Assisting Students of Concern
The Student of Concern Process allows students, staff, faculty, and UCF community members to report concerning behavior exhibited by a student. If you are aware that a student is experiencing challenges or difficulties that concern you, please report the concern using the Student of Concern Form. The entire UCF community will benefit. It is our goal to intervene before the student reaches a crisis level. Examples of concerning behavior includes but is not limited to the following: a student exhibiting behavior significantly out of character, acting peculiar (and this is cause for alarm), displaying unhealthy or dangerous patterns of behavior, or continuing to seem distressed despite prior referrals made.
The team assesses all information to facilitate consistent and comprehensive university responses to specific, critical student, faculty, and staff concerns. If the team determines the person to be engaging in behavior that may pose a threat of harm or danger to the individual or the university community, the SOCT may recommend the concern to the University Crisis Team.
The SOCT is comprised of representatives from multiple offices across campus including the following: Counseling and Psychological Services, Student Rights and Responsibilities, Housing and Residence Life, Wellness and Health Promotions, University Police, Student Health Services, Student Conduct, Academic Advising, and Academic Services.
What to Look For
The following signs of distress should raise concerns. These may be behaviors that you observe or that are reported to you by coworkers, other students, or faculty, etc. If you see any of these signs within a student please submit a Student of Concern Form and provide some of the signs you've witnessed like the ones below:
- Change in personal hygiene
- Dramatic weight gain or loss
- Unruly behavior
- Impaired speech
- Disjointed thoughts
- Intense emotion
- Inappropriate responses
- Difficulty concentrating
- Physically harming self
- Destruction of property
- Anxiety and panic
- Frequently falling asleep in class
- Inability to communicate clearly
- Loss of contact with reality
- Written references to death, dying, or suicide
- Disconnection for classmates
- Hyperactivity or rapid speech
- Preoccupation with gaming, social media or online personas
- Career and course indecision
- Excessive procrastination
- Uncharacteristically poor preparation / performance
- Many requests for extensions / special considerations
- Disruptive classroom behavior
- Excessive absence / tardiness
- Avoiding or dominating discussions
- References to suicide or harm to others in verbal statements or writing
- Always asking for help with personal problems
- Withdrawing from social situations
- Disruptive behavior
- Inability to get along with others
- Complaints from others
The Student of Concern Reporting Process
The Student of Concern Reporting Process allows members of the UCF Community (students, staff, faculty, etc.) to report concerns that they have about UCF students. If you are aware that a student is experiencing challenges or difficulties that concern you, please report to Student Care Services. The entire UCF community will benefit. It is our goal to intervene before the student reaches a crisis level. This process offers supportive intervention and guidance to any UCF student who is in distress or struggling.
1. Help a Student in Distress
When aiding a student you are not expected to provide personal counseling. Rather, you play an important role in encouraging students to use campus resources, including facilitating a referral to the Counseling and Psychological Center, Student Health Services, Student Accessibility Services, Victim Services, and/or other valuable campus resources.
You are encouraged to speak directly to student when you sense that they are in academic or personal distress. Openly acknowledge that you are aware of their distress, that you are sincerely concerned about their welfare and that you are willing to help them explore their options. If the student appears to be open to discussing their concerns with a counselor, you may want to help them make a call to the Counseling and Psychological Center or walk with them there to be seen for an emergency appointment.
If you are working with a student who is in distress regarding an urgent matter, and it is after regular business hours, you may consult with the UCF Counseling Center Crisis Hot-line. If there is an imminent risk of harm or danger, please dial 911 immediately.
2. File a Student of Concern Report
You should file a Student of Concern Report if you are working with a distressed student and you:
- Do not know where to refer them
- Would like to consult about possible responses to a student’s behavior
- Notice a student’s behavior is making others feel uncomfortable
- Believe there may be safety concerns in the future
- If you walk a student over or refer a student to the Counseling Center
- Have called 911 because of a safety concern
- Would like future follow up to ensure that the student is connected to Counseling and Psychological Services
If you need further assistance in determining if you need to file a report, please contact us.
3. What Happens After
Once a Student of Concern Report is filed, it is sent to the SCS Staff for review. The SCS Staff may contact the individual who filed the report to discuss the concern. The SCS Staff will reach out to the student of concern to assess what resources would be beneficial to the student and collaboratively develop an action plan with the student to reduce obstacles to their success at UCF.
The SCS Staff will assist the student in coordinating with campus resources currently being utilized and then will work with the student to monitor progress. Depending upon the circumstances, the referring person may not receive specific information about the student's action plan.