College Center for Advising Services

Conflict of Interest

Regarding Evaluations and Educational Experiences with Student Relatives

To avoid the appearance of favoritism that may result when students engage in formal educational experiences with relatives, and to ensure that students are treated fairly, certain procedures must be followed.

A faculty member or other institutional official must recuse him/herself from any discussion or vote relating to a matter where there is a potential for or the existence or appearance of a conflict of interest and will state publicly that there is a personal conflict.

For the purposes of this policy, a relative is considered to be anyone with whom the faculty member has a close, personal relationship, such as a spouse or partner, child or grandchild, parent or grandparent, sibling, or a spouse, partner or child of any of the foregoing.

Bias in Evaluations Due to Relationships

Arts, Sciences and Engineering expects both faculty and students to avoid situations where a faculty/student personal or family relationship could bias evaluations or teaching situations, or could create the appearance of bias. In case of doubt about such a situation, undergraduate students should contact the dean of the College, and graduate students should contact their director of graduate studies, and the faculty member should contact his or her department chair. Those persons have the authority to decide whether there is a conflict or appearance of one, and how the situation will be managed. The decision may be appealed to the dean of the Hajim School of Engineering or the dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, as appropriate.

The school views this issue as a matter of professionalism, and all suspected violations of this policy will be reviewed by the dean of the faculty or the dean’s delegate.

* Note that students who are employees are covered under the following University policy.

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