Colleges Need to Look Beyond Discipline, Says Book

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Beyond Discipline

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Stetson University College of Law professor Peter Lake says most colleges and universities have a one-size-fits-all approach to a range of student discipline issues including sexual assault, violence, binge drinking, suicide, drug use and cheating. His  latest book, Beyond Discipline – Managing the Modern Higher Education Environment, suggests an alternative.

Beyond Discipline argues for an education-based, student-centered process, which is not overly legalistic.

The book addresses several discipline-related topics including sexual assault and rape on college campuses. Lake argues that it is imperative to identify and remove sexual predators from campuses quickly.

“It is time to completely rethink our approaches to creating safe and responsible campuses,” said Lake, who is the director of the Center for Higher Education Law and Policy at Stetson Law. “What we are doing now does not work. There are too many lawyers and legalistic discipline systems; and not enough of what colleges do best –education. Sometimes we are so obsessed with being ‘fair’ with wrongdoers that we unintentionally cheat our good students.”

“Lake challenges those of us in higher education to ‘recognize an appropriate role for law and legalisms,’ developing a unique system that ensures the student’s education, development, and personal growth remain central,” said Gwendolyn Jordan Dungy, executive director of NASPA-Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education.

Professor Lake often writes for and is quoted in the Chronicle of Higher Education and was recently interviewed by National Public Radio on the campus rape issue.

To order Beyond Discipline, please visit To learn more about higher education law and policy at Stetson, please visit