Skip to content Skip to main navigation Report an accessibility issue

Standards of Conduct Overview

Students are responsible for conducting themselves in a lawful manner and in compliance with the guidelines set forth in the Code. This document is meant to serve as an overview of the Student Code of Conduct; please review the Student Code of Conduct, email studentconduct@utk.edu, or call the Office of Student Conduct & Community Standards (865-974-3171) for more information.

 

Standards of Conduct

Students are prohibited from engaging in the following types of misconduct. The full Standards of Conduct can be found in the Student Code of Conduct on page 5.


Cheating, plagiarism, or any other act of academic dishonesty, including, without limitation, an act in violation of the Honor Statement.

Providing false information to a University official.

Falsifying, distorting, misrepresenting, or withholding information in connection with a University investigation or hearing, except as provided in Section 5.1(9).

Forging, altering, destroying, falsifying, or misusing records or identification, whether in print or electronic form.

Causing physical harm to any person; endangering the health, safety, or welfare of any person; engaging in conduct that causes a reasonable person to fear harm to their health, safety, or welfare; or making an oral or written statement that an objectively reasonable person hearing or reading the statement would interpret as a serious expression of an intent to commit an act of unlawful violence to a particular individual or group of individuals.

Unwelcome conduct that is so severe or pervasive, and objectively offensive, that it substantially interferes with the ability of a person to work, learn, live, or participate in or benefit from the services, activities, or privileges provided by the University. In no event shall this rule be construed to discipline a student for speech protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution (e.g., mere insulting or offensive speech).

Invasion of another person’s privacy when that person has a reasonable expectation of privacy including, without limitation, using electronic or other means to make a video or photographic record of any person in a location in which the person has a reasonable expectation of privacy, without the person’s knowledge or consent. This includes, but is not limited to, making a video or photographic record of a person in shower/locker rooms or restrooms. The storing, sharing, and/or distributing of such nonconsensual recordings by any means is also prohibited.

Any of the following conduct with respect to private or public property including, without limitation, University-controlled property: theft; misappropriation; unauthorized possession, use, sale, duplication, or entry; vandalism; destruction; damage; or conduct that is reasonably likely to cause damage.

Any intentional or reckless act, on or off University-controlled property, by one (1) student, acting alone or with others, which is directed against any other student, which endangers the mental or physical health, safety, or welfare of that student, or which induces or coerces a student to endanger their mental or physical health, safety, or welfare.  “Hazing” does not include customary athletic events or similar contests or competitions and is limited to those actions taken and situations created in connection with initiation into or affiliation with any organization.

Fighting or other physically violent or physically threatening conduct; creating a hazardous or physically offensive condition by any act that serves no legitimate purpose; making noise that could unreasonably disturb others who are carrying on lawful activities; or conduct that breaches the peace.

Engaging in lewd, indecent, or obscene conduct, including, without limitation, public exposure of one’s sexual organs, public urinating, and public sexual acts.

Engaging in speech either orally or in writing that is directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and is likely to incite or produce such action.

Any act of arson; falsely reporting a fire, the presence of an explosive or incendiary device, or other emergency; setting off a false fire alarm; or tampering with, removing, or dam aging fire alarms, fire extinguishers or any other safety or emergency equipment from its proper location except when removed in a situation in which there is a reasonable belief of the need for such equipment.

Possessing, using, or duplicating University keys, University access cards, or University identification cards without authorization from the University.

Theft, misuse, or unauthorized use of information technology facilities, resources, or access codes, including, without limitation: unauthorized entry into or transfer of a file; using another person’s identification and/or password without that person’s consent; using information technology facilities or resources to interfere with the work of another student, faculty member, staff member, or other member of the University community; using information technology facilities or resources to interfere with normal operation of a University information technology system or network; circumventing University information technology system or network security; using information technology facilities or resources in violation of copyright laws; falsifying an email header; and conduct that violates the University’s policy on the acceptable use of information technology resources.

Possessing, carrying, using, storing, or manufacturing any weapon on University controlled property or in connection with a University affiliated activity, unless authorized in writing by the Chief of Police or their designee or unless federal or state law affirmatively gives a student a right, irrespective of the Code, to possess or carry a weapon on University-controlled property or in connection with a University-affiliated activity.

Consuming, manufacturing, possessing, distributing, dispensing, selling, or being under the influence of alcoholic beverages on University-controlled property or in connection with a University-affiliated activity unless expressly permitted by University policy.

Consuming, manufacturing, possessing, distributing, dispensing, selling, or being under the influence of alcoholic beverages, if prohibited by federal, state, or local law.

Providing an alcoholic beverage to a person younger than twenty-one (21) years of age, unless permitted by law.

Using, manufacturing, possessing, distributing, selling, dispensing, or being under the influence of drugs, if prohibited by federal, state, or local law; using, manufacturing, possessing, distributing, or selling drug paraphernalia, if prohibited by federal, state, or local law; using or possessing a prescription drug if the prescription was not issued to the student; or distributing or selling a prescription drug to a person to whom the prescription was not originally issued.

Failing to timely fulfill a University bill, account, or other financial obligation owed to the University.

Failing to respond to a request to report to a University administrative office; failing to comply with a lawful directive of a University employee or other public official acting within the scope of their duties, except as provided in Section 5.1(9); or failing to identify oneself to a University employee or other public official acting within the scope of their duties when requested to do so.

Failing to appear at a University hearing, including, without limitation, a hearing of a University conduct board, following a request to appear either as a party or as a witness.

Violating the terms of a no-contact directive, an interim restriction, a disciplinary sanction, or a condition of re-enrollment imposed by the University.

Obstructing or disrupting teaching, learning, studying, research, public service, administration, disciplinary proceedings, emergency services, or any other University-affiliated activity, or the free flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic on University-controlled property. In no event shall this rule be construed to discipline a student for speech protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.

Violating a University policy or rule including, without limitation, University policies or rules relating to facilities’ use, smoking, the acceptable use of information technology resources, research misconduct, finder’s fees relating to clinical investigations involving human subjects or access to University data or materials, University libraries, dining services, parking or transportation, University identification card use, sexual harassment, residence halls, and registered student organizations.

Committing an act that is prohibited by local, state, or federal law.

Attempting to commit a violation of a Standard of Conduct or being an accessory to the commission of an act or attempted act in violation of a Standard of Conduct.

Engaging in retaliation. Retaliation is an act or omission committed by a student because of another person’s participation in a protected activity that would discourage a reasonable person from engaging in protected activity. Retaliation violates the Standards of Conduct regardless of whether the underlying allegation of a violation of the Standards of Conduct is ultimately found to have merit. Retaliation can include, without limitation: (1) an act or omission committed against a person’s family, friends, advisors, and/or other persons reasonably expected to provide information in connection with a University investigation or hearing; and (2) an act or omission committed by a student through a third party.

 

Sanctions

The purposes of sanctions are to educate, promote
personal and professional development, discourage
violations, and protect the University community.

To learn more about types of sanctions you can find more on our Sanctions page or see the full explanation in the Student Code of Conduct page 20.