text only
The Lowdown
  Student Rights and Responsibilities
  Student Code of Conduct
  Academic Disruption Policy
  Substance Abuse Policy
  University Alcohol Policy
  Security Policies and Procedures
  Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence Policy
  Student Record Policy
  Personnel Policies for Student Employees
  Policy for Non-Discrimination
  Sale of Academic Materials
  Copyright Policy for Students
  USA Posting Policy
  USA Solicitation Policy
  Student Center Posting Policy
  Housing Rules and Regulations
  Registration Process
  USA Student Computer Policy
  Study Abroad Policy
  Traffic/Parking Policy
  Lowdown Handbook (PDF)

Student Rights and Responsibilities
The University of South Alabama is a community of scholars in which the ideals of freedom of
inquiry, freedom of thought, freedom of expression, and freedom of the individual are sustained.
The University is committed to supporting the exercise of any right guaranteed to individuals by
the Constitution and the Code of Alabama and to educating students relative to their
The Code of Student Conduct is the University’s policy regarding nonacademic discipline of
students. Academic discipline is covered under the section of the Lowdown called “Student
Academic Conduct Policy.” 
The primary purpose of the Code of Student Conduct is to protect and preserve a civil and safe
educational environment. The University is not designed or equipped to rehabilitate students who
will not abide by this code. The disciplinary actions prescribed are meant to protect and preserve
a quality educational environment, and if students by their behavior threaten that environment, it
may be necessary to remove them from the community as provided in this code. 
The University’s Code of Student Conduct is set forth in writing in order to give students a
general notice of non-academic prohibited conduct. The Code should be read broadly and is not
designed to define non-academic misconduct in exhaustive terms. 
The University reserves the right to take necessary and appropriate action to protect the safety
and well-being of the campus community and the student(s)’ physical and emotional safety and
well-being; therefore, the University does reserve the right to suspend students on an interim
basis pending an investigation pursuant to this Code of Student Conduct. 
Revocation of conferred degrees may be recommended to the Board of Trustees in instances
where conferral of the degree preceded the determination of significant misconduct or academic
Students may be accountable to federal, state, or local authorities and to the University for acts
which constitute violations of federal, state, or local laws or ordinances and of this Code. Those
accused of violations are subject to the University disciplinary proceedings outlined in this Code
even though similar proceedings of a criminal nature are pending, have been terminated, or not
yet adjudicated in municipal, state or federal court. Such fact of other proceedings or pendency
of same will not be an appropriate challenge to the disciplinary proceedings outlined in this
Code.  6. STUDENTS
The term “student” means any person taking courses at USA, either full-time or part-time,
pursuing undergraduate, graduate, or professional / extension studies.  A person who is not
officially enrolled for a particular term, but who has a continuing relationship with the
University, is considered a “student.”  This includes persons newly admitted to USA, who are on
semester break, and who are sitting out one or more semesters.
University jurisdiction and discipline attaches to conduct which occurs on University
premises, or at University related or sponsored activities, whether on or off University
premises, or which adversely effects the University community and the pursuit of the
objectives of the University. The following non-academic misconduct is subject to
disciplinary action.
The term "jurisdiction" for an individual student shall mean that individual is subject to the
University Judicial system if he or she is alleged to have violated a University conduct regulation
1) while attending any University orientation program; 2) during any semester for which the
individual is or has been registered as a student at the University, including, but not limited to
those who fail to complete the semester and those who are co-op students; and 3) during an
interval between consecutive semesters of registration. 
The term “University premises” means any and all land, buildings, facilities, and/or other
property in the possession of, owned, used, leased, rented or controlled by the University,
including adjacent or pertinent streets or sidewalks. 
The term “University-sponsored activity” means any activity, on or off campus, which is
initiated, aided, authorized, or supervised by the University. 
The terms “University” and “institution” mean the University of South Alabama. 
a. Intentionally or recklessly causing physical harm to any person.
The term “intentionally” means a conscious objective to engage in the described conduct;
intoxication is not a defense to a charge of intentional misconduct.   The term “recklessly” means
conduct which could reasonably be expected to create a substantial risk of harm to a person(s).
b. Harassment. 
The term “harassment” means pervasive or severe, unwanted and annoying actions of one party or a group against another. It is also defined as using abusive language, including electronic communication, tending to incite an immediate breach of the peace to any person, persistent following or stalking of a person, or engaging in a course of conduct or repeatedly committing acts that harm or seriously annoy another person. The University uses the reasonable person standard to determine when acts are defined as annoying, alarming, or harassing in nature.
c. Discriminatory harassment. 
The term “discriminatory harassment” refers to intentional behavior , including but not limited to
written, electronic, verbal, or physical acts that denigrate or show hostility toward an individual
on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, age, veteran status,
genetic information, or disability.
d. Engaging in sexual harassment.
The term “sexual harassment” includes, but is not limited to, verbal or non-verbal conduct that is intimidating, demeaning, hostile, or offensive with an inappropriate focus on sex, sexual history,
individual gender-based characteristics, or sexual orientation; unwelcomed verbal or physical
advances; unwelcomed verbal or physical advances; attempts to subject a person to unwanted
sexual attention or to coerce a person into sexual relations; and/or retaliation for a refusal to
comply with sexual demands.  Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination. 
e. Engaging in sexual violence.
The term “sexual violence” means any physical sexual acts perpetrated against a person’s will or
where a person is incapable of giving consent.  Lack of consent means that the person who has
alleged the occurrence of sexual violence has not said “yes,” or otherwise specifically and
unambiguously indicated agreement to participate in the act, including instances in which she/he
is unable to give informed consent because of her/his youth, temporary or permanent mental or
physical incapacity, including, but not limited to, being under the influence of alcohol or drugs. 
Acts in this category include rape, sexual assault, sexual battery, and sexual coercion.  Sexual
contact  can in clued, but is not limited to: unwelcomed sexual behavior, including kissing,
intentional touching of another person’s intimate body parts or the clothing covering these
intimate areas, and unwelcomed sexual penetration, which includes sexually intended intrusion ,
however slight, into any opening of a person’s body, by parts of another person’s body, or any
other object. Sexual violence is a form of sex discrimination.  
f. Intentionally or recklessly misusing, destroying or damaging University property or the
property of others.
The term “intentionally” means a conscious objective to engage in the described conduct;
intoxication is not a defense to a charge of intentional misconduct.   The term “reckless” means
conduct which could reasonably be expected to create a substantial risk of harm to a person(s) or
property, or which would be likely to result in interference with normal University or University
sponsored activities. The term “property” includes all materials bought, made, or fabricated by
the University or materials, bought made, or in the possession of another.
g. Engaging in activities that threaten the safety of the campus community.
The phrase “threaten the safety of” means engaging in activities including but not limited to
intentionally or recklessly misusing or damaging fire or other safety equipment; unauthorized (by
University officials) use or possession of fireworks or incendiary, dangerous, or noxious devices
or materials; unauthorized (by University officials) use, possession, or storage of any weapon; or
intentionally initiating or causing any false report, warning, or threat of fire, explosion, or other
emergency.  The term “weapon” means any object or substance designed to inflict a wound,
cause injury or incapacitate including, but not limited to, all firearms, pellet guns, BB guns,
switchblade or gravity knives, clubs, blackjacks or brass knuckles, or ice picks. 
h. Conduct which is disorderly or indecent.
“Disorderly conduct” occurs when an individual acts with intent to cause public inconvenience,
annoyance or alarm, or recklessly creating a risk thereof, when he:
(1) Engages in fighting or in violent tumultuous or threatening behavior; or
(2) Makes unreasonable noise; or
(3) In a public place uses abusive or obscene language or makes an obscene gesture; or
(4) Without lawful authority, disturbs any lawful assembly or meeting of persons; or (5) Obstructs vehicular or pedestrian traffic, or a transportation facility; or
(6) Congregates with other person in a public place and refuses to comply with a lawful order of
the police to disperse.
“Indecent conduct” includes intentional exposure of the genitals, buttocks or female breasts or
committing or attempting to engage in a sexual act in public where the individual has reason to
believe he or she will and can be observed. 
 i. Theft of property or of services, or knowingly possessing stolen property or knowingly
benefit from the use of stolen services. Misuse of property or services or knowingly
benefiting from the misuse of property and services.
j. Intentional disruption of University computer systems, unauthorized alteration,
disclosure, or destruction of University computer systems or material, improper access to
University computer files and systems, or violation of copyright or proprietary material
restrictions connected with University computer systems, programs or materials.
The term “intentional” means a conscious objective to engage in the described conduct;
intoxication is not a defense to a charge of intentional misconduct.  
k. Forgery, alteration, misrepresentation, or misuse of any document or instrument of
l. Misrepresenting information or furnishing false information to the University. 
Unauthorized release or disclosure of confidential information.
m. Violation of a federal, state or local law or ordinance or benefitting from same.
n. Violation of any approved University rules, regulations, or policies.
o. Failure to comply with the directions of University officials, including faculty, staff,
student employees and campus police officers acting in the performance of their duties and
failure to identify one's self to those persons when requested to do so.
The term “faculty” means any person appointed or employed by the University to conduct
classroom, clinical, or laboratory activities.  The term “staff” means any person appointed or
employed by the University to carry out a job function.  The term “student” means any person
taking courses at USA, both full-time and part-time, pursuing undergraduate, graduate, or
professional/extension studies. A person who is not officially enrolled for a particular term, but
who has a continuing relationship with the University, is considered a "student." This includes
persons newly admitted to USA, who are on semester break, and who are sitting out one or more
p. Intentionally or recklessly interfering with normal University functions, University
sponsored activities, or any function or activity on University premises including, but not
limited to studying, teaching, public speaking, research, University administration, or fire,
police, or emergency services.
The term “intentionally” means a conscious objective to engage in the described conduct;
intoxication is not a defense to a charge of intentional misconduct.  The term “recklessly” means
conduct which could reasonably be expected to create a substantial risk of harm to a person(s) or property, or which would be likely to result in interference with normal University or University
sponsored activities.
q. Intentionally and materially interfering with the freedom of expression of others.
The term “intentionally” means a conscious objective to engage in the described conduct;
intoxication is not a defense to a charge of intentional misconduct.  
r. Unauthorized presence on or use of University premises, facilities, or property, or that of
another person.
The term “University premises” means any and all land, buildings, facilities, and/or other
property in the possession of, owned, used, leased, rented or controlled by the University,
including adjacent or pertinent streets or sidewalks. 
s. Unauthorized manufacture, distribution, possession, or use of any controlled substance
or illegal drug, as defined by Alabama law, or any substance that mimics the effects of the
previously mentioned.
 The term “distribution” means giving, selling, or exchanging.
t. Appearing in a public or private place manifestly under the influence of a controlled or
other intoxicating substance to the degree that there is danger to self, others, or property,
or there is unreasonable annoyance to persons in the vicinity.
u. Possession or use of alcoholic beverages by individuals without authorization.
v. Providing alcoholic beverages to individuals less than 21 years of age, or unauthorized
possession of alcoholic beverages for purposes of distribution.
The term “distribution” means giving, selling, or exchanging.
w. Hazing.
Hazing activities are prohibited by both the University of South Alabama and Alabama State
Law 16-1-23.
The term "hazing" means any act which endangers the mental or physical health or safety of an
individual, or which results in the destruction or removal of public or private property, or which
causes physical or psychological discomfort, embarrassment, or humiliation, for the purpose of
initiation or admission into, affiliation with, or continued membership in an organization
regardless of the individual’s willingness to participate in the activity. 
Examples of activities falling within the definition of hazing include, but are not limited to, the
1. Striking pledges by any method. 
2. Physical activity which cause excessive fatigue or fear. 
3. Depriving pledges of sleep, (Minimum six hours uninterrupted per night) decent meals, or the
opportunity to maintain bodily cleanliness, (uninterrupted and private). 
4. Scavenger hunts, road trips, quests, treasure hunts, abandonment's or kidnapping. This
restriction on road trips cannot be skirted by having the pledges meet at a location. 
5. Morally degrading or humiliating games or activities. 
6. Requiring pledges to consume alcohol, drugs or revolting substances such as, but not limited
to, salt water, excessive amounts of water, raw eggs or meats, onion or garlic.  7. Jeopardizing academic performance by depriving pledges of reasonable study time or
prohibiting pledges from completing any requirement necessary to achieving academic success. 
8. Requiring or encouraging pledges to participate in any activity which is illegal, immoral,
contrary to the individual's religious beliefs, indecent or perverse, such as theft, vandalism,
public profanity, lewd conduct or public nudity. 
9. Any willful action taken or situation created whether on or off any school, college, or
university or other education premises, which recklessly or intentionally endangers the mental or
physical health of any student. 
10. Forcing pledges to wear blindfolds during any pledging activity. 
11. Depriving pledges immediate access to any prescribed medications. 
x. Aiding or abetting any violation of this Code. 
The terms "aiding and abetting" mean to incite, assist, or encourage in the violating of University
y. Intentionally filing a false complaint under this Code.
z. Violating the terms of any disciplinary sanction imposed in accordance with this Code.
7.1 Organizational Misconduct 
Inherent in University recognition of student organizations is the obligation of each organization
to conduct activities in accordance with University rules and policies and with applicable laws.
Registered student organizations are required to comply with the written rules and policies of the
University. USA POLICIES 
The term “organization” means a number of persons who have complied with the University
requirements for registration.
a. Responsibility of Officers: 
It is the responsibility of the officers of each student organization to ensure that the organization
complies with the Student Code of Conduct and to actively oppose and prevent any planned
organizational activity which might violate the Code. It is also the obligation of the officers to
advise and counsel individual members of their organization whose conduct could lead to
misconduct charges against the organization. 
b. Organizational Responsibility for Misconduct: 
A student organization will be held responsible for its own acts when 1) the organization fails to
comply with a duty imposed by a written University policy, including but not limited to improper
membership initiation, education, and treatment; improper organizational registration of
activities for which either registration or permission is required; failure to comply with
applicable health and safety regulations; misuse of University property, facilities, and equipment;
violations of University regulations on the use of alcohol; and violations of any other rule or
policy applicable to organizations and 2) when one or more officers refuse or neglect to perform
their duties under this code as described above.  A student organization will be held responsible
for the actions of one or more of its members which violate the Student Code of Conduct when
the actions arise in the course of or derive from the activities of the organization or there is a
clear connection or link between the transgressor’s action and the organization. Examples of
such violations include, but are not limited to, offenses against either persons or property of other organizations and alcohol violations. 
When particular actions by an organization (or specific members) prove to be a cause for
concern, the Office of Campus Involvement may notify the organization in writing that further
occurrences of the specified action(s) within a specific period of time will result in misconduct
Complainants, victims, witnesses, and accused students play specific roles within the student
conduct process at the University of South Alabama. 
The complainant is any individual who brings forth information indicating that a USA student
may have violated the Student Code of Conduct contained in the student handbook, The
Lowdown, and who wishes to have charges filed against that student.  The complainant may also
be a victim.  A victim is any individual who may have suffered any harm, loss, or threat at the
hands of a currently enrolled USA student due to a violation of the Code of Conduct.  A victim
does not have to serve as the complainant. A witness is any individual who has information
regarding an incident which is an alleged violation of the Code of Conduct.   An accused student
is any student that has been alleged to be in violation of the Code of Conduct.
Any member of the university community may initiate a complaint against a student or student
organization for an alleged violation of the Student Code of Conduct.  The decision to pursue is
made by the Student Conduct Administrator, who is appointed by the Dean of Students. A
decision not to pursue may be appealed to an ad hoc committee (appointed by the Dean of
Students) of the University Disciplinary Committee (UDC).  The UDC, appointed annually by
the University President or his/her designee, is the body which hears and makes
recommendations regarding charges of violation of the Code of Student Conduct when the
charges are not resolved in the informal process discussed below.  This committee of two to five
students, and a faculty or staff member (except in charges of sexual violence where the UDC will
have two to four faculty or administrators), receives training at the beginning of its year term and
is chaired by the non-voting Student Conduct Administrator or a designee of the Dean of
No individual can force charges to be filed, and while participation by complainants, witnesses,
or victims is encouraged, their participation is not necessary for charges to be filed and an action
Student conduct proceedings and actions are not subject to challenge or postponement on the
grounds that criminal or civil charges involving the same incident have been dismissed, reduced,
or are pending. No individual can force student conduct charges to be dropped. 
Prior to any disposition of charges, either through the informal or formal processes discussed
below, separate meetings will be scheduled with the Student Conduct Administrator for any
accused student/ student organization and the complainant or victim to review key facts and
issues that will be presented at the hearing, to exchange information as to witnesses likely to be
called, and to answer questions.  These meetings will not be used to settle the alleged Code of Conduct violation.
A student charged with violating the Code of Conduct has two hearings options. In most
instances of minor violations where the charged student agrees that the complainant’s charges
are basically correct and both parties agree, Option I may be utilized. In more serious incidents
or when facts are disputed, Option 2 may be utilized.  Option 2 is the only option in cases
alleging sexual violence.
OPTION 1 is an informal proceeding and includes a discussion between the charged student and
the Student Conduct Administrator, after the Student Conduct Administrator has met with the
complainant. Witnesses are not called; however, the complainant may be asked to be present at
the meeting. While the Student Conduct Administrator may contact individuals prior to these
proceeding, charged students waive their rights to question witnesses. The Student Conduct
Administrator alone will determine what, if any sanctions will be imposed upon the student. 
OPTION 2 is a formal hearing before the UDC and chaired by a non-voting, non-deliberating
Student Conduct Administrator.  A formal hearing may involve the presentation of witness
testimony by both the complaint/victim and the accused student.  Both the complainant/victim
and the accused student may question all witnesses presented.  If the UDC, after deliberations,
finds that the accused student is responsible for violating the Student Code of Conduct, the UDC
will make a recommendation to the Student Conduct Administrator regarding the sanctions to be
Witnesses to alleged violations of the Student Code of Conduct are contacted by one of four
parties: the accused, the complainant, the victim, or the Student Conduct Administrator. When
contacted, witnesses will be given a time, date, and location of the hearing. A witness may refuse
to participate or may participate in the following manner: 
• in writing, by providing a statement of fact before the hearing; 
• in writing, by answering written questions posed during the hearing. 
• in person, by attending the hearing and answering questions during the proceeding. 
Victims of alleged violations of policy have specific rights. They may choose to participate - or
not - as a complainant and/or a witness. They also have the option of scheduling a pre-hearing
conference prior to either the informal or formal hearing. In this conference, the Student Conduct
Administrator will fully explain the judicial process, answer questions the victim may have,
discuss options for participating in the hearing, and help coordinate possible hearing dates and
times. The victim is also given an opportunity to provide an impact statement to be placed in the
accused student's disciplinary file should the accused be found responsible; with the
understanding the accused student has the right to review such information.   The complainant or
victim shall have the right to be visually screened from the accused student.
• The right not to attend a formal hearing. 
• The right to submit an impact statement that details the alleged consequences of the behavior in question. 
• The right to have an advisor, as defined in 8.2 c, accompany him or her during any conduct
• Prior to the student conduct hearing, the right to request immediate on-campus housing
relocation (based on available space), transfer of classes or other steps to prevent unnecessary or
unwanted contact or proximity to the accused, when such contact is likely to place the victim in
danger of bodily injury and or cause the victim severe emotional distress. 
• If a victim of physical violence, including sexual violence, or of a non-forcible sexual offense
(which includes sexual activity where the victim is incapable of consenting due to being a minor
or having a permanent or temporary mental of physical disability preventing consent , including
those related to drugs or alcohol), the right to be informed of the outcome of the hearing,
including the sanction, upon request, regardless of whether or not the accused student has been
found responsible.  Further, the institution may disclose to anyone, not just the alleged victim, if
the accused student is found responsible for a crime of violence or a non-forcible sex offense,
and the student has committed a violation of the institution’s rules or policies with respect to the
allegations made.   If a victim of sexual harassment not involving the above, the victim has the
right to be informed of the outcome of the hearing and be informed of the sanction to the extent
the sanction is directly related to the victim.  The information obtained during the process of a
disciplinary proceeding as well as the outcome of all student conduct proceedings are considered
confidential information in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of
1974 (FERPA). Such information must not be shared outside the proceeding unless authorized. 
• The right not to have his or her sexual history discussed during the student conduct proceeding
in cases of sexual harassment and sexual violence.   The relevance of any other behavioral
history will be determined solely by the Student Conduct Administrator.
8.1 Interim Suspension 
The Dean of Students may suspend a student from specific areas of the University, or from the
entire University, for an interim period of time pending disciplinary proceedings, criminal
proceedings, or a medical evaluation, effective immediately and without prior notice, whenever
there is evidence that the continued presence of the student poses a substantial and immediate
threat to himself or herself, to the safety and well-being of members of the University
community, to the preservation of University property, or  of interference with the normal
operation of the University.  
A student suspended on an interim basis shall be given a prompt opportunity to appear before the
Dean or his or her designee in order to discuss only the reliability of the information concerning
the student’s conduct, including the matter of his or her identity, or whether the conduct and
surrounding circumstances reasonably indicate that the continued presence of the student on
University premises poses a substantial and immediate threat. 
8.2 Formal Hearing Procedures 
Whenever a formal hearing is to be held regarding an alleged incident of nonacademic prohibited
conduct, the accused student and the complainant shall be given two (2) working days written
notice of the charges alleged against the accused student and of the date, time, and place of the
hearing.  (The terms “notify in writing” or “transmit in writing” mean to mail written notice to
the student’s most recent address of record or to provide hand written notice to the student in
person.)  Every effort shall be made to set a hearing date that is convenient to all parties concerned. Once the date is set, the Student Conduct Administrator, the accused or the
complainant/ victim may request either a new time or date due to changing circumstances;
however, the decision to approve any requested change is solely the prerogative of the Student
Conduct Administrator. 
The hearing shall be conducted by the Student Conduct Administrator. The hearing shall be
informal in nature and legal rules of evidence shall not apply. The hearing shall be closed to
everyone except the Student Conduct Administrator, members of the UDC, the accused student,
and the complainant/victim and advisors to the accused student and the complainant and/or
victim.  Witnesses will be allowed in only during the actual time of their own testimony. 
The complainant, the accused student, and the victim have the right to: 
a. Be present at the hearing. However, if either or both the accused student and the complainant
and/or victim fail to appear at the hearing, the hearing may be held in either or both their
b. Present evidence by witness or by affidavit if a witness is unable to attend the hearing. It is the
responsibility of the accused student and the complainant/victim to notify their witnesses of the
date, time and place of the hearing. If witnesses fail to appear, the hearing shall be held in their
c. The complainant, the accused student, and the victim have the right to be assisted by an
advisor they choose, at their own expense. The advisor must be a member of the University
community. Member of the community is defined as any student, faculty, or staff member who is
currently attending or working at the University and who is able to abide by the confidentiality
requirements of the hearing process. The complainant, victim and the accused student are
responsible for presenting their own information; therefore, advisors are not permitted to speak
or to participate directly in the hearing.  Advisors may speak quietly to the individual they have
accompanied if it does not impede the flow of the hearing, as determined by the Student Conduct
Administrator. Advisors may address the UDC only if invited to do so by the Student Conduct
Administrator. Delays in hearing dates will not be allowed due to the scheduling conflicts of an
advisor. If the complainant, the accused student, or the victim is a party to a criminal indictment
arising out of the same circumstances, each is allowed to have an attorney serve as his/her
advisor, at his/her own expense. As with any other advisor, attorneys may not address the UDC
unless invited by the Student Conduct Administrator, or participate in the examination of
witnesses or presentation of materials or information. 
d. Question all witnesses. 
In the case of multiple participants in code violations, the Student Conduct Administrator may
determine to hear the cases separately or collectively. 
Pertinent records, exhibits, and written statements may be accepted for consideration by the
Student Conduct Administrator at his/her discretion. After the hearing, the UDC shall meet in
private to determine whether the evidence/information presented to or received by the UDC
during the case proved that it is more likely than not that the accused student violated one or
more section of the Code. 
There shall be a single verbatim record, such as a tape-recording, of all formal hearings. This
record does not include deliberations of the UDC. This record, along with any evidence or transcripts, is the property of the University.  An accused student, complainant, or victim may
review the contents of their file through the Dean of Students Office.
8.3 Hearing Decision 
The UDC shall issue a written finding regarding whether or not the accused student violated the
Code of Conduct and, if so, a recommendation regarding a sanction within five (5) working days
to the Student Conduct Administrator. 
Registration for subsequent terms, the conferral of academic degrees, or the release of transcripts
may be withheld pending the resolution of allegations of student misconduct. 
8.4 Disciplinary Sanctions 
If the hearing decision is that the accused student has committed conduct prohibited in Section 7,
the Student Conduct Administrator shall consider the recommendation of the UDC and impose
an appropriate disciplinary measure from among the following: 
a. Written Reprimand: A formal and official recognition of misconduct.  Its intent is to declare
that the behavior displayed in the subject incident was inappropriate within the University
community. Actions in violation of the Code of Student Conduct in the future may result in a
more severe disciplinary sanction. 
b. Conduct Probation: A student on conduct probation is deemed not to be in good judicial
standing with the University and conditions may be imposed at the time the student is placed on
conduct probation. If the student is found in violation of the Code another time prior to the
completion of the probationary period, he or she may be subject to either suspension or expulsion
from the University through the above-described disciplinary procedures. The duration of the
probation period and conditions imposed will be in direct proportion to the degree of seriousness
attached to the misconduct. Beginning and ending dates will be specified. 
c. Room Transfer: Requires accused to move rooms or areas to reduce chances of additional
problems. Probation will accompany such a move. 
d. Removal from University Housing: Requires that the accused move off campus. A period of
time is imposed. Violators may be subject to trespassing charges. 
e. Restitution for Damages: In addition to the penalties described above, a student may be
required to pay compensation for damage to University property; however, such compensation
shall be limited to the actual cost of repair or replacement of such property. Failure to comply
with this sanction by a specified date may result in placing a "hold" on the student's records and
further disciplinary action. 
f. Fines: Monetary fines levied against the student. Fines can be issued for violations of certain
policies and procedures, at the discretion of the Student Conduct Administrator.
g. Restrictions: Limiting of certain privileges or practices of the individual(s) involved in the
h. Suspension: Removal from the University for a period of time. The duration of the period of
suspension shall be in direct proportion to the degree of seriousness attached to the misconduct.
A suspension may be imposed for an indefinite period of time or for a given period. Violators
may be subject to trespassing charges. 
i. Expulsion: Permanent deprivation of his or her opportunity to continue as a member of the
University community. Violators may be subject to trespassing charges. 
j. Community Services: Specified number of hours that a student works for a community service
agency or a department on campus. Under direct supervision, the student performs his or her
community service hours without compensation.  k. Creative Educational Sanctions 
l. Registration for subsequent terms, the conferral of the degree, or the release of transcripts may
be withheld until all disciplinary measures have been concluded and any conditions imposed by
the University have been fulfilled. 
8.5 Parental Notification 
By law, parents of students 18 years of age and older may not be notified of most violations of
the Code of conduct without permission of the involved student(s). However, by law, the
following exceptions are permitted: 
For students under the age of 21, there will be an automatic notification of parents with every
responsible finding of 7S Unauthorized Use of Controlled Substance or Other Illegal Drug and
7V Distribution of Alcohol. Automatic notification for students under 21 will also occur with
every responsible finding of 7T Public Intoxication if the student has placed himself or herself or
others at risk (ie: driving under the influence, fighting, becoming physically ill). Automatic
notification will occur with every second finding of a violation of 7U Possession of Alcohol for
underage students. In all cases, notification will come only from the Dean of Students or his or
her designee. If a student under the age of 21 can verifiably demonstrate that he or she is
financially independent of his or her parents, and the Registrar's records show that the student's
and the parents' home addresses are different, parental notification may not be necessary. 
8.6 Separation from the University 
In each case where the hearing decision results in separation from the University, the Office of
the Dean of Students shall so notify the dean of the academic unit in which the student has been
If the accused student, complainant, or victim is dissatisfied with the disciplinary decision, the
decision may be appealed to the Dean of Students (or designee).  A request for appeal must be
based on at least one of the following: 
a. Violation of procedural rights. 
b. Severity of discipline action. 
c. Evidence not available at the time of hearing. 
In order to request an appeal, the student must submit a written request or appeal to the Dean of
Students Office within two (2) working days of the hearing decision. 
Students must perform the following procedures when submitting an Appeal: 
(1) Obtain an appeal request from the Student Conduct Administrator or 
(2) Submit in writing to the Dean of Students the nature of the appeal. 
(3) Indicate in writing the desired outcome of the appeal. 
The person or persons considering the appeal (as designated by the Dean of Students) shall have
the authority to: 
a. Sustain the decision of the Student Conduct Administrator, including the penalty imposed. 
b. Sustain the decision of the Student Conduct Administrator, but impose a lesser penalty. 
c. Remand the case to a new Student Conduct Administrator for further consideration. 
d. Reverse the decision. 
The decision shall be transmitted in writing to the appealing party and, if the Dean of Students
was not who considered the appeal, to the office of the Dean of Students within ten (10) days of the date of the appeal hearing. The complainant shall be notified of the decision. This decision is
The rules and regulations contained in this section are subject to change. Between printings of
the Lowdown, an updated version will be presented to any accused student or organization
before any hearing for a violation(s). 
a. All student disciplinary records are subject to the privacy protection granted by the Family
Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). 
*FERPA gives certain rights to parents regarding these records; these rights are transferred to
students who age 18 or are enrolled in postsecondary education. 
*Eligible students have the right to inspect and review their own educational records maintained
by the school. 
*Eligible students have the right to request that the school correct judicial records believed to be
inaccurate or misleading. If the school refuses to change the records, the eligible student then has
the right to a formal hearing. After the hearing, if the school still refuses the corrections, the
eligible student has the right to place a statement in the records commenting on the contested
information in the records. 
*Generally, USA must have written permission from the eligible student before releasing any
information from their conduct records. However, FERPA allows schools to disclose records,
without consent, to certain individuals or organizations, including but not limited to the
1. School officials within the institution determined by the institution to have an legitimate
educational interest in the information (i.e. it is necessary for that official to a) perform his/her
job; b) perform a task related to the student’s education; c) perform a task related to the
discipline of the student; d) provide a service or benefit relating to a student or the student’s
family, such as health care, counseling, job placement or financial aid.) 
2. Certain government officials in order to carry out lawful functions. 
3. Individuals who have obtained court orders or subpoenas, though the student must be given
notice before such records are released. 
4. Accrediting organizations. 
5. And under circumstances listed above in Victim’s Rights.
The complete written policy and procedures for compliance with FERPA are available from the
Student Conduct Administrator. 
b. Student disciplinary records will be kept on file in the office of the Dean of Students and the
Student Conduct Administrator. When necessary, notices of Decisions and Sanctions will also be
sent to the University Police and the Director of Housing. 
c. Files will be kept for ten years from the student’s last violation of the Code of Conduct. These
records will then be shredded after year ten. Exceptions: in cases involving suspension or
expulsion or in which all sanctions have not been satisfactorily completed, files will be kept
Accused students, complainants, witnesses, or victims who are unable to meet in person (e.g., online students) for meetings, hearings, or appeals may arrange a web-conference, telephone conference, or another form of synchronous communication approved by the Dean of Students.
Academic Disruption Policy           
The University of South Alabama respects the right of instructors to teach and students to learn.
Maintenance of these rights requires an academic environment that does not impede their exercise. To ensure these rights, faculty and staff members have the responsibility:
- To establish and implement academic standards.
- To establish and enforce reasonable behavior standards in each academic setting.
- To document and report incidents of academic disruption.
- To refer for disciplinary action those students whose behavior may be judged to be
disruptive under the Code of Student Conduct (refer to USA Policies in the student
handbook “The Lowdown” for specifics).
Disruptive academic behavior is defined as individual or group conduct that interrupts or
interferes with any educational activity or environment, infringes upon the rights and privileges
of others, results in or threatens the destruction of property, and/or is otherwise prejudicial to the
maintenance of order in an academic environment. An academic environment is defined as a
classroom, laboratory, library, study hall, field trip or similar setting in which formal learning is
taking place. Though dependent upon the size and nature of the academic setting, disruption
refers to behavior a reasonable person would view as substantially or repeatedly
interfering with the conduct of an activity. Disruptive behavior may range from the mildly
annoying (which should be tolerated as much as possible) to clearly disruptive, dangerous and/or
behavior which should never be tolerated.
Common disruptive behavior
Common examples of disruptive student behavior include (in part from Gerald Amada “Coping
with the Disruptive Student”):
- Threatening, stalking, intimidating, or harassing of anyone in an academic setting,
such as another student, instructor, librarian or other academic staff person in an
attempt to address some grievance.
- The formation of close and sometimes erotic attachments to a professor resulting in
shadowing or persistent and unwanted phone calls or letters.
- The badgering of an instructor with questions with the intent to interrupt lectures
and gain attention (this problem is even more severe if related to alcohol or substance
- Sleeping in class.
- Routinely entering class late or departing early.
- Personal hygiene problems impacting others.
- Repeatedly talking in class without being recognized, talking while others are talking,
or dominating class discussion.
- Loud keyboarding or playing computer games.
- Physical display of anger (such as throwing books or other items).
- The use of cell phones or pagers.
- Tampering with equipment, altering computer software or hardware, or damaging
furnishings in any academic setting.
1. Excessive noise in a quiet setting such as the library. University procedures for dealing with disruptive behavior
All incidents must be documented and reports (Classroom Disruption/Behavior Concern Report)
must be routed promptly. The instructor should provide a copy of any report to the appropriate
administrator (i.e., Dean of Libraries) or academic department chairperson. The department
chairperson (who may possess other reports filed against a particular student) will then choose
one of the following three options:
- If the faculty member and/or chairperson believe that the situation is salvageable, a conference
between the faculty member and the student – possibly involving others such as the department
head, the Student Conduct Administrator, the University Police – may be held. The
consequences of continued improper behavior and strategies for ending such behavior should be
discussed at this meeting. The student needs to articulate why his/her behavior was inappropriate
for the meeting to be successful. If the student cannot do this, further action is necessary.
- If the department cannot resolve the situation, the report should be forwarded to the Student
Conduct Administrator and charges should be brought against the offending student. There must
be a complainant for this to occur. The complainant may be the involved faculty member or
academic staff person, the department head, a witness to the event, the campus police, or any
other knowledgeable third party, including students. The report or a written statement by the
complainant must be given to the Student Conduct Administrator, who will then notify the
accused student that he/ she is being charged with violating the Code of Student Conduct. The
Student Conduct Administrator will follow necessary procedures in dealing with the student as
explained in the Code of Student Conduct in the student handbook “The Lowdown”. The Student
Conduct Administrator may take unilateral action or the involved parties may be asked to appear
before the University Disciplinary Committee, a group made up of students and faculty charged
with deliberating upon non-academic Code of Conduct violations and issuing appropriate
- If there is a perceived threat or act of violence, or if and when disruptive behavior violates
federal or state laws, the report should be forwarded to the University Police who have arrest
powers and may issue trespass warnings when appropriate. Once the University Police action or
investigation is completed, they will share the report with the Student Conduct Administrator or
the University Behavioral Assessment Team for consideration of additional action.

University of South Alabama