FAQs for Faculty

How is the Ombuds different from other faculty support services on campus?

The Ombuds Office is unique in its adherence to the standards of confidentiality*, neutrality, informality and independence. We are not officially aligned with any other office, profession, perspective, or purpose on campus, and we do not take sides or make decisions. Our sole goal when working with you is to help you resolve your issues fairly.

A student in my class has committed plagiarism in a paper. How can I confront the student and what will happen?

There is a specific process to follow in cases of academic dishonesty. You can find a guide to this process, along with the full Academic Honesty Policy from the University's Academic Regulations, at the Academic Honesty  site. The first step will be to follow steps to resolve the issue informally with the student. The Ombuds Office can help you navigate that process and answer any questions you may have. The informal resolution, if you reach one, is filed with the Academic Honesty Office in 511 Goodell. If no resolution is reached, you can file a formal Academic Honesty complaint.

I am having a dispute with a colleague or graduate student about the authorship of a paper we worked on together. I’d like to try to work this out informally if possible. What should I do?

Talking with an Ombuds is a good place to start to find out what your options may be. The Ombuds can coach you to explore ideas about how best to communicate with the person with whom you have a disagreement. The Ombuds Office also offers informal dispute resolution services if you and the other person agree to try mediation or a facilitated conversation to help you reach agreement.

Several people in my department do not get along with each other and it has started to affect the whole environment. Is there anything I can do?

Speaking with your Chair or Head may be a good first step to make sure that the leader is aware of your concerns. If the Chair or Head is part of the problem, or is unable or unwilling to address it, the Dean could also be a resource for you. If you’d like to have a confidential conversation with a neutral third party to develop some options and strategies for addressing your concerns before you raise them with others, the Ombuds Office is available to help.