Academic Code of Conduct

This policy is directly related to the first Testimony, which is part of the Student Code of Conduct: “I will practice personal and academic integrity.” The College believes that it is important for students to develop high ethical and scholarly standards and accept responsibility for maintaining these standards. Students who engage in academic misconduct receive sanctions from the faculty member of the course in which the misconduct occurs. In addition, students with multiple offenses or who commit a serious violation are required to appear before the Academic Standards and Appeals Committee and may be subject to additional sanctions as determined by the committee.

Examples of Academic Misconduct 

  • Examination offenses include, but are not limited to, the following:
    • Taking unauthorized materials into or out of the examination room.
    • Leaving the examination room without authorization before completing an examination.
    • Talking in the examination room without authorization.
    • Discussing the examination outside the examination room during the course of the examination.
    • Attempting to observe the work of another student.
    • Taking an examination for another person or permitting someone else to do so.
    • Collaborating improperly by discussion, joint research, or joint effort in any way expressly prohibited by the instructor. This includes using a cell phone or other device to access information from another source or another student.
    • Acquiring unauthorized knowledge of an examination or any part of an examination, or solicit, offer, or give information about any part of an examination.
  • Student work offenses include, but are not limited to, the following, which are expressly prohibited in the absence of prior written approval of the instructor or instructors involved:
    • Resubmission of work – Submitting work which has been previously submitted for credit.
    • Plagiarism – Submitting work done wholly or partly by another, including the unattributed copying of all or parts of a published work or internet document.
    • Prohibited sources – Consulting material or persons contrary to the directions of the instructor.
    • Improper collaboration – Engaging in any discussion, joint research, or joint effort of any kind expressly prohibited by the instructor.
    • Deception – Misrepresenting the authenticity of sources, citations, or principles in any written work.
    • Sharing work – Students who share their work with others are responsible for how that work is used. For example, if a student shares a paper with another student to help him or her understand an assignment, and that student submits the work as their own, the author of the paper shares responsibility for the plagiarism.
  • Other misconduct – Engaging in any other improper conduct as specified by the instructor
  • Lying – Deliberately providing false information relevant to academic matters, such as misrepresenting the inability to take an examination because of illness.
  • Disruptive or disrespectful classroom behavior – Causing a disturbance in the classroom, interrupting instruction, speaking rudely or threatening students or faculty. This includes use of a cell phone during class.

Consequences of Academic Misconduct 

Any faculty member who suspects an incident of academic misconduct must confront the student within ten days of knowledge of the event when the college is in session, or in the first ten days of the next semester. If the faculty member feels that the misconduct is substantiated, he or she must notify the student in writing of the resulting sanctions. A copy of this letter or email is sent to the Office of Academic Affairs and placed in the student’s permanent file.

Student Appeal Process

If a student wishes to appeal the charge of academic misconduct and/or the sanctions for the offense, he/she may do so in writing within five (5) school days of receipt of the letter from the faculty member. Students should send a letter or email to the Associate Vice President for Retention and Academic Success. A hearing will be set in front of the Academic Standards and Appeals Committee in as timely a manner as possible. After the hearing, the Committee shall determine (by consensus) whether the level of academic offense and/or the sanctions should be decreased. Review of the level of academic offense and/or sanctions may not result in a more severe level of offense or sanction. The Committee may render its decision without deference to the faculty member’s initial determination.

If the student has prior incidents of academic misconduct, or if the incident is determined by the faculty member and AVPRAS to warrant additional review, the student must appear before the Academic Standards and Appeals (ASA) committee. Any additional consequences will be determined by the ASA committee. Consequences could include academic probation, ineligibility for academic honors, or suspension.

Hearing Guidelines 

Students who appear before the Committee may be assisted by a support person, who may be any member of the college community or a parent. Students are responsible for presenting their own case; however, the support person is permitted to speak and should assist the student in understanding the academic appeals process. Hearings will be confidential. Admission of any person to the hearing who is not a support person, or a witness shall be at the discretion of the Committee. The Committee may restrict testimony that is irrelevant or redundant.

Pertinent records, exhibits, and written statements may be accepted as evidence at the discretion of the Committee. There shall be a single verbatim record, such as a tape recording of all hearings before the Committee. The student shall have access to a record of the hearing. All tapes are destroyed either after appeals are completed or after the time allotted for appeals has passed.

Final Review

Final appeals may be made to the Academic Dean/Dean of the Faculty, within five (5) working days of the decision of the Academic Standards and Appeals Committee. An appeal to the Academic Dean is only appropriate under at least one of the following conditions:

  1. The original hearing was not conducted fairly in light of the charges and evidence presented, and in conformity with prescribed procedures.
  2. The decision was not based on substantial evidence. 
  3. The sanction imposed was not appropriate for the violation. 
  4. There is new evidence that was not presented at the original hearing.