CHP Code of Professional Conduct and Dispositions



The College of Health Professions (CHP) has adopted the Code of Professional Conduct and Dispositions (the Code) which all students are expected to follow. The CHP programs set forth principles, standards and rules regarding proficiencies, dispositions and professional practice expected of the CHP student and graduate, and describe the process for disciplinary action if a student violates the Code. Each student’s professional conduct is continually observed by faculty, staff and any WGU affiliate the student may encounter. 



I. College of Health Professions Mission

The WGU College of Health Professions provides access to visible educational pathways to transform learners into leaders who advance health in their communities.



II. Professional Dispositions

In keeping with the CHP mission, students are expected to demonstrate the following dispositions, to include, but not limited to:

  • Competent and Caring: Evidence of an awareness and response to the needs of others.
  • Respectful and Embracing of Diversity: Students should be honest in all their conversations and show a trustworthy attitude. All written and verbal communications should be performed in a way that demonstrates students' responsibility to their role as a student and representative of WGU.
  • Reflective Practitioner/Be receptive to ideas and feedbackEvidence of any or all of the following reflective facets: analysis, reasoning, explanation, connections, implications to personal or professional practice. Students should be interested in the assigned activities. Students should be open-minded and accept constructive feedback in the spirit in which it is offered. They should be receptive to different ways of looking at problems or performing tasks. Students should value new experiences and take on new challenges as they are offered to them, with a positive attitude. 
  • SafeEvidence of an awareness and practice of safety in all settings
  • Professional Practice/Be accountableEvidence of professionalism in appearance, timeliness, and interactions. Students should arrive at the worksite 10-15 minutes early to be ready for the workday and receive direction from their assigned contact. They should show up prepared for the day. 
  • Collaborative Professional/Be a team player: Evidence of a willingness or attempt to work collaboratively with an interdisciplinary team in a professional environment.  Students should remember when they are at the worksite, they should function like a staff member and support others in their work, all the while maintaining professionalism and following WGU policies.
  • Professional Leaders and Change Agents/Seek new experiences/challenges: Evidence of willingness to examine evidence-based research and consider different perspectives presented, which is an indicator of emergent professional leadership and change skills. Students should set goals and review them with the assigned contact. They are encouraged to be proactive and try new experiences, ask questions, and be interested in what is going on.
  • General Disposition: Evidence of general behaviors that are consistent with the expected behavior of a future professional.


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III. Standards of Conduct

WGU has further defined the proficiencies, dispositions and professional standards expected of WGU College of Health Profession students as follows:

  • Criminal Acts: WGU College of Health Professions students shall abide by federal, state, and local laws and statues.
  • Alcohol and Drugs: WGU College of Health Professions students must refrain from any use of alcohol or drugs during the course of professional practice.
  • Misrepresentation or Falsification: WGU College of Health Professions students must exemplify honesty and integrity in the course of professional practice and are held to the standards of the WGU Academic Authenticity (opens new window).
  • Confidential Information: WGU College of Health Professions students must comply with state and federal laws and clinical agency policies relating to confidentiality unless disclosure is required or permitted by law. Maintain confidentiality of healthcare information always, and never discuss patient information, unless it is directly related to the work at hand. They must always comply with agency policies including policies related to patient confidentiality and HIPAA. This includes the de-identification of all patient information.
  • In addition, WGU CHP Nursing students are held to the CHP Nursing Code of Professional Conduct and Disposition (opens new window).


IV. Human Subjects and IRB Compliance

All students must follow IRB protocols when completing research with human subjects. It is imperative that students review the IRB policies of their assigned facility/partner including how to protect, control and properly use and de-identify patient data.


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V. Violation of Ethics, Standards, or Disposition within WGU College of Health Professions

Process for Disciplinary Action

Conduct unbecoming of a WGU student can constitute valid reason for recommendation to remove the student from an educational program at WGU. Failure to adhere to the Code or the CHP Nursing Code of Professional Conduct and Dispositions (opens new window) may result in disciplinary action up to and including expulsion from the university in egregious instances.



Filing and Investigation of Concerns

A Concern alleging a violation of the standards of professional conduct described in this Code may be submitted by a student, program mentor, course instructor, staff member, clinical instructor, lab instructor or any agency personnel. All Concerns must be submitted in writing to the Health Professions Success Center. All warnings and sanctions issued by the WGU Academic Authenticity Team will result in a concurrent investigation and possible sanctions from the Health Professions Success Center, based on the severity of the incident.

The Health Professions Success Center will categorize each concern according to the following rubric and notify the affected student:

  • Level 1 Concerns: A first time violation of one or more of the standards described in the Code, subject to exceptions for “serious” and “egregious” violations of the Professional Standards
  • Level 2 Concerns: Failure to satisfactorily complete Level 1 corrective actions, a second violation, or any violation deemed “serious”. Examples of serious violations include, but are not limited to: harassment, threats, actions that represent a potential for harm, cheating or misuse of program materials, and violations of the Code & WGU Code of Student Conduct resulting disciplinary action.
  • Level 3 Concerns: Failure to satisfactorily complete Level 2 corrective actions, a third violation, or any violation deemed “egregious”. Examples of egregious violations include, but are not limited to:, physical or verbal abuse of others, criminal misconduct, violations of confidentiality, abuse or misuse of personal property of others, and violations of the Code , and the WGU Code of Student Conduct resulting in disciplinary suspension.
  • Academic Authenticity Warnings: For all academic authenticity warnings issued by WGU, the Health Professions Success Center will issue an automatic and corresponding Corrective Action from the College of Health Professions.

The Health Professions Success Center will investigate each Concern within 10 business days to determine the appropriate manner in which to proceed.

  • Informal Resolution
    A member of the Health Professions Success Center will contact the affected student by email to arrange a time to discuss each concern and attempt to resolve behavioral changes required to align the student’s conduct with the standards of professional conduct described in this Code. If a student fails to respond to this meeting request within three business days, or if corrective behavioral changes cannot be agreed informally, the concern will become subject to formal corrective action.
  • Corrective Actions  
    Where Health Professions Success determines that there is sufficient evidence of one or more violations of the standards of professional conduct described in this Code, the student may be suspended from participation in their professional field experiences during the corrective action process. A record of all corrective actions will be placed in the student’s file.  

    • Level 1 Corrective Action: The Health Professions Success Center may impose corrective action up to and including a written warning and may include a list of corrective activities that a student must complete. Failure to satisfactorily complete the assigned corrective activities may result in an escalation to Level 2 corrective action. 

    • Level 2 Corrective Action: The Health Professions Success Center may impose a Level 2 corrective action to resolve Level 2 concerns. In addition to any other requirements imposed, Level 2 corrective action requires the completion of a corrective action plan that will provide a student with a directed opportunity to demonstrate conduct that meets the standards set forth in this Code. Health Professions Success will determine if the response satisfactorily resolves the Level 2 concern. If the response is accepted, the Level 2 concern is closed. If the response to the corrective action plan is not acceptable, the Level 2 warning will escalate to a Level 3 concern and will be referred to the Student Conduct Board for review.

    • Level 3 Corrective Action: Health Professions Success will refer recommendations for Level 3 corrective action, up to and including temporary or permanent removal from the College of Health Professions program or from the University, to the Student Conduct Board which will conduct a formal hearing.

Students must respond to warning notices from Health Professions Success within three business days indicating either their intent to complete any required corrective action, or to appeal the warning to the Senior Manager of Clinical Experience, Health Professions, whose decision shall be considered final. Any student who fails to respond to a warning notice will be subject to the next-level remediation process. Decisions made in response to an appeal shall be considered final.

  • Administrative Holds
    The Health Professions Success Coordinator may place a readmission hold on a student’s record when a student is withdrawn with an unresolved code violation.


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VI. Student Rights

Students have the following rights pertaining to alleged and confirmed violations of the standards of professional conduct set forth in this Code:

  • When a reported concern is determined to constitute a potential violation of the code a student must be notified in writing.

  • A student must be provided an opportunity to respond to a concern and explain his/her behavior to a responsible WGU staff member or department.

  • The Health Professions Success Center or WGU Student Conduct administration must notify the student in writing of its decision, including, as appropriate, the level of unacceptable behavior.

  • A student may participate in WGU courses during the investigation and decision-making processes, however, may be excluded from specific courses impacted by the investigation until a final decision allowing participation is reached.

  • Provided no other WGU standards of conduct were violated, students who are dismissed from a nursing education program due to a violation of this Code may pursue another academic program at WGU. Students should recognize, however, that certain violations of this Code might bar entrance to other WGU professional programs.


VII. Disciplinary Actions and Education Records

Records of Concerns and corrective action will be maintained according to WGU policy regarding student disciplinary records as well as applicable state and federal laws concerning maintenance and disclosure of student information. 


The polices described above are in addition to the policies outlined in the Code of Student Conduct (opens new window)


Associated Policies 


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Article Number: 20500, 2489