Student Bill of Rights and Responsibilities

Introduction

The University of Wisconsin-Platteville is a dynamic educational institution comprised of students, faculty, and staff who contribute to the on-going development of quality learning. Its vision is to become recognized as the finest public undergraduate teaching university in the upper Midwest.

This document is submitted in accordance with established policies and procedures of the University.

The UW acknowledges that student acceptance of the rights articulated within this document also obligates students with certain responsibilities. Among these responsibilities are:

  1. Behaving in a mature, responsible manner.
  2. Respecting the status, rights, values, opinions and beliefs of others.
  3. Abiding by all established policies and procedures.

In exchange, students have the rights to:

  1. Be treated with respect and dignity
  2. Have all records kept confidential, except where disclosure within the university is based on a legitimate need to know basis, or as required by law.

In addition, students have both the right and the responsibility to resolve conflicts with faculty, staff, students and administrators in accordance with established university policies and procedures. Students have the right to access an identified advocate (Office of Student Affairs) who can assist them with academic or nonacademic questions or concerns.

The student rights and responsibilities identified within this document have been divided into five general areas: Instructional Process; Student Conduct, Grievance Procedures, and Records; Non-Instructional Activities; Campus Environment and Student Services; and Assessment.

Instructional Process

  1. General Academics
    1. Students Have the Right to:
      1. Receive clear, accurate, timely, comprehensive and readily accessible information about academic programs and services.
      2. Receive a clear statement of course objectives, content, grading bases and standards, requirements and attendance policies before registration.
      3. Have faculty and staff set and reasonably observe scheduled office hours.
      4. Have a reasonable opportunity to enroll in academic courses, permitting timely completion of program, university and certification requirements.
      5. Participate in a curriculum which provides opportunities to access an up to date knowledge base, develop skills in critical thinking, communication and computation, and develop ethical and aesthetic sensitivities.
    2. Students Have the Responsibility to:
      1. Familiarize themselves with program, university and certification requirements.
      2. keep scheduled appointments with faculty and staff.
  2. Academic Advising
    1. Students Have the Right to:
      1. Receive timely and accurate academic advising by a faculty member knowledgeable in program, university and certification requirements.
      2. Receive an on-going evaluation of academic requirements already completed and academic requirements still to be completed.
      3. Change academic majors, minors, or advisors without fear of penalty, coercion, or retribution.
      4. Receive accurate and up-to-date class rotation schedules.
      5. Receive objective career counseling by a faculty member knowledgeable in the student's chosen field.
    2. Students Have the Responsibility to:
      1. Utilize advising services in an effective and efficient manner.
      2. Inform their academic advisor of intent to change majors, minors, graduation date, or other factors which may impact on satisfactory and timely completion of academic requirements.
  3. Classroom
    1. Students Have the Right to:
      1. Receive instruction by faculty or staff competent in their discipline.
      2. Receive fair and equitable evaluation according to stated course objectives, grading bases and standards, requirements and policies.
      3. Receive class syllabi within the first two weeks of class.
      4. Receive constructive criticism designed to improve student performance.
      5. Receive reasonable accommodation of religious beliefs and significant personal problems with regard to the scheduling of examinations and other course requirements.
      6. Receive timely, accurate and periodic information or feedback regarding their academic progress/achieve-ments. Initial evaluation will occur at least one week prior to the deadline for withdrawal from a course.
      7. Consult with instructors on a timely basis regarding assignments or class content missed through absence without fear.
    2. Students Have the Responsibility to:
      1. Attend class on time and on a regular basis, be attentive, be alert and take an active role in the learning process.
      2. Contribute to the classroom environment in a positive manner and avoid negative or disruptive behaviors which jeopardize or infringe upon the rights and learning opportunities of others.
      3. Complete all class activities (including text readings) as assigned by the instructor.
      4. Consult with instructors on a timely basis regarding assignments or course content missed through absence.
      5. Inform instructors of special needs (e.g., accommodation of religious practices, physical needs, etc.) on a timely basis as stated in the policy and procedures.
      6. Respect the integrity of the academic process and comply with guidelines governing academic dishonesty.
  4. Evaluation
    1. Students Have the Right to:
      1. Participate in regular constructive evaluation of the classroom performance of faculty, without fear of retribution or penalty.
      2. Access aggregate results of student evaluations of faculty performance in the classroom prior to registration.
      3. Consult with faculty and Chancellor to assist in establishing rules providing for periodic review of faculty performance as provided in UWS 3.05 through 3.08.
    2. Students Have the Responsibility to:
      1. Evaluate instructional performance objectively, constructively and equitably.

Student Conduct, Grievance Procedures and Records

  1. Nonacademic Violations and Grievance Procedures
    1. Students Have the Right to:
      1. Be treated by the university with respect, dignity and fairness, whether as victims or as accused.
      2. Access policies and procedures regarding perceived violations, whether as victims or as accused.
      3. Have allegations and/or complaints processed in an expedient manner according to grievance procedures as stated in UWS 14 and 17, whether as victims or as accused.
      4. Be informed of disciplinary hearing(s), whether as victims or as accused, and receive appropriate explana-tions for all decisions regardless of action taken or not taken.
      5. Be represented or counseled at their own expense and receive appropriate UW assistance, whether as victims or as accused.
      6. Speak or not speak on their own behalf at all stages of proceedings involving them, whether as victims or as accused.
      7. Have a one third voting membership on any nonacademic student conduct committee hearing.
      8. Receive written, documented allegations and complaints against them with facts presented in a complete and concise manner.
      9. Choose between an open or closed hearing when accused of a violation.
    2. Students Have the Responsibility to:
      1. Uphold ethical standards of conduct when reporting alleged violations.

Non-Instructional Activities

  1. Shared Governance
    1. Students Have the Right to:
      1. Be the principal decision making authority for initiating and reviewing policies concerning student life, services and interests.
      2. Select student representatives to appropriate University committees. It shall be the responsibility of Student Senate to facilitate the selection of students to these committees.
    2. Students Have the Responsibility to:
      1. Attend meetings and be prepared to represent their constituency during the decision making process.
      2. Participate in all elections involving student government elections and referendums.
  2. Freedoms of Speech and Association
    1. Students Have the Right to:
      1. Exercise freedom of expression and association in any form in accordance with established statutes, policies and procedures.
      2. Become members of organizations without threat of hazing, or other forms of humiliation.
      3. Unionize as workers, as provided by law.
    2. Students Have the Responsibility to:
      1. Respect other's freedom of expression and association in any form in accordance with established statutes, policies and procedures.

Campus Environment and Student Services

  1. Environment
    1. Students Have the Right to:
      1. Live and learn in a safe campus environment, and to be informed of the existence of known dangers and/or hazards.
      2. Be informed of the location and nature of crimes committed on campus and have access to accurate, aggregate statistics regarding campus crimes.
    2. Students Have the Responsibility to:
      1. Report dangers, hazards, or crimes to authorities and assist in the resolution of the reported problem.
  2. Services
    1. Students Have the Right to:
      1. Receive adequate information and services related to:
        • Career planning and placement
        • Child care
        • Extracurricular and co-curricular events
        • Financial aid
        • On-campus housing
        • Pioneer Student Center
        • University safety, security, and police
        • (This list is not exhaustive; other items may be appropriate)
      2. Have all campus facilities and services accessible to students with documented disabilities in accordance with statutes, policies, and procedures.
      3. Be provided with or receive appropriate referral for health care and counseling services including preven-tion, intervention and treatment.
      4. Have freedom from any financial or academic penalties for inability to pay tuition and fees on time solely because of late financial aid disbursements for which they are not responsible.
      5. Receive balanced, reasonably priced and nutritious food from University Food Service.
      6. Access to information (e.g., library materials, Internet, Interlibrary loans, laboratories) and information technology.
    2. Students Have the Responsibility to:
      1. Remit payments for tuition and UW services by established due dates.
  3. Evaluations
    1. Students Have the Right to:
      1. Participate in the development of student evaluations of non-instructional programs and services.
      2. Access aggregate results of student evaluations of non-instructional programs and services.
    2. Students Have the Responsibility to:
      1. Evaluate non-instructional programs and services objectively, constructively and equitably with the intent of improving that program or service.

Assessment

It is the duty of the University-Administrators, students, faculty and staff to assure that the student rights identified within this document are protected and enforced as necessary. It is also the duty of the University administrators, students, faculty, and staff to guarantee that students meet the responsibilities identified within this document.

The maintenance of these rights and responsibilities shall be assessed each academic year, beginning in the Fall 1994, and to be initiated by the Chancellor and the Student Body President. This assessment shall consist primar-ily of a series of student focus groups directed by students and shall result in a report addressed jointly to the Chancellor and the Student Body President. This report shall be delivered by April 1 of each academic year.

This assessment shall identify whether student rights are being observed, protected and enforced as necessary, and whether student responsibilities are being met, as articulated within this document. This assessment procedure shall also provide opportunity for additional input from faculty, staff and administrators and may identify specific steps to improve implementation of student rights and responsibilities at the university.