Home About Us Advocacy Student Conduct Resources Behaviors of Concern Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

The Office of the Dean of Students (DOS) at Radford University provides answers to some of the most frequently asked questions.


  1. Can you talk to my parents?
    It depends. If your parents contact the DOS with general questions about our processes, then yes, we can answer their questions. If your parents have specific questions about your specific circumstances, a FERPA Waiver would need to be in place before this type of information could be released.
  2. Will you notify my parents of my violation?
    If you are found responsible for an alcohol and/or drug violation and are under the age of 21, yes. Your parents will be sent a letter that includes the outcome of your case and any sanctions agreed to or imposed.
  3. What is FERPA?
    FERPA or Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act is a federal law intended to protect student privacy rights related to educational records. In order to have anyone outside the University access your private student information (for example a conduct record), you must provide written permission for a specific individual inclusive of the specific information you want them to access. In other words, you would need to complete a Student Information Release Authorization (or FERPA waiver). More information regarding the RU FERPA policy and FERPA waiver can be found through the Office of the Registrar.
  4. What is the process after I get caught?
    If you are arrested, receive a summons, or a conduct referral for an incident; generally you will be contacted via e-mail by staff in the DOS or Residence Life to meet with a conduct/hearing officer.
  5. How will I be notified of my alleged violations/charges?
    Generally you will be notified via E-mail.
  6. Will I meet with the actual dean? Or who will I meet with?
    Most often you will meet with one of the Assistant Deans of Students, a DOS graduate assistant, or a member of the Housing and Residential Life Staff.
  7. What is Radford’s jurisdiction?
    Radford’s jurisdiction is anywhere you as a student may be while you are pursuing your education. In other words, from when you accept admission to when you graduate you are expected to abide by the Standards of Student Conduct and the Honor Pledge wherever you may be.
  8. Who can file a complaint?
    Anyone can file a complaint (or conduct referral).
  9. Why are my sanctions different from my friend with the same violation?
    When a student meets with a staff member in the DOS or Housing and Residential Life regarding a conduct matter they can expect a similar experience.  However, each incident and student is unique and that will impact the sanctions.
  10. Where can I report a student of concern?
    If there is an emergency situation or you suspect criminal behavior, please contact the police immediately. For on campus emergencies, contact the Radford University Police Department, 540-831-5500. For off campus emergencies, contact the Radford City Department of Police by dialing 911. In a non-emergency situation, you can contact the Office of the Dean of Students, Radford University Police Department, Student Counseling Services, or the Behavioral Consultation Team by emailing BCT@radford.edu
  11. Who has access to my conduct record? How long is it kept for?
    Radford University, you, and whomever you might designate through a FERPA waiver may have access to your conduct record. Your conduct record is kept for seven years post incident or two years post-graduation (whichever is longer).
  12. I’ve already had a court date about this; will this take care of this charge? Wouldn’t it be double jeopardy?
    The campus conduct process and the criminal court system are separate. Radford University holds students accountable to the Standards of Student Conduct, and the criminal court system holds individuals accountable to local, state, and/or federal laws. Double Jeopardy is not applicable, that refers to an individual being charged multiple times for the same crime in the criminal court system.
  13. What is hazing?
    Hazing is any action or situation requiring inappropriate behavior, creating an atmosphere of servitude, or allowing potentially dangerous, demeaning, humiliating, ridiculing, or degrading activities regardless of intent or consent of the participant(s), by a group(s), or a member of a group(s) on an individual as a part of membership or as part of initiation. Additional information regarding hazing can be found in the Standards of Student Conduct.


  1. What does the alcohol/substance fee pay for?
    The alcohol/substance fee is not a fee for service. However, it does fund the SAVES Office (Substance Abuse and Violence Education Support Services). If a student has an alcohol and/or drug violation they may be referred to the SAVES Office for substance abuse counseling.
  2. How do I pay my alcohol/substance fee?
    You may pay your fee online with credit/debit through the My RU Portal, or you can pay with cash or check at the Student Account windows in Heth Hall.
  3. I have been alleged of an alcohol or drug charge what is next?
    If you are arrested, receive a summons, or a conduct referral, generally you will be contacted via E-mail by the Office of the Dean of Students or Residence Life to meet with one of their hearing officers.
  4. I was in a room where an alcohol/drug violation took place, but was not drinking, will I still be charged?
    You may still receive a charge depending upon your level of involvement with the alleged incident.

Conduct Hearing

  1. What is the difference between an administrative hearing and a conduct board hearing?
    Both hearings follow the same procedures outlined in the Standards, the difference is in whom makes the decisions related to finding and sanctions. In administrative hearing a singular conduct/hearing officer determines responsibility or lack of responsibility and any necessary sanctions. In a conduct board hearing, a faculty member, staff member and one to three students determine responsibility or lack of responsibility and any necessary sanctions.  In a conduct board hearing a conduct/hearing officer chairs the process but does not have a role in the finding and sanctioning decisions of the Board.
  2. Can I bring a witness?
    Yes, you may bring witnesses with direct or firsthand knowledge of the incident (character witnesses are not permitted).  You must follow all the instructions regarding witnesses located in the Standards of Student Conduct.
  3. My witness can’t make it in person, is there any other way they may participate?
    Your witness may write a statement of the events they witnesses and submit it to the Office of the Dean of Students. Please be reminded that a conduct board or administrative hearing officer will determine how a written statement is considered in the hearing. In person witnesses can respond to question related to the information shared, while a written statement cannot.
  4. Is there any place I could go for advice before my meeting?
    Yes, you may certainly utilize any University office or service you deem appropriate to seek advice. You may also utilize the DOS for any questions you may have both before and after a conduct conference/case resolution or hearing.

Academic Integrity

  1. What is an academic integrity case?
    An academic integrity case is one where a student is alleged to have acted inappropriately completed academic coursework (e.g. cheating or plagiarism) or acted in an inappropriate way that directly impacts coursework, grades or progress in an academic program.
  2. My professor has accused me of cheating, what is the process?
    Initially you may meet with the faculty member to see if the case can be resolved, you may also meet with the staff in the DOS if you case is very serious, you have prior proven academic integrity violations and/or a case resolution cannot be achieved with the faculty member.