Participant Code of Conduct

Index of Topics

Setting behavioral expectations at the outset of your program is vital. Then participants understand what behavior is expected and which is not accepted, and so that you have guidelines to point back to in the event that an incident occurs.


National Science Foundation Requirement

The National Science Foundation requires all NSF-funded science and education events (e.g., conferences, REUs, etc.) to create a policy or code of conduct that addresses sexual harassment, other forms of harassment, and sexual assault, and that includes clear and accessible means of reporting violations of the policy or code-of-conduct. NSF requirements for codes of conduct include:

  • zero tolerance for harassment
  • clear and unambiguous standards of behavior
  • accessible and evident means for reporting violations
  • due diligence with timely investigations and corrective action
  • notifcation to NSF of violations by PI or co-PI 

The full Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures Guide from the NSF can be viewed here.



A template of a Participant Code of Conduct handout can be found here for you to modify [DOCX - 19KB]. It is based on the NCAR|UCAR Participant Code of Conduct form. Edit it to enter the contact information for program staff and others who a student might contact if they witness or experience unacceptable behavior.


Training Video

NCAR has a one-hour presentation on codes of conduct.  This presentation includes:

  • Why codes of conduct are important
  • NSF requirements
  • An overview of harassment
  • Process of reporting and investigation
  • Scenario practice


Website Statement

Here is an example of a statement from that could be included on a website.

"Our program is dedicated to providing a harassment-free conference experience for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, ethnicity, religion (or lack thereof), or technology choices. We do not tolerate harassment of participants in any form. Sexual language and imagery is not appropriate for any venue, including talks, workshops, online gatherings, Twitter and other online media. Internship participants violating these rules may be sanctioned or expelled from the program at the discretion of the program organizers."  (Modified from Conference Code of Conduct.)