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Operations Manual The University of Iowa

PART III. HUMAN RESOURCES
DIVISION II STANDARDS AND ETHICS


CHAPTER 15: PROFESSIONAL ETHICS AND ACADEMIC RESPONSIBILITY

( President 5/73; Board of Regents amendment 1/19/94; 5/07; 10/09)
15.1 General
15.2 Responsibilities to Students
15.3 Responsibilities to Scholarship
15.4 Responsibilities to Faculty and Staff Colleagues
15.5 Responsibilities to the Institution
15.6 Responsibilities to the Community

15.1 GENERAL.
The basic functions of the University are the advancement and dissemination of knowledge, the development of critical intelligence, and the education of citizens and professional workers for the society of which the University is a part.

The indispensable condition for the successful discharge of these functions is an atmosphere of intellectual freedom. Unless he or she is free to pursue the quest for knowledge and understanding, wherever it may lead, and to report and discuss the findings, whatever they may be, the University faculty member cannot properly perform his or her work. As a participant in an enterprise that depends upon freedom for its health and integrity, the faculty member has a special interest in promoting conditions of free inquiry and furthering public understanding of academic freedom.

Freedom entails responsibilities. It is incumbent upon the faculty member to accept the responsibilities which are concomitant with the freedom he or she needs.

Those responsibilities are: 1) to students, 2) to scholarship, 3) to colleagues, 4) to the University, and 5) to the larger community which the University serves. To make these responsibilities operational, it is necessary that ethical and professional standards be adopted to guide faculty members in their conduct and that effective mechanisms be established to monitor and enforce compliance with these standards.
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15.2 RESPONSIBILITIES TO STUDENTS.
(Board of Regents amendment 1/19/94; Faculty Senate 12/95; amended 5/07)

As a teacher, the faculty member has the responsibility for creating in his or her classroom or laboratory a climate that encourages the student's endeavors to learn. The faculty member should exemplify high scholarly standards and respect and foster the student's right to choose and pursue his or her own educational goals.

15.3 RESPONSIBILITIES TO SCHOLARSHIP.
The faculty member's responsibilities to scholarship derive from the University's commitment to truth and the advancement of knowledge. Furthermore, society has a vital stake in maintaining the University as an institution where knowledge can be sought and communicated regardless of its popularity, its political implications, or even its immediate usefulness. The faculty member has an ethical responsibility both to make full appropriate use of that freedom in his or her teaching and research and to guard it from abuse. More specifically:

15.4 RESPONSIBILITIES TO FACULTY AND STAFF COLLEAGUES.
(Amended 10/09)

The faculty member has obligations that derive from common membership in the community of academics. The faculty member respects and defends the free inquiry of others and avoids interference with their work. The faculty member refrains from personal vilification; threatening, intimidating, or abusive language; or conduct that creates a hostile work environment. The faculty member acknowledges contributions of others to the faculty member's work. When asked to evaluate the professional performance of another, the faculty member strives to be objective. In the exchange of criticisms and ideas, the faculty member should show due respect for the rights of others to express differing opinions. However, vigorous debate and criticism are not to be viewed as a lack of respect.


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15.5 RESPONSIBILITIES TO THE INSTITUTION.
The faculty member's primary responsibility to his or her institution is to seek to realize his or her maximum potential as an effective scholar and teacher. In addition, the faculty member has a responsibility to participate in the day-to-day operation of the University. Among the faculty member's general responsibilities to the University, the following may be particularly noted:

15.6 RESPONSIBILITIES TO THE COMMUNITY.
As a member of the community, the faculty member has the rights and obligations of any citizen. These include the right to organize and join political or other associations, convene and conduct public meetings and publicize his or her opinion on political and social issues. However, in exercising these rights, the faculty member must make it clear that he or she does not speak for the University, but simply as an individual. The faculty member does not use the classroom to solicit support for personal views and opinions.

Because academic freedom has traditionally included the faculty member's full freedom as a citizen, most faculty members face no insoluble conflicts between the claims of politics, social action, and conscience, on the one hand, and the claims and expectations of their students, colleagues, and institutions on the other. If such conflicts become acute, and the faculty member's attention to his or her obligations as a citizen and moral agent precludes the fulfillment of substantial academic obligations, the responsibility of that choice cannot be escaped, but the faculty member should either request a leave of absence or resign his or her academic position.
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Page last updated June 2013 by Office of the Senior Vice President for Finance and Operations