5.3 Prohibited Relationships — Policy Statement

For the foregoing reasons in II-5.1, any romantic and/or sexual relationship between an instructor and a student in an instructional context is prohibited at The University of Iowa. This means that an instructor who is currently instructing, evaluating, or supervising, directly or indirectly, a student's academic work or participation in a University program will not propose or enter into a romantic and/or sexual relationship with the student. Moreover, an instructor who has a pre-existing romantic and/or sexual relationship with a student is prohibited from instructing, evaluating, or supervising, directly or indirectly, his or her partner's academic work or participation in a University program. For definitions of "instructor," "student," and "instructional context," refer to II-5.2 above.

This policy applies only to relationships involving students. However, romantic and/or sexual relationships in other contexts — between faculty members, between faculty and staff, or between staff members, where one person supervises the other — also may be problematic, and are governed by III-8 Conflict of Interest in Employment (Nepotism). Complaints alleging sexual harassment directed at a student, faculty, or staff member are resolved under II-4 Sexual Harassment. Because the Policy on Sexual Harassment prohibits unwanted behavior of a sexual nature, the scope of the Policy on Sexual Harassment and the scope of this Policy on Consensual Relationships are mutually exclusive. In those cases where a complainant alleges both unwanted behavior of a sexual nature and consensual sexual relations within an instructional context, the two complaints are considered separate allegations and ordinarily are resolved consecutively rather than concurrently, starting with the sexual harassment complaint, which must be investigated under the procedures set forth in the Policy on Sexual Harassment before the consensual relationships complaint is considered.