Norlin Charge: The university is not the campus, not the buildings on the campus, not the faculties, not the students of any one time — not one of these or all of them. The university consists of all who come into and go forth from her halls, who are touched by her influence and who carry on her spirit. Wherever you go, the university goes with you. Wherever you are at work, there is the university at work. - University of Colorado Boulder President George Norlin

At the University of Colorado Boulder, our vision is to be a leader in addressing the humanitarian, social and technological challenges of the twenty-first century. Underpinning this vision is our commitment to the highest ethical standards in all that we do. Inspired by our students’ Colorado Creed, we commit to act with integrity, courage, and respect.

These values are reinforced by our Inclusive Excellence Initiative and our identity is defined by respect for diversity and inclusivity.  To that end, we restate our values as follows:

  • Integrity/Accountability: we are all responsible for our conduct, relationships, and interactions with colleagues, students and the broader university community in creating a climate of inclusive excellence.
  • Collaboration: foster partnerships across the campus community, value diverse perspectives, interdisciplinary/transdisciplinary work, work with all campus constituents to remove barriers and solve problems.
  • Innovative Thinking and Continuous Improvement: adapting to change, continuous learning, critical thinking, promoting growth of the individual and the organization.

Engage in Effective Communication: open dialogue, listening and communication, being respectful of each other's unique backgrounds and perspectives.  Ensure that key and critical information is shared within the unit and provide timely information across the campus community.

We focus our efforts on three strategic imperatives to: Shape Tomorrow’s Leaders, Be the Top University for Innovation, and Positively Impact Humanity.

Our 2018-2019 Efforts:

Vision: We foster an ethical culture that is fully-integrated into all we do, in which we ask questions, raise issues, and address challenges in a supportive environment to advance the mission of the University.

Mision: We will develop a common understanding of ethical behavior within our campus community. We will raise awareness of ethical standards, conduct and compliance. We will engage the community in best practices by providing easy access to relevant tools and resources. 

Goal 1: Create a common understanding of ethics and communicate this common understanding of ethics 

Goal 2: Establish a culture of ethical decision-making

  • Example of Step 1:
    • Assess current culture to set a baseline
    • Re-assess the culture to measure against the baseline

Goal 3: Develop and implement a plan for continuous education and awareness programs

Goal 4: Develop a tool set for people to address ethical questions

Standards of Conduct

In our academic, research, and creative pursuits, and in our daily work, we make decisions that have implications beyond ourselves. The university has developed an overarching Code of Conduct to serve as a resource for decision-making and to ensure that our students, faculty, and staff have the necessary tools to act ethically and in compliance with regulatory requirements. This Plan is a compilation of the many resources available to assist our community with decision-making and operations.

The campus strives to foster confidence and being comfortable to reasonably question and engage with colleagues about correct and ethical courses of actions, as established under the law and under campus policy. When employees are aware of an alleged violation, we take appropriate steps, including steps to self-report, seek guidance, or use the other reporting options listed below.

Our guiding principles, laws and policies are set forth in these documents:

  • The University of Colorado Board of Regents Principles of Ethical Behavior
  • Administrative Policy Statement Code of Conduct
  • System and Campus Policies, including Campus Risk Management Policy

The university is also embracing and advancing our efforts to educate and, in the event of an alleged violation, utilize a “report and support” model of ethics and compliance. As such, the subject matter experts lead with a service and educational approach that supports an ethical and compliant response to difficult issues and policy violations.

High Level Oversight of the Program: CU Boulder Ethics and Compliance Framework

The Chancellor has established a framework of three groups to engage in and implement the ethics and compliance program (“Framework”). The Framework is referenced and described in this section.


The Chancellor is ultimately responsible for the campus ethics and compliance program and reports directly to the President of the University of Colorado System.

Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance

The Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance serves as a resource to the programs and executives making compliance management decisions. The Associate Vice Chancellor is responsible for developing and updating this ethics and compliance plan; and convening the teams that execute the action items from these committees. These committees are:

  • Chancellor’s Cabinet
  • Values and Ethics Advisory Committee
  • Campus Ethics and Compliance Working Group

Membership for these committees appears here.

Executive Committee

The Executive Committee members are the Chancellor, the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, and the Senior Vice Chancellor and Chief Financial Officer, as well as the Chancellor’s Director of Ethics and Compliance and the Campus Managing Counsel.

Lines of Communication

The University of Colorado Boulder framework follows the regular organizational reporting structures and includes the complementary ethics and compliance committees listed below. The purpose of the committee framework is to serve as a resource to decision-makers across campus who are grappling with new ethical questions, competing values, and questions that may test our ability to act with integrity, courage, and respect. Each committee has pledged to offer a collegial, collaborative, and transparent approach to resolving these challenging situations.

Values and Ethics Advisory Committee

The Director for Integrity and Compliance convenes this advisory committee to review best practices and policies and to champion the use of the Vision, Values and Strategic Imperatives which can be used as values-based framework in everyday decision-making at the university.

Campus Ethics and Compliance Working Group

The Director for Integrity and Compliance convenes this group of subject matter experts to ensure the university has a coherent and comprehensive approach to ethics and compliance. The working group completes a variety of tasks including identifying and making recommendations on the priority of resource needs, including training and resource needs; Promotes and identifies other champions of the culture of operational integrity within sphere of influence; Coordinates, reviews, and implements compliance communications plan and activities including education and outreach events, compliance website, etc.  The working group meets quarterly and on an as-needed basis

Shared Governance

Boulder Faculty Assembly
The Boulder Faculty Assembly serves as a voice for the faculty in shared governance. While the BFA does not have any legal or administrative responsibility for ethics and compliance, the BFA serves a critical role in shared governance and raising issues of concern to the Chancellor, Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor and CFO. As stated on the BFA website, “the BFA is proactively building engagement by putting in place initiatives that provide every member of the faculty with the opportunity to have their voice heard and participate in building the CU community.”This faculty input is critical in identifying and addressing issues of ethics and compliance.

CU Student Government (CUSG)
From the CUSG website:
The CU Student Government does a lot that affects every student on a daily basis. CU Student Governments primary responsibility is managing approximately $22 million in student fees every year and voting on its allocation and implementation throughout our various Reources. CU Student Government also helps student groups get funding through the Student Organization Allocation Committee (SOAC). Additionally, CU Student Government lobbies on behalf of students for tuition assistance and cost mitigation at the Colorado capitol, speaks at Boulder City Council meetings, fosters a dialogue between student opinions and the Chancellor, and makes sure that students have a direct channel to make their thoughts and opinions heard.

Staff Council
CU Boulder's Staff Council is a team of elected members from across the campus. Staff Council represents the interests of our campus' staff by advocating on a variety of issues, proposing policies, serving in an advisory role to administration, and facilitating a variety of events to bring collaborative opportunities to the campus. In addition, Staff Council represents, informs and educates staff employees by serving as a liaison between employees and Boulder campus, University system and State administration. Staff Council also recommends proposals to the administration that are designed to improve morale and advocate for the rights of staff employees.

Office of the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs

The Division of Academic Affairs is responsible for meeting the academic mission of the University of Colorado at Boulder “to be a comprehensive graduate research university with selective admission standards offering a comprehensive array of undergraduate, masters and doctoral degree programs.” Our path in accomplishing this mission is articulated in the vision that the University of Colorado at Boulder is a leading global comprehensive research university that will “… be a leader in addressing the humanitarian, social, and technological challenges of the twenty-first century” by shaping tomorrow’s leaders, impacting humanity, and being the top university for innovation.”

Office of the Vice Chancellor, Diversity Equity and Community Engagement​

Our Office of Diversity, Equity, and Community Engagement works to achieve our commitment to inclusive excellence and uphold it as a priority across our campus. The office fosters our vision for an inclusive campus climate and works with students, faculty, and staff to develop and implement the campus diversity and inclusive excellence plan. ODECE sponsors academic programs and activities to engage the campus and community members in making excellence inclusive at the University of Colorado Boulder.

Office of the Senior Vice Provost and AVC for Budget and Planning

The Senior Vice Provost and Associate Vice Chancellor for Budget and Planning provides support to the Provost and the campus with regard to resource planning and allocation of financial and physical resources for the academic and research enterprise.

This Senior Vice Provost participates in campus planning activities relating to tuition rates, financial assistance, graduate student support, academic buildings, space use, research infrastructure, and academic programs.

The Senior Vice Provost also works directly with faculty governance groups on campus. Additionally, the Senior Vice Provost and budget office staff provide analysis and information services to enhance decision-making, planning, and policy formulation.

Office of the Vice Provost and Associate Vice Chancellor for Faculty Affairs

The Office of Faculty Affairs (OFA) coordinates a variety of activities associated with faculty life and academic programming on the Boulder campus. The Office is a branch of Academic Affairs and is administered by the Vice Provost and Associate Vice Chancellor for Faculty Affairs.

The major functions of the Office of Vice Provost and Faculty Affairs include: overseeing faculty personnel actions from recruitment and hiring to leaves and retirement; managing reappointment, tenure, promotion, and post-tenure review; conducting program review through the Academic Review And Planning Advisory Committee (ARPAC); convening the Salary Equity Appeals Committee and the Provost’s Advisory Committee; deploying a series of faculty development efforts including the Faculty Teaching Excellence Program (FTEP), the Leadership Education For Advancement And Promotion (LEAP) program, the Emerging Leaders Program (ELP), faculty mentoring, chair training, and the Director of Faculty Relations; gathering, analyzing, and distributing core data on the faculty through the Faculty Information System, CU Boulder Elements, the Faculty Report Of Professional Activities (FRPA), and CU Experts; and processing faculty personnel actions requiring approval by the Board of Regents, President or Chancellor.

All these activities raise issues of compliance and ethical behavior, both for Faculty Affairs itself and for all the office’s colleagues and partners across campus.  OFA works closely with these groups to heighten awareness and to ensure knowledge of the appropriate actions to be taken to address any issues that arise.

Office of the Vice Provost and Associate Vice Chancellor for Undergraduate Education

The Office of Undergraduate Education (UE) is a campus office reporting to the Provost that has as its charge to focus on the entire undergraduate student experience, assess outcomes, identify gaps, and launch and support student-facing campus initiatives. The Office oversees multiple campus-wide programs that are available to students regardless of school or college. These include the Office of International Education; the Student Academic Success Center; Special Undergraduate Enrichment Programs (Norlin Scholars, Boettcher Scholars, Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program and Professional and Academic Conference Endowment); the Top Scholarship Office; the Presidents Leadership Class; and all three ROTC units.

This office coordinates efforts across the campus to improve our persistence and graduation rates as set by the Chancellor and the Provost. To this end, the Office coordinates advising and first-year initiatives across campus and works to insure a supportive student experience. UE also serves as the project owner for development of the campus-wide system of student engagement, MyCUHub. In addition, academically-centered complaints to legislators, the Board of Regents, the President, the Chancellor and the Provost are typically assigned to this office as a single point of contact for responses to include investigation and resolution, where possible.


The Ombuds Office is a confidential consultation service. As an impartial, informal, and independent resource, Ombuds assist anyone with a University related concern. The Ombuds Office not only offers visitors a safe place to express concerns, it helps visitors strategically assess complex situations, develop options, think through and understand potential repercussions, obtain clarity regarding University policies and procedures, and identify resources available for addressing a variety of situations. While the Ombuds Office is not a compliance function, if often fields concerns and questions about compliance issues, and connects visitors with the appropriate University resources.

Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs

The Division of Student Affairs supports the CU Boulder student community, from the moment they arrive on campus, through graduation and beyond.  Student Affairs fosters a welcoming, inclusive environment for students of all backgrounds. The division supports and serves students throughout their college experience, including housing and dining, campus recreation, physical and mental health services, student organizations, and leadership development. Student Affairs provides programs, services, and facilities to help students build positive relationships, develop and sustain healthy lifestyles, and have resources available when they need help academically or personally. Student Affairs is dedicated to student well-being as a key driver of academic success.

Research & Innovation Office

The Research & Innovation Office supports CU-Boulder's world-class research endeavors by serving as a focal point for investment in our campus’s research, scholarship, and creative works. The Vice Chancellor for Research & Innovation strives to provide the infrastructure and administrative support necessary to promote and sustain the campus’s highly productive faculty and research programs.

Office of Research Integrity 
The University of Colorado Boulder is committed to scientific and ethical integrity as well as academic excellence in all research activities that our students, faculty and staff undertake. The Office of Research Integrity (ORI) supports those needs in regards to: 

The following offices also assist CU Boulder researchers in ensuring compliance with federal, state, and university regulations:

Office of Contracts & Grants (OCG)
OCG works in partnership with the CU Boulder faculty and staff to prepare and submit proposals for external funding and negotiates and accepts sponsored research and service agreements on behalf of the Regents. OCG monitors and provides guidance throughout the life of an award and at award closeout, ensuring compliance with federal and state regulations.

Environmental Health & Safety (EH&S)
EH&S provides comprehensive services to minimize health and safety impacts to the campus and the greater Boulder community, in areas such as Laboratory Safety, Biological Safety, Radiation Safety, and Occupational/Worker Safety.

Deans, Chairs and Institute Directors
The Deans are responsible for promoting the campus ethics and compliance plan to the chairs and directors of their academic departments and units. They should ensure that department leaders engage their faculty, staff, and students in on-going discussions of ethics and compliance during which campus policies and procedures are clearly communicated.

Graduate School
The University of Colorado Boulder offers more than 100 graduate programs that serve over 5000 students. The Graduate School oversees all graduate programs except for Law and the MBA program, and works with departments and offices to ensure that graduate programs are in compliance with all the requirements associated with graduate student teaching and research assistantships, and that graduate faculty and graduate students uphold the highest standards of academic integrity. Centers and programs that report to the Graduate School include the Center for Humanities and the Arts, the Center for STEM Learning, the Center for the Study of Origins, the Center for Native American and Indigenous Studies, the Graduate Teacher Program (a division of the Graduate School), and Environmental Design. Center and program directors have a responsibility to ensure that faculty and staff working in their center/program uphold the highest standards of integrity in the conduct of their work.

Office of the Senior Vice Chancellor and Chief Financial Officer

The Senior Vice Chancellor and Chief Financial Officer provides leadership in campus financial management, and in its operational and planning activities. The Senior Vice Chancellor Division includes the offices of the Vice Chancellor for Infrastructure and Sustainability, the Chief Information Officer, the Senior Associate Vice Chancellor for Finance and Business Strategy and Deputy Chief Financial Officer the Vice Chancellor for Strategic Relations, the Associate Vice Chancellor for Enrollment Management, the Chief Human Resources Officer, the Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance, the financial and capital construction management of Athletics, and their respective units.

Senior Associate Vice Chancellor for Finance and Business Strategy and Deputy Chief Financial Officer

Our Campus Controller's Office (CCO) offers assistance and guidance in the management of the university's fiscal responsibilities. The CCO focuses on fiscal policies and guidelines that are intended to promote sound stewardship of the university's financial resources. The CCO provides high-quality accounting services, resource monitoring and control, and financial and audit reporting on behalf of the CU Boulder Campus. The CCO also provides guidance and training to assist the campus in understanding applicable laws, regulations, policies and procedures, donor restrictions, and sponsored research grant and contract requirements.

Division of Finance and Business Strategy (FBS)
The Division of Finance and Business Strategy serves as a collaborative partner to support CU Boulder through the provision of strategic business support and financial management. FBS provides information and analyses to assist academic and administrative units on campus with informed and effective decision making. Finance and Business Strategy units include Auxiliary Services, Budget & Fiscal Planning, Campus Controller, and Data Analytics. Units within the FBS division are responsible for: provision of retail, printing, parking; ; development and implementation of campus resource planning; fiscal policies and practices that steward the university’s financial resources; provision of actionable data and reporting for internal and external purposes; and partnership with campus units to facilitate large-scale transformations or collaboration on initiatives.

Human Resources

The department of Human Resources (HR) serves as a strategic partner to CU Boulder, providing expertise and guidance in the management of campus human resources. HR’s Centers of Excellence offer a comprehensive set of services designed to attract, develop and retain an exceptional workforce. HR’s units include Recruitment; Position Management, Compensation and HR Analytics; the Faculty and Staff Assistance Program; Organizational and Employee Development; Employee Relations and Affirmative Action. HR provides oversight and guidance to the campus on compliance related to the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Family Medical Leave Act, Affirmative Action employer requirements and the Equal Employment Opportunity Act, among others.  The Recruiting team works with Hiring Leaders to ensure all hiring processes comply with federal Affirmative Action laws and guidelines, as well as other applicable federal and state laws related to the hiring process and the state personnel system. The Position Management and Compensation team works with employees to ensure job descriptions are complete, consistent job titles are assigned, and equitable pay practices are utilized. The Faculty and Staff Assistance Program is dedicated to serving the emotional and psychological needs of the campus community to promote a psychologically healthy workplace. Organizational and Employee Development provides leadership development that includes awareness of federal, state and Regent laws and policies, and CU Boulder guidelines and best practices related to employee management and development. HR’s Office of Employee Relations works to ensure that employees and departments understand their respective rights and responsibilities as governed by University policies and procedures, state rules and regulations, and state and federal law. HR is committed to advising and educating all employees in an equitable and inclusive manner.

Chief Information Officer

With regard to ethics and compliance, oversight responsibility for information technology resources lies with the Chief Information Officer (CIO) as specified by CU Policy (APS 6001: Providing and Using Information Technology & APS 6005: IT Security Program). Specifically, the CIO has the authority to:

  • Enforce the requirements of University and campus policies for information security.
  • Authorize new IT operations, shut down IT operations that are out of compliance with policy, or transfer management of those operations to a department or service provider with the requisite capabilities.

Office of Information Technology
Office of Information Technology (OIT) provides guidance and assists the campus to ensure that it complies with CU Information Technology policies. OIT provides IT services that are designed to meet the various external compliance requirements. CU has established these policies to educate the campus community about the appropriate use of the campus computing and network resources. The Office of Information Technology is also responsible, in collaboration with campus governance, for establishing IT standards to advance the mission of the campus.

Data Governance 
Recognizing that data are often a material asset, the University has established a data governance program ensure that that data provides value, meets compliance requirements, and risks are managed appropriately. By establishing the data governance program and appropriate supporting roles the University seeks to exercise positive control over the processes and methods used to handle data to assure that university employees and administrative processes have appropriate access to reliable, authentic, accurate, and timely data. Data trustees, as specified by APS 6010: Data Governance, are accountable for managing, protecting, and ensuring the integrity and usefulness of university data. Data owners work collaboratively with the CIO, Office of Data Analytics, Chief Information Security Officer (CISO), University Counsel and other appropriate data custodians when fulfilling their responsibilities. Additional information about the university data governance program can be found at

Associate Vice Chancellor for Enrollment Management

Associate VC for Enrolment Management Enrollment Services at CU Boulder includes the Admissions, Financial Aid, and Registrar Offices. The Admissions Office practices holistic review of all freshman and transfer applicants, reading all applications to  make admissions decisions using a variety of primary academic factors, as well as secondary factors related to the student’s experiences, unique contributions, academic disadvantage, and achievement beyond circumstance. The Admissions Office employs accepted industry standards with respect to fair and ethical recruitment practices.

The Financial Aid Office administers financial aid according to established federal, state, and institutional rules, regulations, laws, standards, policies, and guidelines. The Office of the Registraroversees CU Boulder’s compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), Colorado tuition classification statutes and other state, federal, and NCAA laws and policies.  The security of student data is a top priority for all of these offices. Enrollment Management units develop systems, policies, and procedures to ensure that the student data entrusted to CU Boulder is protected according to all federal and state laws and institutional policies.

Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance

The Office for Integrity, Safety and Compliance consists of the CU Boulder Police Department, Director of Integrity and Compliance,  Children’s Programs, Information Security Officer and Chief Digital Accessibility Officer.  

CU Boulder Police Department
The purpose of the University of Colorado Boulder Police Department is to support the University and its mission by providing public safety services that meet the unique needs of campus constituents.  The Police Department is responsible for providing public safety and commuter access services to the CU-Boulder community. The department is comprised of three units: the Police Services Division, the Support Services Division, and the Events and Emergency Management Division.  The Police Services Division, or University of Colorado Police Department (CUPD), is a full-service police agency that provides a variety of police services to the university community including: 24/7/365 police patrol, criminal case investigations, facility and residential security, crime prevention programs, victim rights amendment compliance and social program referrals, traffic and parking code enforcement, emergency and disaster preparedness planning, hostile threat assessment and response, and event security oversight.  The Support Services Division is comprised of the Communications (Dispatch) Center, Police Records, Information Technology, Accounting and Procurement, Professional Standards Unit and the Police Property and Evidence sections of the Police Department.  The Events and Emergency Management Division is comprised of the Emergency Management and Special Events Units. The Emergency Management (EM) unit is responsible for development, promulgation, implementation, training, coordination and oversight of emergency management plans and programs for CU Boulder.

Director of Integrity and Compliance
The Director is responsible for coordinating and monitoring the efforts of ethics and compliance programs on the Boulder campus.  This position develops and implements the Boulder campus ethics and compliance program and coordinates and supports the existing compliance units on campus and to create and support a compliance network.

Children’s Programs
The university has several programs that serve minors including our daycare program, Pre-collegiate Program, CU Science Discovery, Athletic Camps, Academic Summer Camps, and many others. While the university runs many of these programs, some are also run by third parties using our facilities. Our researchers also conduct studies that include children, with the consent of their parents.

Over the next year, the director of ethics and compliance will convene representatives of these programs to catalogue the list of programs, identify best practices, review current policies and procedures and make recommendations where we fall short of best practices.

Information Security Officer
The Information Security Officer (ISO) supports data owners and others in their responsibility by providing guidance regarding risk management processes to ensure that IT security safeguards are applied in a judicious and effective manner. The ISOs also have responsibility for establishing training standards for employees.

Chief Digital Accessibly Officer
The CDAO supports the AVC for Integrity, Safety and Compliance in oversight responsibility with respect to our obligations to provide equal access to programs, services and activities, and effectively communicate with individuals with disabilities. The CDAO is responsible, in collaboration with the Information and Communication Technology Accessibility Review Board, for oversight of the university digital accessibly program. The program provides services to assist campus units in meeting accessibility requirements and provides verification that services are accessible. Additional information about the digital accessibility program can be found at and Business Strategy

Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance

The Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance reports to the Senior Vice Chancellor and Chief Financial Officer. It is committed to preventing and addressing sexual misconduct (including sexual assault, intimate partner abuse, sexual exploitation and stalking) as well as discrimination and harassment based on race, color, national origin, pregnancy, sex, age, disability, creed, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, veteran status, political affiliation, or political philosophy at the University of Colorado Boulder. In addition, the ADA Compliance unit is responsible for providing reasonable accommodations for faculty and staff, educating the campus community regarding accessibility, and ensuring equal access and opportunity for those with disabilities.

To achieve this mission, the OIEC conducts fair and unbiased adjudications as well as informal resolutions, and treat all individuals who seek our assistance with respect and dignity. We also evaluate and coordinate protective and remedial measures as necessary, and provide educational training sessions for all members of the University community including faculty, staff, and students.

Athletics Office of Compliance Services

The mission of the Office of Compliance Services is to promote the knowledge of and adherence of the NCAA and Pac-12 rules and regulations by the CU Community, amongst University employees (including especially Athletics Department employees), and student-athletes. The Office of Compliance Services monitors such rules and regulations, with a goal of reducing infractions that may otherwise occur.

Office of University Counsel

The Office of University Counsel provides comprehensive legal services to support the University of Colorado. Campus counsel reports to the Vice President and University Counsel. Counsel protects and defends the university's legal interests in accordance with the laws of the United States and the state of Colorado, and guides the principles of integrity, knowledge, and humanity. The office is designated by the Colorado attorney general's office to represent the university in all lawsuits. Campus counsel attorneys practice higher education law and advise campus constituents on laws that impact a major research and education institution, including employment law, first amendment law, contract law, and real property law, among other areas. In addition, the counsel’s offices represent the campuses in State Personnel Board and other administrative hearings.

Reporting, Non-retaliation and Enforcement

The purpose of reporting is to correct and remedy violations, especially those that relate to health and safety issues or issues related to the misuse of university resources. When violations do occur, we report:

  • Criminal Activity 
  • Sexual violence, abuse, or harassment
  • Child abuse of any kind
  • Bias or discrimination
  • Behavioral threat
  • Fiscal & Research misconduct
  • Non-compliance with State and Federal laws and regulations
  • Suspected ethical or policy violations

We are committed to protecting all individuals against retaliation.

To prevent or avoid violations of policy, the campus uses a variety of tools, for example:

  • Pre-employment Screening Process
  • Disclosure of Interests
  • Fiscal Certification
  • Employee Criminal Background Check

Individuals can report concerns or potential violations as follows:

  • Supervisors – this is the first option for reporting and where we can resolve the majority of issues.
  • Ethics Hotline – The University of Colorado System operates an ethics hotline. The hotline provides a way to anonymously report concerns involving fiscal misconduct, violations of state or federal law, serious or recurring violations of university policy, or gross waste of university funds or property. The reporting service is provided by EthicsPoint, an independent company that provides similar services for hundreds of companies and universities. Options for 24/7 reporting are via a toll-free phone number (1.800.677.5590) or online ( 
  • CU Boulder provides “The Report It” website: to receive reports of possible bias-motivated incidents, sexual misconduct, gender/sexual harassment, protected class discrimination, and crimes. The website also provides access to additional reporting options and resources, including those regarding confidential assistance, reports to law enforcement, and Sexual Assault Nurse Examinations.
  • We report criminal activity to the police.


We also provide a variety of support services for students, faculty and staff involved in all sides of an ethics and compliance issue:

Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance (OIEC)
The Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance is committed to preventing and eliminating discrimination and harassment based on race, color, national origin, pregnancy, sex, age, disability, creed, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, veteran status, political affiliation, or political philosophy at the University of Colorado Boulder.

ADA Coordinator
At the University of Colorado Boulder, individuals with disabilities are entitled to access, support, and when appropriate, reasonable accommodations.

Office of Victim Assistance (OVA)
The Office of Victim Assistance offers free and confidential information, consultation, support, advocacy, and short-term counseling to students, faculty, and staff at the University of Colorado Boulder.

Faculty and Staff Assistance Program
The Faculty and Staff Assistance Program is dedicated to serving the emotional and psychological needs of the campus community. FSAP offers brief counseling, crisis support, and referral services to CU Boulder-campus faculty and staff members. Employee receive an intake session plus six counseling sessions.

Ombuds Office
The Ombuds Office is a confidential, impartial, informal and independent problem-solving and conflict resolution resource for all members of the University community.

Counseling and Psychiatric Services
Counseling and Psychiatric Services offers confidential, on-campus mental health and psychiatric services for a variety of concerns such as academics, anxiety, body image, depression, relationships, substance use and more. CAPS offers services in three locations on campus at Wardenburg Health Center, the Center for Community (C4C), and the Health and Counseling Clinic (HCC) at Village Center. 

Awareness, Training and Education

We implement and ensure compliance with university policies and procedures and Regent, state and federal laws, policies, and regulations through our organizational reporting structure and we will begin to include specific responsibilities in employee performance plans. We develop and continue to improve our policies, procedures and training programs to ensure expectations for ethical and compliance standards are adopted and clearly communicated.

Throughout the year, we promote on-going dialogue and awareness of ethical and compliance issues and each September during our annual “ethics and compliance” month. The Values and Ethics Advisory Committee and the Campus Ethics and Compliance Working Group sponsor dialogue around ethics and compliance issues. The campus also has many informal groups who exchange information related to ethics and compliance. For example, the Research Administrators Meet is an informal, grass-roots organization developed to facilitate networking, communication, and knowledge transfer by and between CU Boulder Research Administrators.

Leadership and Management Curricula

HR’s Organizational and Employee Development provides ethics and compliance related training for supervisors, managers, and leaders through on-going employee development programs (currently Managing the CU Boulder Way and The Highly Effective Manager).

HR also provides on-going training for campus employees. HR’s Organizational and Employee Development (OED) offers a range of training opportunities for employees of all classifications and coordinates the new employee orientation and onboarding programs. The Office of Employee Relations offers trainings and one-on-one sessions pertaining to employee rights and responsibilities, and state and federal laws and regulations. CU-Boulder’s commitment to ethics and integrity is integrated throughout HR’s training and educational programs.

Clery Training

On an annual basis, CUPD offers Clery Act Campus Security Authority training in-person and online to all Campus Security Authorities regarding responsibilities under the Clery Act and mechanisms in place to report Clery-related offenses. Discrimination and Harassment Training.

All CU Boulder staff and student employees must complete an online discrimination and harassment workshop within their first 30 days of hire. All CU Boulder faculty members must complete an online discrimination and harassment workshop within their first semester of hire. After this initial training, all employees are required to complete a discrimination and harassment session at least once every three years. Our students receive similar training through our new student welcome program.

New Employee Orientation and On-going Training

CU Boulder requires all new employees to take the online orientation training. The Office of Employee Relations provides trainings and works one-on-one with employees and supervisors to ensure that employees and departments understand their respective rights and responsibilities as governed by University policies and procedures, state rules and regulations, and state and federal law. We advise all employees in a fair and unbiased manner and treat all individuals who seek our assistance with respect and dignity. 

Research Compliance

ORI , OCG and EH&S provide a range of training opportunities to help ensure compliance with regulatory requirements. . Prior to conducting research, researchers must complete mandatory training specific to research involving animals, humans, radiation, recombinant DNA or biohazards, and export controls, as appropriate to their research. NIH and NSF grant recipients must complete training on disclosures and management of financial conflicts of interest, and NIH and NSF trainees complete an RCR education program that imparts a broad set of guiding principles and behaviors on topics including:

  • Mentor-trainee interactions and responsibilities
  • Data acquisition, management, sharing and ownership
  • Safe laboratory practices
  • Publication practices and authorship
  • Peer review
  • Conflicts of interest
  • Collaborative science
  • Research misconduct
  • Human subjects
  • Animal welfare
  • Export Control
  • The scientist in society

The University of Colorado is committed to the ethical and responsible conduct of research. The charge of the Standing Committee on Research Misconduct is to encourage a research climate that supports this goal, and to investigate allegations of misconduct in the research process.


The Athletics Office of Compliance Services, in conjunction with the Faculty Athletics Representative, strives to promote an atmosphere of compliance within the department and the surrounding community. Athletics staff, coaches, donors, and student-athletes are educated on a regular basis through numerous mediums, and as well as upon their entry to and departure from the University.  Monthly and annual rules-education meetings, informational pamphlets, and nationally known “toilet tips” represent a large portion of the Office of Compliance Services’ educational efforts, but the staff also recognizes the influence that technology and social media have and continue to extend their educational plan to include those outlets.

Internal Monitoring and Auditing


The campus engages in frequent surveys and self- assessments to identify areas for improvement and areas of strength. The campus also enters contracts for third party assessments of programs that require greater scrutiny, for example, the external review of our Title IX compliance in sexual assault cases, the review of the accessibility of our technology, etc. We also engage third parties to assist us in program reviews to identify areas where we can implement better business processes, which lead to higher compliance rates.

Controller and Risk Management

The Campus Assistant Vice Chancellor and Controller is our campus liaison to the CU Internal Auditor. The controller assists campus departments with the audit process, which includes attending entrance conferences held by Internal Audit with the campus department, helping the department prepare the draft report to Internal Audit, setting realistic timelines and deliverables, etc. The Assistant Vice Chancellor and Controller also represents the campus at the Regent Audit Committee.

Office of Internal Audit

The Department of Internal Audit provides independent, objective assurance and consulting activity designed to add value and improve the university's operations.

It helps the university accomplish its objectives by bringing a systematic, disciplined approach to the evaluation and improvement of university processes related to university-wide risk management, control, and governance.

The Department of Internal Audit is established within the University of Colorado by the Board of Regents. Its role and responsibilities are defined by the Board of Regents as set forth in the Internal Audit charter. The Audit Committee of the Board of Regents provides oversight of the Department of Internal Audit. The director of the Department of Internal Audit is appointed by the Board of Regents, reports functionally to the Audit Committee, and reports administratively to the president.

Continuous Improvement

CU Boulder is a community of problem solvers with a commitment to continuous improvement. When CU Boulder finds that actions or policies do not support its commitment to ethical behavior and legally compliant programs, CU Boulder works to remedy wrongdoing as quickly as possible, including actions ranging from employee discipline and termination; holding students, faculty and staff accountable in accordance with the applicable code of conduct; and revising policies and procedures to support this program.