The Department of Housing and Residential Life Peer Review Board hears cases involving alleged instances of misconduct by those living in the residential halls. The DHRL PRB consists of at least five justices who review a case, listen to testimony, make a decision regarding an individual’s responsibility, and assign sanctions as appropriate.
The basic philosophy of discipline at Texas State University is one of education and the belief that students can learn from their mistakes and choose to change. The community floor agreements, along with university and residential hall policies help to determine the type of environment that is acceptable to the majority of students. This includes fostering an atmosphere of respect for the rights of others, responsibility for one’s actions, and encouraging self-discipline and community accountability.
The discipline process focuses on the growth and development of students charged with violating policies by determining why students make the decisions they do and building an understanding of the consequences that accompany such decisions. If a student is determined to have violated a policy, appropriate sanctions that encourage better decision-making are utilized as a means of education.
The formal responsibility for discipline rests with the University and the Board of Regents. This responsibility and implementation has been delegated to the Dean of Students Office. The Dean of Students Office chooses to make the Department of Housing and Residential Life (DHRL) a designee for adjudicating discipline cases which involve students that live in the residence halls. As such, the DHRL Peer Review Board was created as an alternative to the traditional Administrative Review currently in practice.
Whether a discipline case is processed by the Dean of Students, a Residence Director, or the DHRL Peer Review Board, the end remains the same: to direct behavior into acceptable patterns and to protect the rights of all students. The unique advantage of the DHRL Peer Review Board lies in the ability of its members to influence the attitudes and subsequent behavior of other students through a formal process. Peer influence, exercised through the Peer Review Board process, can often be more effective in redirecting the behavior patterns of students than any other method of discipline within the institution.
The success of the DHRL Peer Review Board is contingent upon the conviction of its members to achieve a suitable living environment while affording individual students maximum personal freedom within institutional and DHRL community guidelines. Service on the board is considered a volunteer position.
Since the Dean of Students and the Department of Housing and Residential Life (DHRL) has delegated the authority for Peer Review Board operation, certain institutional guidelines regarding discipline must be observed by student boards. Violation of these standards is cause for an individual’s removal from the Peer Review Board and possible disciplinary action.