment based on held gender stereotypes. Adverse treatment can include verbal, nonverbal, or physical aggression, intimidation, or hostility based on gender or held gender stereotypes, but is not limited to conduct of a sexual nature.5
  5. Engaging in disorderly conduct or fighting. For purposes of this Code, disorderly conduct is defined to include, but is not limited to, acts which breach the peace or are lewd, indecent, or obscene.
  6. Hazing, defined as an act which endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student, or which destroys or removes public or private property, for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition for continued membership in, a group or organization. (Refer to Policy Statement B at the close of this document for a description of the kinds of activities covered by this Code.)
  7. Disrupting or obstructing teaching, research, administration, other University activities, including its public service functions on or off campus, or of other authorized non-University activities when the conduct occurs on University premises. (Refer to Policy Statement C at the close of this document for the Board of Trustees’ Policy on Campus Disruption).
  8. Possessing, duplicating, or using keys to any University building or facility without authorization by appropriate University officials or committing an act of unauthorized entry into or use of University buildings or facilities.
  9. Engaging or participating in acts or attempted acts of unauthorized possession, use, removal, defacing, tampering, damage, or destruction of property of the University or property of a member of the University community or other personal or public property, on or off campus.
  10. Posting, affixing, or otherwise attaching written or printed messages or materials (e.g., posters, signs, handbills, brochures, or pamphlets) on or in unauthorized places, including, but not limited to, trees, shrubbery, sidewalks, buildings, and lawn areas.
  11. Engaging or participating in unauthorized possession or use of explosives, firearms, dangerous weapons, or other hazardous objects or substances. Weapons, explosives, and other hazardous objects or substances covered by this regulation will include, but not be limited to, the following:
    1. any device defined as a "deadly weapon" under 720 Illinois Compiled Statutes, 5/24-1. (Refer to Policy Statement D at the close of this document.)
    2. all handguns, rifles, and shotguns.
    3. all longbows, crossbows, and arrows.
    4. all knives having a blade length of three inches or more (with the exception of culinary knives used solely in kitchens and dining rooms in the preparation and eating of meals).
    5. all BB guns, pellet guns, air/CO2 guns, paintball guns, or blow guns.
    6. all fireworks.
    7. all explosives, laboratory chemicals, dangerous compounds, gunpowder, firearm ammunition, and flammable petroleum fuel.
    8. any martial arts weapon (e.g., nunchucks and throwing stars).
    9. any item used as a weapon in the commission of a crime.
    10. any operative animal trap or other device that is used to ensnare animals.
  12. Committing acts of arson, creating a fire hazard, or possessing or using, without proper authorization, inflammable materials or hazardous substances on University property.
  13. Committing acts which endanger the property of the University (including, but not limited to, altering or misusing any fire-fighting equipment, safety equipment, or emergency device).
  14. Making false reports of a fire, bomb threat, or other dangerous condition; failing to report a fire; or interfering with the response of University or municipal officials to emergency calls.
  15. Failing to comply with the directions of or obstructing University officials or law enforcement officers acting in performance of their duties and/or failure to positively identify oneself to these persons when requested to do so.
  16. Aiding and abetting another person in committing an act that violates the Code of Student Conduct.
  17. Committing acts of dishonesty, including, but not limited to, the following:
    1. engaging or participating in cheating, plagiarism, or other forms of academic dishonesty (students committing acts of academic dishonesty are also subject to academic sanctions).
    2. furnishing false information to any University official, faculty member, or office.
    3. forging, altering, or misusing any University document, record, or instrument of identification.
    4. tampering with the election of any University-recognized student organization.
    5. attempting to represent the University, any recognized student organization, or any official University group without the explicit prior consent of the officials of that group.
    6. possessing or using false identification or identification which represents the bearer to be 20 or more years of age.
  18. Gambling on University property or engaging in unauthorized canvass-in or solicitation.
  19. Engaging in acts of theft or abuse of computer time, including, but not limited to (refer to Policy Statement E at the close of this document for the Western Illinois University Appropriate Use Policy):
    1. any activity that violates the integrity or interferes with the normal operation of the University computing system.
    2. unauthorized use of another person’s identification and password.
    3. unauthorized transfer of a file or files.
    4. unauthorized entry into a file to use, read or change its contents.
    5. any other activity that interferes with another user's work or which causes a significant drain upon University computing resources.
    6. any other activity that interferes with the work of another WIU student, faculty member, staff member, or University or other official.
    7. unauthorized financial gain or commercial activity.
    8. any obscene, harassing, or defamatory activity.
    9. any activity which is illegal under federal or state law, including, but not limited to, accessing child pornography; participating in chain letters; and unauthorized reproduction or distribution of copyrighted material, including software, text, images, audio, or video.
    10. unauthorized connection of computing devices or technology infrastructure equipment to the WIU computing infrastructure.
  20. Using, possessing, manufacturing, or distributing cannabis (marijuana) or any State or federally controlled substance except as expressly permitted by law. (Refer to Policy Statement F at the close of this document for a list of substances which fall under this Code.)
  21. Using, possessing, manufacturing, or distributing alcoholic beverages except as expressly permitted by law, University regulations, or residence hall policy. (Refer to Policy Statement G at the close of this document for applicable University alcohol regulations.)
  22. Engaging or participating in abuse of the judicial system, including, but not limited to:
    1. falsifying or misrepresenting information before a judicial body.
    2. disrupting or interfering with the orderly conduct of a judicial proceeding.
    3. instituting a judicial complaint knowingly without cause.
    4. attempting to discourage an individual’s proper participation in, or use of, the judicial system.
    5. attempting to influence the impartiality of a member of a judicial body prior to, during, and/or after a judicial proceeding.
    6. harassing (verbal or physical) and/or intimidating a member of a judicial body prior to, during, and/or after a judicial proceeding.
    7. failing to comply with the sanction(s) imposed under the Code of Student Conduct.
    8. influencing or attempting to influence another person to commit an abuse of the judicial system.
    9. retaliating against any student, staff, faculty member or third party for reporting an incident, investigating a judicial complaint and/or participating in the process.
  23. Committing violations of rules and regulations duly established and promulgated by other University departments (e.g., University Housing & Dining Services, Parking Services, and the University Library).
  24. Parading or marching on streets, roadways, or property of the University without the advance approval of the Vice President for Student Services or designee and the Director of Public Safety or designee.
  25. Misusing electronic devices. (Refer to Policy Statement I at the close of this document for a description of the kinds of activities covered under this Code.)

E. Sanctions

  1. In recommending or determining a sanction, a hearing board or judicial officer will consider all relevant factors, including the nature of the offense, the severity of any damage, injury or harm resulting from the offense, the student’s current demeanor, and the student’s past disciplinary record, if any.
  2. Te following are sanctions which may be imposed for a violation of this Code:
    1. Expulsion - Permanent separation from the institution. The student will be barred from University property.
    2. Suspension - Separation of the student from the University for a specified period of time. The student will not participate in University-sponsored activities and will be barred from University property, unless otherwise specified by the Vice President for Student Services or designee.
    3. Deferred Suspension - A specified period of time during which a student’s continued enrollment at the University is clearly in jeopardy. Should a University judicial board find a student in violation of the Code of Student Conduct during the period of deferred suspension, the board will automatically consider imposing a lengthy suspension or an expulsion from the University.
    4. University Housing Removal - Removal of the student from University housing for a specified time. Normally, a student who is found to be in violation of this Code by the appropriate hearing body or judicial officer is entitled to five calendar days to vacate his or her University housing facility.
    5. Disciplinary Probation - A specified period of time during which the student is removed from good disciplinary standing. The student may be precluded from representing the University in any extracurricular activity or running for or holding office in any student group or organization. A letter will be sent to the student’s parents or legal guardians notifying them of the probation. This will occur unless otherwise stipulated by a judicial officer and approved by the Director of Student Judicial Programs. This will be waived for students who are financially independent of their parents/guardians or who are twenty-one years of age or older.
    6. Disciplinary Censure - A specified period of time during which any further violation of the Code of Student Conduct will likely subject the student to more severe disciplinary action.
    7. Disciplinary Reprimand - A written warning to the student that the cited behavior is not acceptable by University standards. The student is warned that further misconduct may result in more severe disciplinary action.
    8. Restitution - The student is required to make payment to the University for loss of or damage to University property.
    9. Other Sanctions - Other sanctions may be imposed instead of or in addition to those specified above, including, but not limited to, the following: community service, educational or research projects, mandated counseling or therapy, relocation to another University living area, trespass from specified University premises, loss of specified University privileges, fines for alcohol or controlled substance policy violations, or loss of institutional financial aid. The imposition of such sanctions must be related to the nature of the violation.
    10. Revocation of Admission and/or Degree – Admission to or a degree awarded from the University may be revoked for fraud, misrepresentation, or other violation of University standards in obtaining the degree, or for other serious violations committed by a student prior to graduation.
    11. Withholding Degree – The University may withhold awarding a degree otherwise earned until the completion of the process set forth in the code of Student conduct, including the completion of all sanctions imposed, if any.

F. Interim Suspension

In certain circumstances the Vice President for Student Services or a designee may impose a University or residence hall suspension prior to the student judicial hearing.

  1. Interim suspension may be imposed only: a) to ensure the safety and well-being of members of the University community or preservation of University property; b) to ensure the student’s own physical or emotional safety and well-being; or c) if the student poses an ongoing threat of disruption of, or interference with, the normal operations of the University.
  2. During the interim suspension, a student will be denied access to the residence halls and/or to the campus (including classes) and/or all other University activities for which the student might otherwise be eligible.
  3. The interim suspension does not replace the regular process. It is a temporary action that will be enforced until such time as a student judicial hearing and the resulting decision-making process has been completed. The hearing will be conducted within a reasonable length of time; unless unusual circumstances are present, the hearing will be held not later than ten calendar days from the date the interim suspension was imposed. The student should be notified in writing of this action and the reason(s) for the suspension.

G. Student Judicial Programs

  1. Student Judicial Programs has been delegated the responsibility to administer the student judicial system. Responsibilities include:
    1. determining charges to be filed pursuant to the Code of Student Conduct.
    2. interviewing and advising parties involved in disciplinary proceedings.
    3. supervising the training and advising of all judicial boards.
    4. reviewing the decisions of all judicial boards.
    5. maintaining all student disciplinary records resulting from enforcement of the Code of Student Conduct.
    6. resolving disputes and contested issues that arise out of alleged cases of student misconduct.
    7. collecting and disseminating data concerning student judicial system actions.

H. Hearing Boards

  1. The University will establish appropriate hearing boards which may conduct hearings concerning alleged violations of the Code of Student Conduct and recommend findings and sanctions. Such boards include:
    1. University Judicial Board - Consisting of student, faculty, and staff representatives, the University Judicial Board will be the hearing body for cases involving students and recognized student organizations charged with violations under this Code.

I. Selection and Removal of Board Members

  1. Members of the various judicial boards are selected in accordance with procedures approved by the Vice President for Student Services or designee.
  2. Prospective members of the University Judicial Board are subject to confirmation by the following: faculty members confirmed by the Faculty Senate, student members confirmed by the Director of Student Judicial Programs, and administrative staff confirmed by the Vice President for Student Services.
  3. Prior to participating in board deliberations, new members will participate in at least one orientation session coordinated by Student Judicial Programs.
  4. Student members of any judicial board who are charged with any violation of the Code of Student Conduct or with a criminal offense may be suspended from their judicial positions by the Director of Student Judicial Programs during the pendency of charges against them. Students found in violation of any charge or offense may be disqualified from further participation on judicial boards by the Director of Student Judicial Programs.

J. Procedures for Disciplinary Actions

  1. Any student, faculty, or staff member may refer a student or a student group or organization suspected of violating this Code to Student Judicial Programs. Persons initiating such referrals are required to provide information in writing pertinent to the allegation and will normally be expected to appear at a judicial hearing related to the matter.
  2. If an alleged violation takes place in or near a residence hall, the complaint may be filed with the residence hall director in that area. If an alleged violation occurs elsewhere, the complaint should be filed with Student Judicial Programs.
  3. The University may file appropriate charges against students accused of violating the Code of Student Conduct. If a student has withdrawn or withdraws after the filing of such charges, either (1) a registration encumbrance will be initiated and the student notified that disciplinary action may be pursued upon the student’s application for readmission, or (2) the University will proceed to take disciplinary action under the provisions of the Code.
  4. The Director of Student Judicial Programs or a designee will review judicial complaints to determine whether alleged violations of the Code may result in removal from University housing, suspension, or expulsion. Students who might be subject to such sanctions will be accorded a hearing before a University Judicial Board. All other cases will be scheduled initially for review through a disciplinary conference.
  5. Students referred to a judicial board hearing may elect instead to have their case resolved through a disciplinary conference. Sanctions authorized by this Code with the exception of suspension and expulsion may be imposed, but under such circumstances the right of appeal will no longer apply.
  6. Any student charged with violating the Code of Student Conduct may request permission from either the judicial officer involved in the disciplinary conference or the Director of Student Judicial Programs for a delay in a disciplinary conference or board hearing. In a case in which criminal charges are pending against an accused student for the same incident, upon the student’s request, a reasonable delay will be granted to secure the advice of legal counsel, except in the case of interim sanctions. All other delays will be granted at the discretion of the Director of Student Judicial Programs or her/his designee.

K. Disciplinary Conferences

  1. Upon the filing of charges, the University may schedule a disciplinary conference with the accused student(s) at which the nature of and the responsibility for the alleged offense is discussed. The charged student(s) will be notified in writing at least three calendar days prior to the scheduled disciplinary conference and will have the right to waive the disciplinary conference and proceed to a hearing board. The judicial officer conducting the disciplinary conference may withdraw any charge deemed to be without basis.
  2. If the substantive facts and sanction(s) can be agreed upon by the judicial officer and the accused student(s), a judicial action agreement may be prepared and signed by both. A signed judicial action agreement will constitute a waiver of the right to a hearing and any appeal, and an acceptance of the finding(s) and sanction(s).
  3. If the substantive facts and sanction(s) cannot be agreed upon, the matter will be referred to the appropriate hearing board.
  4. If an accused student fails to appear at a scheduled disciplinary conference following proper written notification, the designated judicial officer may review the evidence in support of the charges and render a decision. Findings and sanctions, if applicable, will be based on the evidence and not on the accused student’s failure to appear. The decision rendered by the judicial officer will be final and not subject to appeal.

L. Board Hearing Procedures

  1. In the event of a board hearing, the charged student will be notified at least three calendar days prior to the date of the hearing. Such notice will be in writing and include the following:
    1. the specific charges citing the appropriate University policies or regulations allegedly violated and the acts alleged to have been committed.
    2. a description of the alleged acts, including the time and place (insofar as may reasonably be known) and a summary of the information upon which the charges are based.
    3. the time and place of the hearing.
    4. the procedures to be followed at the hearing.
  2. In most instances, hearing notification letters will be sent via campus or United States mail and University e-mail. Notification letters will be considered to be received upon delivery to a student's current local address as recorded with the Office of the University Registrar or time of e-mail posting. Failure to notify the University of a change of address, failure to pick up one’s notification letter, or failure to read one’s notification letter could result in a case being reviewed in absentia.
  3. Any hearing board will be subject to the following procedures:
    1. Members of the board will be impartial (i.e., judge the case fairly and solely on the evidence presented).
    2. Hearings will be conducted in private.
    3. Where the student denies the charges, the University presenter/complainant will bear the burden of proving the charges by a preponderance of the evidence.
    4. Should an accused student fail to appear after proper notification, the hearing will be conducted in absentia. Evidence in support of the charges will be presented to and considered by the judicial board.
    5. The presenter/complainant, accused student and their advisors, if any, will be allowed to attend the entire portion of the hearing at which information is received (excluding deliberations). The presenter/complainant and the accused student may be assisted by an advisor they choose, at their own expense. The complainant/presenter and/or accused student is responsible for presenting his or her information, and therefore, advisors are not permitted to speak or to participate directly in a hearing before a judicial board. A student should select as an advisor a person whose schedule allows attendance at the scheduled date and time of the hearing because delays will not normally be allowed due to scheduling conflicts of an advisor.
    6. The presiding chairperson of each board will exercise control over the hearing. A hearing board need not observe formal rules of evidence and may exclude unduly repetitious or irrelevant evidence.
    7. A case report will be completed for each board hearing. The case report will include a record of all parties involved in the hearing, pleadings of the accused, the board’s findings and sanction recommendations, and a rationale for the recommended sanctions.
    8. Witnesses will be expected to present truthful information.
    9. Prospective witnesses, other than the alleged victim and the student accused, will be excluded from the hearing during the testimony of other witnesses. All parties, the witnesses, and advisors will be excluded during board deliberations.
    10. Any person, including the charged student, who disrupts a hearing or fails to adhere to the procedural rulings of the board chairperson, may be excluded from the proceedings.
    11. The presenter/complainant and the accused student may arrange for witnesses to present pertinent information to the hearing board. The University will try to arrange the attendance of possible witnesses who are members of the University community, if reasonably possible, and who are identified by the presenter/complainant and/or accused student at least two weekdays prior to the judicial board hearing. Witnesses will provide information to and answer questions from the judicial board. Questions may be suggested by the accused student and/or presenter/complainant to be answered by each other or by other witnesses. This will be conducted by the judicial board with such questions directed to the chairperson, rather than to the witness directly. This method is used to preserve the educational tone of the hearing and to avoid creation of an adversarial environment. Questions of whether potential information will be received shall be resolved in the discretion of the chairperson of the hearing board.
    12. Pertinent records, exhibits, or written statements may be accepted as evidence for consideration by a judicial body at the discretion of the chairperson.
    13. Board advisors will serve as the chairperson for board hearings. All procedural questions are subject to the final decision of the chairperson of the hearing board.
    14. A single record of proceedings, such as an audio recording, will be made of all hearings before a judicial body. The record will be the property of the University and be used for deliberations and appeals. No other recording, audio or video, will be permitted.
    15. The hearing board may accommodate concerns regarding the personal safety, well-being, and/or fears of the confrontation of the presenter/complainant, accused student, and/or other witness during the hearing by providing separate facilities, by using a visual screen, and/or permitting participation by telephone, videophone, audio tape, Skype or other VoIP, written statement, or other means, where and as determined in the sole judgment the Director of Student Judicial Programs.
  4. A hearing board will list their recommended findings of fact, sanctions, and rationale for the sanctions which will be included in the official record of the hearing. The board will consider the past disciplinary record of the charged student only after a finding of violation has been determined. The entire record will be forwarded to the Associate Vice President for Student Services.
  5. The Associate Vice President for Student Services will, within a reasonable length of time after receiving the judicial board’s recommendation, render a decision in the disciplinary matter and notify the accused student. Such notification will be in writing and include the findings of fact, sanction(s), and rationale for determinations. The complainant or victim will be apprised of the decision. Such information will be communicated orally with a reminder that the information is subject to privacy laws.

M. Appeals

  1. A decision reached after a judicial board hearing may be appealed by the accused student. A complainant of sexual misconduct or other interpersonal violence case may also appeal a hearing outcome. Such appeals must be submitted in writing and be delivered to the Office of Student Judicial Programs within five calendar days of the written decision. The Vice President for Student Services will review and act on a filed appeal.
  2. Except as required to explain the basis of new information, an appeal will be limited to a review of the record of the judicial board hearing and supporting documents for one or more of the following purposes:
    1. To determine whether the judicial board hearing was conducted fairly in light of the charges and information presented, and in conformity with prescribed procedures giving the complaining party a reasonable opportunity to prepare and present information that the Code of Student Conduct had been violated, and giving the accused student a reasonable opportunity to prepare and present a response to those allegations. Deviations from designated procedures will not be a basis for sustaining an appeal unless significant prejudice results.
    2. To determine whether the decision reached regarding the accused student was based on substantial information; that is, whether there were facts in the case that, if believed by the fact finder, were sufficient to establish that a violation of the Code of Student Conduct occurred.
    3. To determine whether the sanction(s) imposed were appropriate for the violation of the Code of Student Conduct which the accused student was found to have committed.
    4. To consider new information sufficient to alter a decision or other relevant facts not brought out in the original hearing, because such information and/or facts were not known to the person appealing at the time of the original judicial board hearing.
  3. >After receiving an appeal and reviewing all available information, the Vice President for Student Services may elect to:
    1. affirm the finding and the sanction originally determined.
    2. affirm the finding and modify the sanction.
    3. remand the case to the original hearing board with instructions.
    4. dismiss the case.
  4. >The imposition of sanctions will normally be deferred during the pendency of appellate proceedings.

N. Disciplinary Files and Records

  1. Student Judicial Programs will maintain disciplinary records and a disciplinary tracking system, which will include, but not be limited to, the respondent’s name and related information, description of the incident, parties involved, Code violations, sanctions, and other data deemed relevant. Such information will be maintained in accordance with the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. Disciplinary records will be made available to hearing boards and University officials designated in the Code of Student Conduct as necessary.
  2. Students may arrange to review their own disciplinary records by contacting Student Judicial Programs. Except as provided in the Code of Student Conduct and as required by law, the University will not communicate a student’s disciplinary record and related information to any person or agency without the prior written consent of the student; however, the parents or legal guardian of a student who is a minor may be notified. Disciplinary proceedings under the Code of Student Conduct will be private.
  3. In situations involving both an accused student or group or organization and a student(s) claiming to be the victim of another student’s conduct, the records of the process and the sanctions imposed, if any, will be considered to be the education records of both the accused student and the student claiming to be the victim because the educational career and chances of success in the academic community of each may be impacted.
  4. With the exception of unresolved cases or those involving suspension, expulsion, or revocation of or withholding of a degree, disciplinary records will be expunged seven years from the final disposition of the case

Policy Statement A

Sexual Assault (See Section D.3.) - The information contained in this policy statement is abridged from Western Illinois University’s policy governing sexual misconduct. For a complete copy visit

Consistent with Western Illinois University’s (University) Non-Discrimination Policy and in compliance with Title IX of the Educational Amendments Act of 1972 and its implementing regulations, as well as the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), the university prohibits discrimination based on sex in its educational programs and activities. As a result, Western Illinois University issues this statement of policy to inform the community of our comprehensive plan addressing sexual misconduct, educational programs, and procedures that address sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking, whether the incident occurs on or off campus and when it is reported to a University official. In this context, Western Illinois University prohibits the offenses of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking and reaffirms its commitment to maintain a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the university community.

The term sexual assault means an offense that meets the definition of rape, fondling, incest, or statutory rape as used in the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting system. A sex offense is any act directed against another person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent. Rape is defined as the penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim. Fondling is defined as the touching of the private parts of another person for the purposes of sexual gratification, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her age or because of his/her temporary or permanent mental incapacity.

The term sexual harassment means unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Examples of behavior and conduct that constitute sexual harassment may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • physical assault;
  • direct or implied threats that submission to sexual advances will be a condition of employment, work status, compensation, promotion, grades, or letters of recommendation;
  • sexual advances, physical or implied, or direct propositions of a sexual nature. This activity may include inappropriate/unnecessary touching or rubbing against another, sexually suggestive or degrading jokes or comments, remarks of a sexual nature about one's clothing and/or body, preferential treatment in exchange for sexual activity, and the inappropriate display of sexually explicit pictures, text, printed materials, or objects that do not serve an academic purpose;
  • a pattern of conduct, which can be subtle in nature, that has sexual overtones and is intended to create, or has the effect of creating, discomfort and/or humiliation of another; or remarks speculating about a person's sexual activities or sexual history, or remarks about one's own sexual activities or sexual history, that do not serve a medical or academic purpose.
  • Allowing third parties to view sexual acts whether in person or via video or other recording device without the knowledge and consent of the subjects; engaging in voyeurism of sexual acts without the knowledge and consent of the subjects. 

A person who is incapacitated as a result of drug or alcohol use, voluntarily or involuntarily, is incapable of giving effective consent. Incapacitation is defined as the inability to make informed, rational decisions because the individual lacks the capacity to give knowing consent (e.g. to understand the “who, what, when, where, why, or how” of their sexual interaction). Individuals who know, or should have known, that another person is incapacitated must refrain from engaging in sexual activity with that person. Further, drug or alcohol use is never an excuse for violating this policy.

The University has procedures in place that serve to be sensitive to those who report sexual misconduct, including informing individuals about their right to file criminal charges. Information is readily available regarding counseling, health, mental health, victim advocacy, legal assistance, visa and immigration assistance, student financial aid and other services on and/or off campus. Interim steps can also be implemented to prevent contact between a complainant and an accused party, such as housing, academic and working accommodations, if reasonably available. The University will make such accommodations, if the complainant requests them and if they are reasonably available, regardless of whether the complainant chooses to report the crime to the Office of Public Safety, local law enforcement, or be involved in an internal investigation. Students and employees should contact the Title IX Coordinator in the Office of Equal Opportunity and Access at 309-298-1977 or for assistance. Students may also contact the Student Development Office at 309-298-1884 or 

Individuals who experience sex discrimination in violation of Title IX are entitled to:

  • An effective internal investigation of complaints (using the preponderance of the evidence standard) separate from law enforcement or criminal proceedings.
  • The implementation of protective interim steps prior to the final outcome of the investigation (such steps may include but not be limited to: schedule/room changes, work changes, parking assignment changes, safety protocols.)
  • Notification of the investigatory outcome
  • Protection from retaliation
  • File an appeal

The Director of Equal Opportunity and Access serves as the University’s Title IX Coordinator. The Title IX Coordinator may delegate investigative responsibilities to individuals in their supervisory chain of command. Investigations will be conducted promptly to reach an equitable resolution. Once a reported violation of this policy is received, the following steps will occur:

  1. The Title IX Coordinator, or an appointed investigator, will assess the report to identify further action. If needed, immediate interim steps will be implemented to protect the complainant from further misconduct and/or notify the respondent that their behavior is concerning and must stop.
  2. The investigator will promptly make contact with the complainant to discuss the incident and inform them of available campus support resources and their right to file an internal complaint.
  3. If the complainant files a formal complaint:
    1. The investigator will meet with the complainant to review their written complaint. The complainant may provide supplemental witnesses and evidence at this meeting and any time throughout the investigation. The complainant may also have a support person present at this meeting.
    2. The respondent will be notified of the complaint and given the opportunity to respond within five (5) calendar days.
    3. Once the response is received, the investigator will meet with the respondent to review the complaint and their response. The respondent may provide any supplemental witnesses and evidence at this meeting and any time throughout the investigation. The respondent may also have a support person present at this meeting.
    4. The investigator will interview pertinent witnesses and gather additional documentation to assist them in their determination.
    5. By evaluating the totality of the record by a preponderance of the evidence standard, the investigator will compose the investigative report to determine whether a violation of University policy occurred.
    6. Both parties will be notified simultaneously of the outcome of the investigation.
    7. If the respondent to the complaint is a student, the investigative findings will be provided to the Office of Student Judicial Programs for discipline, up to and including expulsion from the University.
    8. Both parties will be notified of the discipline administered.

Investigations will typically be completed within 60 calendar days, inclusive of holidays, excluding appeals, after receipt of a complaint or report from a responsible employee. If the investigation cannot be completed in the 60 day interval, the complainant, respondent, and other parties, as appropriate, will be notified as to the delay.

Either party has the right to appeal the investigator’s finding to the University President within 10 calendar days of receiving the finding.

Please note that the internal investigative process is separate and may occur concurrently with any possible criminal proceedings undertaken by the legal system.

Complainants may also file complaints with the Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights (OCR). Once a complaint is filed with OCR, the University’s internal investigative process ends. The University will then fully cooperate with OCR’s investigative process. Any established interim steps will continue as needed.

Retaliation is a separate cause for complaint. Retaliating or threatening retaliation against an individual who has reported or filed a complaint alleging discrimination/harassment or participated as a witness in such an investigation is strictly prohibited. Individuals who disregard, or delay investigation of harassment claims when responsibility for reporting and/or investigating harassment charges comprise part of their supervisory duties also violate this policy.

Policy Statement B

Hazing (See Section D.6.) - Hazing of any type, whether committed or arranged by individual students or members of recognized student organizations, is an unacceptable practice at Western Illinois University.

Activities prohibited under this Policy will include, but not be limited to, any of the following: extended deprivation of sleep or rest; forced consumption of food, liquor, beverage, or drugs; beatings; brandings; tests of endurance; or submission of members or prospective members to potentially hazardous or dangerous circumstances.

It will not be an acceptable defense to a charge of hazing to claim that the participants took part voluntarily, that they voluntarily assumed the risks or hardship of the activity, or that no injury in fact was suffered.

Policy Statement C

Western Illinois University Board of Trustees Statement on Campus Disruption (See Section D.7.) - The Board of Trustees is the governing board for Western Illinois University. The Board was created to operate, manage, control, and maintain the University. In keeping with this responsibility, the Board has formulated and established a policy statement governing campus disturbances.

This policy enunciated herein is in no sense intended to deprive any person of his or her rights of free speech and assembly. The exercise of those rights in a lawful manner is to be encouraged under the jurisdiction of the Board. Actions, however, which deprive others of their rights without due process of law cannot be justified.

All too often campus disturbances disrupt educational functions, deprive the majority of their rights to pursue their education, and result in injury to persons and extensive damage to property. The State, no less than a private property owner, has the right and responsibility to preserve property under its control for the use to which it is lawfully dedicated. Neither the United States Constitution, nor the Constitution of the State of Illinois, precludes the State from controlling the use of its own property for lawful, nondiscriminatory purposes.

Accordingly, in order that normal educational purposes can continue without interruption and in order that individual safety, personal freedoms, and property rights can be enjoyed without impairment, this Board declares that unlawful activities will not be tolerated on the campus of any institution under its jurisdiction. In particular, the Board believes that 720 ILCS 5/21 provides appropriate penalties for dealing with persons who willfully damage State property, commit trespass on the campus, or interfere with a public institution of higher education.

Criminal damage to State property is committed by one who does any of the acts specified in 720 ILCS 5/21-4 and, without regard to time or place, any person who knowingly damages campus property violates the law and should be arrested and prosecuted.

Criminal trespass to State land is committed by one who enters upon the campus or a building with legal notice that entry therein is forbidden or who remains in an area after notice to depart. It is lawful and proper to prescribe reasonable regulations as to conditions and times for access to campus buildings. Entrances, halls, and exits must be kept open for normal operations and the safety of others; offices are to be used for purposes intended; and buildings are to be cleared and closed at established hours. Persons who violate such reasonable regulations should be notified to depart. This advice and notification should be given publicly and orally by an authorized representative. Thereafter, if such persons remain, a police officer should read applicable portions of the criminal trespass statute, 720 ILCS 5/21-5, and advise them that they are in violation of the law and that they will be arrested if they do not depart. In appropriate circumstances, court action of the injunctive or criminal nature should be sought.

Interference of an institution of higher education is committed by one who, without authority of the institution, through force or violence, actual or threatened, willfully acts as prohibited by 720 ILCS 5/21.2-2. In appropriate circumstances, court action of the injunctive or criminal nature should be sought.

Members of a campus community who participate in unlawful activities which disrupt educational functions will be dealt with according to established disciplinary or administrative processes. Such processes may be invoked regardless of either civil or criminal actions arising out of the same event.

When the President of the University believes that unlawful activities which disrupt educational functions warrant, that person is directed to make prompt application to those agencies provided by the State for the purpose of dealing with those who break the law. Police should be summoned without delay, public prosecutors should be advised of the situation, and the courts should be asked to make timely disposition of all cases resulting from the incident.

Education is the living and growing source of our progressive civilization, of our open repository of increasing knowledge, culture, and salutary democratic traditions. It deserves our highest respect and fullest support in the performance of its lawful mission. No person, with liability to lawful processes, may intentionally act or prevent the accomplishment of the lawful mission, process, or function of an educational institution.

Policy Statement D

Explosives, Firearms, and other Hazardous or Dangerous Weapons (See Section D.11.) - 720 Illinois Compiled Statutes, 5/21-6, makes it a crime to possess or store on property “supported in whole or in part with public funds or in any building on such land” any weapon “without prior written permission from the chief security officer for such land or building.”

Under 720 ILCS 5/24-1, “weapon” is defined as including the following: bludgeon, black-jack, sling-shot, sand-club, sand-bag, metal knuckles or other knuckle weapon regardless of its composition, throwing star, or any knife, commonly referred to as a switchblade knife, which has a blade that opens automatically by hand pressure applied to a button, spring, or other device in the handle of the knife, or a ballistic knife, which is a device that propels a knifelike blade as a projectile by means of a coil spring, elastic materials or compressed gas, dagger, dirk, billy, dangerous knife, razor, stiletto, broken bottle or other piece of glass, stun gun or taser or any other dangerous or deadly weapon of like character, tear gas gun projector or bomb or any object containing noxious liquid gas or substance, other than an object containing a non-lethal noxious liquid gas or substance designed solely for personal defense carried by a person 18 years of age or older, pistol, revolver, stun gun, taser, or other firearm, spring gun, device or attachment of any kind designed, used, or intended for use in silencing the report of any firearm, machine gun, any rifle having one or more barrels less than 16 inches in length or a shotgun having one or more barrels less than 18 inches in length or any weapon made from a rifle or shotgun, any bomb, bomb-shell, grenade, bottle, or other container containing an explosive substance of over one-quarter ounce for like purposes, such as, but not limited to, black powder bombs and Molotov cocktails or artillery projectiles, and explosive bullets.

Students in violation of this policy will be subject to University judicial action and criminal arrest. Requests to return confiscated items covered by this policy and the University’s Code of Student Conduct will be taken under consideration and decided upon by the Director of Public Safety. Such items will normally only be released under a court order or in the care of a parent or guardian.

Policy Statement E

WIU Appropriate Use Policy (See Section D.19.) - All users of University computing resources must: Comply with all federal, state and other applicable laws; all generally applicable Board of Higher Education and university rules and policies, contracts and licenses. Users are responsible for ascertaining, understanding, and complying with the laws, rules, policies, contracts, and licenses applicable to their particular uses.

Users of university computing systems or data are required to take appropriate measures, as defined in the Administrative Procedures under Appropriate Use Procedures, to protect university computing systems and data.

The following is a partial list of the state and federal laws governing all users of the WIU's computing resources.

  • Obscenity and Pornography
  • Restriction of access by minors to materials commercially distributed by means of World Wide Web that are harmful to minors 47 USC § 231
  • Data Management and Protection
    • Identity Protection Act 5 ILS 179
    • Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA)
    • FTC Identity Theft Red Flag Rules
    • Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS)
    • Gramm-Leach-Billey Act (GLBA) Title V
    • Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
    • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA)
    • Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)
  • Transporting of Obscene Materials for Sale or Distribution 18 USC § 1465
  • Intercepting Electronic Communications 18 USC § 2703 et seq
  • Computer Fraud 18 USC § 1030
    • Illinois Compiled Statutes Computer Fraud 720 ILCS 5/16D-6
    • Illinois Compiled Statutes Computer Tampering (hacking, maliciously spreading viruses, etc.) 720 ILCS 5/16D-3
    • Illinois Compiled Statutes Illicit or Unauthorized Use of a Password 720 ILCS 5/16D-7
  • Slander and Libel 47 USC § 230c1
  • Copyright 17 USC

Policy Statement F

Cannabis and Other Controlled Substances (See Section D.20.) - Faculty, administrative staff, Civil Service employees, and/or students will not manufacture, possess, use, deliver, sell, or distribute any substance prohibited by the Illinois Cannabis Control Act, Drug Paraphernalia Control Act, or the Illinois Controlled Substances Act, any other State statute, or any Federal statute, except as authorized by law, the Board of Trustees regulations, and the policies of Western Illinois University.

Substances prohibited under this policy will include, but are not limited to, marijuana, hashish, amphetamines, barbiturates, cocaine, heroin, lysergic acid (LSD), methaqualone, morphine, pentazocine, peyote, phencyclidine, anabolic steroids, rohypnol, and GHB.

Policy Statement G

University Alcohol Regulations (See Section D.21.) - Students and/or their guests under 21 years of age may not possess or consume alcoholic beverages on University property. Students and their guests who are of legal age as defined by Illinois statute, may not possess or consume alcoholic beverages, except in certain designated locations which have been specified in accordance with State law and University policy (consult the Residence Hall Handbook and/or Office of Student Activities for locations which have been designated as exceptions). No alcoholic beverages having a proof exceeding 100 will be permitted. The possession of
alcoholic beverages in open containers by students and/or their guests is prohibited on University property, except as specified by University policy. Students and/or their guests may not sell or effect the delivery of alcoholic beverages on University property. Students may not purchase alcoholic beverages with University approved student fees or with any other student funds which are collected and administered by a University office or agency.

The possession and/or consumption of alcoholic beverages is prohibited in Bayliss & Henninger Hall andTanner Hall by any person, regardless of age. Alcohol is not permitted in any outside area adjacent to any residence hall. In Corbin & Olson Hall,Grote Hall, Lincoln & Washington Hall, and Thompson Hall, alcoholic beverages may be possessed and/or consumed only by persons who are of legal age. Alcoholic beverages may only be consumed in individual rooms and may not be consumed in hallways, stairways, elevators, lounges, or any other public area of the residence hall. Alcohol containers may not be larger than one quart (32 fluid ounces).

Student organizations are expected to abide by State laws and institutional policies concerning alcoholic beverages. The University will not sanction or approve an off-campus event sponsored by a student organization where alcoholic beverages are served or provided by the organization as a part of the event. The University will not authorize the use of University approved student fees or other student funds collected and administered by a University office to support such off-campus events. When some members of an organization are under the legal drinking age, the members of the organization are responsible for conducting themselves in accordance with State laws.

Policy Statement H

Skateboarding (See Section D.23.) - The use of skateboards, roller skates, in-line skates, and bicycles on stairways, walls, planters, parking bumpers, and similar objects is prohibited. The use of skateboards, roller skates, in-line skates, and bicycles for the purpose to perform acrobatic stunts anywhere on campus is prohibited. Students, faculty, and staff engaging in such activities will be subject to disciplinary action, while others not part of the University community will be removed from campus. Nothing in this policy prohibits the safe use of the listed items.

Policy Statement I

Misuse of Electronic Devices (See Section D.25.) - Cellular phones, pagers, and other electronic devices may not be used in a manner that causes disruption in the classroom, library, or within college-owned or operated facilities. This includes abuse of cellular devices with photographic capability. Utilizing such devices for the purposes of photographing test questions or other forms of academic misconduct or illegal activity is prohibited. Photographing or video recording individuals in secured or private areas such as restrooms and locker rooms is prohibited.