When to Refer A Student


Students, Faculty, Parents, and others are strongly encouraged to report behaviors that they feel are concerning or worrisome (no matter how small or insignificant they may seem).

Why Make a Referral?  Four Important Reasons:


  1. Early intervention means rapid solutions:  Often, a quick response to provide a distressed student with timely resources will ensure that the student remains successful academically.  Late intervention often involves missed classes, isolation from friends and family, possible withdrawals or late drops and an overall interruption in the student’s experience.
  2. Connecting the Dots: Our office receives reports from all over campus.  Our ability to connect your concerns with the concerns of others means we are able to provide a greater level of support for each student involved.  Whether putting together a puzzle ordeciding what an elephant looks like, every piece of information matters!
  3. We Care, You Care: Making a referral shows that you care enough to get the student the help he or she needs.  It means you’re are not prepared to let a student fall through the cracks.  It means that NC State is a family that takes care of its members.
  4. It Might Be Required: Under certain circumstances, Faculty, staff, and students are obligated to report acts of violence and other threatening behaviors.  See the Campus and Workplace Violence Prevention and Management policy for details.

Common Concerning Behaviors:

Although the terms, “concerning and “worrisome” are subjective, the following list of indicators provides some context when assessing whether a student may need additional support:

Academic Indicators

Emotional Indicators

Physical Indicators

  • Persistent unexplained absences
  • Deterioration in quality/quantity of work
  • Extreme disorganization or erratic performance
  • Written or artistic expressions ofunusual violence, morbidity, social isolation, despair, or confusion
  • Continual seeking of special permission (extensions, make-up work)
  • Patterns of perfectionism
  • Disproportionate response to grades or other evaluations
  • Direct statements indicating distress
  • Significant change in mood
  • Angry or hostile outbursts, yelling, or aggressive comments
  • More withdrawn or more animated than usual
  • Appears over-anxious
  • Excessively demanding or dependent behavior
  • Fails to respond to outreach from staff/faculty
  • Deterioration in physical appears or personal hygiene
  • Excessive fatigue, exhaustion;
  • Erratic or disjointed thinking – skips around a lot; unable to stay focused on one topic; topics don’t align
  • Noticeable cuts, bruises, burns
  • Frequent or chronic illness
  • Disorganized speech, rapid or slurred speech; confusion
  • Substance abuse

Other Factors to Consider:

  • Concern expressed by another student or teaching assistant
  • Student is experiencing substantial and prolonged financial or legal problems
  • A sixth sense or hunch that something is wrong


Enhancing Your Level of Care: Using The Counseling Center and Other Campus Resources:

The case manager works very closely with a variety of campus offices to ensure that students are connected to appropriate resources.  Some of these include the Counseling Center, LGBT Center, Women’s Center, International Student Services, Disability Support, and many more (for a full list with contact information, click here).  You are strongly encouraged to personally connect students with the Counseling Center and other campus resources that might best serve each student’s needs.  Once connected or referred, please continue to benefit the student by submitting a referral online.

By sharing your concerns with the case manager and taking the initial steps to make sure the student is safe, you are doing two things: First, you are enhancing the odds that the student will maintain a connection with the resource provided;  and second, you ensure that your information is connected with other referrals submitted for the student so that those working with the student have a fuller picture of the issues involved.

Managing Classroom Disruptions

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