North Dakota University System (NDUS) procedures mandate that each campus have a Behavior Intervention Team (BIT). A BIT is defined as follows:
A multi-disciplinary group whose purpose is meeting regularly to support its target audience (i.e. students, employees, faculty, and staff) via an established protocol. A BIT is designed to be engaged in the early intervention and support that prevents a behavioral concern from rising to the level of a threat or crisis.
The current team members are as follows:
- Erin Williams
- Hattie Albertson
- Corey Gorder
- Laura Halvorson
- Cole Watson
- Brock Lemon
- Beth MacDonald
The team needs your help in identifying members of the campus community who might require early intervention and support that prevents a behavioral concern from rising to the level of a threat or crisis. If you have a concern about a member of our community, please report it to a member of the team.
Following is a roles and responsibilities overview or protocol of the DCB Behavior Intervention Team. Please familiarize yourself with it.
Roles and Responsibilities
What is the mission of the BIT?
Team members provide additional eyes and ears to help identify individuals within the campus community whose behavior indicates that they may harm themselves or others in some way. Problem behaviors may be rooted in psychological, academic, relationship, or social difficulties that exceed one’s ability to cope. Anxiety, fear, suicidal thoughts, and violent acting out are all problem behaviors that might be displayed. The BIT’s responsibility is to personify DCB’s care and concern for students and for each other by being especially alert to personal behaviors that might be harmful.
What adverse behaviors should BIT members watch for?
(Reported from NDSU’s website – student life/BIT)
- Changes in academic performance in the classroom
- Significant drop in examination scores
- Change in pattern of interaction
- Changes in physical appearance
- Problems concerning & remembering things or making decisions
- Repeated request for special consideration
- New or regularly occurring behavior which pushes the limits and may interfere with class management or be disruptive to other students, faculty or staff
- Unusual or exaggerated emotional responses
- Persistent sadness or unexplained crying
- High levels of irritability or inappropriate excitement
- Highly disturbed behavior
- Outbursts of anger
- Inability to communicate clearly
- Irrational conversation or speech that seems disconnected
- Loss of contact with reality (seeing/hearing things that are not there, beliefs or actions at odds with reality)
- Suspiciousness, irrational feelings of persecution
- Statements related to death or dying or feelings of hopelessness
- Threats of harming self or harming others
How will I know when an intervention might be required?
You were asked to serve on the Team because of the work you do on campus and the care and concern for student that it entails. You are well placed to become aware of behavior issues that “bubble up” from our campus and community that need attention. As a Team, your collective proximity or closeness to student life and to colleagues affords you the opportunity to be in-the-know. When you are made aware of a possible behavior issue – either directly or indirectly – bring it to the Team to determine an action plan. You will need to distinguish between an emergency and a circumstance that requires intervention. An emergency requires immediate action from Student, Business, or Risk Management Affairs personnel and emergency management is not a responsibility of the Team.
Discipline Issues vs Other Student Behavior Issues
Straight forward violations of the Campus Student Conduct Code are handled by the DCB Student Affairs Office and are not the responsibility of the Behavior Intervention Team. In simple terms, the BIT’s responsibility is to be proactive in helping provide a safe and healthy environment for students, staff and faculty.
To whom should the Team make referrals?
The office or individual appropriate for accepting referrals regarding troubled students will vary dependent on the behavior issue. Following are choices available: Campus Nurse, Campus Counselor, Head Residents, Retention Advisor, Title IX Coordinator, Associate Deans, a faculty, or an off-campus helping resource.
How can I refer a student to BIT?
The names, titles and contact information for Team members will be provided to faculty and staff via handbooks, Email, and the DCB website. A description of BIT’s role in helping provide a safe and healthy campus will also be provided.
The Behavior Intervention Team has been mandated by State Board of Higher Education policy to assist students who might be struggling academically and/or emotionally. The goal is to help these students successfully cope with their difficulties so they can regain normal productivity. The Team’s role in this initiative is to work with the campus community to identify students who might be struggling, gather as much information as possible about their circumstances, and refer them to a helping resource.