Student Life Policies
It is the students' responsibility to familiarize themselves with the policies of the University and those contained within these policies and procedures. Divisional policies and guidelines assist students in understanding expectations, processes, and procedures during their time as JHU students. Failure to become acquainted with this information will not excuse any student from responsibility for abiding by the rules and procedures described herein. Personal difficulties, illnesses, or advice contradicting the rules and procedures described herein contained do not constitute automatic grounds for exemption from these policies. These standards and procedures are not to be regarded as a contract.
Any waivers to the policies and procedures must be reviewed and approved in advance and are effective only when accepted by the Office of the Dean of Student Life.
In addition to the information contained on this page, https://studentaffairs.jhu.edu/policies-guidelines is a resource for Student Affairs polices and guidelines. Students are urged to consult the Office of the Dean of Student Life and Homewood Student Affairs about any questions that they may have concerning student activities, student life, and student affairs.
Please visit https://www.jhu.edu/university-policies/ to view JHU's Policy and Document Library, a searchable resource for university-level policies, statements, and guidelines. JHU community members can access this using their JHED ID.
The University reserves the right to make changes to policies and procedures, and other information contained herein as it deems appropriate.
Table of Contents
The fundamental purpose of Johns Hopkins University’s regulation of student conduct is to promote and to protect the health, safety, welfare, property, and rights of all members of the University community as well as to promote the orderly operation of the University and to safeguard its property and facilities. As members of the University community, students accept certain responsibilities which support the educational mission and create an environment in which all students are afforded the same opportunity to succeed academically. View the full text of the Student Conduct Code and Non-Academic Policies.
This section contains many of the relevant rules and regulations governing undergraduate student nonacademic life on the Homewood Campus. Students are responsible for complying with these policies.
Constitution of the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences and the Whiting School of Engineering
Throughout its history, The Johns Hopkins University has enjoyed a distinguished reputation for academic excellence and integrity. Each member of the University bears a personal responsibility to uphold the ethical standards of the Institution. The Undergraduate Academic Ethics Board has adopted the following procedures for responding in a timely and impartial manner to infractions of the high ethical standards of the academic community. Faculty and undergraduate students in the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences and the Whiting School of Engineering are expected to understand their responsibilities as members of the Johns Hopkins University academic community and are bound by these procedures.
The Undergraduate Academic Ethics Board
The Undergraduate Academic Ethics Board (hereinafter "The Ethics Board") is a subcommittee of the Academic Council and an independent committee of the Student Council. The Ethics Board is comprised of eight full-time faculty members (four from each school) and a minimum of twelve undergraduate students, as well as a Presiding Official (up to three presiding officials may be trained to fill the role), who is an undergraduate student. The faculty members are selected by the Vice Deans of Education for KSAS and WSE, respectively, and the undergraduate members are selected by the Student Council's Committee on Leadership Appointments. Undergraduate members shall serve terms of one academic year or more, beginning on September 1st. A board member may be removed from the Ethics Board if he or she has not met the expectation of the board.
The Ethics Board is responsible for the maintenance of the academic integrity of the undergraduate programs in the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences and the Whiting School of Engineering and for all matters concerning adherence to this Constitution, including but not limited to: receiving reports of suspected violations, consulting with members of the University community on ways to reduce possible violations, appointing hearing panels, maintaining confidential records, orienting new students to the ethic standards of the community.
The duties of the Presiding Official are:
- to plan and oversee all general meetings of the Board
- to assist in training of the board members selected for the subsequent year
- to assist in the selection of new board members when requested
- to provide assistance to the Associate Dean for Student Conduct in his or her duties when requested
- to oversee all hearings of the Undergraduate Academic Ethics Board and to make procedural decisions
The Ethics Board shall have jurisdiction over all undergraduates in the Krieger School of Arts & Sciences and the Whiting School of Engineering. The Ethics Board may assume jurisdiction over a case involving a full time undergraduate in a class in the School of Education and the Carey School of Business.
Undergraduate students enrolled in the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences or the Whiting School of Engineering at the Johns Hopkins University assume a duty to conduct themselves in a manner appropriate to the University's mission as an institution of higher learning. Students are obliged to refrain from acts which they know, or under circumstances have reason to know, violate the academic integrity of the University. Violations of academic ethics include, but are not limited to:
- plagiarism; submitting the same or substantially similar work to satisfy the requirements of more than one course without permission; submitting as one's own the same or substantially similar work of another;
- knowingly furnishing false information to any agent of the University for inclusion in academic records;
- falsification, forgery, alteration, destruction or misuse of official University documents or seal.
Faculty members are responsible for specifying at the beginning of each semester the basic rules and procedures for any and all coursework, examinations, and other academic exercises. They are also responsible for exercising a reasonable degree of caution while writing, transporting and administering examinations and other graded work. All faculty members and teaching assistants are responsible for taking appropriate actions in accordance with the Constitution in all cases of suspected violations of academic ethics.
It is the responsibility of each student to report to the professor in charge of the course or to the Ethics Board any suspected violations of academic ethics.
If a student is suspected of a possible violation of academic ethics, the professor in charge of the course will review the evidence and the facts of the case promptly with the student. If, after speaking with the student(s), the professor believes that a violation of academic ethics has occurred, the professor may (a) settle the case directly with the student with appropriate notification to the Office of the Dean of Student Life (the Professor may also ask the Associate Dean for Student Conduct to serve as a mediator in such instances) or (b) promptly notify the Ethics Board in writing, through the Office of the Dean of Student Life, setting forth the details of the case.
- A professor has the authority to settle a case with a student if (a) the current offense does not constitute a second or subsequent offense, and (b) the settlement does not call for a notation on the student's transcript. It is the responsibility of the professor to check with the Office of the Dean of Student Life to determine whether the student has any prior record of misconduct. If the circumstances surrounding the case do not satisfy the above criteria, then the professor must send the case to the Ethics Board for resolution.
- If the professor settles a case with the student(s), the penalty or penalties imposed may only be selected from items (b) through (e) listed under the Penalties section. If the professor feels that none of these penalties is appropriate, he/ she must submit the matter to the Ethics Board for resolution.
- If a case is settled directly between the student and the professor, then the professor must submit the name of the student and the settlement agreed upon to the Office of the Dean of Student Life.
- If the student(s) and professor are unable to reach a settlement, then the professor must file a written charge of a violation of academic ethics to the Office of the Dean of Student Life for resolution. Professors should make every effort to take such action within one week of the alleged occurrence of academic misconduct.
- In the event that a case arises near the end of a semester, the professor must submit a charge (as outlined above) at least one week before the official last day of classes. Any charge received after this date may be held over until the following semester. When possible, hearings could be held during Intersession and summer. For summer hearings, officers and board members may be drawn from the Board for the subsequent academic year at the discretion of the Associate Dean for Student Conduct.
Upon receipt of a charge of a violation of academic ethics (that constitutes a student's second violation) from a professor or an egregious charge that if found responsible would require the student's removal from the University, the Associate Dean for Student Conduct shall appoint a hearing panel to consider the charge(s). The panel shall decide the issue of responsibility and, if the student is found responsible, shall impose an appropriate penalty, as specified in the Penalties section.
When the Associate Dean for Student Conduct receives a charge of a violation of academic ethics from a professor, he/she shall:
- file the professor's written charge in the Ethics Board's file in the Office of the Dean of Student Life.
- collect all pertinent evidence.
- set a hearing date, time, and location.
- notify the accused student(s) of the charge and hearing date, time, and location.
- select members of the Ethics Board to serve on the hearing panel
When the conditions warrant a hearing, the Associate Dean for Student Conduct shall appoint a hearing panel of unbiased persons to consider the case.
A hearing panel shall consist of two faculty members and three students and shall ordinarily be selected from the members of the Ethics Board. A Presiding Official shall conduct the proceedings of the hearing panel. He or she is responsible for maintaining records of all procedural decisions.
If any member of the panel feels they are unable to treat all parties fairly, they should remove themselves from the board, and the Associate Dean for Student Conduct may appoint a hearing panel of faculty or full-time undergraduate students from the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences and the Whiting School of Engineering who are not members of the Ethics Board. Such a circumstance might occur if a panel could not be appointed from among the members of the Ethics Board.
The professor shall submit all relevant documents to the Associate Dean for Student Conduct at least five business days prior to a hearing. The accused student shall submit all relevant documents to the Associate Dean for Student Conduct at least two business days prior to the hearing. If any evidence is submitted after this date, both parties will be notified of its addition.
The accused student shall be notified in writing of a charge of a violation of academic ethics at least five business days prior to a hearing. Upon receipt of notification, the accused student(s) shall have the opportunity to inspect all documents under the supervision of the Associate Dean for Student Conduct.
The hearing panel members shall not be informed of details of the charge(s) before the hearing is convened and shall keep all information confidential.
The accused student may discuss procedures with the Associate Dean for Student Conduct or a designee but may not approach members of the panel, the accuser, or the accuser's witnesses concerning any matter directly or indirectly related to the hearing.
- Students charged with misconduct arising from a single incident or occurrence may have their hearings joined at the discretion of the Associate Dean for Student Conduct. Charges of academic misconduct against a single student arising from several incidents or occurrences may also be heard at one hearing at the discretion of the Associate Dean for Student Conduct.
- The accused student shall receive written notification of a joinder of charges.
- When a hearing involves a joinder of charges, the guilt or innocence of each student shall be ruled upon separately. Similarly, joined charges against a single student shall be ruled upon individually.
- If an accused student fails to appear for the hearing after having been duly served with notice, or withdraws from a hearing before its conclusion without the written permission of the Associate Dean for Student Conduct, immediate suspension from the University may be imposed. Such a suspension shall continue until the hearing can be concluded with the student present.
- Students are responsible for appearing as witnesses before a hearing panel as requested by the Ethics Board, and no student may willfully interfere with the processes of the Ethics Board or its hearing panels. A student's failure to appear and tell the truth in response to all relevant questions, or his or her interference with the processes of the Ethics Board or its hearing panels constitutes a violation of academic ethics.
Those present at a hearing of the Ethics Board are limited to the following: the Presiding Official, panel members, the member of the University bringing charges, the accused student(s), and not more that one representative of the accused student(s). Any witness called by either party may be present only when their testimony is required. The Associate Dean for Student Conduct or other administrative officer may also attend the hearing but cannot decide responsible or not responsible regarding the accused.
A full and complete record shall be made of the proceedings via digital audio recording. No record of the deliberation shall be made. The hearing panel may, however, prepare a brief written report detailing the reason(s) for the finding of guilt or innocence and any penalties imposed. The Office of the Dean of Student Life will maintain a permanent file of all such reports. If a student is found responsible, they will receive written notification of their sanction(s).
- The Presiding Official shall conduct the hearing in an orderly fashion. He/ She shall have the authority to rule on peremptory challenges, exclude testimony and evidence that is repetitious or irrelevant to the charges, and shall make final decisions of all questions of procedure. They may ask the Associate Dean for Student Conduct questions for clarification.
- The Presiding Official may recess the hearing when it is deemed necessary. During a recess of a hearing, no discussion of the case by panel members, the accused student, the accuser, or witnesses will be permitted.
The accused student shall be presumed not responsible until found responsible. A determination should be reached during deliberations based solely upon the information presented during the hearing, and not upon any preconceived assumptions.
Upon calling the hearing to order and introducing the panel, the Presiding Official shall read the charge(s) and ask the accused student to enter a plea of responsible or not responsible.
If the accused student pleads responsible to the charge(s), the professor shall present testimony which can aid the hearing panel in determining the severity of the offense. The student shall then be given the opportunity to present information to the hearing panel which he/ she wishes to be considered in determining a penalty. The hearing panel may also ask questions of both parties in order to ascertain the severity of the offense.
- If the plea is not responsible, the professor shall present testimony and evidence in support of the charges. Evidence may include documents, the professor's own testimony, and that of any witnesses. Before calling a witness, the professor should be prepared to establish that the witness will present evidence relevant to the case at hand. Only the panel may ask questions of the accused or the professor. The Associate Dean for Student Conduct may curtail questioning if it is determined to be irrelevant or repetitious.
- Following the professor's presentation, the accused student shall present testimony and evidence under the same restrictions.
- Following the accused student's presentation, the professor and the accused student may recall witnesses if they can establish the need to do so. Such a recall of witnesses shall be subject to the discretion of the Associate Dean for Student Conduct.
- After testimony from both sides has been heard, the professor and the accused student shall be given the opportunity to present a closing statement and any mitigating circumstances which they feel are appropriate. If the charge being heard constitutes a second or subsequent offense by the student, the student shall have the opportunity to comment on each prior offense individually.
- Following the closing statements, the professor, the accused student, his/ her representatives, and all witnesses are excused. All parties shall remain available and shall inform the Presiding Official of their whereabouts.
- The panel shall deliberate the charge(s) until each member is ready to vote or the Associate Dean for Student Conduct determines that any further deliberation will not be productive.
- The accused student, professor, and/ or any witnesses may be recalled for further testimony at any time during the panel's deliberation.
- The individual decision of each hearing panelist on responsible/not responsible shall be based upon a preponderance of the evidence.
- Voting of the hearing panel may be by secret ballot or verbally. Majority of votes will determine responsible or not responsible.
- The accused student will be asked to return, and told of the results of the panel.
Notice of the outcome of the hearing shall be sent to the student(s), professor, and the Dean of the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences or the Whiting School of Engineering, depending on the school in which the student is enrolled. A copy will also be filed in the Office of the Dean of Student Life.
If a student is found responsible for a violation of academic ethics, whether by direct settlement with the professor, by pleading guilty at a hearing, or by a ruling of a hearing panel, a notification of the violation must be made in the student's file explaining the violation.
- One or more of the following penalties may be imposed upon students found responsible for violations of academic ethics:
- A notation placed on the student's permanent transcript explaining the violation and punishment.
- Retake of the examination, paper or exercise involved.
- Score of zero on the examination, paper, or exercise involved.
- Lowering of the course grade.
- Failure in the course.
- Failure in the course with a notation on the transcript that the grade was for a violation of academic ethics.
- Failure in the course with suspension from the University.
- Failure in the course with suspension from the University and notation on the transcript that the failing grade was for a violation of academic ethics.
- Suspension from the University for at least one Semester.
- Suspension from the University for at least one Semester with a notation on the transcript that the cause was a violation of academic ethics.
- Expulsion from the University with a notation on the transcript that the cause was a violation of academic ethics.
- Hearing panels shall make every effort to select a penalty appropriate to the severity of the offense, and may take into consideration any mitigating circumstances brought to its attention, as well as any record or absence of prior misconduct. A hearing panel may also impose a penalty that is not enumerated above if to do so would appropriately reflect the severity of the offense.
- In most cases, the penalty for a second or subsequent finding of guilt must be selected from items (f) through (k) of Section B-1 above.
The penalty decided upon by the hearing panel must be agreed upon by the majority of the panel.
A student found responsible for a violation of academic ethics in a course forfeits the right to withdraw from the course or to change a graded course to pass/fail, and any withdrawal from that course or change effected prior to the finding of responsibility shall be voided.
A student who has committed a violation of academic ethics has the option of making a timely and personal report of the offense to the professor in charge of the course or to the Dean of the respective school. A self-reported violation of academic ethics reported and dealt with under this section shall not constitute a first offense. Self-reporting is defined as reporting a violation of academic ethics without prompt by an instructor.
A student found responsible for a violation of academic ethics may appeal the decision of the hearing panel to the Vice Dean of Undergraduate Education (or his or her designee) of the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, the Vice Dean of Undergraduate Education of the Whiting School of Engineering, whichever is applicable. The appeal must by filed within 10 business days from the date of the decision from which the appeal is taken. The appeal must be in the form of a written statement setting forth the grounds for the appeal. A student may appeal due to procedural error and/or the severity of the sanction(s). The Vice Dean may disallow an appeal of any procedural error if that error did not cause harm to the accused student. Upon receipt of an appeal, the Vice Dean will review any and all documentation related to the case, obtain and audio recording of the hearing, and may interview panel members in determining the outcome of the appeal. The Vice Dean may uphold, overturn, or amend any or all sanctions based on his/her findings. A full written report of the disposition of each appeal shall be made by the Vice Dean of the respective school and to the Associate Dean for Student Conduct.
Records of the Ethics Board are available to members of the Board, faculty, and administrative staff, including the pre-medical and pre-law advisors. Records will only be released if a written request has been made and approved by the Associate Dean for Student Conduct.
The records of the Undergraduate Academic Ethics Board shall be held in the Office of the Dean of Student Life.
- It is strongly encouraged that if formal charges have not been brought against an accused student within three months or within the first month of the fall semester for charges carried over from the previous academic year, then any references to the accusation(s) shall be eliminated from all files into which they had been placed.
- A case file concerning an accused student shall be retained for seven (7) years after that student graduates or otherwise leaves the University.
Summary of Procedures for Responding to Infractions of the Academic Ethics Code
Violations of Academic Integrity
Violations of academic ethics include, but are not limited to: cheating, plagiarism; submitting the same or substantially similar work to satisfy the requirements of more than one course without permission; submitting as one's own the same or substantially similar work of another; knowingly furnishing false information to any agent of the University for inclusion in academic records; falsification, forgery, alteration, destruction or misuse of official University documents or seal.
Suspicion of a Violation of Academic Integrity
Faculty members and teaching assistants have a responsibility to act in accordance with the ethics code in all cases of suspected violations of academic ethics. Students have a responsibility to report suspected violations of the ethics code to the professor in charge of the course or to the Ethics Board.
The Associate Dean for Student Conduct in Mattin Suite 210, 410-516-8208, is the liaison for the Ethics Board. If a student is suspected of a violation of academic ethics, the professor in charge of the course must contact the liaison for the Ethics Board to determine whether the student has a record of a previous violation of academic ethics. The professor will review the evidence with the student. If the professor believes that a violation of academic ethics has occurred, the professor may
- settle the case directly with the student, provided the student does not have a previous violation of academic ethics on file with the Office of the Dean of Student Life (the Associate Dean for Student Conduct may be requested by the professor or student to mediate in such instances)
- promptly request a hearing by the Ethics Board (by contacting the liaison) and submitting a written charge, describing the details for the case.
Direct Settlement between the Professor and Student
If this is a first offense, the professor may settle the case with the student if the student admits responsibility. Written notification of the violations and the settlement, signed by the professor and countersigned by the student, should be sent to liaison for the Ethics Board. The penalty imposed may be selected from the following: retake the examination, paper or exercise involved; earn a lower grade in the course; or fail the course. If the professor or student feels that none of these penalties is appropriate, the case must be submitted to the Ethics Board for resolution. If this is a student's second violation of academic ethics, the case must be submitted to the Ethics Board.
Ethics Board Hearings
When direct settlement is not possible, due to either a dispute of the charge, a second charge, or a faculty referral, the case is brought before the Ethics Board. A hearing panel of two faculty and three student members is then scheduled. The accused student will be notified of the charge(s) and hearing date, time and location. If the case is reported at the end of the semester, when students and faculty are busy with examinations or have left campus, the case may be held over until the start of the next semester.
The professor submits all relevant documents to the liaison of the Ethics Board prior to the hearing. The accused student is given an opportunity to inspect all documents prior to the hearing under the supervision of an official of the Office of the Dean of Student Life. The student may also bring one representative to the hearing. The representative must be a full-time student presently enrolled in the School of Arts and Sciences or the School of Engineering. A tape of the hearing is made and can be furnished to the accused student for the purpose of preparing an appeal. No recording of the deliberation is made, although a brief written report is prepared detailing the reason(s) for the panel's decision and the penalties imposed.
The hearing panel members are not informed of the details of the charges until the hearing is convened. The accused student may not approach the members of the panel, the accuser, or the accuser's witnesses regarding any matter related to the hearing.
The hearing is conducted in an orderly fashion with testimony taken in turn from the accuser, the accused, and from witnesses. Cross-examination and closing statements are allowed. The decision of the hearing panel on responsibility shall be based upon a preponderance of the evidence. At least three votes are required for a finding of responsible, otherwise the case is dismissed.
Penalties and Records
If a student is found responsible for a violation of academic ethics, either by direct settlement with the professor, or by a ruling of a hearing panel, a notation explaining the violation must be made in the student's academic advising records. Penalties for a violation that is heard by a Hearing panel may include those available to a professor who reaches a direct settlement with the student, plus others including notations on a transcript and suspension or expulsion from the University. A student found guilty of a violation of academic ethics in a course forfeits the right to withdraw from the course, to change the graded course to satisfactory/ unsatisfactory, or to absolve the grade by repeating the course.
Self-Reports of Violations
A student who reports his/her own violation of academic ethics to the professor in charge of the course, or the Dean of the school, is subject to penalties, but the violation is not considered a first offense.
The Homewood Schools’ freshman and sophomore residence requirement applies to students engaged in their first two years of full-time undergraduate study. Transfer students entering the university with freshman or sophomore status are subject to this same requirement. Since students cannot complete their residence requirement in the middle of the academic year, transfer freshmen entering the university in January must live in the residence halls their entering semester and the following academic year. Transfer sophomores entering in January fulfill the residence requirement by living in the residence halls their entering semester. Exceptions to this policy are made for individuals living at home in the Baltimore area with parents or guardians.
The benefits of the residence requirement are many. It is designed to provide the students with a variety of services and conveniences. Living oncampus supports the academic mission of the university and affords students the opportunity to interact, socialize, and unwind with their classmates.