Students often come to speak to the chair when they have a concern about a grade or an instructor. Conversely, instructors often rely on the chair for advice about how to handle challenging student issues. It is in the best interest of everyone involved to treat these concerns with respect and fairness.
Faculty within your department are often the first line of contact for students who are experiencing challenges. Faculty are encouraged to come and consult with you as their chair to help strategize about how to handle difficult student situations. Here are some tips:
Camosun College students are required to comply with the standards of academic honesty set out in the Academic Integrity policy. The Guide to academic misconduct and how to address it provides helpful direction.
Academic integrity is the responsibility of the entire college community but instructors play a key role in preventing, detecting, and taking action when academic dishonesty is suspected. Be familiar with and follow the Process for documenting and addressing academic misconduct.
The Ombuds office is a place where students can go for help in dealing with conflicts or disputes on an informal basis. Camosun's Ombudsperson is an impartial, independent person whose major function is to provide confidential and informal assistance to students. The Ombudsperson receives and investigates student complaints, reports on findings, and helps achieve just and equitable settlements. Make sure students are aware of other supports available to them, as appropriate (counselling, Centre for Accessible Learning, etc.).
Meeting with students is part of your job – but it can expose you to a risk of violence or accusations of inappropriate conduct. Supporting Students in Distress Guide is an excellent resource that will help you decide what actions to take when you become aware of a student who is exhibiting concerning, distressful or threatening behaviours. A student does not need to be violating any Camosun rules or regulations for you to be concerned. For additional information check out the student misconduct policy. If you are planning to meet with a difficulty student (and you are concerned about the potential for violence), contact Campus Security in advance to assist you with strategies.