Contents, Related Policies, Applicability ▾
Students must be in good Honor Code standing to be admitted to, continue enrollment at, and graduate from BYU. The term “good Honor Code standing” means that a student’s conduct is consistent with the Honor Code and the ideals and principles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. A student immediately loses good Honor Code standing if the Church formally restricts the student’s membership privileges or withdraws the student’s membership in the Church. A student also immediately loses good Honor Code standing if the student resigns membership in the Church. Further, a student is not in good Honor Code standing if the student’s ecclesiastical endorsement has either lapsed or has been withdrawn, or if the Honor Code Office has placed a “hold” on the student’s records.
All students, upon admission to BYU, are required to observe the standards of the Honor Code at all times, whether on or off campus. If, after admission decisions are announced, the university discovers an individual falsified or plagiarized content on the admissions application, or the initial ecclesiastical endorsement is withdrawn, the Admissions Office will review the facts and take appropriate action. When the Honor Code Office receives reports of other student misconduct, a normal Honor Code process will be initiated. The Honor Code Office will notify the student, indicating when a “hold” will be placed on the student’s registration if the matter is not resolved to the satisfaction of the Honor Code Office by a specified date. The Honor Code Office also reserves the right to place a “hold” on the record of any student based on reports of student misconduct prior to notifying the student.
In conjunction with the requirement for students to be in good Honor Code standing, all enrolled continuing undergraduate, graduate, intern, and study abroad students are required to obtain a Continuing Student Ecclesiastical Endorsement for each new academic year. Students must have their endorsements completed, turned in, and processed by the Honor Code Office before they can register for fall semester or any semester thereafter. To avoid registration delays, one’s endorsement should be submitted to the Honor Code Office by March 15. To pursue ecclesiastical endorsement, new applicants and those seeking continuing endorsement use endorse.byu.edu.
Students who are members of the Church may be endorsed only by the bishop of the ward (1) in which they live and (2) that holds their current Church membership record.
Students who are not members of the Church are to be endorsed by (1) their local ecclesiastical leader if the student is an active member of a congregation, (2) the bishop of the Church ward in which they currently reside, or (3) the nondenominational BYU chaplain.
Students who have resigned their membership in the Church are not eligible to receive an ecclesiastical endorsement.
An ecclesiastical leader may withdraw a student’s endorsement at any time or may decline to endorse a continuing student if the leader determines that the student is no longer eligible for the endorsement. If an endorsement is withdrawn or if a Continuing Student Ecclesiastical Endorsement is denied, no confessional information is exchanged without authorization from the student. The withdrawal of a student’s ecclesiastical endorsement automatically results in the loss of good Honor Code standing. Students who are not in good Honor Code standing must discontinue enrollment. Also, they are not eligible for graduation, even if they have otherwise completed all necessary coursework.
The decision to withdraw an ecclesiastical endorsement or to deny a Continuing Student Ecclesiastical Endorsement may be appealed through appropriate ecclesiastical leaders only. As a matter of practice, BYU does not intervene in ecclesiastical matters or endorsements. However, a student may petition the Dean of Students Office to allow an exception to the ecclesiastical endorsement requirement. As part of the petition, the student must (i) complete an Application for Exception to Policy (this form may be obtained from the Dean of Students Office); (ii) prepare a written statement outlining the reasons why the university should allow an exception; and (iii) within ten business days of receiving notice that the ecclesiastical endorsement has been withdrawn or that a Continuing Student Ecclesiastical Endorsement has been denied, submit the completed application and relevant statements to the Dean of Students Office for consideration. During the ten-business-day application window and while the university is considering the Request for Exception to Policy, the student will be permitted to continue in classes, live in BYU housing, and work on campus. However, the student will be ineligible to graduate or receive a diploma, and a hold will be placed on the student’s record, which will prevent him or her from registering for new classes or being considered for admission to any Church Education System school until the student qualifies for a new ecclesiastical endorsement or an exception to the ecclesiastical endorsement requirement has been granted.
When considering the Request for Exception to Policy, the dean of students will determine whether the student has observed and continues to observe the standards of the Honor Code or has demonstrated other sufficiently compelling grounds to warrant an exception to the university’s ecclesiastical endorsement requirement. The dean of students will not review the ecclesiastical leader’s decision to withdraw or deny endorsement or the process for reaching that decision. The dean of students and other university officials will not discuss confidential matters with the student’s present or former ecclesiastical leaders unless the student voluntarily signs a release allowing that communication. The dean of students may also choose to personally interview the student, who may further explain the circumstances which might justify an exception to the ecclesiastical endorsement requirement. The student bears the burden of persuasion and must show a compelling reason why he or she should be considered to be in good Honor Code standing, notwithstanding the lack of an ecclesiastical endorsement. The dean of students’ decision regarding the petition will be reviewed by the student life vice president if requested by the student. The decision by the student life vice president is final.
The Admission Policy provides a separate Application for Exception process for applicants who cannot obtain an ecclesiastical endorsement in support of their application for admission to the university.