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Academic Integrity Policy and Procedures YGCLA/MSB

Approved by Provost Council 2/28/94
Corrections made 3/18/94

I. Preamble

The University of Baltimore comprises a community of students, faculty, administrators, and staff who share a commitment to learning. As the practice of academic honesty is essential to learning, the university has established the following policy for academic honesty. The university's academic integrity policy is derived from the following convictions:

  • Honesty is the foundation of personal integrity
  • Honesty promotes substantive learning
  • Honesty validates the recognition of scholarly achievement
  • Honesty demonstrates respect for the work of others, enabling effective cooperation

All members of our community share responsibility for actively fostering academic honesty, actively discouraging academic dishonesty, and engaging in ongoing discussion of activities that may violate the spirit of honesty.

Although the academic integrity policy places primary emphasis on fostering honesty, it also provides clear consequences for behavior that violates the policy, together with fair procedures for judging alleged cases of dishonesty.

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II. Policy

It is the policy of the University of Baltimore :

  • that the academic performance of each member of the university community should fairly reflect that person's own capabilities and efforts
  • that prohibited actions include cheating, plagiarism, falsification, submission of the same work in different courses, and any attempts to facilitate these activities
  • that members of the University of Baltimore community will not condone actual or attempted cheating, plagiarism, falsification or other academically dishonest activities
  • that members of the community will take appropriate actions to report and resolve any suspected violations of the principle of academic honesty following the procedures established in the appropriate University of Baltimore policies

All members of the university community (students, faculty, administration, and staff) must take academic honesty seriously by being well informed, by contributing to a climate in which honesty is valued, and by taking responsible action to discourage dishonesty in the work of others. No member will condone or tolerate cheating, plagiarism, falsification, or other acts of academic dishonesty, as these activities negatively affect the community and all its members.

Responsibilities of Students

University of Baltimore students will:

  • encourage and support an atmosphere of academic honesty
  • utilize appropriate methods of documenting the sources used in their written work
  • refrain from acts of cheating, plagiarism, or other violations of the academic integrity policy and make all reasonable efforts to prevent the occurrence of academic dishonesty
  • refrain from assisting other students in any attempts to violate the academic integrity policy
  • report acts of academic dishonesty of which they are aware to the responsible faculty member or to the associate vice president for student affairs
  • take the university's on-line course in academic integrity prior to the completion of their first semester at UB in order to ensure that their understanding of academic integrity requirements is complete and consistent with the requirements of the university
  • consult the associate vice president for student affairs or personnel at the Academic Resource Center if they have any questions about this policy or about what constitutes academic dishonesty

Responsibilities of Faculty

University of Baltimore faculty members will:

  • encourage and support an atmosphere of academic honesty
  • take appropriate measures to raise the consciousness of individuals throughout the university community to the importance of maintaining the values underlying academic honesty
  • serve as models of academic honesty
  • emphasize the need for appropriate source attribution in written work
  • emphasize the need for academic honesty in their syllabi
  • indicate in their syllabi if they intend to punish incidents of academic dishonesty through the use of sanctions more severe than awarding of no credit (a grade of 0) for the project or work involved (for example, if their policy will be to assign a failing grade in the course for any violation of the academic integrity policy)
  • clearly inform their classes of the extent to which collaboration and use of outside sources (such as use of texts or notes during examinations or take-home work) are permitted in their tests and assignments
  • appropriately safeguard course material and examinations to prevent the occurrence of academic dishonesty through their inappropriate dissemination
  • take appropriate action when instances of academic dishonesty are suspected
  • consult the associate vice president for student affairs for further information about or clarification of the policy or the procedures relating to academic integrity
  • keep academic integrity inquiries and investigations about particular students confidential, aside from discussions with the student, discussions with the associate vice president for student affairs, and discussions with the relevant faculty administrators, during which the faculty member should not reveal the student's name unless a final determination has been made

Responsibilities of Administrators and Staff

University of Baltimore administrators and staff members will:

  • encourage and support an atmosphere of academic honesty
  • take appropriate measures to raise the consciousness of individuals throughout the university community to the importance of maintaining the values underlying academic honesty
  • encourage discussion of issues involving the principles of integrity and honesty at all levels of the university community
  • take steps to define acts of academic dishonesty, ensure procedures for due process for persons accused or suspected of acts of academic dishonesty, and impose appropriate sanctions on members of the university community found to have been guilty of acts of academic dishonesty
  • provide advice about this policy and about what constitutes academic integrity through the associate vice president for student affairs and personnel at the Academic Resource Center
  • serve as models of academic honesty

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III. Academic Dishonesty

The following are descriptions and examples of behaviors that are inconsistent with the university academic integrity policy:

Cheating

Cheating includes the giving or receiving of any unauthorized assistance or providing or obtaining unfair advantage in any form of academic work. Examples may include, but are not limited to, the use during exams of crib sheets or any other materials not expressly authorized by the professor, unauthorized possession of a test prior to the test date, copying from other students' exams, or talking to other students during exams.

Examples for faculty, administrators, and staff include, but are not limited to, providing an individual student with exam answers in advance or otherwise giving a student an unfair advantage over other students during an exam.

Plagiarism

Plagiarism includes the copying of the language, structure, ideas, or thoughts of another and representing the same as one's own original work. Examples may include, but are not limited to, submission of a purchased research paper as one's own work, paraphrasing and/or quoting material in a paper without properly documenting the source, and copying someone else's language without using quotation marks and/or crediting the original author.

Examples for faculty, administrators, and staff include, but are not limited to, failing to acknowledge the work of another in publications or publishing a student's work as one's own.

Multiple submissions of the same work

It is a violation of the academic integrity policy to submit work that was prepared for one course for credit in another or to submit the same work for credit in two courses, without permission from the responsible professor(s).

Falsification

Falsification includes the statement of any untruth either verbally or in writing with respect to any circumstances relating to one's academic work. Examples may include, but are not limited to, receiving assistance or working as a group on an independent take-home examination, making false statements to avoid taking an examination, engaging in any other type of activity that gives an unfair advantage to an individual student over other students, or providing inaccurate information concerning one's academic standing or status to anyone, inside or outside the university. Knowingly making a false report that another student has violated the academic integrity policy also constitutes falsification.

Examples for faculty, administrators, and staff include, but are not limited to, knowingly falsifying data, misrepresenting information on a resume, or misleading students in terms of compensation or scholarship that they will receive for student assistant work.

Attempts/Facilitation

Any attempts toward or facilitation of any act of academic dishonesty are also cases of academic dishonesty. Examples may include, but are not limited to, knowingly discussing a test or an examination not yet taken with another student who has taken that test or examination, or knowingly discussing an examination already taken with another student who is scheduled to take that examination, but has not yet done so.

Examples for faculty, administrators, and staff include, but are not limited to, facilitating a student's efforts to cheat on an examination, facilitating another in an act of plagiarism, or facilitating the falsification of data or other information.

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IV. Reporting a Probable Violation of the University’s Academic Integrity Policy

Those within the university community shall not condone academic dishonesty because this activity negatively affects the community as a whole and each of its members. In order to encourage a climate of academic honesty, community members will therefore discourage dishonest behavior if they hear of it in general terms and, if aware of more specific behavior that is a probable violation of the academic integrity policy, will report their concerns to the professor in whose class the behavior occurred, the associate vice president for student affairs, the dean, or the provost.

Any person who knows of or has good reason to suspect a violation of the University of Baltimore academic integrity policy by a student or students should notify the faculty member for the class in which the potential violation occurred or the associate vice president for student affairs, who will in turn notify the relevant faculty member.

A faculty member who receives notice, otherwise becomes aware of, or has good reason to suspect that a student in that faculty member's class has violated the academic integrity policy will attempt to contact the student within the following 14 calendar days. The purpose of the contact is to discuss the academic integrity allegations with the student and to hear the student's response. As background for this discussion, the faculty member will refer the student to the sections of the Student Policies and Procedures Handbook relating to academic integrity matters. The discussion may take place in person, by telephone, or by e-mail.

If the faculty member attempts to contact a student to discuss academic integrity concerns and the student (1) fails to respond to the faculty member's attempted contact for a period of 14 calendar days after that contact occurs, (2) declines to participate in discussion with the faculty member, or (3) agrees to participate in the discussion, but subsequently fails to do so, the faculty member will refer the matter to the associate vice president for student affairs.

In light of the student/faculty discussion:

(1) If the faculty member determines that the academic integrity policy has not been violated, the matter will be closed and the work in question graded as if no academic integrity question had been raised.

(2) If the faculty member believes that the academic integrity policy may have been violated, he or she will either resolve the matter with the student and will send a sealed letter to the associate vice president for student affairs as described in (a) below or will refer the matter directly to the associate vice president for student affairs to follow one of the processes described in (b) below:

(a) Resolution through discussion. During the initial discussion or a subsequent discussion, if necessary, the faculty member may determine whether the student is willing to accept responsibility for the actions in question. If the student is willing to accept responsibility, the faculty member will propose a penalty the faculty member considers appropriate in light of the violation and the acceptance of responsibility. If the student is willing to accept that penalty, the student and faculty member will sign a statement reflecting their agreement and the student's acceptance of responsibility. The faculty member will place a copy of the statement in an envelope, seal it, and write on the envelope's exterior the name of the student, the faculty member, the course, and semester in which the course was taken. The faculty member will then forward the sealed envelope to the associate vice president for student affairs. If the associate vice president has no previous envelope bearing the student's name and the student has not previously been found to have violated the university's academic integrity policy, the sealed envelope will be placed on file. If an envelope represents a second allegation of academic integrity violations, the associate vice president will convene a hearing board to adjudicate the second alleged violation.

When a student graduates or after the time allowed for the completion of a program, the associate vice president for student affairs will destroy any sealed envelopes bearing that student's name.

(b) Referral to associate vice president for student affairs. If the faculty member does not wish to resolve the matter through discussion or if an attempted resolution is not successful, the faculty member will submit the allegations to the associate vice president for student affairs. The associate vice president may consider the matter administratively or submit it for a disciplinary hearing before a Hearing Board.

(i) Administrative consideration . The associate vice president may consider the case administratively only if the student is willing to accept responsibility for the behavior, if the student and faculty member did not reach an agreement on a penalty under provision (a) above, if it is an alleged first offense (that is, the student has had no prior findings of violations of the academic integrity provisions and has no sealed envelopes on file in the associate vice president's office), and if the student prefers an administrative determination over appearance before a hearing board. The minimum sanction that will be imposed by the associate vice president through administrative consideration will be no credit (a grade of 0) for the project or work in question. If, however, the syllabus for the relevant course states that an academic integrity violation will result in a more stringent sanction than no credit for the work (for example, if it states that any academic integrity violation will result in a failure of the course), the minimum sanction that will be imposed through administrative consideration will be the sanction provided in the syllabus.

(ii) Hearing board. Unless the case is considered administratively as described above, the associate vice president will submit it for a disciplinary hearing before a hearing board. The hearing board will follow the procedures provided in the Disciplinary Procedures portion of this Handbook.

If grades must be submitted for any student before an academic integrity allegation regarding him or her has been resolved, the faculty member will submit a temporary grade of "T" for that student. Upon completion of an academic integrity inquiry, the temporary ("T") grade will be removed and changed to the grade determined to be appropriate as a result of that inquiry.

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V. Faculty Consideration of Student Violations of the University’s Academic Integrity Policy

When a faculty member knows of or has good reason to suspect a violation of the University of Baltimore Academic Integrity Policy on the part of a student or students, the faculty members shall notify the student or students of his or her view and the reasons therefore.

The faculty member shall determine an appropriate course of action after meeting with the student(s) to discuss the factors involved. At this time the faculty member shall inform the student of the sections of the Student Policies and Procedures Handbook which identify the university's Academic Integrity Policy.

  1. At the subsequent meeting if the faculty member determines that the case should be submitted for a disciplinary hearing, the faculty member shall so inform the student or students.
  2. At the subsequent meeting if the faculty member determines that no such hearing is needed, the faculty member shall make clear an intention to omit credit for the questionable work, and the consequences for determination of a final grade. The effect of omission on the final grade shall be in accordance with the course syllabus.

If the student or students agree with the allegations, the student or students and the faculty member shall sign a statement of agreement. A copy of that statement, with the name of the student or students and the faculty member on the outside of an envelope, will be forwarded to the associate vice president for student affairs. That envelope shall remain sealed unless a second envelope with the student's name is received by the associate vice president. In such an event the associate vice president shall convene a hearing board. Sealed envelopes shall be destroyed after the student or students graduate, or after the time allowed for the completion of a program.

If the student or students do not agree with the allegations, the faculty member shall either grade the questionable work as if the work were unquestionable, or shall submit the case to the second stage for a disciplinary hearing in accordance with the Procedures for Hearing Boards set forth in the Student Policies and Procedures Handbook.

If the students refuses or fails to meet, or fails to respond, within 10 working days to a faculty member's request to meeting, the faculty member shall submit the case to the associate vice president for student affairs, who will convene a hearing board to adjudicate the case.

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VI. Sanctions for Students

Sanctions for the violation of the University of Baltimore academic integrity policy may include one or more of the following:

  • Non-credit for Work - A judgment that specific work violated the academic integrity policy can result in the student receiving no credit (a grade of 0) for that work, with a consequent grade in accordance with the grading policy indicated in the course syllabus.
  • Failure of the Course - A judgment that work or behavior has violated the academic integrity policy can result in failure of the relevant course. The failure of a course for academic integrity reasons will be reflected in a grade of "FX." If the student successfully completes an academic integrity course administered by the associate vice president for student affairs, the grade of "FX" will be changed to a grade of "F."
  • Integrity Paper - The w riting of a research paper may be required in an attempt to educate students about the principles of honesty and integrity.
  • Disciplinary Probation - Disciplinary probation may be assigned for a specific period of time during which a student may not represent the university in any capacity nor hold office in student government or any other student organization.
  • Disciplinary Suspension - Disciplinary suspension precludes a student from registration, class attendance, and use of university facilities for at least one semester but not more than one year. Disciplinary suspension is recorded for the term of suspension in the student's academic record and removed from the record on completion of the suspension. Credits for any course completed during suspension are not acceptable as transfer credits at the University of Baltimore.
  • Disciplinary Dismissal - Disciplinary dismissal is cancellation of the student's registration and all permissions and privileges related thereto. Dismissal is permanently recorded in the student's academic record. A student who has been dismissed is not eligible for re-admission earlier than one year following dismissal and then only with the approval of the appropriate academic dean. Credits for any course completed during dismissal are not acceptable as transfer credits at the University of Baltimore .
  • Disciplinary Expulsion - Disciplinary expulsion is permanent dismissal from the university and cancellation of all permissions and privileges related thereto. Expulsion is permanently recorded in the student's academic record.

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VII. Minimum Sanctions To Be Imposed by Hearing Boards

When a hearing board finds that a student has violated the academic integrity policy, it will impose an appropriate sanction on the student. The minimum sanction for a first violation in the policy is no credit (a grade of 0) for the project or work in question. If, however, the syllabus for the relevant course states that an academic integrity violation will result in a more stringent sanction than no credit for the project of work in question (for example, if it states that any academic integrity violation will result in an FX for the course), the minimum sanction that will be imposed by a hearing board will be the sanction provided in the syllabus. The recommended minimum sanction for a second violation of the policy is expulsion from the university.