At Deakin, we don’t tolerate poor behaviour
As we head towards the end of the trimester, we want to acknowledge that revision and final assessments can be a stressful period. However, this is no excuse for disrespectful, abusive or intolerant behaviour, either on our campuses or online.
Recently, there have been reports across the University of poor behaviour in both our physical and online spaces, including trolling on social media channels, and disruptive and rude conduct towards other students and staff in places like the library.
Any behaviour of this type is unacceptable and may have serious consequences. One of the foundations of Deakin’s culture is respect, and all students and staff have the right to considerate behaviour across the University. Our shared spaces should be safe and enjoyable at all times.
Deakin is a place for everyone to succeed, no matter where you’re from or what you’re studying. Together, we can live up to our values.
How to act respectfully
Being respectful mostly involves common sense and thinking before you act. But remembering some specific principles will help you treat your fellow students, your teachers and other staff properly, both online and on campus:
- Act in the best interests of the University. The standards of behaviour outlined in the Student Rights and Responsibilities and Student Code of Conduct underpin your enrolment at Deakin, so get familiar with these policies and take them seriously.
- Consider language and tone, especially when communicating online. This will minimise your chances of being misunderstood or inadvertently offending someone. The eSafety Commissioner has some useful tips for how to both be respected and give respect online.
- Never behave aggressively or abusively. This constitutes student misconduct and will not be tolerated in any context. Cyberbullying includes things like sending hurtful or abusive text messages/social media posts, spreading rumours via email/SMS or on social networks, setting up fake profiles or posting from someone else’s accounts.
- Respect personal boundaries. Never make inappropriate comments, post unsuitable images or use private messaging functions online to comment on things like another student’s appearance or personal situation.
Don’t risk your degree
Any Deakin student who behaves inappropriately in any face-to-face or online teaching and learning space will be directed to stop the behaviour. If the behaviour continues, the student will be asked to leave. Staff will report discriminatory or offensive language, bullying or harassment to the Student Conduct Team, who investigates allegations of student misconduct.
Formal penalties from the University may affect your grades and enrolment and, in some cases, hinder your degree or future career.
We understand that stress, anxiety or frustration can sometimes be an underlying reason for poor behaviour, and the last year has been very hard on everyone. But as individuals we can choose how we react or behave, especially in shared spaces. Remember that help is always available at Deakin, so if you’re struggling:
- Speak to a Deakin CAPS counsellor for free and confidential psychological support. Book online to have a real-time telehealth appointment.
- Visit Ask Counselling, our online blog for students struggling with study or personal issues. Anonymous questions from students are answered by our professional counsellors, or you can submit your own question.
- Chat to one of our multifaith chaplains, who offer guidance and non-judgmental advice. They welcome contact from religious and non-religious students.
- Access a wide range of study support to help you feel in control of your learning.
What to do if you experience poor behaviour
- If you ever feel unsafe, contact Victoria Police by calling Triple Zero (000) for emergency help.
- If you’ve witnessed or experienced concerning, inappropriate or threatening behaviour by a fellow student or staff member, contact Safer Community, who can offer support, advice and information to all parties involved.
- You can also report concerning or threatening behaviour to our Student Conduct team through a simple online form.