Honor System Fall 2011 - Judicial Affairs Slides

VCU Honor
Virginia Commonwealth
from VCU Honor System:
“Virginia Commonwealth University
recognizes that honesty, truth,
and integrity are values central to
its mission as an institution of
higher education.”
from VCU Accepted:
“The VCU Honor System obliges
each student to understand the
types of conduct that are
unacceptable, to refrain from acts
of cheating and plagiarism and to
report those who violate these
from VCU Accepted:
“The system’s effectiveness
depends upon each student’s
acceptance of responsibility
for it.”
A Student’s Responsibilities:
 All
VCU students are presumed upon
enrollment to have acquainted
themselves with and have an
understanding of the Honor System.
 It
is a student’s responsibility to ask course
instructors to clarify expectations for each
assignment in order to be in compliance
with the Honor System.
We remind the community …
 If
bring questions to professors and
you hear people talking about or you
witness dishonorable activities contact
the faculty member responsible for
instruction or the Assistant/Associate Dean
of the appropriate school/college.
Therefore …
 Lack
of knowledge of the policy is never an excuse
for an infraction.
 Lack
of understanding of the stated directions for
an assignment is never an excuse for an infraction.
 “…enrollment
in classes at VCU implies consent to
observe and adhere to all university policies.”
The Honor System
Honor Pledge:
“On my honor, I have neither given nor received aid on this
assignment, and I pledge I am in compliance with the Honor
Did you know that instructors may give assignments to
students in one of two ways:
1. As “pledged” work for which the students will sign a pledge
statement indicating that the work was completed
independently, or
2. As “unpledged” work, which may be completed in
collaboration with others as directed by the instructor.
Neither the presence nor the absence of a signed pledge
statement, however, shall prevent a student from being
charged with a possible violation or from being held to the
standards of the Honor System.
Honor System Violations:
Facilitating Academic
Lying Related to Academic
Stealing Academic Materials
“Representing the words, ideas,
facts, opinions, theories,
illustrations, tables or any part of
another’s work as one’s own on
academic assignment without
customary and proper
acknowledgement of the
Examples of
Student’s Journalism Class Assignment:
First three paragraphs:
From an article on
Paragraph from a student’s paper:
Paragraph from a journal article:
was for
student to
take pictures
of specific
Student used
a picture
from an
Section of student’s paper
From published source
“Receiving, giving and
attempting to receive or
give unauthorized
assistance, such as materials,
devices, information, notes,
or sources, on academic
Examples of
Phone found in the student’s lap.
Found on the phone was cheat
Paragraph from Student #1’s
Paragraph from Student #2’s
Answers from Student #1’s final
Answers from Student #2’s final
Side by Side Comparison:
Answer from Student #1’s math
Answer from Student #2’s math
Side by Side Comparison:
Answer from Student A’s Exam
Answer from Student B’s Exam
Answer from Student
A’s Exam. Incorrect
for their version but
identical to the
alternative version of
the exam
Answer from Student
B’s Exam. Correct for
their version of the
exam. Student B was
sitting to the left of
Student A.
Student’s answer from Spring 2011
The 2011 assignment question
Question from 2009 Assignment
Part of Student C’s Code
Part of Student D’s Code
Facilitating Academic
“Helping or soliciting
another person to
commit an act of
academic dishonesty.”
Facilitating Academic Dishonesty:
Two programs/playbills
from a tuba concert
attended by two
students. Student #1
attended the program –
their signed program is on
the top. The bottom
belongs to student #2
who did NOT attend the
program. Students #1
and #2 are roommates.
A signature on the
program is all that is
needed to prove
attendance and get a
grade for the assignment.
“ Transferring, transmitting
or communicating any
false statements
concerning academic
A note submitted by a
The note the doctor actually gave
to the student:
T.A.’s signature forged
“Taking or making
Academic Materials
inaccessible, thereby
temporarily or permanently
depriving others of its use or
Academic Integrity Quiz?
How will you do?
Academic Integrity Quiz
Thank you USC, VCU, BC & Cornell University
Jerome is taking an upper level engineering class.
There is a solutions manual available online. It
shows how to work out every example problem
in his textbook. The exams for the class are made
up of example questions from the book. Jerome
uses the solutions manual to study and practice,
but does not use it when taking the exam.
Is this a violation?
Academic Integrity Quiz
Thank you USC, VCU, BC & Cornell University
Alan is taking Organic Chemistry Lab. Students are
required to keep a notebook for their lab
experiments. They are told that they can not use
another student’s, because they will be allowed
to use it during quizzes and exams. During the
last quiz, Alan had the notebook of a previous
semester’s student on top of his desk.
Is this a violation?
Academic Integrity Quiz
Thank you USC, VCU, BC & Cornell University
Ingrid is assigned to write a paper. She cuts and
pastes material from Wikipedia into her paper.
Because she also copied the source citations
included on Wikipedia, she does not cite
Wikipedia in her bibliography as a source for her
Is this a violation?
Academic Integrity Quiz
Tom is taking two classes and has papers to
write in each. The assigned topics for the
final papers are overlapping, so Tom
writes a single paper and turns it in for
both courses.
Is this a violation?
Academic Integrity Quiz
Louisa has a midterm exam the following
afternoon. She feels that she did not
study enough, and would really like an
extension. She sends an email to her
professor, saying that she can’t attend
the exam because she is sick.
Is this a violation?
Academic Integrity Quiz
Bill, Sally, and Mike are in the same math class
and throughout the semester have met at the
Commons to do their homework together –
coming to consensus on answers and writing
them in on their individual papers.
Is this a violation?
Academic Integrity Quiz
A student realizes that another student is
looking at his/her test paper. They don’t
know the second student, but don’t make
any effort to cover their paper. We know
that the “looker” is cheating, but is the
other student guilty of an Honor Violation?
Due Process:
What happens if accused?
1. Violation filed in writing with the Honor System
Administrator within 30 calendar days of discovery.
2. Accused & Accuser:
Written notification.
3. Investigation – 30 days
Issuance of determination, or
Referral to University Honor Council.
Meeting with AIO:
Student is presented with the material submitted by the
accuser and gathered by the AIO.
Advisor may or may not be present at this meeting.
Parents may be present for this meeting.
Student is given the chance to present any information
they feel is important for the AIO to know in order to
complete their investigation.
Decision about responsibility likely will NOT be made
during this meeting.
Investigation, in summary:
Student is invited to meet with AIO, via notification letter
Meeting is held with student (and advisor); or case is
adjudicated if student does not respond.
Information is gathered from both the accused and the
Determination is made and parties are notified.
 Accused/Accuser
may appeal the
determination of the Academic Integrity Officer
to the Honor Council.
 The Accused may appeal the determination of
the Honor Council to the University Appeal
University Appeal Board consists of a student, a
faculty member, a classified/hourly employee, and
an administrative officer.
The recommendation of the UAB will be presented
to the University President for review and action.
The decision of the President is FINAL.
have five
business days to appeal
decision of AIO.
Accused has five days to
appeal UHC decision.
All appeals must be submitted in
UAB/President’s decision cannot
be appealed.
Reported to Office of Judicial Affairs
and Academic Integrity
Within 30 Days
Notify/Consult with
Appropriate School
Accuser and Accused
(Not Guilty) Case
information destroyed
case filed
and action recorded
Accuser or Accused Appeal
Possible Suspension/Expulsion, Second Violations,
Multiple Violations, Accused Chooses
Three students, two faculty and a non-voting student
determine not guilty/guilty and sanction
Case filed
and action recorded
Withdraws from University
Hearing can be held or a
hold is placed on the
student’s registration and
the process resumes if the
student returns to VCU
Case information destroyed.
Accused Appeals
Appeal based on procedural error, the availability of new evidence, if they are
concerned that the policy has not been properly interpreted, if they believe the
decision is not supported by the evidence, and if they feel the sanction imposed is
not proportionate to the gravity of the misconduct.
Issues final decision
A student found guilty of a violation shall be subject
to one or more of the following sanctions:
Honor Probation
Other Relevant Sanctions
Assignment of Grade “0” on a test/paper/assignment
Assignment of an “F” for the course grade
(Transcript notation)
Suspension (Transcript notation)
Expulsion (Transcript notation)
Revocation (Transcript notation)
Sanctions assigned by the Honor System are
intended to address specific violations. In
some cases, however, the assignment of
a sanction may result in the lowering of
the accused’s cumulative grade point
average, the accused’s loss of a
graduate assistantship, or the accused’s
dismissal from further enrollment in a
One for all ...
There is one Honor System for the ENTIRE university
•Assignment of a sanction may result in the lowering of the accused’s
cumulative grade point average,
•The accused’s loss of a graduate assistantship,
•The accused’s dismissal from further enrollment in a program;
These are points that the student should consider
BEFORE violating Honor System, and not points the
Academic Integrity Officer, the Honor Council, nor
the University Appeal Board must consider once a
violation has occurred.
Something to think about …
From VCU Accepted:
“A student who cheats* creates at least THREE
problems for self and others: loss of knowledge
that may be beneficial in the future, an unfair
advantage over classmates who have not
cheated and the possibility of forming a pattern
of accepting lower standards of behavior that
could lead to unethical conduct in other areas.”
* Cheat is being used generally to address all Honor System violations.
Recommended Sanctions:
 The
recommended sanction for a student’s first
violation is an ‘F’ for an assigned course grade.
Although the Honor System can consider and
assign other sanctions.
 The recommended sanction for a subsequent
determination of an honors violation is
suspension for at least three semesters.
NOTE: Honor probation is automatically on a
student’s record until they receive their degree.
Honor Probation:
in effect for duration of
degree program.
NOT noted on the student’s
NOT reported to outside agencies.
Grade of “0” on Assignment:
applies grade and
recalculates grade for course as
Not noted on transcript as an
Honor System issued sanction.
Other Relevant Sanctions:
 Can
be anything, but should be related to the
Writing with Integrity Course at VCU Library
Ethics Class
Reflective Paper
 Be
very specific when assigning this sanction.
What, when due, to whom, etc.
 Should
NOT be used as a way to avoid giving the
student an “F” or other sanction (i.e. Issuing a “C”
for the course).
“F” in Course:
sanction for any
violation of the Honor System.
It is NEVER an inappropriate
Cannot be replaced by retaking
Transcript Notation.
Reported to outside agencies.
Appropriate for multiple violations of the Honor System or
student who violates the policy a second time.
For a specified period of time; cannot exceed 2 years.
UHC must specify length of suspension (may be
impacted by appeal).
If intended” F” in the course must also be stated as a
Suspension should NOT become effective after the
expected date of graduation.
Noted on transcript while the student is suspended.
Reported to outside agencies.
sanction for multiple
violations, repeat offenders, student
previously suspended.
After 5 years the student may petition
for readmission to the university.
Transcript notation.
Reported to outside agencies.
 When
a violation invalidates a major
piece of work required for a degree then
the sanction may include a
recommendation to the university
president for rejection of a thesis or
dissertation or revocation of a degree or
 Transcript notation.
 Reported to outside agencies.
Honor Council Hearings:
Honor Council:
 Three Students.
 Two Faculty.
 One non-voting Chair (from the Executive Board).
 Clear and convincing evidence.
Significantly more likely than not.
Four or more voting to find guilty.
Three of more voting to assign a sanction.
Honor Council Hearings:
 Hearing
is either result of an appeal by the
accused or the accuser (of the AIO decision), a
referral by the AIO, or a remand by the UAB.
 The parties cannot be compelled to appear; the
hearing will continue despite the absence of the
accused or the accuser.
 The accused student’s class schedule and the
availability of the accuser are considered when
scheduling the hearing.
Read it:
Visit it:
Thank You
Karen Belanger
Director, Office of Judicial Affairs & Academic
(804) 828-1963
[email protected]
Kevin Heise
Coordinator, Academic Integrity
(804) 828-1963
[email protected]
[email protected]
Have a good one!

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