Study Abroad

Community & Conduct

Studying abroad in an exciting time when you will be trying new things and having new experiences. We want those experiences to be safe, healthy and happy for you and your fellow students. You will soon be entering into a new learning community and environment. Please think about how you will contribute to your learning and host communities. Study abroad is as much about what you bring to a new place as to what you get out of it.

Below are behavioral standards that you will be expected to uphold as a member of the UW community. You have the distinguished honor of being an ambassador for the UW. Please take this responsibility seriously so that future generations of UW students can also be welcomed into these host communities.

Program-specific community standards

If you are participating in a UW or affiliated program, you may create a program-specific set of community standards with the rest of your group. We encourage you to participate in that process and make your own expectations of yourself and your peers known. Program-specific community standards might include unique rules included by your program director. These rules are meant to keep you safe. If you are unsure about any aspect of your program’s community standards, please discuss your questions with your director and the group.

UW Student Code of Conduct

The UW Student Code of Conduct is a set of community standards that applies to all UW students, whether they are studying on campus or abroad. Review the UW Student Code of Conduct and be familiar with this baseline behavioral standard.

UW Study Abroad Standards of Conduct

The Study Abroad Standards of Conduct (SASC) is a document that you sign when you apply to a study abroad program. It builds on the UW Student Code of Conduct and it outlines those activities or actions that are prohibited on any kind of study abroad program. It also details the follow up procedures should you allegedly violate the SASC. It is a set a of standards that you are agreeing to when you decided to participate in a program, so please read them carefully and understand the potential outcomes of these behaviors or actions. If you have questions about SASC, let us know. Write to studyabroad@uw.edu.

PART ONE: Standards of Conduct

I. General Expectations of Conduct

  1. As a condition of being permitted to participate in a study abroad program, students agree to conduct themselves as responsible members of the University of Washington (“UW”) community. This means that as a condition of enrollment in a study abroad program (“Program”), each student studying abroad agrees to assume the responsibility to observe standards of conduct that will contribute to the pursuit of the academic goals of the Program and to the welfare of the members of the UW community. This responsibility includes, but is not limited to, being respectful of one another, other members of the UW community, and others with whom they encounter while abroad; refraining from behavior that would jeopardize the health, safety, or welfare of oneself or of any other person; and maintaining the integrity of the Program.
  2. Given the unique aspects and circumstances of studying abroad, including, but not limited to, the demands of the Program, the limited resources, the relatively short duration, and the remote location(s), serious and/or repeated incidents of misconduct by a student are inherently contrary to the health, safety, and welfare of all other persons on the same program.
  3. A violation of these University of Washington Study Abroad Standards of Conduct (“SASC”) may lead to corrective action by Office of Global Affairs (“OGA”) and/or the Program, up to and including, immediate dismissal from the Program.
  4. Additionally, a violation of SASC may result in OGA and/or the Program referring the matter to the appropriate student disciplinary office for consideration of further action, including possible disciplinary action and sanctions under the UW’s Student Conduct Code, which could include suspension or dismissal from the UW.
  5. For the purposes of SASC and the SASC Compliance Procedures, “during the term of the Program” means the entire time period from the commencement of the Program (including any pre-departure activities) through the date of the termination of the Program. Unless otherwise indicated, all Study Abroad Standards of Conduct apply during the term of the Program. Also, the term “distribution” means providing or making available to any other person or persons.

II. Specific Violations of SASC

Specific violations of SASC include, but are not limited to:

  1. Disruption of the academic environment of the Program, or unauthorized or unexcused absences from the Program or any mandatory Program activities;
  2. Obstruction or disruption of teaching or other University or Program activities;
  3. The refusal to comply with any lawful University directive related to the Program;
  4. Not adhering to high standards of academic honesty or integrity, including plagiarism and cheating; unauthorized access to or viewing, copying, or distributing of confidential academic, administrative, or personal records; forgery, alteration or misuse of official documents, records or identification; or knowingly furnishing false information;
  5. The physical harm or abuse or another person, the direct or implied threat of physical harm or abuse of another person, or other conduct intended to threaten the physical harm or abuse of another person;
  6. Engaging in activities that endanger the health, welfare, or safety of oneself or others;
  7. Harassment, including but not limited to, sexual harassment or other forms of discriminatory harassment, based on a person’s race, color, creed, religion, national origin, citizenship, sex, pregnancy, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, or military status;
  8. Stalking, whether directly, indirectly, via electronic means, or through third parties;
  9. Relationship/domestic violence or abuse;
  10. Sexual misconduct, including, but not limited to, sexual assault;
  11. Retaliation against anyone who makes a report of a violation of this agreement, University policy, or laws of the home country or against anyone who participates in any investigation;
  12. Possession, use, or distribution of firearms, explosives, dangerous chemicals, or other inherently dangerous weapons or instruments;
  13. Knowingly violating the rules and policies, whether formal or informal, of the host university, residential housing, homestay, youth hostel, or other University arranged housing where the student is studying or staying;
  14. The malicious or willful misuse, destruction, deprivation, or theft of, or malicious damage or vandalism to, property belonging to the UW, another person, institution, organization, or entity;
  15. Unauthorized entry into or use of facilities, equipment, or technology of the UW or host/partner; illegal or otherwise inappropriate use of UW or host/partner’s technology;
  16. Engaging in conduct that results in eviction or termination from one’s lodging;
  17. Not respecting the rights and privileges of other members of the University community, the host institution, or the host family or location;
  18. Disturbing the peace or disrupting the quiet enjoyment of the community;
  1. Openly and knowingly abusing, disrespecting, or showing flagrant disregard for the customs and mores of the host community;
  2. Disorderly, lewd, indecent, or obscene conduct, gestures, or actions;
  3. Intentionally inciting others to engage in any unlawful activity, which incitement leads directly to such conduct;
  4. Hazing (as defined in RCW 28B.10.900, or as may be amended), or conspiracy to engage in hazing;
  5. Knowingly making a false report of a crime, emergency, or violation of these standards of conduct;
  6. Violating the laws of the country in which the student is traveling or studying;
  7. Violating or not complying with the rules or requirements applicable to the Program in which you are enrolled;
  8. Violating or not complying with the rules, regulations, procedures, policies, standards of conduct, and orders of the University and its schools, colleges, departments, offices, and programs;
  9. Unlawful or illegal conduct under international, U.S. federal, Washington State or local law;
  10. With regard to alcohol:
    1. The abuse of or excessive and/or irresponsible use of alcohol, as reasonably determined by the Program Director(s) or the UW Study Abroad Director, which includes, but is not limited to, being demonstrably under the influence of alcohol during any Program activities;
    2. The purchase, possession, use, or distribution of alcohol that is in violation of the laws of the country or countries where the Program is taking place;
    3. The manufacture of alcohol, except as expressly permitted by the Program Director;
    4. Regardless of the laws of the country or countries where the Program is taking place,the purchase, possession, use, or distribution of alcohol during any Program activities, provided, however, that a Program Director may make a limited exception to this restriction and allow the limited consumption of alcohol by students, who are at least of the legal age for alcohol consumption in the country where the Program is taking place, in connection with special Program arranged meals or organized events;
    5. The use or possession of alcohol on premises used or controlled by the Program where such use or possession is in violation of any rules of the premises or any restrictions specified by the Program Director(s);
    6. The distribution of alcohol to any other person under the legal age for alcohol consumption in the country or countries where the Program is taking place;
  11. With regard to any drugs and controlled substances:
    1. The purchase, possession, use, distribution, or manufacture of any drug(s) that is inviolation of the laws of the country or countries where the Program is taking place;
    2. The purchase, possession, use, distribution, or manufacture of a controlledsubstance(s) as defined in Chapter 69.50 RCW or 12 U.S.C. § 802 that would be in violation of Washington State or U.S. federal law, if such purchase, possession, use, distribution, or manufacture had occurred in Washington State.

30. Any violation or breach of the SASC Agreement.

PART TWO: Compliance Procedures

I. General Procedure

In the event a student is alleged to have engaged in conduct during the term of a study abroad program in violation of the Study Abroad Standards of Conduct (SASC), the following process will apply:

A. Preliminary Assessment of Alleged Violation

The Program Director, on-site coordinator, and/or a representative of the Office of Global Affairs will conduct a preliminary assessment of the alleged violation(s). The student(s) may be temporarily separated from the Program or from Program activities while the preliminary assessment is conducted.

B. Notice to Student

If, based on the preliminary assessment, the Program Director, on-site coordinator, or representative of OGA, determines that there is reasonable cause to believe that a violation of SASC has occurred, s/he will provide the student(s) alleged to have violated SASC with verbal and/or written notice of the allegation(s). Additionally, the student(s) will be informed of the potential corrective action(s) that may be taken and will be given a reasonable opportunity to respond to the allegations. This may all be accomplished in person, in writing, via the telephone, or other reasonable means of communication. In cases involving allegations of sexual harassment, sexual misconduct (including, but not limited to, sexual assault), stalking, and relationship violence, the alleged victim will also be given notice and an opportunity to be heard prior to any decision (as described in paragraph C below) is made.

C. Decision

After providing the student with notice and an opportunity to respond, and following the completion of any follow up review deemed appropriate, the Program Director, on-site coordinator, and/or representative of the Office of Global Affairs will determine whether the student has violated SASC, and if so, what corrective action(s) specified in Section E below will be implemented, except that any decision to dismiss a student from the Program must be approved in advance by the Vice Provost for Global Affairs, the Vice President for Student Life, or the appropriate Chancellor (or the Chancellor’s designee). (Dismissal from a Program does not necessarily affect a student’s eligibility to register for, or his or her status in other – i.e., non-Program – University courses. A student’s status with regard to non-Program purposes shall be determined in accordance with the provisions of the University Student Conduct Code and/or other applicable University policies and procedures.)

D. Communicating the Decision

The student will be promptly informed in writing of any decision regarding corrective action, which may be implemented immediately and shall be final. A copy of any decision will be provided to the Office of Global Affairs.

E. Corrective Actions
  1. If a student is determined to have violated SASC, one or more of the following corrective actions may be implemented:a. A letter of warning or reprimand
    b. Probation (with conditions)
    c. Suspension from specified Program activities (with conditions)
    d. Dismissal from the Program (Emergency Dismissal is addressed in Section II. below)
  2. In connection with the implementation of any corrective action, a student’s housing may be reassigned at the student’s expense.
  3. Any prior violations of SASC by a student and/or the nature or circumstances of the Program may be a basis to implement a more significant corrective action(s).
  4. A violation of SASC that is similar to a student’s pre-Program violation of the Student Conduct Code may be a basis for the student to be dismissed from the Program.
F. Conditions/Expectations Regarding Future Conduct

In the event a student is subject of a letter of warning or reprimand or is placed on probation or suspension, the student may be also informed of specific conditions/expectations regarding his/her conduct for the duration of the Program, and that any failure to comply with such conditions/expectations may result in immediate dismissal from the Program.

II. Emergency Dismissal

Notwithstanding any other provision of these SASC Compliance Procedures, if the Program Director, on-site coordinator, and/or a representative of the Office of Global Affairs, in consultation with the University’s President, the Vice President for Student Life, the Chancellor for Bothell or Tacoma, or the President’s or Chancellor’s designee, determines that a student has engaged in conduct during the term of the Program that causes or threatens to cause an immediate danger to the health, safety, or welfare of the student and/or others, or is otherwise severely detrimental to the interests of the Program, a student may be immediately dismissed from the Program on an emergency basis. To the extent practical and feasible, the student will be given an opportunity to respond to the concerns raised prior to a decision to implement emergency dismissal from the Program. Temporary separation and other interim measures may be implemented while a decision regarding emergency dismissal is pending.

III. Possible Disciplinary Action Under University Student Conduct Code

A student’s violation(s) of SASC may also be the basis for initiating disciplinary proceedings in accordance with the University’s Student Conduct Code.

IV. Consideration of Past Violations of SASC

Any prior violation of SASC by a student may be considered in connection with any other application by the student to other study abroad programs.

PART THREE: Agreement

This UW Study Abroad Standards of Conduct Agreement (“Agreement”) is entered into by and between the University of Washington (“University” or “UW”) and the individual signatory (“Student”), a University of Washington student, who is in good standing and is applying for acceptance into a UW Study Abroad Program (“Program”) (which may be a faculty-led program, a direct exchange with a partner university abroad, an independent learning opportunity, or any other type of UW study abroad opportunity).

For the purposes of this Agreement, “during the term of the Program” means the entire time period from the commencement of the Program, including any pre-departure activities, through the date of the termination of the Program.

Student hereby agrees as follows:

  1. I understand that there will be academic demands and expectations applicable to me while studying abroad that are in addition to those applicable to me while studying on campus. A core educational component of every study abroad program is that students are expected to demonstrate that they understand the importance of appropriate and culturally sensitive behavior while living and studying in a group setting in a foreign location.
  2. I understand that all of my actions during the term of the Program (whether during University sponsored activities or otherwise) may reflect upon the University and that while abroad, I am expected to maintain high standards of academic performance, personal integrity, and respect for others.
  3. I understand that, in order to remain in good standing in the Program, I must satisfy all of the academic requirements and expectations of the Program during the term of the Program. These academic requirements and expectations include a requirement that I demonstrate a willingness and an ability to learn about the cultures and customs of the countries that I visit and to refrain from any conduct that is in flagrant disregard of such cultures and customs and/or likely to disrupt any aspect of the Program. I also acknowledge that I am required to abide by the laws of the countries that I visit as well as the rules and regulations of my host institution, if any. I understand that the Program Director(s) may establish additional conditions of participation or requirements for the Program, and that I am subject to all such conditions and requirements.
  4. During the term of the Program, I agree to conduct myself as a responsible member of the University community and of the Program, which includes observing standards of conduct that will contribute to fulfilling the goals of the Program and will not negatively impact the experience or welfare of the other Program participants. I understand that the University has established the Study Abroad Standards of Conduct (“SASC”), which are applicable to all students participating in a Program. I have read and understand SASC, a copy of which is attached as Appendix A and incorporated as part of this Agreement by this reference. As a condition of participating in, and in consideration of being allowed to participate in the Program, I agree to abide by SASC, during the term of the Program. I further agree that SASC may be amended by the University during the term of the Program.
  1. I understand that the University has established SASC Compliance Procedures, which describe the process and procedures that are applicable to all students who are alleged to have violated SASC. I have read and I understand the SASC Compliance Procedures, a copy of which is attached as Appendix B and incorporated as part of this Agreement by this reference. I understand and agree that if there is an allegation that I violated SASC during the term of the Program, the SASC Compliance Procedures will apply.
  2. Accordingly, I understand and agree that my continued enrollment in the Program is subject to my fulfillment of and adherence to the standards set forth in this Agreement and I understand that any violation of SASC may result in corrective action being taken by the University, up to and including, immediate dismissal from the Program and a requirement that I return home. I agree that if I am dismissed from the Program, I will be responsible for all expenses incurred following my dismissal, including, but not limited to expenses related to housing, other living expenses, costs of returning home, repayment of financial aid, etc.
  3. I understand that while participating in the Program, I am also subject to the University’s Student Conduct Code (WAC 478-120 Chapter) and I acknowledge that any violation of SASC may be a basis for the University initiating disciplinary action under the University Student Conduct Code and could lead to disciplinary sanctions.
  4. If participating in a UW faculty led Program, I agree that any deviation by me from the Program design or curriculum must be approved in advance and in writing by the Program Director. If I fail to participate in any mandatory component of the Program without prior approval, I understand that I will be required to explain my non-participation to the Program Director or on-site coordinator. In the absence of an acceptable explanation, such as personal illness or an emergency, I agree that my failure to participate may have a negative consequence on my grade, the number of credits granted to me, and/or my continued participation in the Program. Should I fail to appear for the Program and/or fail to participate in required Program activities for 2 or more days without prior approval, I acknowledge and agree that I will be considered to have voluntarily withdrawn from the Program and will not be entitled to any refund of any Program fees.
  5. If I am dismissed from or if I voluntarily withdraw from the Program for any reason, I agree that I will immediately vacate Program housing and will immediately cease all participation in Program activities, except as may be expressly allowed by the Program Director or on-site coordinator. I further acknowledge and agree that I will be solely responsible for making any interim housing arrangements that may be necessary and will be solely responsible for making my own travel arrangements back home. Additionally, I understand that my dismissal or my withdrawal from the Program may result in a failing grade and/or no academic credit for the Program.
  6. If participating in a UW faculty led Program, I agree to notify the Program Director in advance if I am planning to engage in individual (i.e. non-Program) travel while the Program is in progress abroad. I also agree to provide the Program Director with details of any proposed individual travel, including plane, bus, and train schedules, and accommodations. Any failure to do so, may be a considered a violation of SASC and lead to the implementation of corrective action.