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Academic Integrity

Memorandum #3 - Academic Integrity

Policyholder: Dean of Students
Effective Date: August 10, 1972
Revised: December 2, 1999; March 3, 2012; July 1, 2022
Approved by: President

Academic integrity emphasizes fairness and honesty in academic study and communication and is a shared commitment and responsibility of students, faculty, and administrators.

The faculty and staff of Community College of Philadelphia are dedicated to helping students learn about academic integrity and to develop their abilities to engage in academic study fairly and honestly. These abilities include respecting others’ work through correct citations, learning to quote, paraphrase, and summarize accurately and appropriately, and taking responsibility for doing your own work rather than cheating on a test or assignment or deceiving a professor to get more time on an assignment. For academic support, students are encouraged to use the Learning Lab and  Library Services to their advantage. These services are free and very helpful resources. Please visit the Virtual Student Resource Center website for more information.

STUDENTS RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES

  1. The student has the responsibility to familiarize themselves with and comply with College and class policies on academic integrity, and to seek clarification if needed.
  2. The student has the right to be informed of any alleged violations and possible sanctions concerning academic integrity and to receive due process (fair treatment) concerning those allegations.

VIOLATIONS OF ACADEMIC INTEGRITY

Violations of academic integrity can include, but are not limited to, cheating and plagiarism. Cheating is an intentional effort to deceive or gain an unfair advantage in completing academic work. Plagiarism is the act of using the work of another person and passing it off as your own. Any violation may lead to disciplinary action. Here are common examples of academic integrity violations, including but not limited to:

  1. copying original ideas, images, words or design elements and using them without proper citation or permission of the author.
  2. unauthorized collaboration on an assignment.
  3. deceiving the instructor to get more time for an assignment or examination.
  4. using unauthorized electronic devices or software during an examination.
  5. allowing other students to copy exam responses or homework assignment answers so that they can pass it off as their own work.
  6. stealing an exam and selling it to fellow students.
  7. substantial and deliberate plagiarism on a project or paper.
  8. having a substitute take an exam.
  9. self-plagiarism (the presentation of your own previously published work as original; like plagiarism, self-plagiarism is unethical; learn more here).

JUDICIAL PROCEDURES

The judicial process for issues involving academic integrity follows the standard judicial process detailed in Article IV of the Student Code of Conduct.

ACADEMIC PENALTIES/DISCIPLINARY SANCTIONS

Academic penalties and disciplinary sanctions are progressive. In other words, students who violate the Student Code of Conduct on separate occasions are subject to more severe sanctions with each repeated offense, whether or not the violations are similar in nature.

Any one or more of the following academic penalties or disciplinary sanctions may be imposed upon any student found to have committed an academic integrity violation (*sanctions ii-vi may be imposed by the Judicial Board/Judicial Affairs Officer):

  1. Academic Sanctions – the faculty member may impose an academic penalty as articulated in the class syllabus. These penalties may vary based on the number or severity of the violation(s). Examples of these penalties include, but are not limited to, receiving no credit for an assignment or failing the class.
  2. Warning – Judicial Affairs may issue a verbal or written warning to the student that they are violating or have violated institutional regulations.
  3. Probation – Probation lasts for a designated period of time and includes the probability of more severe disciplinary sanctions if the student is found to be violating any institutional regulation(s) during the probationary period.
  4. Discretionary Sanctions – Work assignments, service to the College or other related discretionary assignments (such assignments must have the prior approval of the Judicial Affairs Officer).
  5. College Suspension – Separation of the student from the College for a designated period of time, after which the student may apply for readmission to the College. The College will then decide on the conditions for readmission.
  6. College Expulsion – Permanent separation of the student from the College. Expulsion requires the approval of the College President.

APPEALS PROCEDURE

The appeals procedure for issues involving academic integrity follows the standard appeals process detailed in Article IV of the Student Code of Conduct.

FACULTY RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES

  1. It is the responsibility of faculty to know and execute College policies regarding academic integrity in a fair, timely, and diligent manner.
  2. It is the responsibility of faculty to inform students of class expectations and assessment guidelines in a timely manner and to include these expectations and assessment guidelines on their class syllabi.
  3. It is the right and responsibility of faculty to participate in a fair and equitable process concerning any allegations of violations of academic integrity.
  4. It is the responsibility of faculty to include a link to the academic integrity policy and a statement clarifying the application of academic integrity criteria to the course in the syllabi. Faculty should help students understand the importance of academic honesty in the learning process relevant to course content. Faculty are encouraged to review the policy at the beginning of the course and reiterate the policy throughout assignments within the course.

REPORTING

When a faculty member believes that a student is deliberately violating the academic integrity policy, it is their responsibility to do the following:

  1. document evidence of suspected wrongdoing and keep records of relevant communications with the student.
  2. contact the student concerning the suspected violation. Remind the student about the consequences of violations as outlined in the course syllabus. Allow the student time to respond.
  3. seek to resolve the matter informally with the student (if appropriate). Faculty may choose to notify their department head and/or the Judicial Affairs Officer about any academic integrity violation, with no sanctions requested.
  4. if there is no informal resolution, submit documented evidence to the Dean of Students office (via the  Behavioral Reporting Form). Severe academic integrity violations should always be submitted. Examples of severe violations include stealing an exam, extensive and deliberate plagiarism or repeated acts of plagiarism, or unauthorized use of a device during a test or exam.
  5. inform the student that the alleged violation has been reported to the College.

Other than College expulsion, disciplinary sanctions shall not be made part of the student’s permanent academic record, but shall become part of the confidential disciplinary record. Cases involving the imposition of sanctions other than College suspension or expulsion shall be expunged from the student’s confidential disciplinary record five (5) years from graduation or last date of attendance.

The sanctions above may also be imposed upon student groups or organizations. In addition, student groups or organizations may be deactivated and lose all privileges for academic integrity violations, including College recognition for a specified period of time and/or have their charter revoked.