On any given day at the University of Houston-Victoria, community members may become aware of behavior that is deviant, threatening, intimidating or disruptive. The University of Houston-Victoria Administration created the Behavioral Assessment Team (BAT) to proactively intervene to ameliorate any disruption to community life. The BAT is designed to assist faculty, staff, students and the administration by providing information and assistance in dealing with aberrant behavior that disrupts the educational mission of the university. The goals of the BAT are multifaceted and include:
- Assess situations involving students who pose a potential risk of harm to persons or property in the University community or are of substantial disruption to University activities in accordance with policies stated in the Student Code of Conduct.
- Consult with administration, faculty, staff and other students affected by the inappropriate behaviors of disruptive students.
- Coordinate the University’s response to violent, threatening, or significantly disruptive students.
- Develop a specific strategy to manage the threatening or disruptive behavior with regard to the safety and rights of others and to minimize the disruption to the University community.
- Recommend to appropriate university officials, actions consistent with University policy and procedure statements, as well as state and federal laws.
- Inform referral sources concerning next steps taken with students, given the confidential nature of the information and what is permissible under policy and law.
- Educate and train the community on the identification of potentially violent, threatening, or disruptive behaviors and options to assist students who exhibit them.
- Establish a process that is designed to be helpful to students, particularly when the rights of others or an individual’s own growth and development are being endangered.
BAT will use a designed process to proactively intervene in behavioral conduct that threatens members of the University of Houston-Victoria community or threatens the educational mission of the institution. The BAT will use a process identified in the literature as a threat assessment approach to assess conduct that raises concerns of possible violence. The assessment process is designed to identify inappropriate behavior and intervene early enough to manage the case before the individual commits an act of violence. This model focuses on the facts of the particular occurrence and the student’s behavior to guide suppositions and conclusions. This method focuses on the student's behavior by collecting information that verifies the student's progress from ideation, planning and preparation, to implementation of the plan. In short, the process is based on preventing violence and developing effective interventions, not trying to predict it. The process is designed to:
- Identify persons of concern.
- Thoroughly investigate and gather information concerning the identified individual.
- Review and evaluate the information and situation.
If deemed appropriate, develop a management plan that gets the individual needed help and acts to reduce the threat.
- The committee reports to the Vice President for Student Affairs
- The committee chair is appointed by the Vice President for Student Affairs and core members include:
- Sr. Director of Student Services & Judicial Affairs
- Director of Student Life
- Director of Residence Life and University Commons
- Manager of Disability Services
- Safety Officer/Peace Officer
- Associate Provost for University College
- A School Dean (appointed by Provost)
- Title IX Coordinator
- General Counsel Ex Officio
- Other University officials may be asked to serve on the committee as needed. They include but are not limited to:
- Director of Human Resources or designee
- Director of Facilities
- University Registrar or designee
- International Programs Director
- Athletic Director
- Victim Advocate
For more details on the Behavioral Assessment Team, visit their website.