Structure and Operation of the Undergraduate Disciplinary System

Affected Parties

All Undergraduates

Policy Statement

Responsibility for Disciplinary Matters

The Trustees of Dartmouth College have ultimate authority for the structure and operation of the undergraduate disciplinary system at the College. The Trustees have delegated to the Dean of the College and the Committee on Standards (COS) authority for promulgation, revision, and enforcement of rules concerning the disciplinary system as it relates to undergraduates, and to the Dean of the College and the Organizational Adjudication Committee (OAC) as it relates to recognized undergraduate organizations. Regularly matriculated undergraduates and all special and exchange undergraduate students are subject to this authority. Students are subject to disciplinary action in accordance with this Handbook as soon as they arrive on campus to begin orientation activities (including DOC trips, pre-season athletic practices, and related programs). Prior to that date, any misconduct that comes to the attention of the College will be managed by the Office of Admissions and Financial Aid outside of the student disciplinary process, and may result in the College's decision to rescind the offer of admission.

Committee on Standards (COS)


The purpose of the COS is to hear cases involving undergraduates concerning violations of the Academic Honor Principle and the Standards of Conduct, cases involving academic standing and requirements, and cases involving appeals of certain registrarial actions.

Composition and Selection

The COS shall be comprised as follows: (a) twelve members who shall be faculty members nominated by the Committee on Organization and Policy (COP) and elected by the faculty; (b) twelve members who shall be members of the sophomore, junior or senior classes, and who meet the requirements for service established by the Committee on Standards, six elected annually by the student body and six selected by the Dean of the College; (c) eight members who shall be selected by the President, but not from the Office of the Dean of the College. The COP, Student Assembly, Dean of the College, and President shall ensure that a full complement of their respective members are available each term and shall appoint members as required to provide a full complement. Members of the Organizational Adjudication Committee (OAC) are eligible to serve as substitutes for members of the COS.  OAC and COS members are expected to participate in scheduled trainings during their term of service. The Director or Assistant Director of Community Standards & Accountability will normally be present at hearings, and may be asked to chair hearings when appropriate. The Dean of the College shall designate staff to serve as Chair of the Committee on Standards.  The Dean of the College, or a designee, shall receive requests for review of COS outcomes following the procedures outlined in this Handbook.

Misconduct Panels

A COS panel designated to hear a specific case shall consist of two faculty members, two students, one of the administrative members selected by the President, and the non-voting Chair. In the event that a hearing panel cannot be assembled from current COS members, current OAC members (who may serve as COS alternates) or former COS members who have agreed to reappointment, the Chair shall request the COP, Student Assembly, and/or President to appoint such additional members as are necessary to complete the panel.

Academic Action Panels

Academic action matters, which involve the review of undergraduate academic standing and which do not include alleged Academic Honor Principle violations, are heard by a COS panel consisting of two faculty members, one of the administrative members selected by the President, and the non-voting COS Chair.

Registrarial Appeals Panels

 The Dean of the College, or a designee, shall consider appeals of registrarial actions including but not limited to the following:

  • Request for exemption or waiver from the summer term residence requirement.
  • Request for partial exemption from the senior year requirement.
  • Request for a thirteenth and fourteenth term in residence.
  • Request for repetition of a course for grade only.
  • Request for electing a two- or four-course load in more than three terms (subject to additional tuition).
  • Request for late registration and fee waiver.
  • Request to add or withdraw from a course after a deadline (with or without grade penalty). If the student seeks a late withdrawal, the request must be made to the Committee on Withdrawals, convened by the Registrar, by the posted termly deadline.
  • Request for extension of the various deadlines relating to the non-recording option.
  • Late request for change of enrollment pattern.
  • Five-year enrollment plan.

Students must file with the Office of Community Standards & Accountability a written statement explaining the basis of the appeal, together with all relevant supporting materials, within seven days of the date of the Registrar's written decision.

Reports to the Community

The Office of Community Standards & Accountability releases an annual report on the Dartmouth Undergraduate Disciplinary System which includes information about individual and organizational student misconduct for the previous year.

Effective Date

September 12, 2016

Last Revised Date

August 14, 2023

Office of Primary Responsibility

Office(s) of Secondary Responsibility