Office of Student Life

For Parents

You have learned your child (our practice is to refer to them as your “student”) is involved in a Student Conduct case. It is natural you would have questions about this. You may be worried about how this may affect your student’s enrollment. You likely want to know how you can best support your student. What follows are questions we often hear from parents and answers we hope are helpful.

FAQ For Parents

My student received notice to schedule a “preliminary conference” regarding allegations they violated the Code of Student Conduct. What is the preliminary conference?

A preliminary conference is the first meeting your student will have with the Student Conduct hearing officer assigned to investigate the allegation. At this conference, the hearing officer will explain the conduct process to your student and answer questions. Your student will be given the opportunity to explain the incident at issue.

May I attend the preliminary conference with my student?

Yes. We encourage students to bring an advisor with them to meetings and hearings. You’ll find more about the role of the advisor here. Please note that your student will have to sign a waiver (PDF) for you to attend the meeting because under federal law, our records are confidential.

Additionally, because our process is designed to be educational and because we want to treat your student like the adult they are, your student must always speak for themself. We also ask that you consider how your attendance and involvement in this process may affect the educational outcome. It is our hope that your student will gain self-advocacy skills, an appreciation for how to appropriately behave in a professional manner, and how to be accountable for their behavior and choices. You know your student. Will your presence help or hinder their development?

Should I hire an attorney for my student?

Please see the Role of the Advisor page for more information on attorneys in our process. We welcome their participation as an advisor. Please also review how our process is different from the criminal justice process. If your student has a corresponding criminal case for the same conduct we are investigating, your student should consider contacting Student Legal Services. An attorney from that office may be able to represent your student at no cost. Student Legal Services attorneys are not permitted to advise your student in our cases.

How will this case affect my student’s future?

If your student is charged and either accepts responsibility for the violation or is found responsible through a hearing, we will give appropriate sanctions. Please refer to the sanction page for more information. 

How is a violation recorded? Will this appear on my student’s transcript?

These are good questions. We’ve answered questions about record-keeping and background checks here. Currently, we only note suspensions and dismissals on transcripts.

Will a disciplinary record prevent my student from going to medical, law, or other professional or graduate school?

We have found that for most students involved in our process, if their disciplinary record reflects that they learned from the process – meaning they had limited repeat cases – AND they are open and honest when asked about their disciplinary record, they do not lose out on future opportunities. We all make mistakes, especially when we are young. The world is a pretty forgiving place when we can honestly describe a mistake from our past and explain how we learned from it.

Some students who are suspended or dismissed for multiple or more serious cases, such as sexual misconduct, theft, or endangering behavior, may have more work to do before seeking enrollment at other institutions or pursuing certain careers. Cases in which we suspend students often result in specific, individually designed educational sanctions. Completing those sanctions, even if a student doesn’t intend to return to Ohio State, is a good first step that will demonstrate accountability and a willingness to learn and improve oneself going forward.