Academic Misconduct Policy

Any staff, administrative official, instructor, or student may file a written complaint against any student for academic misconduct by using the Report of Student Academic Misconduct. The Report of Student Academic Misconduct shall be filed with the Dean of Student Success (DSS) or designee 

Disciplinary Policy and Sanctions for Academic Misconduct
Definition

Academic misconduct includes, but is not limited to, the use of the following actions in an attempt to gain an unfair advantage, for yourself or another, on any tool utilized to evaluate student competency:

  • Cheating or unauthorized collaboration of any type or use of electronic or digital technology with the intent to deceive.
  • Copying information from another person, or otherwise submitting work other than your own.
  • Use of unauthorized materials.
  • Unauthorized use of electronic devices.
  • Buying, selling, providing or stealing papers, examinations, or other work.
  • Substituting for another person, or arranging such a substitution for yourself.
  • Collusion with another person or persons in submitting work for credit in class or lab, unless such collaboration is approved in advance by the instructor.
  • Multiple submissions: it is not permissible to submit substantial portions of the same work for credit as part of more than one assignment, or in multiple courses, without the explicit consent of the instructors to whom the material is being submitted.
  • Plagiarism: the intentional or accidental presentation of another’s words or ideas as your own. Students should familiarize themselves with the description of plagiarism found in their English handbooks, their English class syllabi, or in writing manuals available in the library. It is the student’s responsibility to understand and abide by the rules regarding plagiarism. Ignorance is no excuse nor is it a defense.
  • Falsifying documentation.
Policy, Procedure, and Sanctions

Each instructor has the discretion to choose whether they will handle instances of academic misconduct internally, or defer to another ruling body as described below. Factors to consider in making this decision include the severity of the misconduct, precedent or pattern of misconduct, and other circumstances unique to the situation.

An instructor who chooses to handle the situation internally may take one or more of the following actions:*

  • Reprimand with warning of further misconduct
  • Decrease grade on assignment in question
  • Failing grade on assignment in question
  • Require student to repeat assignment
  • Apply additional compensatory assignment
  • Other per instructors’ discretion the severity of which cannot exceed a failing grade on the assignment in question Instructors must notify the student, in person if possible, of the instance of academic misconduct, and the action to be taken. This notification must be done as soon as possible, not to exceed FIVE business days of the instructors first knowledge of the misconduct. Instructors must document this notification using a Report of Student Academic Misconduct which must be submitted to the office of the Dean of Student Success (DSS) within FIVE business days of the instructors’ first knowledge of the misconduct.

If the instructor feels that the misconduct warrants penalty beyond those options listed above, and/or they feel that the situation should be deferred to another ruling body, they should follow the procedure described below. In this case, the instructor forfeits the right to impose a penalty of their choosing unless their academic Dean agrees with the instructors’ decision.

  1. The instructor must investigate the matter, collect all evidence, and compile all relevant information, including a copy of the completed Report of Student Academic Misconduct, in a clear written document to present to their academic Dean.
  2. Schedule a meeting with their academic Dean to discuss the situation within FIVE business days of the incident. The outcome of this meeting must be one of the following:
    1. determine that the charges are unfounded in which case no further action is required,
    2. apply one or more of the penalty options given to instructors from the previous list*. In this case, the Dean and/or instructor must notify the student, and document such notification as is described in the previous paragraph.
    3. determine that the misconduct warrants more severe penalty, and should be submitted to the Student Conduct Committee. In this event, the instructor must:
  3. Inform the DSS of this determination within FIVE business days of the meeting with their academic dean. In this event, the office of the DSS will contact the student via Certified Mail within TEN business days to inform them of the date and time of the Student Conduct Committee meeting to hear their case, as well as the student’s rights and responsibilities.
  4. Notify the student verbally within FIVE business days that a report has been filed for consideration by the Student Conduct Committee (See Student Conduct Committee Procedure on the website).
Appeals Procedure for decision made by instructor or academic Dean

A decision of the accusing instructor may be appealed to the appropriate academic Dean. If the Dean was involved in the decision, the appeal must be directed to the office of the DSS. In either case, the appeal must be in writing and must be received by the appellate body (academic Dean or Dean of Student Success) within FIVE business days of the date on which the student was notified of the charge of academic misconduct. The appellate body will review the situation and reach a determination. The decision of this appellate body is final.

Disciplinary Sanctions
When the case is referred to the Student Conduct Committee

The Student Conduct Committee may apply one or more of the following disciplinary sanctions for instances of academic misconduct:

  • Dismissing the charges as unfounded
  • Warning: Notice, in writing, that continuation or repetition of conduct found wrongful, within a period of time stated in the warning, may cause more severe disciplinary action;
  • Decrease grade on assignment in question
  • Failing grade on assignment in question
  • Require student to repeat assignment
  • Apply additional compensatory assignment
  • Failing grade in the course
  • Disciplinary Probation: Suspension of eligibility for college extracurricular activities;
  • Suspension: Exclusion from classes and other privileges or activities as set forth in the notice for a definite period of time not to exceed two years;
  • Expulsion: Termination of student status for an indefinite period. The conditions of readmission, if any, shall be stated in the order of expulsion.

Note: In cases of suspension and expulsion, students will receive a failing grade for all courses in which they are currently enrolled.

Appeals Procedure (Student Conduct Committee)

A decision of the Student Conduct Committee on student academic misconduct may be appealed to the DSS. The appeal must be in writing and must be received by the office of the DSS within FIVE business days after the Committee hearing. The DSS will review the written record and reach a determination. The decision of the DSS is final.