Click on any question to go directly to its answer below:
A: Policy 1025 states that “Virginia Tech is… committed to the free and vigorous discussion of ideas and issues. This policy does not allow curtailment or censorship of constitutionally protected expression, nor does it attempt to address behaviors that do not constitute discrimination or harassment. Offensive behavior that does not violate this policy should be addressed by the appropriate supervisor or administrator.” [back to top]
A: It is understood that there are times when it is pedagogically necessary to be intellectually provocative or challenging in the classroom. Our experience is that complaints arise in the classroom when an individual makes statements that are offensive or hurtful without apparent academic value. [back to top]
A: Yes. The policy can be violated by women harassing men, and by people harassing individuals of the same sex. [back to top]
A: No—contrary to what many people believe, false accusations are rare. [back to top]
A: No—Virginia Tech’s policy includes a number of protected classes, and behavior based on any of those characteristics that interferes significantly with a person’s work or education could be harassment. [back to top]
A: Yes, Virginia Tech policies prohibit harassment or discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. [back to top]
A: No, harassment can occur between coworkers or between students at the same level. [back to top]
A: Yes, this policy applies to all Virginia Tech entities and to all individuals enrolled or working at Virginia Tech. [back to top]
A: No-a staff member will discuss with you informal approaches to dealing with your situation as well as formal options. We look for low-level approaches whenever possible or appropriate. See What to Expect when you contact our office [back to top]
A: Yes—if you engage in behavior that is unwelcome and repeated or severe, and that behavior unreasonably interferes with a person’s work or education, you may be violating policy. [back to top]
A: While people are strongly encouraged to speak up if someone’s behavior is causing a problem, there are times when they may not. The person engaging in the behavior may be in violation of the policy. [back to top]
A: Most people complain about others when they feel they have been treated disrespectfully. The best way to avoid having a complaint filed is to treat people with respect and dignity. [back to top]
Q: This person's behavior is a little scary, but I don't want to overreact. What should I do?
A: Do not hesitate to call Virginia Tech Police or your local police agency.
Contact us to schedule an initial appointment to discuss your situation with us. We normally set aside an hour to speak with you. When you visit us, we will ask you to describe your situation and your view of what is going on, so that we can fully understand the situation. There is no need to bring evidence or documentation to your appointment, since at this point there is no need to prove anything.