Title IX at American University

No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972

American University is committed to creating an accessible and inclusive environment that supports and serves our community members.

Under Title IX, American University prohibits sex- or gender-based harassment and discrimination, sexual violence, relationship violence, and stalking. Under American University's Title IX Sexual Harassment Policy and Discrimination and Non-Title IX Sexual Misconduct Policy, the university expressly prohibits any form of discriminatory harassment on any protected bases, including dating violence, domestic violence, rape, sexual assault, sexual harassment, and stalking.

Recent Changes to Title IX

The new regulations from the Department of Education went into effect August 14, 2020, and require significant changes to the Title IX process. The new regulations require changes for reporting and responding to sexual harassment in the university’s education programs and activities that occurs against a person in the United States. Specifically, some of those changes include narrowing the definition of what constitutes sexual harassment under Title IX, and requiring a live hearing as part of the formal complaint process. Some conduct of a sexual nature which previously fell within the scope of Title IX may no longer do so, but it will still be prohibited and addressed by the university under AU’s Discrimination and Non-Title IX Sexual Misconduct Policy.

AU is making changes to its Title IX process to comply with the new regulations, as failure to comply would result in loss of federal funding, including financial aid for students and faculty research grants.

All members of the AU community will receive notification of the new policy, and there will be a variety of forums and discussions to learn more. Everyone must participate in a training about the new Title IX provisions. All persons who play a more specific role for the university in the complaint resolution process, including students, will receive specialized training. More information on the new regulations can be found on the FAQ page.

If you have experienced sex/gender discrimination and harassment in any university context, there are resources available to you. We encourage you to contact the Title IX office at titleix@american.edu and explore these pages for more information.

Discrimination and Non-Title IX Sexual Misconduct Policy

American University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex (including pregnancy), age, sexual orientation, disability, marital status, personal appearance, gender identity and expression, family responsibilities, political affiliation, source of income, veteran status, an individual's genetic information, or any other protected bases under federal or local laws in its programs and activities.

This applies to any university context, including online and virtual environments, and prohibited behaviors include cyber-harassment, sex-based cyber-bullying, and cyber-stalking as well as sexual violence, intimate partner violence, retaliation, or other sexually discriminatory behaviors.

Instances of such discrimination can be brought forward and investigated by the Office of Equity and Title IX.

Title IX Incident Response Protocol

To know more about the incident response process, download this flowchart. 

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