We are here to support your success and personal development as members of the LSU Law Center and the LSU community by promoting academic integrity and standards of conduct. Exercising an understanding of the Principles of Civility, Code of Student Professional Responsibility – Title IX (Honor Code) and LSU University Policies is essential in being a productive LSU community member.
Principles of Civility
A hallmark of an enlightened and effective system of justice is adherence to standards of professional responsibility and civility. Integrity and courtesy are indispensable to the practice of law. A central mission of LSU Paul M. Hebert Law Center is to develop and maintain a challenging yet supportive academic and professional environment. While the study of law may engage language or subject matter that some consider impolite or even offensive, the Law Center is governed by the core values of professionalism, integrity, trust, civility, courtesy, mutual respect, cordiality, humility, and accountability.
Concerns about civility are at the forefront of contemporary discussions of professionalism not just in law schools, but in the legal profession at large. Civility is the recognition of a shared investment in and commitment to a mode of self-expression and human interaction. Civility is expressed by polite, courteous, and considerate speech or behavior appropriate to civil interactions. The presence of civility does not mean the absence of vigorous or impassioned disagreement. Civility does not seek to limit or chill the expression of dissent, strongly held convictions, or contrary positions. It is concerned with the character of speech and expression as opposed to its specific content. It does not strive for a culture of token respectability that requires policing or diminishing constitutional protections. A commitment to civility represents an appreciation of the ways in which the presentation of ideas can have an impact on how they are ultimately received, regardless of their merits. Civility is therefore indispensable for effective advocacy.
Members of the Law Center community conduct themselves in a manner that preserves not only their personal dignity and honor, but also that of the Law Center and the legal profession. Student members of the Law Center community should aspire to:
- Speak and write in a civil, professional, courteous, and respectful manner in communications.
- Treat all members of the Law Center community in a civil, professional, courteous, and respectful manner.
- Respect diverse backgrounds and experiences.
- Refrain from conduct that diminishes the dignity or decorum of the Law Center’s communal spaces and overall environment.
- Strive to resolve disputes in a civil manner.
Code of Student Professional Responsibility
It is the sense of the faculty that it is unprofessional for a law student, either on the Law Center or University campus or at a Law Center of University event, in addressing or describing a person or persons, to use epithets that demean on the basis or based upon race, gender, religion, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, or age and that the forgoing statement shall be published in the Law Center Catalog as a policy statement, in close proximity to the Code of Student Professional Responsibility.
Law school is the first step toward becoming a member of the legal profession. Members of the legal profession are subject to the highest standards of professional conduct. The Law Center, therefore, expects its students to adhere to high standards of conduct during their legal education and to avoid even the appearance of impropriety during that process. Just as lawyer behavior reflects on the bar and courts even when they are not in court, student behavior can reflect on the Law Center away from the physical facility. When students represent the Law Center, or when their behavior might closely affect the Law Center or its relationships with other institutions in Louisiana or abroad, students are expected to abide by the professional obligations of the Code of Student Professional Responsibility.
It is the obligation of every student to report to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs or to a member of the Ethics Committee of the Student Bar Association any violation of this Code of Student Professional Responsibility. Students are expected to live up to the standards set forth in this Code and to assist in its enforcement.
Lying, cheating, plagiarism, theft, and other forms of student misconduct are prohibited.
- Lying includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Knowingly furnishing false or misleading information to the administrators, faculty, or other personnel of the Law Center.
- Forging, altering, or misusing Law Center documents, records, or identification cards.
- Knowingly furnishing false information in any proceedings undertaken pursuant to this Code.
- Failing to acknowledge one’s presence in class when present and requested by the instructor to recite materials or otherwise participate in class discussion.
- Falsifying information on a class roll sheet in any manner, such as by signing or initialing for another student who is not present, by procuring another student to sign or initial for a student not present, or by signing or initialing a roll sheet indicating that the student was present when the student was not actually present in the classroom or was so late that this student missed a substantial portion of the class.
- Cheating includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Copying from or looking upon another student’s examination paper during an examination with intent to give or obtain information relevant to the examination.
- Using material during an examination not authorized by the person administering the examination.
- Collaborating during an examination with any other person by giving or receiving information without authority.
- Stealing, buying, otherwise obtaining, selling, giving away, or bribing another person to obtain all or part of an unadministered examination or information about an unadministered examination.
- Substituting for another student, or permitting any other person to substitute for oneself, to take an examination.
- Submitting as one’s own, in fulfillment of academic requirements, a report, term paper, memorandum, brief, or any other written work prepared totally or in part by another person.
- Taking time beyond that allowed other students for the completion of an examination, without the expressed permission of the person administering the examination.
- Selling, giving, or otherwise supplying to another student for submission in fulfilling academic requirements any report, term paper, memorandum, brief, or any other written work.
- Consulting any attorney regarding the specifics of any written or oral presentation, unless authorized by the instructor.
- Plagiarism is the unacknowledged incorporation of another person’s work in one’s own work submitted for credit or publication (such material need not be copyrighted).
- Theft includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- The taking or unauthorized use of Law Center property, including any materials from the Law Library.
- The taking or unauthorized use of the funds of the Law Center or any student organization.
- The taking or unauthorized use of the property of other students while on campus, or of material related to the Law Center while off campus.
- Student misconduct includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Attempting to commit, or being an accessory to the commission of any of the foregoing offenses.
- Committing any misdemeanor on the premises of the Law Center, or on the premises of a Law Center partner institution, on the premises of student residences associated with the Law Center or its programs, or at an official Law Center function, or committing any felony.
- Knowingly interfering with any proceedings undertaken pursuant to this Code, including threats directed to students, faculty, or other persons initiating or participating in such proceedings.
- Repeatedly attending class without adequately preparing the material assigned by the instructor, unless special arrangements are made with the instructor prior to class.
- Refusing to participate in class discussion when requested to do so by the instructor.
- Using any other person’s work or assistance in the preparation of work to be submitted for credit, unless authorized by the instructor.
- Committing any act of vandalism or destruction with respect to Law Center property, the property of a Law Center partner institution, the property of student residences associated with the Law Center or its programs, or the property where a Law Center function is being held.
- Intentionally disrupting a class.
- Violating any rules established to govern student use of or conduct in the Law Library.
- Talking with another student during an examination with intent to give or obtain information relevant to the examination.
- Utilizing materials submitted in fulfillment of the requirements of a course to fulfill the requirements of another course or courses without first obtaining consent of all faculty members affected.
- Knowingly to communicate directly to one or more specifically identifiable person(s) an epithet i) that a reasonable person would regard as demeaning to the recipient student or students and ii) that has a direct tendency to cause acts of violence by the person or persons to whom the communication is addressed. Such epithets shall include, but shall not be limited to, epithets that demean on the basis of race, gender, gender identity/expression, religion, national origin, disability, sexual orientation or age.
- Knowingly to communicate directly to one or more specifically identifiable person(s) a statement that a reasonable person would regard as a serious expression of an intent to commit an act of unlawful violence against the recipient or recipients of the statement. Such statements shall include, but shall not be limited to, statements expressing intent to commit an unlawful act of violence based on the race, gender, gender identity/expression, religious belief, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, or age of the recipient student or students.
- Repeated, persistent, or pervasive conduct (including verbal conduct) directed toward specific individual(s), that is (i) unwelcome and (ii) intended to interfere with, or that a reasonable person would regard as having the effect of interfering with, the ability of the specific individual(s) to participate in or benefit from the services, activities, or opportunities offered by the law school or university. Such conduct is that which is motivated by personal characteristics of the specific individual(s) to whom such conduct is directed, including but not limited to, race, gender, gender identity/expression, religious belief, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, or age.
- Sex discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual misconduct, interpersonal violence, stalking, or any other Title IX-related misconduct that results in a finding of responsibility under LSU PM-73. Any person with knowledge of misconduct identified in this Section shall report it immediately to either the LSU Title IX Coordinator, the LSU Deputy Title IX Coordinators, the Law Center’s Associate Dean for Academic Affairs or any person designated to receive such reports under LSU PM- 73. (See Title IX of the United States Education Amendments of 1972, 20 U.S.C.S. §§1681-88 (2017); 34 C.F.R. Part 106; and Permanent Memorandum No. 73 of the Louisiana State University System)
Rules of Procedure for Disposition of Complaints
- General. The ultimate goal of the disposition of complaints is to determine whether a student violated the fundamental standard of the Code of Student Professional Responsibility and to impose an appropriate sanction, if necessary. Given the serious nature of these proceedings, hearing committees shall endeavor to hold hearings as soon as possible after notification of an incident. The hearings are inquisitorial in nature and do not follow formal rules of evidence. However, it is important that both the student and the hearing committees have the opportunity to present and/or obtain all relevant evidence and testimony. Disciplinary Hearings are not formal courts of law, and the Chairs of said hearings may suspend hearings and reconvene them later on if necessary or in the interests of fairness and justice. A student may be investigated only one time for a particular alleged violation of the Code.
- Reporting. Any person having first-hand knowledge of a violation of this Code shall report the incident to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs of the Law Center designated by the Law Dean to receive such reports, or to a member of the Ethics Committee of the Student Bar Association. No anonymous reporting is permitted. If a report is made to a member of the Ethics Committee, that member shall promptly report the matter to the designated Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.
- Any complaint alleging misconduct identified in Section 5(o) of this Code shall be governed by the substantive standards and procedures set forth in the LSU Code of Student Conduct, as administered by the LSU Office of Student Advocacy and Accountability. If a complaint alleges conduct that may violate both Section 5(o) and other sections of the Law Center Code of Student Professional Conduct, all alleged violations shall be investigated and adjudicated under the LSU Code of Student Conduct, as administered by the LSU Office of Student Advocacy and Accountability.
- Preliminary Inquiry by Associate Dean.
- Upon receipt of a report of an alleged violation of the Code of Student Professional Responsibility, the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs will conduct a preliminary inquiry to determine whether probable cause exists to warrant a disciplinary hearing.
- In conducting this inquiry, the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs may meet with the accused student, the reporting party, and any witnesses and may examine any relevant evidence.
- If the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs determines that no probable cause exists, the charges will be dismissed. If the Associate Dean determines that probable cause exists, the Associate Dean shall direct the Chair of the Student Ethics Committee to appoint a committee to conduct a Disciplinary Hearing to determine the merits of the com- plaint.
- The Law Center directly reports to state bar examiners only the final results of a Disciplinary Hearing. If the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs does not recommend a Disciplinary Hearing, the student may not have to report the incident to the state bar examiners. The student should consult the applicable state’s bar application website for more information.
- The accused student or a reporting party may appeal the decision of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs to the Law Center’s Executive Committee within 14 days of receiving notice of the Associate Dean’s decision.
- The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs shall provide to the Chair of the Student Ethics Committee and to the Executive Committee an anonymous summary of each report of alleged violation received and the disposition of that report.
- Disciplinary Hearing.
- Preliminary Matters.
- The Chair of the Student Ethics Committee and the President of the Student Bar Association shall appoint the Disciplinary Hearing Committee consisting of five (5) members: three (3) law student members and two (2) faculty members, and shall appoint one member to serve as Chair of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee.
- The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs shall set forth in writing the grounds of the complaint against the student and shall furnish a copy of the written complaint to the Chair of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee.
- The Chair of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee shall designate the time and place for a hearing. The hearing shall be conducted de novo and the preliminary determination of probable cause by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs should not be considered binding on the Disciplinary Hearing Committee.
- The Chair of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee shall provide the student with a copy of the written complaint. The Chair of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee shall prepare a notice containing the following information: (a) the time and place of the hearing; and (b) the date for furnishing the information described in paragraph 4.a.v. The notice shall be furnished to the student and to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.
- The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and the student shall furnish to each other and to the Chair of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee (a) a list of the names and addresses of witnesses whose testimony should be heard by the Disciplinary Hearing Committee; (b) a brief statement describing the substance of the testimony of each witness; (c) any documentary evidence which should be considered at the hearing; and (d) the name of any person designated to assist him or her during the hearing.
- The following may be present at the hearing: members of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee, the student, the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, persons designated to assist during the hearing, the witness under examination, and any person authorized by the Disciplinary Hearing Committee to record the proceedings. At the request of the student, the Disciplinary Hearing Committee may permit such other persons as it deems appropriate to be present during the hearing.
- Opening Procedures.
- A statement of the charges shall be read to the student and he/she will be asked if he/she understands said charges.
- The Chair of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee shall determine whether there are any facts which may be agreed upon and the order in which the witnesses shall be heard.
- Examination of Witnesses.
- All witnesses whose names have been submitted and who are available will be asked to testify unless the Disciplinary Hearing Committee determines that their testimony would not assist in finding relevant facts or in making a recommendation as to the proper disposition of the case. The Committee may also ask witnesses to testify whose names have not been submitted by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs or the student. When practicable, notice of such witnesses shall be given to the student. The Chair of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee shall notify all witnesses of the time and place of the hearing.
- The Disciplinary Hearing Committee may receive affidavits based upon personal knowledge addressing relevant facts upon a finding that the witness cannot conveniently attend the hearing. If the Committee feels that hearing the witness’s testimony is necessary to achieve a fair result and disposition, the Committee may ask the witness to appear to testify or, if the witness is unavailable, take whatever alternative steps it deems appropriate.
- Prior to hearing the testimony of a witness, the Chair of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee shall ask the witness whether he or she will truthfully respond to all questions.
- The Chair of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee will first examine the witness. The members of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee will next examine the witness. The Chair may then permit the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs (or the person designated to assist him) and the student (or the person designated to assist the student) to examine the witness. The order of examination may be varied by the Chair in order to effectively present the testimony of the witness.
- Examination of Evidence.
- The Disciplinary Hearing Committee may receive any documentary evidence it deems helpful in fairly performing its duty.
- The Disciplinary Hearing Committee may consider any reliable evidence which it deems helpful in fairly performing its duty.
- If the Disciplinary Hearing Committee determines that additional evidence and/or testimony is required before a verdict can be reached, the Chair of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee will inform the student and the Associate Dean that a continuance is needed. The Chair will then coordinate with the Associate Dean to obtain the evidence and/or testimony and notify the student when the hearing will resume.
- Closing Procedures.
- At the close of the hearing, the Disciplinary Hearing Committee shall allow the student (or person designated to assist him or her) and the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs (or person designated to assist him) the opportunity to make a closing statement.
- The student or the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs may request that the Disciplinary Hearing Committee vary its procedures or grant a continuance and, upon a showing of good cause for such, the committee shall, by majority vote, grant the request.
- At the close of the hearing, the Disciplinary Hearing Committee shall deliberate privately. The Committee will, by majority vote, make and deliver to the Law Dean (a)written findings of fact and conclusions concerning the complaint; and (b) written recommendations concerning the proper disposition of the case. Any concurring or dissenting views of a Committee member, including the Chair of the Disciplinary Committee, shall be included in the report.
- Sanctions. If the Disciplinary Hearing Committee finds that by clear and convincing evidence the student committed a violation included in the complaint, the Committee may recommend any appropriate sanction or combination of sanctions. Sanctions include, but are not limited to recommending that the student be:
- expelled from the Law Center indefinitely;
- expelled from the Law Center with a right to apply for readmission no sooner than a fixed date;
- suspended from the Law Center for a fixed period;
- publicly reprimanded by the Law Dean, with a copy of the public reprimand sent to the Louisiana State Bar Association;
- denied course credit or assigned a grade of 1.3 in a course if the violation involved the student’s conduct in a course.
- Actions by the Law Dean.
- The Law Dean shall advise the student of the recommendations of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee and allow him/her a reasonable opportunity to respond in writing before imposing a sanction.
- Determination of the sanction shall be at the discretion of the Law Dean. In arriving at the sanction, the Law Dean shall consult with the Disciplinary Hearing Committee. Modification of a sanction shall be done only after consultation with the Committee.
- Upon the imposition of a sanction by the Law Dean, an announcement shall be placed on the bulletin boards of the Law Center to the effect that: “A student has been found guilty of a violation of the Code of Student Professional Responsibility in that he or she committed (name the offense). The student has been (name the sanction).” The student’s name shall be withheld unless the Law Dean determines that a public sanction is in order.
- The Law Dean, with or without a recommendation of the Disciplinary Hearing Committee, may communicate the results of the proceedings to witnesses, faculty or other interested parties if he determines it is in the best interests of the Law Center or the legal profession.
University Policy Statements
Law Center Policy Statement Number: PS-45LC Credit Hour
To provide a definition of a credit hour for courses to satisfy degree requirements.
Applicable ABA Standard
ABA Standard 310 provides with respect to the determination of hours for coursework:
- A law school shall adopt, publish, and adhere to written policies and procedures for determining the credit hours that it awards for coursework.
- A “credit hour” is an amount of work that reasonably approximates:
- not less than one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and two hours of out-of-class student work per week for fifteen weeks, or the equivalent amount of work over a different period of time; or
- at least an equivalent amount of work as required in subparagraph (1) of this definition for other academic activities as established by the institution, including simulation, field placement, clinical, co-curricular, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours.
For purposes of ABA Standard 310, fifty minutes suffices for one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction. An “hour” for out- of-class work is sixty minutes. The 15-week period may include one week for a final examination. (Interpretation 310-1)
General Policy Statement
This statement is applicable to all academic offerings (courses, seminars, clinics, and field placements) for which credit may be granted.
No credit is given any academic offering unless the student has been duly registered in the academic offering.
A “credit hour” is an amount of work that reasonably approximates:
- not less than one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and two hours of out-of-class student work per week for fifteen weeks, including examination time, or the equivalent amount of work over a different period of time; or
- at least an equivalent amount of work as required in sub-paragraph (1) of this definition for other academic activities as established by the institution, including simulation, field placement, clinical, co-curricular, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours.
Satisfaction of the Guidelines
The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs is responsible for ensuring that individual offerings involve the requisite amount of classroom or direct faculty instruction to satisfy these guidelines. The Curriculum Committee, through the administration of its New Course Proposal Procedure and the approval of new academic offerings, is responsible for ensuring that individual offerings involve the requisite amount of out-of-class student work to satisfy these guidelines. For clinic and field placement, work is accounted for using time sheets which are evaluated by instructors and placement supervisors. In addition, the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs shall conduct periodic review of syllabi to ensure that existing academic offerings continue to justify their designated hours of course credit.
Law Center Policy Statement Number: PS-48LC Title/Topic: Disposition of Student Complaints
The Law Center recognizes two forms of student complaints: formal and informal. The Law Center recognizes two categories of student complaints: those regarding academic matters and those regarding non-academic matters. Further, the Law Center recognizes that some complaints are governed by other policies and procedures promulgated by the LSU System or by the Chancellor of the Law Center. For example, routine complaints concerning grades are governed by the policy on grade grievances set forth in the current LSU Law Catalog. Complaints regarding matters falling within the scope of those policies must be handled in accordance with the procedures outlined in those policies. Complaints regarding matters not within the scope of those policies must be handled in accordance with the following procedures.
- Formal and Informal Student Complaints
An informal complaint is a complaint, whether anonymous or not, made orally or in some written format other than the written format prescribed in this memorandum. Such complaints may be considered by the appropriate member of the Law Center administration. However, no formal response to the complaining student will be forthcoming nor will any record of the complaint be maintained unless the Dean directs otherwise.
A formal complaint is a complaint submitted in written form which conforms to and complies with the written form adopted in this policy (Formal Complaint Document ). The written complaint shall contain a clear and concise statement of the essential facts establishing the complaint. The complaint shall be signed by the student making the complaint and shall identify the student and provide information enabling the Law Registrar to contact the student. The written complaint shall be submitted to the Law Registrar, who shall promptly provide a copy of the complaint to the Dean. The Dean shall review all formal complaints and may take such action to investigate and dispose of the complaint as the Dean deems appropriate, including, without limitation, referring the complaint for investigation and/or recommended disposition to the appropriate committee or personnel responsible for supervision of the aspect of the Law Center program, policy, or personnel about which the complaint is filed. Following disposition, the Dean shall notify the Law Registrar of the disposition and the Law Registrar shall notify the student filing the formal complaint of the disposition.
A log reflecting the filing, referral, and disposition of all formal complaints shall be maintained by the Law Registrar.
- Procedures for Determination of Facts and Disposition of Formal Complaints
In addition to the factual statement submitted by the student making the complaint, the Dean and any Law Center personnel or committee charged with investigating and/or recommending disposition of the complaint shall consider any additional documentary material such as written statements, affidavits, or other documentary evidence submitted by the student or by the Law Center personnel responding to the allegations of the complaint. If necessary to achieve a fair disposition of the matter at issue, the Dean and/or any committee or personnel charged with investigating and/or recommending disposition of the complaint may hear oral statements of witnesses who are either identified by the student or the responding Law Center personnel or who are determined by the Dean or the investigating committee or personnel to have information bearing on the merits of the complaint.
- Review of Disposition
The student who files a formal complaint may petition the Dean for review of any factual findings and recommended disposition of the student’s complaint if a committee or Law Center personnel are charged by the Dean with investigating and/or recommending disposition of the complaint. The petition to the Dean for review shall be filed within 10 days of the student’s receipt of notice of the recommended disposition of the complaint.
The petition for review shall set forth the factual basis for the complaint; any objection to any factual findings regarding the complaint and the factual basis for the objection; and the reason why the recommended disposition of the student’s complaint would be arbitrary, capricious, unreasonable, or disproportionate.
The Dean may consider the merits of the petition for review if submitted in a timely fashion and may make such disposition of the petition for review as the Dean deems appropriate. If a petition for review is not submitted in a timely fashion, the Dean may decline to consider the petition or to grant any relief based on the petition.
If an LSU System or another Law Center policy governs the review or disposition of the complaint, the Dean shall proceed in accordance with that policy.
Law Center Computer Usage Policy
Personal laptop or notebook computers may be used to take examinations at the discretion of the professor. Microsoft Windows and Apple OS X –based computers are allowed and must be running a supported operating system version as determined by the exam software vendor. Currently Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard (64-bit only), 10.7 Lion, 10.8 Mountain Lion, 10.9 Mavericks and 10.10 Yosemite are allowed. Virtualized operating systems are not allowed. OS X on non-Apple hardware or Windows on Apple hardware is not allowed. Exams are not allowed on any other platform (Linux, Chromebook, Android, iPad etc. are NOT supported)
Prior to taking any exams by computer, students are required to download, install, and test the exam security software. The approved examination software must be used for all in-class examinations taken on computer. Exam computers are required to have wireless Internet access and to connected to the LSU wireless network as all completed examinations will be submitted by means of wireless internet.
Students will identify their exam using their assigned random number. Rooms will be assigned for using computers separate from rooms assigned for students to hand write their exams. All students, regardless of whether they are writing or using computers to complete their exams, will pick up their examinations in the same room. Those using computers may be required by the professor to return the exam questions or some other physical evidence of completing the exam within the time allowed.
Policy Regarding the Usage of the Electronics Classroom During Final Examinations
Law students intending to take their final examinations using the Exam4 software are expected to provide their own laptop computer. The Law Center does not have a sufficient number of lab computers to make them openly available for usage during final examinations.
If a law student is prepared to take a final examination on his/her own computer but experiences a computer/software failure too close to the administration of the final examination to fix the problem or replace the laptop, as determined by the Law Center’s Information Technology (“IT”) Department, s/he may use one of the 2 lab computers in the Law Library, room L111.
To use a lab computer for a final examination, the student must first verify the computer or software failure with the IT department in room 317 and also notify the Law Registrar’s Office so they are aware of the change. These computers are available on a first-come, first-served basis and availability is not guaranteed.
Please make every effort to ensure your computer is in good working order well before the start of final examinations.
Privacy Of Student Records (FERPA) – PS31
What is FERPA?
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (also known as the Buckley Amendment) is a Federal law that helps protect the privacy of student education records. The Act provides students the right to inspect and review education records, the right to seek to amend those records, and the right to limit disclosure of information from the records. The intent of the legislation is to protect the rights of students and to ensure the privacy and accuracy of education records. The Act applies to all institutions that are recipients of federal aid administered by the Secretary of Education.
When do my FERPA Rights Begin?
Your FERPA rights begin when you have enrolled; that is, when you have scheduled classes, paid fees and classes have begun.
FERPA: Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974
FERPA governs and protects students’ rights to their individual educational records. The primary rights protected under FERPA are as follows.
- Students’ rights to review and inspect their educational records within 45 days from the day the University receives a request for access. Students should submit to the appropriate office written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. Requests for Law Center records should be addressed to the Law Registrar in the Law Center’s Office of Student Records and Registrar.
- Students’ rights to have their educational records amended or corrected. Students may ask the University to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the director of the appropriate office, clearly identifying the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading. If the university decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the University will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing will be provided to the student when notified of a hearing.
- Students’ rights to control disclosure of certain portions of their educational records. One exception which permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an educational record to fulfill his or her professional responsibility. All students’ educational records are open to the Chancellor, the Vice-Chancellors, the academic deans and directors, and the Dean of Students. In addition, the following individuals are also Louisiana State University officials.
- A person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research or support staff position, including health and medical staff and teaching assistants and student assistants.
- A person appointed by the Board of Supervisors.
- A person employed by or under contract to the University to perform a special task, such as a University attorney.
- A person employed by the LSU Police Department.
A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.
- Students’ right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the University to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is as follows:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Ave., SW
Washington, D.C. 20202-4605
What are “Education Records?”
With certain exceptions, education records are records which directly related to a student and are maintained by the University or a party acting for the University.
A student has the right of access to these records.
Education records include any records in whatever medium (handwritten, print, magnetic tape, film, diskette, etc.) that are in the possession of any school official. This includes transcripts or other records obtained from a school at which a student was previously enrolled.
What is not included in an Education Record
- Sole possession records or private notes held by school officials that are not accessible or released to other personnel;
- Law enforcement or campus security records that are solely for law enforcement purposes and maintained solely by the law enforcement unit;
- Records relating to individuals who are employed by the institution (unless contingent upon attendance);
- Records relating to treatment provide by a physician, psychiatrist, psychologist, or other recognized professional or paraprofessional and disclosed only to individuals providing treatment; and
- Records of an institution that contain information about an individual obtained only after that person is no longer a student at that institution, i.e., alumni records.
- Financial information submitted by parents.
- Education records containing information about more than one student; however, in such cases the institution must permit access to that part of the record which pertains only to the inquiring student.
What is Directory Information?
Directory information is information contained in an educational record of a student that generally would not be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed.
Louisiana State University has established the following as directory information and it may be released to those requesting it, unless the student specifically requests otherwise by submitting written notification to the Office of the University Registrar.
- Student’s name, local address, and telephone number
- Student’s home address
- Student’s email address
- Student’s major field of study/classification
- Student’s participation in officially recognized activities and sports; weight and height of members of athletic teams
- Dates of student’s attendance
- Degrees, awards, and honors received by student
- The most recent previous educational institution attended by the student
Louisiana State University will not disclose any other information without written consent from the student, with some exceptions as provided by FERPA.
Students have the right to refuse the disclosure of personally identifiable information as directory information subject to other overriding provisions of law. To withhold directory information, students must fill out the Request to Prevent Disclosure of Information form located in the Office of the University Registrar, Room 112, Thomas Boyd Hall.
If a student has chosen to restrict the release of directory information, NO information can be released without further written permission of the student. Should someone inquire about an individual who has restricted the release of his/her directory information, the appropriate faculty/staff response is, “I am sorry, I do not have any information on any such person.”
For more information concerning the privacy rights of students, please refer to the Official University Policy Statement, PS-30.
FERPA Questions or Concerns
How to Contact Us:
Office of the University Registrar
Louisiana State University
Room 112, Thomas Boyd Hall
Baton Rouge, LA 70803
Persons with Disabilities
The Law Center does not discriminate on the basis of disability in any academic program or activity and strives to integrate students with disabilities into the Law Center community to the fullest extent possible. Qualified applicants with disabilities will not be denied admission or subjected to discrimination in admission to or promotion in the Law Center on the basis of their disability.
The Law Center works with LSU Disability Services to provide services for students with disabilities. Students with disabilities who need reasonable accommodations and services should contact LSU Disability Services, 124 Johnston Hall, Baton Rouge, LA 70803; or call 578-5919. Specialized support services are based on the individual student’s disability-based need. Students must provide current documentation of their disabilities at the time services are requested. All requests and documentation are treated as confidential. Efforts will be made to develop and implement an appropriate reasonable accommodation plan that meets the student’s needs without imposing undue burden on the Law Center or altering its academic standards.
Students who need special accommodations on examinations must make those needs known to LSU Disability Services in writing each semester at least one month prior to the beginning of examinations. Although the foregoing is the deadline, students are encouraged to initiate the process early in a semester. It is possible that additional documentation, consultation, etc., may be necessary to substantiate the need for accommodation or to determine the appropriate accommodation. Such additional steps will require time, and students applying late in the semester are at risk of not having adequate time to complete those steps. LSU Disability Services will then contact the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and make a recommendation. The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs will make the final decision regarding accommodation and communicate that decision in writing to the students. In order to preserve the anonymity of the process, the student should not inform his or her professors about the request.
Students who have requested accommodations and who believe that such accommodations have been impermissibly denied, or who believe that they have been discriminated against on the basis of their disability, should report the matter to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs if the request was made of a faculty or staff member, and to the Dean if the request was made of the Associate Dean. The student may also request that, before deciding on the matter, the Law Dean refer the matter to a Faculty Committee which shall recommend to the Law Dean an appropriate solution.
The Law Center shall not discriminate against any individual for filing a charge of discrimination, opposing any practice or act made unlawful by the ADA, or for participating in any proceeding under the ADA. In addition, the Law Center shall not coerce, intimidate, threaten, or interfere with any person in the exercise or enjoyment of his or her rights under the Act or because he or she aided or encouraged any other person in the exercise or enjoyment of rights under the ADA.
The Director of Student Affairs and Law Registrar (578-8646) is the ADA coordinator for all nonacademic affairs. The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs is the ADA coordinator for all academic affairs.
Administration of Scholarship, Fellowship, and Fee Exemption Programs (Law Center Policy PS-106LC)
This policy statement offers guidance to LSU Law Center personnel concerning their responsibilities for administering scholarship, fellowship and fee exemption programs (“awards”). The Law Center strives to utilize awards to attract students with exceptional academic ability, leadership skills, unique talents and other characteristics that further the Law Center’s mission and strategic goals. These resources motivate students to strive for reaching and maintaining their academic goals, and help students fund their education without performing a service in return.
Public confidence in Law Center stewardship of these resources is achieved when the highest ethical standards of impartiality and fairness are maintained through all stages of processing awards and when internal controls operate effectively. The internal control structures for awards depend heavily on the Law Dean’s appointment and supervision of the selection committee members and independent reconciler. Those assigned these duties must effectively discharge their responsibilities according to these directives. The independent reconciler for the Law Center is the Comptroller/CFO. Monthly reports are generated of awards which are entered into the Office of Enrollment Management system by the Associate Director of Admissions. These reports are verified independently by the Associate Director of Admissions and Comptroller/CFO.
LSU A&M, through the Office of Enrollment Management, provides support to the Law Center through utilization of its mainframe for the financial aid/scholarship database. LSU A&M is also responsible for administration of the needs-based component of financial aid as well as disbursement of all needs-based and scholarship funds. All scholarship programs (which includes tuition waivers) offered through the Law Center are administered through the Law Center Faculty Scholarship Committee. This Scholarship Committee is comprised of 2-3 full-time faculty members of the Law Center and the Director of Admissions. This committee is appointed by the Law Dean of the Law Center at the beginning of each academic year. A listing of available scholarships offered through the Law Center is listed on the Law Center website. (NOTE: Other scholarships may be available to law students but not issued through the Law Center.) Law students are automatically considered for scholarships issued through the Law Center – no special application is required. For a limited number of scholarships with special requirements, students are required to submit documentation if they meet the requirements for special consideration.
Law Center personnel who seek private donations to fund awards should be aware that there are constraints on how these funds may be accepted and used. Every reasonable effort should be made to honor a donor’s request for restricting awards.
Appropriate restrictions may include academic merit, special talents and other characteristics that are consistent with the Law Center’s mission and goals. A donor may not name recipients nor participate in the selection process.
QUESTIONS - Any questions regarding this policy should be directed to the Director of Admissions at 225-578-8646, the Director of Alumni Relations at 225-578-8645, or the CFO/Comptroller at 225-578-8470.
Tuition Scholarship Procedures
(Office of Admissions)
Prior to admitting students in the first-year class, the Law Dean with the assistance of the Associate Dean for Business and Financial Affairs of the Law Center determines how many tuition scholarships are available for the next fiscal year.
- All Scholarship programs (which include tuition waivers) offered through the Law Center are administered through the Law Center Faculty Admission and Scholarship Committee. This committee is comprised of 5 full time faculty members of the Law Center and the Director of Admissions.
- Tuition scholarship recipients are notified of their award by the Director of Admissions. Copies of the following documents are maintained in the Office of Admissions/Records:
- copy of scholarship letter in each student’s file
- copy of scholarship letter to Associate Director of Admissions for maintaining permanent scholarship binder in Admissions/Records Office. This binder is used by auditors in verifying scholarship information.
- copy of scholarship letter to Law Dean’s Office for permanent Law Center files.
- Freshman Scholarship Recipients ONLY - make notation on outside of applicant’s folder indicating which tuition scholarship they received.
- Update Scholarship Excel File. The independent reconciler (Comptroller/CFO) updates the excel file of all tuition scholarship awards (recipient’s name and ID), amounts, account numbers, and criteria for retention. This file is maintained for collection of scholarship data and awards for each academic year.
- Excel Spreadsheet. Maintained by Admissions Office from data imported from SRR database and data collected from freshman applications. Individual data which may qualify students for particular scholarships must be keyed in. Final copies are distributed to members of the Scholarship Committee.
- Advanced Billing System (ABS). Each tuition scholarship award must be entered on the ABS system database since the awards are applied to the fee bill of the student. his amount acts as a credit towards a student’s tuition for the semester.
Policy on Sexual and Other Unlawful Harassment (Law Center Policy Adopted April 4, 2007)
The Paul M. Hebert Law Center reaffirms and emphasizes its commitment to provide an academic and work environment free from sexual and other unlawful harassment. The intent of this policy is to express the Law Center’s commitment to protect its employees and students from such harassment and from retaliation for participating in harassment complaints. It is not intended to infringe upon constitutionally guaranteed rights not upon academic freedom. In considering allegations of harassment, the Law Center must be concerned with the rights of both the complainant and the accused.
The Law Center will take appropriate disciplinary or other corrective action in all substantiated cases of harassment. Under appropriate circumstances, the Law Center will also take reasonable steps to protect its employees and students from harassment by individuals who are not employees or students of the Law Center.
Sexual harassment is a form of unlawful sexual discrimination. It is defined as speech or conduct of a sexually discriminatory nature, which was neither welcomed nor encouraged, that would be so offensive to a reasonable person so as to create an abusive working or learning environment or impair his/her performance on the job or in the classroom.
Sexual harassment may involve unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual or gender based nature when:
- Submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s employment or academic progress or status;
- Submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as a basis for employment or academic decisions;
- Such advances, requests or conduct have the purpose of effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work or academic performance or creating a hostile or offensive work or academic environment.
Other harassment is defined by analogy to sexual harassment, and means speech or conduct of an unlawfully discriminatory nature, which was neither welcomed not encouraged, that would be so offensive to a reasonable person so as to create an abusive working or learning environment or impair his/her performance on the job or in the classroom.
Any member of the Law Center community who believes that he or she has been subjected to sexual or other unlawful harassment should report the conduct so that the Law Center may address the matter. Reports may be addressed to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, to the Law Registrar, or to the Director of Human Resources. No student or employee is required to report or make a complaint of harassment to the person who is engaging in the conduct that is the subject of the complaint.
The Law Center will address all complaints. If informal means of resolving the complaint seem appropriate, and the person making the complaint agrees, informal means will be tried first. However, if informal procedures are insufficient to resolve the complaint, the Law Center will proceed to an investigation of the complaint in accordance with the procedures provide in the Law Center’s Equal Employment Opportunity Policy.
Every effort will be made to keep all complaints confidential. Only those with a need to know will be informed about the complaint. If an investigation is conducted, the complainant and the subject of the complaint will be notified of the final decision.
No employee or student will be subjected to discrimination or retaliation for making a complaint or otherwise requesting relief under this policy, or for participating in the investigation of any such complaint or request for relief.