Code of Ethics

The Office of the Provost adheres to and affirms the University’s Code of Ethics, University Policy Manual 1.20

Southern Methodist University creates and shares knowledge and prepares citizens for a global society. The University is entrusted with the freedom and opportunity to fulfill these purposes by a public that values our creativity and needs our leadership. Our vision of the future draws on the legacy of those whose learning, faith, and moral commitments shaped the institution we now share. Whatever our individual roles at SMU, we owe it to the public, to our common heritage, and to one another to uphold certain basic values.

These include:

Pursuit of truth.
We seek knowledge and understanding through open, energetic inquiry and creative freedom. We support one another with hard questions and sincere encouragement. Because we seek truth, we encourage free expression of ideas, accept challenges to our assumptions, and treat those whom we question as colleagues sharing a common purpose.

Integrity in work.
In teaching and learning, research, administration, and all aspects of university life, we strive for the highest standards of excellence. We represent what we have done honestly, and we acknowledge the ideas, effort, and resources that others have contributed to our achievements.

Respect for persons.
We honor the dedication of faculty, staff, and students to their work at SMU. We evaluate them and their work fairly. We seek diversity, which enhances our search for truth and enriches our experiences in learning, work, and life together. We extend hospitality to visitors, guests, and participants in programs at SMU. We maintain confidentiality and respect the privacy of others. We do not tolerate any form of discrimination, harassment, or intimidation, and we reject behavior that is degrading to ourselves or those around us.

Responsible use of resources.
We direct funds and services to their intended purposes. We do not make personal use of University assets, nor do we permit misappropriation of those assets to go unchallenged. We use resources efficiently, conserving financial assets, physical resources, and the built and natural environment for future generations.

Accountability.
We take personal responsibility for respecting these values. We keep accurate and complete reports of the work we have done and the funds we have handled. We disclose potential conflicts of interest and reject inappropriate influences on our choices. We endeavor to make decisions that meet public and professional standards of honesty, competence, and fairness.

To implement the principles in this Code of Ethics.
SMU has developed policies, disciplinary procedures, and sanctions related to academic honesty, non-discrimination, use of University funds and resources, faculty, staff, and student conduct, and other aspects of our life and work together. Upholding the basic values we share includes knowing and following the applicable policies and incorporating the spirit of these values, as well as the requirements of law and policy, into all of our decisions and actions as members of the University community.