University continues utilizing student misconduct software

Maxient is a software used by universities to keep track of misconduct on campus. PHOTO CREDIT:

University of Rhode Island’s Dean of Students Dan Graney has recorded student conduct through Maxient, a software used to report and track student misconduct, since its introduction to the University in 2016.

Graney’s position at URI involves overseeing many entities that serve a prominent role in student welfare.The office of community standards and housing and residential life (HRL) put out a request for proposals (RFP) to begin using Maxient in 2016.

 Graney collaborates with the Office of Community Standards, Student Support and Advocacy Services, Disability, Access and Inclusion, Commuter Affairs and Greek Life to oversee and record student conduct at URI. 

“I also convene the sexual assault prevention and response team, the behavioral intervention team, the threat assessment team and I’m the co-chair of the bias resource team,” Graney said.

The student conduct system is run by the office of community standards, according to Graney. Accessible on the URI website, students and faculty can report misconduct under different classifications.

One of the benefits of Maxient, according to Graney, is the recorded misconduct reports held for each student.

Ellen Reynolds, the vice president of Student Affairs, utilizes Maxient in her department in regard to the compilation of individual student records.

“We certainly use it in our housing and residential life when there might be a violation of the student handbook,” Reynolds said. “Then we track to make sure that if there’s repeated offenses, a tiered approach might be taken in regards to those offenses.”

According to Reynolds, the Dean of Students reports misconduct and oversees the office of community standards, which includes the reporting of misconduct.

Reynolds said misconduct is considered to be a violation of the student handbook, community standards, housing contracts or Title IX.

Once the misconduct report is made, a case is opened and then overseen by someone in one of the mentioned departments that use Maxient. The overseer depends upon what kind of misconduct was committed and what office on campus can approach it best. 

“There’s many different aspects of what happens,” Reynolds said. “It’s based on the type of case that is being started.” 

On the dean of students’ website, there are tiles listing different categories, including commuter affairs, community standards, disability access and inclusion and greek affairs. Each tile guides students to information about entities that oversee student welfare. Students and faculty can be guided to forms for misconduct from this page as well.

“There’s about 12, maybe 14 different tiles that people can choose from,” Graney said. “From academic concerns, bias incidents, cheating, plagiarism, COVID-19, medical concerns, mental health concerns — all of the forms are created by Maxient.”

These forms help record all incidents of misconduct to the University.

According to Graney, faculty can utilize Maxient to report plagiarism or cheating, students can report student and faculty misconduct and parents of students can also report welfare concerns for students. 

Also under the “Report an Incident” tab on the office of community standards’ website, students can file reports categorized under general conduct, academic honesty, bias incident and hazing.

“It’s a really robust system,” Graney said. “A lot of other offices on campus use it as well.”

According to Graney, the Sexual Prevention and Response (SPR) team uses Maxient as well. For example, infringements upon Title IX are processed and investigated by the SPR.

Graney said the incident reports require the student’s name and ID number and students who want to remain anonymous have to report with their information initially to verify their status as a student.

If the student does not want to take action against the reported misconduct, their information can remain anonymous by request, according to Graney. 

“A lot of times students just want the University to know — which is great, we want that information,” Graney said. “But it becomes a challenge because we might want to help that person or offer resources.” 

There are minimal obstacles while using Maxient, according to Graney. The company’s customer service works closely with the University to fix any hiccups in the software. 

According to him, the software can be challenging only when compiling data reports. Specific reports with custom analytics are an upside to Maxient, but the compilation can be difficult. Graney praised Maxient’s assistance in making reports.

“I think without Maxient, we would almost be lost,” Graney said. “We’d get by, but it’s a really significant program.”

Because of the effort it would take to switch software and the clear benefits of using it, Graney hopes and believes that Maxient will be used long into the University’s future.