6.  ACADEMIC HONESTY POLICY

(approved May 2002)

 

            Academic integrity is the foundation on which learning at Moravian College is built.  Moravian College expects its students to perform their academic work honestly and fairly.  In addition, a Moravian student should neither hinder nor unfairly assist the efforts of other students to complete their work successfully.  The College’s expectations and the consequences of failure to meet those expectations are outlined below.  In an academic community, you are encouraged to help each other learn.  In fact, because no two students learn in exactly the same way or take exactly the same things away from a lecture, we encourage students to study together.  The boundaries on what is or is not acceptable work may not always be clear; thus if at any point in your academic work at Moravian you are uncertain about your responsibility as a scholar or about the propriety of a particular action, consult your instructor.  The list below is not to be considered complete, but rather the most common areas of concern.  In general, you should be guided by the following principles. 

 

Guidelines for Honesty

1)      PLAGIARISM:  A major form of academic dishonesty is plagiarism, which we define as the use, whether deliberate or not, of any outside source without proper acknowledgment; an “outside source” is defined as any work (published or unpublished), composed, written, or created by any person other than the student who submitted the work.  (adapted from Napolitano vs. Princeton).  All work that you submit or present as part of course assignments or requirements must be your original work unless otherwise expressly permitted by the instructor.  This includes any work presented, be it in written, oral, or electronic form or in any other technical or artistic medium.  When you use the specific thoughts, ideas, writings, or expressions of another person, you must accompany each instance of use with some form of attribution to the source.  Direct quotes from any source (including the Internet) must be placed in quotation marks (or otherwise marked appropriately) and accompanied by proper citation, following the preferred bibliographic conventions of your department or instructor.  It is the instructor’s responsibility to make clear to all students in his or her class what is the preferred or required citation style for student work.  Student ignorance of bibliographic convention and citation procedures is not a valid excuse for having committed plagiarism.  

When writing creative or research papers in a foreign language you may not use electronic translation services; utilizing such tools without express permission of the instructor is plagiarism.   The use of electronic dictionaries for single-word inquiries or short idiomatic expressions is permissible at the discretion of each professor in the Department of Foreign Languages.

You may not present oral or written reports written by others as your own work.  This includes incorporating formal lecture notes written or dictated by someone other than yourself.

You may not use writing or research which is obtained from a “paper service” or which is purchased from any person or entity, unless you fully disclose such activity to the instructor and are given express permission.  You may not use writings or research which is obtained from any other student previously or currently enrolled at Moravian or elsewhere or from the files of any student organization (such as fraternity or sorority files) unless you are expressly permitted to do so by the instructor.

            You may not submit or present work prepared in whole or in part to fulfill course requirements in more than one course, unless expressly permitted to do so by all instructors involved.  Note that this includes work submitted for courses at other institutions as well as in previous semesters at Moravian College.

            Students must keep all notes, drafts, and materials used in preparing assignments until a final course grade is given.  For work in electronic form, you may be asked to keep all intermediate drafts and notes electronically or in hard copy until final grades are given.  All these materials must be available for inspection by the instructor at any time.

 

2)                  CHEATING

You may not submit homework, computer solutions, lab reports or any other coursework prepared by, copied from, or dictated by others.  If you are employing the services of a tutor (whether from the college community or elsewhere), you may not use the tutor to prepare your work for class.

            You may not provide or receive unauthorized help in taking examinations, tests, or quizzes or in preparing any other performance requirements for a course.  Such restrictions are illustrated by but not limited to the following.  You may not use unauthorized material in an examination, test, or quiz.   You may not solicit or use a proxy test-taker nor act as one.  You may not use crib notes in any form, regardless of who prepared them.

            You may not use calculators or any other hand-held electronic devices unless authorized by the instructor.  You may not use e-mail or text messaging during any exam without the permission of the instructor.

            You may not steal, use, or transmit in writing, electronically, or verbally, actual examinations, tests, quizzes or portions thereof prior to or during an exam. 

            You may not read or observe another’s work without his or her consent, whether it be on paper, electronically, or in any other form.

 

3)  HELPING OR HINDERING OTHERS  

You may not tamper with, damage, or otherwise hinder the work of others to complete their assignments successfully to the best of their abilities.

You may not collaborate during an in-class examination, test, or quiz.  You may not work with others on out-of-class assignments, exams, or projects unless expressly allowed or instructed to do so by the course instructor.  If you have any reservations about your role in working on any out-of-class assignments, you must consult with your course instructor.

 

4)  FALSE TESTIMONY  You may not submit or present a falsified excuse for an absence from an examination, test, quiz, or other course requirement either directly or through another source.

You may not falsify laboratory results or research data or results.  You may not invent bibliographical entries for research papers, websites, or handouts.  You may not falsify information about the date of submission for any coursework.

 

5)  OTHER INAPPROPRIATE BEHAVIORS

In the preparation of course, program, or degree work, you are directed to comply with the Copyright Law of the United States (Title XVII, United States Code, available in Reeves Library).  Violations of the Copyright Law and violations of regulations regarding the use of copyrighted material for educational purposes are violations of this policy.

            Damage to, theft or abuse of library, media, computing, other academic resources, and other institutional property is prohibited by the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and is a violation of this policy.

            You may not copy print or non-print media, or download copyrighted files (including music) from the internet, beyond the accepted norms.  Please consult with the Reeves Library staff or the United States copyright policies on norms for educational purposes. 

           

Consequences of Violating the Academic Honesty Policy

 

            An instructor who suspects a student of violating the policy on academic honesty with regard to an assignment, requirement, examination, test, or quiz will consult with the department chair or another full-time faculty member in the department, using a blind copy of the work in question, to verify the violation.  If the charge is verified, the instructor will, in almost all cases, assign either a grade of zero to the academic work in question or a failing grade in the course in which the violation occurred.  The student must be informed in writing of the alleged violation and penalty; a copy of this memo must be sent to the associate dean of academic affairs.  A record of the violation will be kept in the Office of Academic Affairs and a copy of the record in Student Services or Comenius Center files until the student completes his/her degree or certification program, at which point all references to the incident are removed from the student’s permanent record.  Anonymous information will be maintained by the Office of Academic Affairs for statistical purposes only.  The College strongly recommends that any finding of academic impropriety be disclosed to the student’s faculty advisor, to assist the student in understanding the implications of the finding, and to assist the advisor in counseling his or her advisee.  The associate dean for academic affairs will request that students involved in academic disciplinary proceedings provide written authorization to disclose the results to his or her academic advisor for the limited purposes set forth in this section.

            Accusations of violations of the Academic Honesty Policy must be presented to the associate dean for academic affairs by the end of the drop/add period of the subsequent term (spring term for fall violations; summer I for spring term violations).  No charges may be brought after that date. 

            If a faculty member wishes to impose a different penalty (other than course failure or assignment failure), that faculty member must confer with the associate dean for academic affairs before notifying the student of the penalty.

            If a student wishes to appeal either the charge of dishonesty or the penalty, the student should first consult with the faculty member in question.  If the student is dissatisfied with the result of that meeting, he/she should meet with the department chair who reviewed the assignment in question.  If the student wishes to seek an appeal beyond this, he/she should appeal in writing to the Academic Standards Committee, chaired by the associate dean for academic affairs.  Student appeals must be filed within one month of the instructor’s filing of the violation of the Academic Honesty Policy.  The faculty member will be asked to explain in writing the charge and circumstances surrounding the charge.  Letters from material witnesses may be submitted by either the faculty member or the student, but letters in support of the student’s character will not be accepted or considered by the Academic Standards Committee. 

            A student charged with a second violation of the academic honesty policy will have his/her case automatically referred to the Academic Standards Committee.  The case will be reviewed in writing by the non-student members of the Academic Standards Committee.  As with student appeals of charges or penalties, both the faculty member and student in question will submit a written explanation of the situation.  If the charge is found to be valid, the Academic Standards Committee will determine whether or not the penalty was sufficient and/or reasonable.  At this point, the student could be suspended or expelled from the institution. 

            If the Academic Standards Committee determines that either suspension or expulsion of the student is reasonable and advisable, the student will be informed of this action in writing.  If the student wishes to appeal, a formal hearing will be held.  The procedure will be audio recorded and transcribed.  No parents or friends may be present.  Material witnesses will be asked to submit testimony in writing and may be asked to testify in person.  No character witnesses, or written statements from such parties, are permitted.  The student may consult with his or her academic advisor in preparing an appeal or defense for the Academic Standards Committee.  The president of the College, at his discretion, will hear appeals of a decision to suspend or expel a student.

            In the event of a third charge, the case will be automatically referred to the Academic Standards Committee for a formal hearing, following the procedure described immediately above.  Should the Academic Standards Committee determine that a student has violated this policy for the third time, the result shall be immediate expulsion of the violator.  The president of the college will hear appeals of the decision of the Academic Standards Committee at his discretion. 

            Any member of the Academic Standards Committee who feels he/she has a conflict of interest in reviewing the case must be recused from discussions and vote; student members of the Academic Standards Committee may not hear or review academic honesty cases.  For a case to be reviewed, a simple quorum is required.  If more than two members (faculty or administrative) of the Academic Standards Committee choose to recuse themselves from the deliberations, the associate dean for academic affairs will temporarily appoint replacements from the faculty ranks to review the case in question. 

            A student may not withdraw from a course in which he or she has been charged with a breach of this policy.  If, after a successful appeal to the Academic Standards Committee, the charge against the student is overturned, the student may then withdraw with a “W” from this course without the assessment of a late fee. 

 

 

STUDENT RIGHTS WITH REGARD TO ACADEMIC HONESTY ALLEGATIONS

            The student has the right:

  • to have the alleged violation and penalty described in writing.
  • to review all material submitted to the Academic Standards Committee before it makes its determination as to whether or not a policy infraction has occurred, and the opportunity to respond to it orally or in writing (at the student’s option).
  • to a meeting with the instructor to discuss the alleged violation and the penalty.
  • to appeal, in writing, the alleged violation or the penalty, to the Academic Standards Committee, through the associate dean for academic affairs within one month of the filing of the alleged violation.
  • to receive assistance from his or her academic advisor in preparing his or her appeal to the Academic Standards Committee (only members of the current student body and current full-time employees may be used to assist the student in preparing his or her appeal or defense).
  • to a decision from the Academic Standards Committee within a reasonable time.
  • to have all record of the alleged violation removed from the student’s file, in the event of an acquittal.
  • to have in attendance at the hearing a member of the faculty, administration, or student body who may provide support to the student but not participate in the hearing.  Individuals other than those listed above (including but not limited to family members and attorneys) will not be admitted.
  • to appear in person and present information in his or her own behalf, to call witnesses, and to ask questions of anyone present at a hearing.  In determining the validity of and responsibility for the alleged violation, the Academic Standards Committee will permit witnesses of fact, not character.
  • to refuse to answer or make a statement; however, decisions will be based on the evidence available.
  • to elect not to attend a hearing.  The hearing will be conducted in the student’s absence with the evidence available.
  • to have all record of the violation(s) removed from the student’s permanent record and from the files of the Academic Affairs Office, as well as Student Services and/or Continuing and Graduate Studies, at the time the student graduates.
  • to receive written documentation of the outcome of a hearing and any sanctions imposed.
  • to request an appeal of the process of any hearing by the Academic Standards Committee; appeals will be heard by the vice president for academic affairs, who will determine whether or not proper procedures have been followed, and refer the case back to the Academic Standards Committee if needed.

 

FACULTY RIGHTS WITH REGARD TO ACADEMIC HONESTY ALLEGATIONS

            The faculty member filing the academic honesty violation has the right:

  • to have the chair or other faculty member present in meetings with the student;
  • to consult with the associate dean or department chair on an appropriate penalty for the alleged violation;
  • to negotiate with the associate dean for academic affairs an alternative penalty if the instructor feels there are mitigating circumstances;
  • to submit to the Academic Standards Committee any and all materials relevant to the decision;
  • to review the student’s written appeal and respond in writing to the Academic Standards Committee before the case is reviewed;
  • to be apprised of the Academic Standards Committee’s decision.