Academic Honesty

Academic Honesty

The University is a community dedicated to learning and research, both of which include the transmission of knowledge. In striving to learn, we are often dependent on what others have achieved and thus become indebted to them. Courtesy, gratitude and justice require that we make public our reliance on and use of the ideas and writings of others. At the time of matriculation, all students are informed of the honor code as described below, and asked to electronically sign a form indicating their understanding of same.

Plagiarism

An attempt to claim ideas or writings that originate with others as one's own is a serious offense against the academic community. Plagiarism is not mitigated by a paraphrase or even by an extensive rewriting of another's work. Whenever ideas or words are borrowed, the student must give credit by citing the source. The same principle of honesty applies to the use of modern technologies like the computer—sources of information must be accurately credited.

A student who submits plagiarized work is subject to disciplinary action. An instructor who discovers that plagiarized work has been submitted in fulfillment of course requirements shall immediately inform the student, allowing him or her the chance to explain the circumstances. If, after conferring with the student, the instructor still considers the student's work to be plagiarized, then the instructor will compile the materials of the case, including the piece of work that may have been plagiarized, any sources from which the student plagiarized, and a report of the instructor's conversation with the student. The instructor will submit these materials to the appropriate Academic Dean.

If the student acknowledges in writing that he or she has plagiarized, the case does not go to an Academic Discipline Committee. Instead, the instructor assigns a grade on the work and a grade in the course, up to and including failure in the course. The appropriate Academic Dean reviews the case and decides on a penalty beyond the grade as necessary.

If the student does not acknowledge the plagiarism, the appropriate Academic Dean will submit the case, with all relevant materials, to the Academic Disciplinary Committee of the student's school. That disciplinary committee will conduct its own investigation and will hold a hearing at which the student, representing him or herself, will be invited to present his or her case and to respond to the committee's questions.

The committee will decide solely on whether the student did plagiarize, and will base its decision only on the evidence, not on mitigating or extenuating circumstances.

If the committee finds that plagiarism did occur, it will convey its findings to the instructor and to the appropriate Academic Dean. The instructor will assign a grade to the material in question and a grade for the course, up to and including failure in the course, and shall report these grades to the appropriate Academic Dean. The Dean shall hold a show-cause hearing with the student on why he or she should not be dismissed from the University, and shall decide on any penalties beyond the grade, up to and including dismissal from the University.

If the appropriate Academic Discipline Committee decides that the work is not plagiarized, the committee will inform the instructor of its decision. The instructor shall then compute a grade for the piece of work and the course without regard to plagiarism, but solely on an evaluation of the quality of the student's work. The case against the student is then dropped.

Repeat offenses are subject to further disciplinary action including, but not limited to, academic suspension and dismissal.

Adequate procedures for dealing with instances of plagiarism in off-campus programs will be determined by the appropriate Academic Dean in consultation with the Director of that program.

The standard procedure in a case of plagiarism discovered in a thesis or dissertation is termination of work toward the degree. The standard procedure in a case of plagiarism discovered in a thesis or dissertation after the degree has been granted, regardless of the length of time ensuing, is revocation of the degree.

Cheating

The integrity of examinations is essential to the academic process. A student who cheats on examinations or other work submitted in fulfillment of course requirements is subject to disciplinary action. When cheating is discovered during the examination itself, the instructor or proctor is to take up the examination and dismiss the student from the examination for a later appearance before the instructor. The review of all cheating cases and the imposition of penalties will follow the procedure explained under "Plagiarism."

Course Requirements

Clearly there are relationships between ideas considered, texts read, and assignments given in courses. However, students should understand that requirements are unique to the particular course. That is, it is unethical and thus a case of academic dishonesty to submit the same work for more than one course unless there is prior agreement between the professors concerned about the cross-course nature of a project.

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