Article 1: Medical Student Rights and Responsibilities

1.1 Michigan State University is a community of scholars. The basic purposes of the University are the advancement, dissemination, and application of knowledge. While engaged in these activities, the University seeks to provide an environment conducive to instruction, research, and service.

1.2 Each right of an individual places a reciprocal responsibility upon others: the responsibility to permit the individual to exercise the right. The medical student, as a member of the academic community, has both rights and responsibilities. Within that community, the medical student’s most essential right is the right to learn. The University provides for the medical student those privileges, opportunities, and protections which best promote the learning process in all its aspects. The medical student has responsibilities to other members of the academic community and to patients, clients, and the general public.

1.3 Regulations governing the activities and conduct of student groups and individual medical students do not attempt to specify all prohibited and permitted conduct. Rather, they are intended to govern conduct that seriously interferes with the basic purposes and processes of the community or with the rights of members of the community.

1.4 The medical student is not only a member of the academic community, but also a citizen of the larger society who retains those rights, protections, and guarantees of fair treatment held by all citizens.


1.5.1 The medical colleges shall not enact student regulations unless there is a demonstrable need for them which is reasonably related to the basic purposes and necessities of the University.

1.5.2 The medical colleges shall provide opportunities for medical students to participate in formulating and revising regulations governing medical student conduct.

1.5.3 All regulations governing medical student rights and responsibilities shall be made available to medical students in print or in electronic form. (See medical college student handbooks.)

1.5.4 Every regulation shall be as brief, clear, and specific as possible.

1.5.5 Wherever rights conflict, regulations shall, to the maximum extent feasible, permit reasonable scope for each conflicting right by defining the circumstances of time, place, and means appropriate to its exercise.

1.5.6 Regulations shall respect the free expression of ideas and shall encourage the competition of ideas from diverse perspectives.

1.5.7 Penalties shall be commensurate with the seriousness of the offense. Repeated violations may justify increasingly severe penalties.

1.5.8 There shall be clearly defined channels and procedures for the appeal and/or review of:

a. The finding of a violation of a regulation.

b. The reasonableness, under the circumstances, of the penalty imposed for a violation.

c. A regulation or administrative decision which is alleged to be inconsistent with guidelines in this document.

d. Alleged violations of the complaint/grievance procedures set forth in Article V of this document.

1.5.9 Every regulation shall specify to whom it applies and whether responsibility for compliance lies with medical students.

1.6 A handbook of the University’s current regulations relating to student rights and responsibilities shall be made available to every member of the academic community.