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Code of Conduct, Norms, & Policies

In the early years of Hampshire College, each of the four housing areas determined their own policies and procedures. In 1972, Community Council (comprised of 8 students, 4 faculty, and 2 staff) began work to establish a student Code of Rights that would apply to all students. On May 17, 1973 the Community Council approved the first guidelines for community living, the "Code of Rights;" over time this document was reviewed and revised and the Community Council approved the second set of guidelines for community living, the "Bill of Rights." Finally on March 11, 1976, the Community Council affirmed the "Norms for Community Living" that the College continues to use today as guiding principles for review of all reported violations of policy. The Code of Conduct section was later added as the student conduct process evolved, and serves to strengthen the College’s expectation that these are the standards, along with the associated Policies, to which all Hampshire College students and employees must conform. While the Code of Conduct is specific to students, the Norms for Community Living apply to all Hampshire College community members.

Code of Conduct
Hampshire College students, whether or not they are on campus or enrolled as a degree candidate, must abide by this Code of Conduct including the Norms for Community Living that guide review of all policies. Guests of Hampshire students and students from other colleges who are enrolled in Hampshire College courses are required to comply with these policies while on the Hampshire College campus and while off campus when participating in Hampshire College programs and activities.

All rules and laws of the Town of Amherst, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and the United States of America apply on the campus and are considered part of College policies. The Town of Amherst and Commonwealth of Massachusetts laws include, but are not limited to, regulations on indoor and outdoor smoking, open container laws (for alcoholic beverages), public nudity restrictions (including public urination), bans on drug use and paraphernalia, and limitations on weapons possession.

Town of Amherst General Bylaws: https://www.amherstma.gov/207/General-Bylaws-Government-Act

Commonwealth of Massachusetts General Laws: https://malegislature.gov/Laws/GeneralLaws/

The Dean of Student's Office reserves the right to change and/or modify policies, processes, and procedure without notice.

Norms for Community Living
Charge and Membership
Members of the Hampshire College community have a common concern for each individual person and their personal development. Each member of the community has certain rights that afford personal protection and insure the College’s commitment to learning and the advancement of knowledge through free inquiry will not be interfered with. No member of this community shall violate the rights of any other member, as represented by the norms described in this document.

All persons affiliated with Hampshire College are considered members of the Hampshire community and are expected to abide by the Norms for Community Living and Policies while they are on or off the Hampshire College campus.

Right of Assembly
All members of the Hampshire community have a right to assemble peaceably and petition for the redress of their grievances.

Right of Freedom of Communication of Ideas
All members of the Hampshire community have the right to freely express their ideas provided that the method of expression does not violate any other rights affirmed by this document, the Code of Conduct, and policies in the Hampshire College Student Handbook. Any member of the College has the right to publish and distribute without interference. However, while such members may not be subject to prior restraint, they shall be held accountable for any erroneous, malicious, or defamatory statements that violate any other right affirmed by this document, the Code of Conduct, and policies in the Hampshire College Student Handbook.

Right of Integrity
Every member of the Hampshire community is entitled to the Right of Integrity. The Right of Integrity is composed of three parts:

  1. Academic Integrity: Every member of the college community has the exclusive right to their own academic work. To use or convert another person’s work as one’s own for academic credit, public approbation, or monetary gain violates this right. (Also see Ethics of Scholarship.)
  2. Business Integrity: Every member of the college community has the right to expect that any business conducted with any other member is free from malice and fraud.
  3. Personal Integrity: Every member of the college community has the right not to be the subject of slander or libel, and not to have their character impugned.

Right of Personal Security
Every member of the Hampshire community has the right to reasonable security from threat or physical abuse or mental anguish by any other person or device or substance controlled by any other person.