Sexual Misconduct Policy Definitions

Non-Consensual Sexual Intercourse: any sexual intercourse (anal, oral, or vaginal) with a man or woman without his/her effective consent. Intercourse includes vaginal or anal penetration by a finger, tongue, penis, or object and oral copulation.

Non-Consensual Sexual Contact: sexual touching of a man or woman without his/her effective consent. Non-consensual sexual contact may include the following forms of contact:

  • Touching, either directly or through clothing, of buttocks, breasts, groin, or genitals. Non-consensual sexual touching may include touching of these body parts of another, touching another with these body parts, and making another touch these body parts on himself/herself or on another
  • Attempted non-consensual intercourse

Sexual Exploitation: taking non-consensual, unjust, or abusive sexual advantage of another for the advantage or benefit of anyone other than the one being exploited; exceeding the boundaries of consent. Sexual exploitation includes but is not limited to:

  • Non-consensual video- or audio-taping of sexual activity
  • Non-consensual sharing, posting, or distribution of photographs or recordings of sexual activity without all participants' consent
  • Observing or permitting someone to watch sexual activity surreptitiously without all participants' consent
  • Observing one who is partially or fully undressed and who has a reasonable expectation that he/she is not being observed covertly.

Sexual Harassment: behavior that a reasonable member of a college community considers as unwelcome sexual advances, unwelcome requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:

  1. For students: A student's ability to participate in or to receive benefits, services, or opportunities in the school's program is denied or limited on the basis of sex.
  2. For employees:
    1. An employee's submission to such conduct is made explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of the employee's work performance;
    2. An employee's submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as a basis for an employment decision concerning the employee; or
    3. Such conduct is known or should have been known by the respondent to unreasonably interfere with an employee's work performance or to create an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.

Effective Consent: informed agreement given freely and actively and expressed in clear, mutually understandable words or actions that indicate willingness to participate in mutually agreed upon sexual activity. Silence or lack of resistance cannot, in themselves, be interpreted as consent; similarly, agreement or acceptance received after a sexual act has occurred does not constitute effective consent. The initiator of any type of sexual activity is responsible for obtaining affirmative effective consent from the other participant(s). Consent to one type of sexual activity does not indicate consent to others; similarly, prior consent to sexual activity does not indicate consent to current sexual activity. Being under the influence of alcohol, a drug, or other substance does not negate the responsibility of the initiator of sexual activity to obtain affirmative effective consent from the other participant(s).

Consent is NOT effective if it results from:

  • Coercion
  • Force
  • Incapacity
  • Intimidation
  • Threat

Consent to sexual activity may be withdrawn at any time through clear, mutually understandable words or actions; at the time that consent is withdrawn, all sexual activity must cease.

Coercion: exists when the initiator of sexual activity engages in an unreasonable amount of pressure that directly results in the object of the pressure engaging in unwanted sexual activity. Unreasonableness is judged by considering the intensity, frequency, duration, and isolating nature of the pressuring behavior.

Incapacity: a person is mentally or physically incapacitated when he/she lacks conscious knowledge of the sexual activity and/or cannot comprehend the nature or extent of the activity. A person can be incapacitated due to: the effects of alcohol, a drug, or other substance; sleep; temporary or permanent mental impairment; youth. One may not engage in sexual activity with another who one knows or reasonably should know to be incapacitated.

Complainant: a person who has made a report of a possible violation of the Sexual Misconduct Policy to Campus Safety and Security, the Title IX Coordinator, or the Office of the Dean of Students.