As a basic science unit in the medical school, we all share the responsibility of improving our scientific and educational missions, and ensuring that we have a healthy, productive departmental climate. Toward this, the department provides multiple options to communicate ideas, comments, and suggestions for advancing our missions in research and education, promoting a positive and inclusive community, and reporting unprofessional and/or in appropriate behavior. The Department of Human Genetics reporting structures and policies for distinct types of communications are described below.
The Department of Human Genetics leadership is interested in any and all feedback from all members of the DHG community on the research and education missions of the department. These topics can include, though are not limited to, research directions, research facilities, faculty and trainee recruitment, outreach efforts, scientific training, the curriculum, and seminars and events. Positive feedback is important for informing us of what is working, and constructive criticism is important for helping us to protect individuals and to improve in all areas. General feedback can be directly shared with the Cohort Representatives, Associate Chairs or Department Chair. Confidential feedback can be provided via the Cohort Representatives who will communicate the information to departmental leadership.
Reporting violations of academic or professional integrity:
Evidence of potential violations of academic or professional integrity (e.g., Rackham Graduate School Academic Policies; Section 8: Rackham Academic and Professional Integrity Policy and University of Michigan Policy Statement on the Integrity of Scholarship) should be provided to the course director, DHG graduate program directors and/or Associate Chair for Education. The alleged misconduct will be reported to the DHG Academic and Professional Misconduct Review committee, which is composed of the DHG Chair, Associate Chairs, Director or Associate Director of the Genetic Counseling Program and a cognate M.S. program director. Four committee members are required for a quorum and must include the Associate Chair for Education and cognate member. The committee will gather information about the alleged violation of academic or professional integrity and communicate the findings with the parties involved. All relevant parties will have an opportunity to respond and provide additional information to the committee. Based on the information, the committee will determine whether any disciplinary action is warranted. If there is sufficient evidence of a serious violation of academic or professional integrity, the alleged incidents and evidence of misconduct will be reported to the Rackham Graduate School Resolution Officer who will conduct a formal, independent investigation into the allegations and determine if the complaint merits further consideration by the Rackham Integrity Board. If there is sufficient evidence of a serious violation of professional integrity by non-student department members, the alleged incidents and evidence may be referred to the Office of the Vice President for Research and/or Human Resources as per the University of Michigan Standard Practices Guide, e.g., U-M Grievance Procedure SPG for review.
Reporting issues involving discrimination and harassment that are not sexual or gender-based misconduct:
It is the policy of the University of Michigan to maintain an academic and work environment free of discrimination and harassment for all students, faculty, and staff. The Department of Human Genetics fully endorses this policy and is committed to identifying and mitigating issues that negatively affect the safety, security, inclusivity and well-being of all members of the departmental community. Any incidents, policies or procedures that are perceived as discriminatory, harassing or otherwise harmful to individuals or groups within the Department of Human Genetics can be directly reported to the departmental leadership (Chair and Associate Chairs). The situations or incidents will be reviewed and discussed by the DHG Academic and Professional Misconduct Review committee, and the outcomes of these discussions will be shared, if appropriate and allowable.
Reporting sexual and gender-based misconduct:
The University of Michigan has developed a detailed policy on sexual and gender-based misconduct. The Department of Human Genetics fully endorses this policy and is required to adhere to it. The University’s statement on sexual misconduct—including definitions of misconduct and processes for reporting—can be found at the following website: https://sexualmisconduct.umich.edu. Individuals with Reporting Obligations (IRO) within the department are required to report incidents within 48 hours (please see Reporting Contacts table). Any member of the Department of Human Genetics can report a potential act of sexual or gender-based misconduct to an IRO within the department or to the Medical School administration via the Sexual and Gender-based Misconduct Reporting link. Additional details about reporting and reporting obligations can be found at the above website and in the University’s full policy: https://sexualmisconduct.umich.edu/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/policy-on-sexual-gender-based-misconduct-08-07-20.pdf.