Ethics in Advising: Knowing When to Say When


  • Most referral sources cannot by law, ethics or professional practice confirm attendance of referred individual or share any information about the individual as related to that office.
  • Advisers should maintain similar standards of confidentiality with anyone outside of the referral source.
  • The Behavioral Analysis Team (BAT) will act prudently in all matters related to confidentiality.
  • Limits to confidentiality allow each department/profession to notify appropriate persons at appropriate times.


  • Do not “adopt” students.
  • Do not take responsibility for advisee.
  • Let them make decisions, unless this is an emergency/crisis situation.
  • Respect the limits of what they want to share with you.
  • Do not impose your own biases on the student; provide information only.
  • Do not take personally any action or inaction by the student.
  • It is okay to ask them how they are doing after a referral, but do so in a noninvasive manner.
  • Do not take concern home with you.
  • Make an appointment for yourself to “debrief” after a situation.
  • Be available within your own limits and comfort zone.