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Texas Tech University
Statement of Ethical Principles

“DO THE RIGHT THING”

Texas Tech University is committed to the values of mutual respect; cooperation and communication; creativity and innovation; community service and leadership; pursuit of excellence; public accountability; and diversity.

                                               — 2005 Texas Tech University Strategic Plan

Texas Tech University is committed to being an ethical institution. In recognition of the rights and inherent dignity of all members of the Texas Tech University community, the university is committed to supporting the following principles and to protecting those rights guaranteed by the Constitution, the laws of the United States and the State of Texas, and the policies adopted by the Board of Regents. As members of the Texas Tech community, faculty, students, staff, administration, and all stakeholders accept responsibility for abiding by and promoting the ethical principles of the university described below. Although legal behavior and ethical behavior overlap in many areas, they are quite distinct from each other. While we follow legal requirements, an ethical institution goes beyond them to achieve the following values.

 

Mutual Respect

Texas Tech University is committed to an open and diverse society. Each member of the Texas Tech community has the right to be treated with respect and dignity. This right imposes a duty not to infringe upon the rights or personal values of others. Professional relationships among all members of the Texas Tech community deserve attention so that they are not exploited for base motives or personal gain.

 

Cooperation and Communication

Texas Tech University is committed to the promotion of professional relationships and open channels of communication among all individuals. The university will publish and disseminate in a timely manner its values, policies, procedures, and regulations, as well as any other information that is necessary to protect and educate all members of our community. We encourage and provide opportunities for the free and open exchange of ideas both inside and outside the classroom. While the free expression of views in orderly ways is encouraged, personal vilification of individuals has no place in the university environment.

 

Creativity and Innovation

Texas Tech University is committed to ethical institutional programs that meet the teaching, research, and service objectives of each discipline and department, to policies that are consistent with those objectives, and to a working and learning environment that encourages active participation. Such exemplary environments often challenge existing worldviews, requiring trust in the process of discovery and the acceptance of uncertainty and ambiguity within ethical parameters. The university supports all its members in life-long learning—a process that is both challenging and rewarding—and encourages creative and innovative means to achieve this goal through both opportunities and incentives.

 

Community Service and Leadership

Texas Tech University is committed to ethical leadership practices at all levels and to our tradition of community service, both within the university community and in our relationships with the greater community. We strive for exemplary professional and community service through research, creative works, and service programs that extend beyond the university environment. We strive to provide excellent service in a caring and friendly environment and encourage such involvement in the community by all faculty, students, staff, and administration.

 

Pursuit of Excellence

Texas Tech University is committed to achieving excellence in all aspects of its community. We expect this in the expertise and performance of our faculty, staff, and administration, as well as the continuing education of our students. A high standard of professionalism, including opportunities for professional contact and continuous growth, is expected of our faculty, students, staff, and administrators. The university is committed to academic integrity and to the effective and just implementation of a system designed to preserve and protect it. The university intends to be a model of excellence, following best practices in its professional work, displaying the highest standards in its scholarly work, and offering venues to showcase national and international examples of achievement.

 

Public Accountability

Texas Tech University is committed to transparency in governance, personal responsibility, and both individual and organizational integrity. Being responsible requires us to be thoughtful stewards of our resources—accountable and respectful to ourselves, to each other, and to the publics we serve. A sense of institutional and public responsibility requires careful reflection on one’s ethical obligations and the duty to respect commitments and expectations by acknowledging the context and considering the consequences, both intended and unintended, of any course of action. We promptly and openly identify and disclose conflicts of interest on the part of faculty, staff, students, administration, and the institution as a whole, and we take appropriate steps to either eliminate such conflicts or ensure that they do not compromise our procedures and values. When we make promises, we must keep those promises. We strive to do what is honest and ethical even if no one is watching us or compelling us to “do the right thing.”

 

Diversity

Texas Tech University is committed to the inherent dignity of all individuals and the celebration of diversity. We foster an environment of mutual respect, appreciation, and tolerance for differing values, beliefs, and backgrounds. We encourage the application of ethical practices and policies that ensure that all are welcome on the campus and are extended all of the privileges of academic life. We value its cultural and intellectual diversity because it enriches our lives and the community as a whole, promoting access, equity, and excellence.
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