Frequently Asked Questions for Students

If you're a UC Merced student, this is an excellent place to start. Read through the FAQ below. If you still have a concern, we'd be happy to address it.

The Informal Discipline Process

What is an Informal Dispositional Meeting (IDM)?

Informal disposition means resolution without a formal hearing, usually by agreement between the student and Student Conduct Officer. Informal disposition can also include unilateral conduct action if a student fails to participate in the conduct process. (See Section 603.20)

What happens at the first meeting between the Student Conduct Officer and the student?

The allegations and possible rules violations are discussed and the student has the opportunity to respond to the charges before a decision is reached. This occurs after the Student Conduct process and procedures are reviewed with the student.

Does the Student Conduct Officer determine whether or not the student violated University policies or the campus code of Student Conduct rules during the first meeting?

Not necessarily, but in a majority of the cases, yes. The Student Conduct Officer has the option of consulting with the reporting party or other witnesses before reaching an agreement with the student or otherwise resolving the case informally.

What is the “Formal Hearing Waiver” the student signs during the first disciplinary meeting?

A formal hearing waiver is a document that ensures the student understands and takes responsibility for the violations he/she has agreed to. By signing this document the student is accepting the disciplinary action and sanctions listed on the form, waving their right to a formal hearing and resolving the matter informally.

What if a case cannot be resolved informally?

If an agreement cannot be made regarding the facts and or sanction, the student and the Student Conduct Officer may agree to have the case resolved by Appeal or Formal Hearing.

What if the student is afraid that admitting the violation will ruin his/her college career?

The Office of Student Conduct encourages student to act in an ethical manner, and accept responsibility for his/her actions.

Will the Student Conduct office inform the student’s parents about the case?        

No. The Office of Student Conduct will not contact a student’s parent(s) regarding a conduct matter without the student’s consent.

Some students feel stressed after being reported to the Office of Student Conduct? Is there someone the student can talk to anonymously to get help and advice?

Concerned students can be directed to the Office of Ombuds Services located in SSB 211. The Ombuds Office is designed to serve as a safe, confidential, neutral and informal place to discuss your concerns.

What if the student did not commit the violation he/she has been accused of?

If a student is able to provide a plausible explanation for the circumstances that led to the allegation and if there is evidence to support that claim, the matter will likely be dropped. However, if the student denies the allegation, and in the judgment of the Student Conduct Officer, there is evidence indicating that the student is responsible, the Student Conduct Officer may refer that matter to a hearing.

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