Conduct issues with fraternities and sororities: university processes evaluated at four-year universities

Author/s: Jonathan Burnard Sanders, PhD
Availability: Open Access
Type: Dissertation
Year: 2012

Abstract: The purpose of this study was to discover the types of conduct processes that are being utilized when fraternities and sororities violate alcohol, hazing, and other policies at four-year universities. Many negative issues have been tied to Greek letter organizations and have become a national concern, such as hazing, alcohol consumption, and other types of risky behavior (Bruce & Keller, 2007). Research on the type of processes being used by universities is needed in order to analyze current practices and whether there needs to be a change in conduct processes. A survey instrument was developed by the researcher and sent out via e-mail to 797 university administrators, of which 260 responded. The study was sent to institutions that did not recognize fraternities and sororities and those participants were not included in the research. Out of those that responded, the researcher was able to use 201 total respondents for this study. University administrators reported the conduct process that is most often utilized by institutions for hazing violations by fraternities and sororities was the “College/University Conduct Board involving faculty, staff, and students”. Addressing alcohol and “other” violations by fraternities and sororities, institutions most often utilized the “Administrative Conduct Hearing (single administrator involved)” to address these concerns. Based on the results of this research, it was determined that most institutions utilize the same conduct process for general student organizations and individual students as fraternities and sororities. Implications for this research include a need for universities to analyze whether current processes are achieving desired outcomes and goals. University conduct processes also need to look at ways in which they can begin to incorporate additional stakeholders, to include headquarters, local alumni, and chapter leaders. It was determined that further inquiry is needed on this topic to include qualitative research. Now that we know what type of conduct processes are being utilized, researchers need to determine why certain differences occur in conduct processes depending on different demographics of the institutions and whether desired outcomes or goals are being achieved.

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