Code of Conduct

We are a community made up of individuals from every state and more than one hundred countries. The diverse backgrounds and experiences that all of us collectively bring to Tufts guarantee that living and studying in our community will be seen through a broad variety of lenses and that we can learn from one another. All of us should cherish the chance to be exposed to different values and beliefs, even though balancing them will at times create tension among us. There is no reason to think that we will always agree with one another. We would not be an interesting campus if we all held similar opinions about everything – or if we were not willing to engage in difficult conversation with others whose views we find hard to understand. You are urged to be open to new ideas – to embrace the unfamiliar. Take advantage of every opportunity to broaden your understanding of others’ viewpoints, even if you will never hold those viewpoints yourself, for they will be part of your world beyond Tufts, and you will thus be better prepared for that world.

At the same time, meaningful dialogue depends on respect and civility. Those who engage in expression without attention to these values can and should anticipate that their choice of expression will not promote dialogue – it will instead cause hurt and divisiveness. Rules and policies cannot protect you from all that is unpleasant. What all of us can do is voice our own outrage when others’ behavior is outrageous. All of us must remain committed to creating a community that feels welcoming – one that promotes growth, learning and enjoyment.

Tufts students are expected to be responsible citizens of the Tufts community and of the larger communities of which we are all members. Students are expected to comply with all University policies, Somerville and Medford city ordinances, and Massachusetts and federal laws. The policies of the University are designed to ensure a reasonable environment in which community members can pursue an education and a social life. Tufts’ Code of Conduct addresses the requirements of ethical behavior in and out of the classroom. It also addresses community participation and how our behavior impacts others. Some of the policies that collectively make up our Code of Conduct require:

  • Ethical behavior, including academic integrity and honesty; an understanding and adherence to the requirements of legitimate academic work and responsible use of the University’s resources, including information technology resources;
  • Respecting intellectual property rights, including the appropriate use of copyrighted materials such as music, videos and software;
  • Respecting others’ privacy, and abiding by all city and state ordinances and state and federal laws and regulations regarding privacy (including electronic communication and recording);
  • Respectful and civil engagement with other members and affiliates of the Tufts community, including students, faculty, staff, and visitors to campus;
  • Respecting the safety of community members by avoiding behavior that harms, endangers, or intimidates others, including the behavior of individuals you bring to the campus as guests;
  • Avoiding behavior that is not becoming of a Tufts student;
  • Avoiding behavior that causes community disruption, and/or causes interruption of University operations or students’ course of study;
  • Avoiding harassing, hazing or bullying behavior, including that using electronic resources and including that based on race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, ability, and ethnic or national origin;
  • Being absolutely certain that sexual activity is mutually agreed upon and complying with the requirements of the University’s Sexual Misconduct Policy;
  • Respecting the property of the University and of community members, including policies on theft, vandalism, and graffiti;
  • Respecting and abiding by all city and state ordinances and state and federal laws and regulations, as well as those that are specific to the University, including those that pertain to the possession and consumption of alcohol and other drugs, and public nudity;
  • Cooperating with University officials;
  • Respecting and adhering to the requirements and policies regarding life in the residence halls of the University; and
  • Respecting and adhering to the policies of any community in which we participate in any University-related work or recreation, both on and off the campus.