Bias Reporting Process and FAQs

As part of our efforts to create as inclusive a community as possible, when bias incidents occur at Columbia we provide an opportunity for those involved to engage in education, advocacy and conversation. In this way, we work to address the incident and minimize the potential for future occurrences.

Our community’s tools to address bias include a reporting process and the Bias Incident Resource Team, plus resources within schools and various offices. Below you can find frequently asked questions about bias and the reporting process.

Bias is an inclination for or against one person or group, especially in a way considered to be unfair.

A bias-related incident occurs when language or behavior conveys prejudice and is motivated in whole or in part by a negative judgment about an aspect of a person’s (or group’s) perceived identity.

In some cases, you may be able to interrupt bias as it is happening by speaking up for yourself or another person. However, when bias is threatening or ongoing, you may wish to report the incident to protect yourself and others.

A Bias Incidents Resource Team member will review and respond to your report within two business days. A member of the Team will then offer to meet and discuss the incident in detail and explore a plan for resolution. During the meeting, Team members will also provide information about University resources available to you.

When incidents do not involve a violation of law or University Policy, Team members can assist in implementing remedying solutions, such as a facilitated dialogue and/or educational opportunities. When a reported incident involves a potential violation of University Policy or law, Student Conduct and Community Standards (SCCS) or Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action (EOAA) will review and respond to the report.

Yes. Anonymous reports may limit the University’s ability to fully address a situation but are possible. If you are concerned about sharing your contact information, you can submit a report anonymously, which can help track patterns of bias occurring on campus.

The Bias Incidents Resource Team, CSSI, and EOAA are not confidential resources. If you would like to speak to a confidential resource, below is a list of confidential resources for Columbia students.

Confidential Resources

Any report you file with the Bias Incidents Resource Team, CSSI, or EOAA and follow-up conversations will be shared only as needed with other campus officials.

For information regarding support services and additional resources, please contact any of the following:

Confidential Resources

Nonconfidential Resources

No. The purpose of Columbia’s bias response process is to support our community, not to suppress speech. Columbia offers robust protection of speech, while simultaneously cultivating a culture of inclusion. Visit Freedom of Expression on Our Campus for more information about free speech and Columbia.