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The information provided below is intended to give you a better understanding of what constitutes sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, etc. These concepts are incorporated into each college's Title IX policy although the language used may vary slightly. If you need more information about specific policy definitions, please contact your Title IX coordinator or consult the relevant college's Title IX policy.  


Consent is:

  • Clearly indicative of willingness to engage in mutually agreed-upon sexual activity 

  • Voluntary and given free of violence, threat, or manipulation

  • Knowing, informed, and provided while fully conscious and not incapacitated by drugs or alcohol

  • Ongoing and required at each step 

  • Freely and actively given through mutually understandable words or actions

  • May be withdrawn at any time

Engaging in any non-consensual sexual activity, as defined below, including with a person whom one knows or should reasonably know to be physically or mentally incapacitated or unable to give consent, including as the result of drugs or alcohol, is against our policies.

Incapacitation is defined as being incapable of making a rational, reasoned decision regarding intimate sexual activity.

Some important considerations:

  • The same definitions apply whether the individuals involved in the sexual activity are strangers, acquaintances, or friends.

  • The consumption of alcohol may impede one's ability to give consent as well as to recognize when consent is not present.

  • The responsibility of obtaining consent lies with the person who initiates sexual activity.

  • Lack of resistance and/or silence does not imply consent.

  • Relying solely on non-verbal communication can lead to misunderstanding.

  • The existence of a dating relationship between the persons involved or a past sexual relationship does not establish consent.

  • Consent that is obtained through the use of force, threats, intimidation, or coercion does not constitute consent.

Sexual Harassment 

Sexual harassment is unwelcome conduct that is sexual in nature. Sexual harassment can include unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, nonverbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:

  • Submission to or rejection of such conduct is a term or condition of educational benefits, academic evaluations, or opportunities (quid pro quo)

  • Such conduct is sufficiently severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive as to have the effect of creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment sufficient to deny an individual educational benefits or participation in activities at the institution (hostile environment)

Sexual Assault

Non‐Consensual Sexual Contact

Non‐Consensual Sexual Contact includes:

  • Any touching of another person’s intimate body parts (or forcing another to touch one’s intimate body parts)

  • However slight

  • With any object or body part, including fingers

  • Without consent.

Non‐Consensual Sexual Intercourse

Non‐Consensual Sexual Intercourse includes:

  • Any sexual intercourse (anal, oral, or vaginal)

  • However slight

  • With any object or body part, including fingers

  • Without consent


Stalking is engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to:

  • Fear for their safety or the safety of others

  • Suffer substantial emotional distress

Stalking may take many forms, including but not limited to persistent calling, texting, posting on a social networking site, as well as physical stalking.


Sexual Exploitation

Sexual Exploitation can include, but is not limited to:

  • Invasion of sexual privacy (such as letting one’s friends hide in the closet to watch consensual sex)

  • Non-consensual video or audio-taping of sexual activity

  • Engaging in voyeurism

  • Knowingly transmitting an STI to another student

  • Exposing one’s genitals in non-consensual circumstances

  • Prostituting another student

Domestic and Dating Violence

Domestic Violence (consistent with the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)) is defined as:

Crimes of violence committed by a current or former spouse of the victim/survivor, by a person with whom the victim/survivor shares a child in common, by a person who is cohabiting with or has cohabited with the victim as a spouse, by a person similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction receiving grant monies, or by any other person against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction.


Dating Violence is violence committed by a person:

  • Who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim 

  • Where the existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on a consideration of the following factors

    • The length of the relationship

    • The type of relationship

    • The frequency of interaction between the persons involved

Sexual Misconduct

Sexual misconduct is an umbrella term that may include sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, stalking, and sexual exploitation.


Retaliation is intentionally engaging in any form of intimidation, reprisal, or harassment against an individual who has made an allegation of sexual misconduct, or otherwise participated in the investigation or resolution of such a complaint.


Force is the use or threat of physical violence or intimidation to overcome an individual’s freedom of will to choose whether or not to participate in sexual activity. There is no requirement that a party resists the sexual advance or request, but resistance will be viewed as a clear demonstration of non-consent.


Coercion is the use of pressure to compel another individual to initiate or continue sexual activity against an individual’s will. Coercion can include a wide range of behaviors, including intimidation, manipulation, threats, and blackmail. A person’s words or conduct are sufficient to constitute coercion if they wrongfully impair another individual’s freedom of will and ability to choose whether or not to engage in sexual activity. Examples of coercion include threatening to “out” someone based on sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression and threatening to harm oneself.



Intercourse includes vaginal penetration by a penis, object, tongue, or finger; anal penetration by a penis, object, tongue or finger; and oral copulation (mouth-to-genital contact or genital-to-mouth contact).


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