Graduate Catalog

2014 – 2015

2013-2014 Graduate Catalog Archive

Office of Graduate Studies
McKelvie Hall, 102 W. Rosedale Avenue
West Chester University
West Chester, PA 19383
Phone: 610-436-2943
Fax: 610-436-2763

Catalog Home

Revised October 2014

Social Equity

Nondiscrimination/Affirmative Action Policy

West Chester University is committed to providing leadership in extending equal opportunities to all individuals. Accordingly, the University will make every effort to provide these rights to all persons regardless of race, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, sexual orientation, disability, or veteran status. This policy applies to all members of the University community including students, faculty, staff, and administrators. It also applies to all applicants for admission or employment and all participants in University-sponsored activities.

West Chester University will take all necessary steps to

  1. Recruit, hire, utilize, train, and promote for all job classifications without regard to race, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status, or protected-class status.
  2. Recruit and admit students without regard to race, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status, or other protected-class status
  3. Base decisions on selection, employment practices, employee utilization, job training, career mobility, promotion, program operations, and services provided so as to further the principles of equal opportunity and affirmative action.
  4. Create and maintain a climate free from discrimination and harassment of any individual.
  5. Create and maintain a climate free from sexual harassment of any individual.
  6. Make every effort to increase the admission and employment opportunities for qualified persons with disabilities.
  7. Assure that reasonable accommodation will be made for all the physical and mental limitations of qualified individuals.
  8. Assure that in offering employment or promotion to persons with disabilities, no reduction in compensation would result because of disability, income or other benefits.

This policy is in compliance with federal and state laws, including Titles VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Educational Amendment of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1972, Americans With Disabilities Act of 1972, Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990, and Executive Order of the Governor of Pennsylvania.

Overall responsibility for the implementation of the affirmative action-equal opportunity policy has been assigned to Barbara Schneller, director of social equity, who is the Title IX coordinator for the University. Any individual having suggestions, problems, complaints, or grievances with regard to equal opportunity or affirmative action is encouraged to contact the director of social equity, 13/15 University Avenue, Room 100, 610-436-2433.

Sexual Harassment Policy

West Chester University is committed to equality of opportunity and freedom from unlawful discrimination for all its students and employees. Sexual harassment is a form of unlawful discrimination based on sex and will not be tolerated in any form by faculty, staff, students, or vendors. Upon official filing of a complaint, immediate investigation will be made, culminating in appropriate corrective action where warranted, which may include termination of the relationship with the University. Retaliatory actions against persons filing a complaint of sexual harassment, or any person cooperating in the investigation of a complaint, are also prohibited. Acts of retaliation shall constitute misconduct subject to disciplinary action.

Sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other harassing conduct of a sexual nature. Sexual harassment occurs when

  1. submission to the unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual's employment or status in a course, program, or activity;
  2. submission to or rejection of the unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature by an individual is used as the basis for an academic or employment-related decision affecting such an individual; or
  3. the unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive as to substantially limit or interfere with an individual's work, educational performance, participation in extracurricular activities, or equal access to the University's resources and opportunities; or
  4. such conduct creates an intimidating, hostile, or abusive living, working, or educational environment.

Sexual violence is a form of sexual harassment. Sexual violence refers to physical sexual acts perpetrated against a person’s will or where a person is incapable of giving consent due to the victim’s use of drugs, alcohol, or disability. Physical sexual acts include rape, sexual assault, sexual battery, sexual coercion, stalking, and domestic or dating violence.

All incidents of sexual harassment must be reported to the Title IX coordinator, Barbara Schneller, director, Office of Social Equity, 13-15 University Ave., 610-436-2433 or

This policy and the procedures addressed herein are in addition to, and not a replacement for, criminal remedies that may be available. Anyone interested in pursuing a criminal complaint should contact the Office of Public Safety at 610-436-3311 or dial 911 in the case of an emergency. If the incident occurred off campus, the WCU Public Safety Office will assist the complainant in filing the complaint in the appropriate jurisdiction.

This policy is not intended to interfere with the protections afforded by law to freedom of speech. Additional information, including examples of what constitutes sexual harassment, is available from the Office of Social Equity. Individuals who believe themselves to have been sexually harassed, or who have questions about the University’s policy on this matter, should contact Barbara.

ADA Policy and Accommodations

The University's complete ADA Policy Statement and commitment to accommodations compliances are on page 25 of this catalog.