Concerning Behaviors

The Importance of Reporting “Red Flag” Behaviors

The overall goal of the Behavioral Intervention/Violence Prevention Plan is to promote a safe college environment for all students and staff focused on student learning and student development. By encouraging all members of the campus community to report behaviors that are concerning, the BIT will be able to reach out to students to intervene, provide support, and connect them with resources that can assist them. As such, the BIT asks that the campus community report concerning, “red flag” behaviors.

Identifying “Red Flag” Behaviors

Recognizing that it is not uncommon for college students to display some questionable or inappropriate behaviors, “red flags” behaviors are those questionable, suspicious, or inappropriate behaviors that go beyond what seems normal or reasonable for the situation. “Red flag” behaviors may be presented through a student’s appearance, spoken or written words, or specific actions. Examples of “red flag” behaviors include:

  • Behaviors which regularly interfere with the classroom environment or management
  • Notable change in academic performance – poor or inconsistent preparation
  • Overly aggressive behaviors towards others; inability to set limits or redirect focus
  • Writings and comments endorsing violence; unusual interest in violence
  • Indirect or direct threats in writings or verbalizations
  • Lack of empathy and concern for others, inability to care
  • Appearance of being overly nervous, tense or tearful
  • Expression of suicidal thoughts or feelings of hopelessness
  • Impairment of thoughts – verbal or written
  • Inappropriate or strange behavior
  • Low frustration tolerance
  • Overreaction to circumstances
  • Lack of resiliency
  • Anger management problems
  • Threats to others
  • Notable change in behavior or appearance
  • Poor decision-making and coping skills

Identifying the Distressed Student

Over the course of their career at Lake Land College, it is likely that staff will come into contact with a student they find challenging. It is important to understand the difference between a student having a bad day and a student who may need mental health treatment or intervention. All students go through a time of adjustment when they begin college. It is normal for students to feel anxious and sad to some degree within the first three months of beginning college, as they try to figure out how and where they fit. Concern should come when the distress to the student is in excess of what would be expected or if there is significant impairment in social, educational or occupational functioning. Whether a student is having difficulty with the transition to college, depression or anxiety, help is available. Staff is not expected to diagnose a student’s situation, but are asked to recognize when a student is in trouble and to connect them to Counseling Services. Counselors can them assess the situation and assist the student.