Academic Integrity Policy

“As an academic community, Carroll College affirms its commitment to the principle of freedom of inquiry in the process of investigating, understanding, critically reflecting upon, and finally judging reality and truth in all fields of human knowledge. As value-oriented, Carroll College is committed to and deeply involved in the further dimension of free deliberation and decision making regarding values and personal commitment. Each student at Carroll, through personal and institutional means, is exposed to value systems with which one can readily identify, including secular values such as the worth of work and the use of the intellect, humanistic values centering on the uniqueness and dignity of the person, and religious and moral values concerned with one’s relationship to God, self, and others.” Carroll College Mission Statement

As contributing members of the Carroll learning community, students at Carroll College are expected to have high standards of integrity. Any student who cheats or plagiarizes on examinations or assignments, falsifies college records, or fails to give requested academic information on official documents is subject to dismissal or other appropriate disciplinary action by the College. All students of the college are expected to understand and follow the standard outlined in Article V: Expectations for Student Conduct of the Carroll Code of Student Conduct which states:

“Any student found to have committed or to have attempted to commit the following misconduct is subject to the disciplinary sanctions outlined in Article VI (B):

  1. Acts of dishonesty, including but not limited to the following:
    1. Cheating, plagiarism, or other forms of academic dishonesty.
    2. Furnishing false information to any College official, faculty member, or office.
    3. Forgery, alteration, or misuse of any College document, record or instrument of identification.”

(Carroll College Student Handbook)

Ignorance of the code is not a valid reason for committing an act of academic dishonesty. Students should realize that their actions may affect other students. In general, students may not obstruct or interfere with other students’ academic work or otherwise undertake an activity with the purpose of creating or obtaining an unfair academic advantage over other students. Each of the following behaviors, including any attempt to engage in any of the behaviors, violates the high standards of academic integrity and is thus prohibited.

1. Plagiarism

The term “plagiarism” includes, but is not limited to, the use, by paraphrase or direct quotation, of the published or unpublished work of another person without full and clear acknowledgment. It also includes the unacknowledged use of materials prepared by another person or agency engaged in the selling of term papers or other academic materials. Plagiarism may range from isolated formulas, sentences, or paragraphs to entire articles copied from books, periodicals, web sites, speeches, or the writings of other students. Honesty requires that any work or materials taken from another source for either written or oral use must be acknowledged. Any student who fails to give credit for ideas or materials obtained from another source is guilty of plagiarism. Plagiarism, in any of its forms, and whether intentional or unintentional, violates standards of academic integrity. Examples of plagiarism include, but are not limited to:

  • Direct quotation of any source material whether published or unpublished without giving proper credit through the use of quotation marks, footnotes and other customary means of identifying sources.
  • Paraphrasing another person’s ideas, opinions, or theories from books, articles, web sites, etc., without identifying and crediting sources.
  • Borrowing facts, statistics, graphs, diagrams, photographs, or other illustrative or visual materials that are not clearly common knowledge without identifying and crediting sources.
  • Copying another student’s essay test answers or submitting papers written by another person or persons. This includes copying, or allowing another student to copy, a computer file that contains another student’s assignment and submitting it, in part or in its entirety, as one’s own.
  • Buying or selling, or exchanging term papers, examinations, or other written assignments, or any part of them.
  • Offering false, fabricated, or fictitious sources for papers, reports, or other assignments.

2. Cheating

The term “cheating” includes, but is not limited to: (1) use of any unauthorized assistance in taking quizzes, tests, or examinations; (2) use of sources beyond those authorized by the instructor in writing papers, preparing reports, solving problems, or carrying out other assignments; (3) the acquisition, without permission, of tests or other academic material belonging to a member of the College faculty or staff; (4) engaging in any behavior specifically prohibited by a faculty member in the course syllabus or additional written documentation, or, if using the Academic Resource Center testing service, prohibited by the rules of the testing service.

3. Duplicate Submission of the Same Work

Submitting the same work, or parts of the same work, on more than one occasion for academic credit without full citation and prior permission from the instructor(s).

4. False Information and Lying

This includes consciously furnishing false information to other students, faculty members, advisors, staff and administrators of the college offices with the intent to mislead. Instances would include but are not limited to misrepresenting activity outside of the classroom (reports on field work, internships, etc.) or improperly seeking special consideration or privilege (e.g., for postponement of an examination or assignment deadline, etc.).

5. Falsifying Academic Documentation and Forgery

This includes any attempt to forge or alter academic documentation (including transcripts, letters of recommendation, certificates of enrollment or good standing, registration forms, drop/add forms, withdrawal forms, and medical certification of absence) or to falsify other writing in academic matters (e.g., any documentation provided to instructors) concerning oneself or others.

6. Theft, Abuse and Destruction of Academic Property

This comprises unauthorized removal, retention, mutilation or destruction of common property of the college that deprives others of equal access to these materials. Such property includes but is not limited to library materials, laboratory materials, computers and computer software, etc. The theft, mutilation or destruction of another student’s academic work, including books, notes, computer programs, papers, reports, laboratory experiments, etc. also falls under this type of violation. This also Includes making copies of another student’s files without that student’s permission, even if the original files are not destroyed in the process.

7. Unauthorized Use of Technology

The unauthorized use of computers or the college’s computer network (e.g., the unauthorized use of software, access codes, computing accounts, electronic mail and files) or other electronic devices (cell phones, calculators, personal digital assistants, pagers, etc.) when completing course assignments or examinations is prohibited.

8. Aiding and Abetting Academic Dishonesty

This includes intentionally: (a) providing material, information, or other assistance to another person with knowledge that such aid would likely be used to commit any of the proscribed acts noted above; or (b) providing false information in connection with any inquiry regarding academic integrity.

Procedures for Adjudicating Violations of the Code of Academic Integrity

A. Initial Procedure

The course instructor, if possible, should meet with the student to discuss the incident. The student will be informed of the course instructor’s suspicions and will have an opportunity to respond to the allegations. If the instructor is unable to meet with the student, he/she must notify the student by email of the suspicions. The student will have an opportunity to respond to the suspicions by email. If the alleged incident of academic dishonesty occurs while using academic support and/or testing services, the college employee witnessing or involved in the incident will report the suspicions to the course instructor within twenty-four hours. The course instructor will then follow the procedure outlined above.

The instructor decides whether the student has violated the Code of Academic Integrity and, if necessary, assigns a sanction. This determination of responsibility shall be based upon the facts of the incident and whether it is more likely than not that the student is responsible for the alleged violation(s). If a sanction is imposed the course instructor will file a “Notification of Academic Dishonesty” form with the Registrar. Forms are available in the Registrar office and the Public Folders on MyCarroll. The form, the sanction and supporting documentation become part of the Academic Misconduct file.

The student shall be provided written notification of the instructor’s decision and sanction by the Registrar, normally within five (5) school days after the “Notification of Academic Dishonesty Form” has been received in the Office of the Registrar. The student’s academic advisor(s) and, if applicable, athletic or college-sponsored activity coaches will be copied on the notification. Possible sanctions include but are not limited to:

  • Warning: a notice in writing to the student that the student has been found responsible for violating the Code of Academic Integrity.
  • Grade reduction or course failure.
  • Other Sanctions: additional work assignments, community service, participation or completion of college service or educational program, service to the college and/or other related discretionary assignments.
  • One or more semesters of academic disciplinary probation with a transcript notation of “Probation: Academic Integrity Violation”
  • A semester of suspension from the college with the a transcript notation of “Suspension: Academic Integrity Violation”
  • Dismissal from the college with the a transcript notation of “Dismissal: Academic Integrity Violation”

The Academic Misconduct file is confidential and separate from the student’s permanent academic file. First violations of the Code are a part of this confidential record. Second violations are handled on a case by case basis and will become part of the student’s academic file only in those instances when subsequent offences are serious enough to warrant inclusion.

A course instructor who suspects academic dishonesty may ask the Registrar about the student’s prior record in this area. The sanctions imposed for violations of the Code after the first offense shall become increasingly serious with each offense. If the faculty member becomes aware of two or more violations at the same time (e.g. notices that two papers turned in on different dates were both plagiarized) these shall not be treated as a first offense, but as two separate offenses, both a first offense and a second offense, and sanctions will be imposed accordingly. Ignorance of the Code shall have no effect on the sanctions imposed for any violation.

If the alleged incident of academic dishonesty occurs while using academic support and/or testing services, the college employee (student proctor or other college employee) witnessing or involved in the incident will immediately file a formal report of the suspicions with the department director, the course instructor, and the Registrar, in accordance with the process outlined above.

B. Appeal Procedure

During the appeal process, the accused student and faculty/staff member have the right to be assisted by an advisor they choose, at their own expense. The student and faculty/staff member are responsible for submitting and presenting his/her own information and, therefore, the advisors are not permitted to participate directly in any of the appeal process.

Step 1:

Within at least 15 school days of receiving the official notification from the Registrar’s Office, the student may request in writing a review by the Department Chair or a designee of the Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs (Associate Academic Dean) if the faculty member is the Department Chair. The Chair/Dean designee must meet or confer with the student and faculty member within five (5) school days after the student has presented the request for a review to the Chair/ Dean designee. This can be done with all parties present or individually. The Chair/Dean designee must give a resolution in writing to both parties within five (5) school days of the last necessary meeting or conversation. The decision of the Chair/Dean designee shall contain the reasons for his/ her decision. The Chair/Dean designee may uphold the original decision of the faculty member or replace the sanction with another that may be more severe, less severe, or otherwise different. The decision of the Chair/Dean designee must be filed with the Registrar in the Academic Misconduct file.

Step 2:

If the appeal is not resolved to either the student’s or the faculty/staff member’s satisfaction, he/she can proceed to Step 2. The appealing party must present the appeal in writing to the Associate Academic Dean within five (5) school days from the appealing party’s receipt of the response given in the review by the Department Chair/Dean designee.

Step 3:

Within five (5) school days of receipt of the written appeal, the Associate Academic Dean shall meet or confer with the student and faculty member, which may include an attempt to facilitate a resolution of the matter. This can be done with all parties present or individually. After the meeting has taken place the Associate Academic Dean shall then render a written decision within five (5) school days from the date of the last necessary meeting. The decision of the Associate Academic Dean shall contain the reasons for his/her decision. In either instance, the written decision shall be furnished to the parties involved either electronically, by mail or in person. If the decision is mailed, it will be deemed to have been received on the third calendar day (excluding Sunday or Federal holidays) after being mailed. NOTE: the student is responsible for making sure the Registrar’s office has his/her most current local address and phone number. The decision of the Associate Academic Dean must be filed with the Registrar in the Academic Misconduct file.

Step 4:

If either the student or the involved faculty/staff member is dissatisfied with the decision made by the Associate Academic Dean, they may appeal the Associate Academic Dean’s decision to an academic integrity grievance committee by filing an appeal, in writing, with the Associate Academic Dean, stating the reasons for the appealing party’s disagreement with the decision issued by the Associate Academic Dean. The appeal must be presented to the Associate Academic Dean within five (5) school days from the receipt of the Associate Academic Dean’s decision.

Within five (5) school days of receipt of the appeal, the Associate Academic Dean will initiate the process for selecting an academic grievance committee. This will include inviting a written response to the appeal from any non-appealing parties.

The academic grievance committee shall consist of five (5) members. Committee members may not serve as advocates or witnesses for any party to the grievance, or any other grievance involving the student. The members of the committee shall be selected as follows:

  • One tenured faculty member shall be selected by the Associate Academic Dean.
  • One tenured faculty member shall be selected by the Associate Academic Dean from a list of the names of three tenured faculty members submitted by the complainant, after consultation with the respondent.
  • One tenured faculty member shall be selected by the Associate Academic Dean from a list of names of three tenured faculty members submitted by the respondent, after consultation with the complainant.
  • One full-time student shall be selected by the Executive Committee of the Associated Students of Carroll College.
  • One full-time student shall be selected by the Associate Academic Dean, from a list of the names of three full-time students submitted by the complainant after consultation with the respondent.

The Associate Academic Dean shall appoint one faculty member to act as chairperson of the committee. The duties of the chairperson shall be as follows:

  1. Schedule appropriate times and places for committee meetings and hearings;
  2. Inform committee members and the parties to the grievance of the times and places of committee meetings and hearings they are required to attend, and supply them with copies of all documents relating to the grievance and all appeal thereof;
  3. Arrange for the recording of the committee’s hearing;
  4. Maintain committee records; and
  5. Inform the Associate Academic Dean of the committee’s decision.

The academic grievance committee must meet within five (5) school days after committee members have been appointed. At this meeting, the committee shall review the appeal and the original documentation filed in the Academic Misconduct file. The committee may request the parties to appear in order to answer questions from the committee or additional documentation or information.

Within five (5) school days after completion of the committee’s review, the committee shall make its decision and transmit its decision in writing to the Associate Academic Dean. The committee’s decision shall be reached by a simple majority vote.

The decision of the committee shall contain the reasons for the committee’s decision. The committee’s written decision shall be furnished to the parties Involved by the Associate Academic Dean within five (5) school days of receipt by the Associate Academic Dean. The decision of the committee is final. This does not preclude other outside legal action to be taken by either party.

Extensions of time

For good cause shown, the Associate Academic Dean may grant an extension of any deadline contained in this policy. Any request for an extension must be copied to the other party, who will be given an opportunity to respond to the request before it is granted or denied. Extensions may be necessary if the discovery and/or notification of academic dishonesty occurs between semesters or during summer break. The decision to grant such an extension shall be in writing and shall be provided to the parties involved. The written decision shall become a permanent part of the Academic Misconduct file.

Waivers

Any step of this grievance policy, and the time frames in the procedure, may be waived upon written agreements of all parties. The written agreement shall become a permanent part of the Academic Misconduct file.

Burden of Proof

The determination of responsibility shall be based upon the facts of the incident and whether it is more likely than not that the student is responsible for the alleged violation(s).

Confidentiality

All information and discussion of the case is confidential and must remain within the committee and the parties to the grievance.

Formal Appeal Resolution

An appeal is resolved when:

  1. The complainant requests in writing that the appeal be withdrawn, or
  2. When both parties sign a statement that a resolution has been achieved, or
  3. The student or other party with a right of appeal fails to advance the appeal in the required time frames, or
  4. The final step of the formal grievance procedure is completed.

Records

Upon final resolution, all records relating to the appeal shall be forwarded to the Associate Academic Dean, who shall instruct the Registrar to maintain these records in the Academic Misconduct file. All Notification of Academic Dishonesty forms and proceedings records shall be maintained confidentially in the Academic Misconduct file until seven years after the responsible student graduates or permanently separates from Carroll College. In cases where notation on the official transcript, suspension, or expulsion is imposed, the file shall be retained as part of the student’s permanent academic record.

Portions of this policy were adapted with permission from Canisius College.