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Reviewed by:
  • Student Conduct Practice: The Complete Guide for Student Affairs Professionals
  • Kim A. Martin-Anderson
Student Conduct Practice: The Complete Guide for Student Affairs Professionals. James M. Lancaster and Diane M. Waryold (Editors). Sterling, Virginia: Stylus Publishing, LLC, 2008, 312 pages, $27.50 (softcover)

Student conduct professionals recognize that a key component of education and development is to help students learn from their experiences of misconduct. In the foreword of Student Conduct Practice: The Complete Guide for Student Affairs Professionals, Linda Timm acknowledges many of the key issues in student conduct (safety, accountability, consideration for others’ similarities and differences, freedom of expression and other contemporary issues) and poses questions such as, “[H]ow do we assist the students, in an educationally sound manner, to recognize how their behaviors are impacting others? How do we encourage growth, ethical decision making, and sensitivity to the differences among us? How do we ensure students’ freedom of expression while protecting others from hurtful, uncivil behavior?” (pp. ix-x). These questions set the stage for readers to embark on a thought provoking and insightful read.

The first ten chapters of the guide address structural issues in student conduct. In the first chapter, “The Professional Philosophy of Student Conduct Administration,” Diane M. Waryold and James M. Lancaster provide a brief summary of the history of student conduct. They discuss both the relative youth of the profession and the 20th anniversary of the Association for Student Judicial Affairs (ASJA).

A thought provoking chapter 2, “Temperament for Practice: The Effective Student Conduct Practitioner,” William Fischer and Vaughn Maatman identify the broad categories of skills (collaboration, cognitive diversity, adaptability, and flexibility to name a few) needed for effective practice. Felice Dublon addresses how governance impacts student conduct and how best to identify and work within the structure of one’s institution in chapter 3, “Demystifying Governance: The Influential Practitioner.” Dublon reinforces the need for collaboration, which should never be underestimated—especially in the field of student conduct.

In an exceptionally useful and practical chapter, “Revising Your Student Conduct Code,” Edward N. Stoner, II offers a pragmatic approach to undertaking revisions of one’s Code of Conduct. In addition to providing a sample code, Stoner offers suggestions regarding those who should be involved in the process, leaving the reader with tangible ideas on one’s own code revisions. John Lowery addresses “Laws, Policies, and Mandates” as they pertain to court rulings on due process before, during, and after hearings at public institutions. Lowery also addresses the rights afforded to students at private institutions. Finally, an overview of federal legislation impacting the student conduct community is provided. This chapter is written in an accessible fashion enabling non-legal experts to grasp the key legislation critical to student conduct professionals.

Eugene L. Zdziarski and Nona L. Wood identify different venues to resolve student misconduct in chapter 6, “Forums for Resolution,” such as an individual hearing with a student conduct officer, a meeting with a [End Page 133] conduct board, and a model with two hearing officers from different areas of the university referred to as the “Co-Adjudication Model.” In addition to the more traditional means of resolving student misconduct, the authors also identify several of the newer forums, such as Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), providing advantages and disadvantages of each, which can help readers ascertain what forum(s) may work best on their campuses.

Gary Pavela, in an attention-grabbing chapter 7, “Can We Be Good without God?: Exploring Applied Ethics with Members of Student Conduct Hearing Boards,” suggests that student conduct practitioners engage members of conduct boards in a thought provoking conversation about applied ethics. He identifies this as an area of growth and development beyond the skills board members have already developed.

Student conduct practitioners are hungry to incorporate social justice into the practice of student conduct. In “Development and Diversity: A Social Justice Model” Matthew Lopez-Phillips and Susan P. Trageser identify ways in which power and privilege impact student conduct processes. They offer two case studies and suggest that conduct officers further develop social justice skills and awareness to become more cognizant of these dynamics occurring in the student conduct process. Elizabeth Baldizan, in her chapter...


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