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PS-03.A.19 - Academic Honesty Policy

​EFFECTIVE DATE: May 04, 2015

ISSUE #: 5

PRESIDENT:​  William Flores

PURPOSE 

This PS states the University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) policy on Academic Honesty.

DEFINITIONS

Written communication or notification: Refers to communication between parties using official university email accounts. 

POLICY 

3.1 Principles 

3.1.1 Academic Honesty Code

The Academic Honesty Code is the University's standard of honesty. The code states, "Students must be honest in all academic activities and must not tolerate dishonesty." 

3.1.2 Faculty Responsibility

Faculty members are responsible for knowing the principles and procedures of the Academic Honesty Policy, and for enforcing the policy when academic honesty violations occur. Faculty members must also remind students of the Academic Honesty Policy and help them comply with it. 

3.1.3 Student Responsibility

Students are responsible for maintaining the academic integrity of the University by following the Academic Honesty Policy. Students are responsible for doing their own work and avoiding all forms of academic dishonesty. 

3.2 Academic Honesty Violations

The most common academic honesty violations are cheating and plagiarism. 

Cheating includes, but is not limited to: 

  • Submitting material that is not one's own. 
  • Submitting substantially similar material in more than one course, even if it is one’s own work, without the instructor’s permission. 
  • Using information or devices that are not allowed by the faculty member. 
  • Obtaining and/or using unauthorized material. 
  • Fabricating information. 
  • Violating procedures prescribed to protect the integrity of a test, or other evaluation exercise. 
  • Collaborating with others on assignments without the faculty member's consent. 
  • Cooperating with or helping another student to cheat. 
  • Having another person take an examination in the student's place. 
  • Altering exam answers and requesting that the exam be re-graded. 
  • Communicating with any person during an exam, other than the faculty member or exam proctor. 

Plagiarism includes, but is not limited to: 

  • Directly quoting the words of others without using quotation marks or indented format to identify them. 
  • Using sources of information (published or unpublished) without identifying them. 
  • Paraphrasing materials or ideas of others without identifying the sources. 

PROCEDURES 

4.1 Resolution of Academic Honesty Violations

A student involved in an academic honesty proceeding may continue to attend all classes until the matter is resolved. 

4.1.1 Action Initiated by the Faculty Member

If a faculty member believes a student has committed an academic honesty violation, the faculty member may request a meeting with the student as soon as reasonably possible to attempt to resolve the incident. If the faculty member determines a violation has occurred and/or a penalty has been assigned, he or she will send the student a copy of this policy statement to the student’s official university email account, complete an Academic Honesty Report, and forward a copy to the faculty member's chair and the Office of the Dean of Students. The faculty member may assign a penalty; see section 2.5. If a penalty is assigned, the faculty member will send the student a copy of this policy statement and a completed Academic Honesty Report. If appropriate, the faculty member will file a Withdrawal Prevention form notifying the Registrar’s Office that the student may not withdraw from the class. The faculty member will send these documents to the student’s official university email account and provide a copy to the faculty member's chair.

In the event that a faculty member files an Academic Honesty Report but is no longer at UHD to meet with the student and/or address a student appeal, the student will go directly to the department chair. For programs that do not have a department chair, the student will appeal to the program director of the program in which that course is housed. 

4.1.2 Appeal Procedures

The student is encouraged to communicate with the faculty member before starting the appeal process. The student may appeal to the faculty member's department chair. For programs that do not have a department chair, the student will appeal to the program director of the program in which that course is housed. If the student does not appeal, the decision of the faculty member stands and a copy of the Academic HonestyReport will be forwarded by the faculty member's chair to the Office of the Dean of the faculty member's college and to the Office of the Dean of Students, where it will be filed for future reference. The student may appeal the department chair’s decision (or the program director’s decision, if applicable) to the Office of the Dean. The student may appeal the Office of the Dean’s decision to the Student Discipline Committee. The decision of the Student Discipline Committee is final. 

4.1.2.1 Appeal to the Department Chair

If a student does not agree with the faculty member’s Academic Honesty Report and/or assigned penalty, the student must submit a written appeal to the department chair within 15 working days (excluding Saturdays, Sundays and university holidays) of receiving the Academic Honesty Report filed by the faculty member. For programs that do not have a department chair, the student will appeal to the program director of the program in which that course is housed. The department chair (or program director, if applicable) may request a meeting with the faculty member and the student. Within 15 working days (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and university holidays) of receiving the appeal, the department chair (or program director) must make a decision (uphold, reject, or modify the penalty assigned by the faculty member) and communicate it to all stakeholders. The department chair (or program director) will notify the student, the faculty member, and the Office of the Dean of the faculty member's college. Within ten working days (excluding Saturdays, Sundays and university holidays) of the chair's (or program director’s) decision, the student or the faculty member may appeal the chair's (or program director’s) decision to the Office of the Dean of the faculty member's college. If the decision is not appealed, the chair (or program director) will notify the Office of the Dean of Students. 

4.1.2.2 Appeal to the Office of the Dean

Within ten working days (excluding Saturdays, Sundays and university holidays) of the department chair's (or program director’s) notification to the student that a penalty has been assigned, the student or the faculty member may submit a written appeal to the Office of the Dean of the faculty member's college. This written appeal should ask the Office of the Dean to review the chair's (or program director’s) decision and explain why the student or the faculty member believes that the chair's (or program director’s) decision was wrong. Within ten working days (excluding Saturdays, Sundays and university holidays) from the time the written appeal is received, the Office of the Dean will determine if the chair's (or program director’s) action should be upheld, rejected, or modified and will notify the student, the faculty member, the department chair (or program director), and the Office of the Dean of Students of the decision. Within ten working days (excluding Saturdays, Sundays and university holidays) of the Office of the Dean's decision, the student may appeal that decision to the Student Discipline Committee. 

4.1.2.3 Appeal to the Student Discipline Committee

If the student requests a hearing before the Student Discipline Committee, the hearing will be conducted according to the procedures specified in PS 04.A.01 Student Rights and Responsibilities

4.2 Maintenance of Academic Honesty Reports

The Office of the Dean of Students will maintain a record of each Academic Honesty Report filed on a student. Faculty members or administrators investigating allegations of academic honesty violations may request that the Office of the Dean of Students release to them any previous reports that have been filed on the student against whom the current allegations are being made. 

4.3 Penalties

The penalty for academic honesty violations will be left to the discretion of the faculty member and may be modified upon appeal. The penalty will be consistent with the infraction. Giving the penalty of an F in a course should be given in instances of multiple and/or flagrant violations. When an academic honesty violation includes multiple and/or flagrant violations, such as having a substitute take an exam or stealing an exam, the faculty member shall also refer the matter to the Office of the Dean of Students for disciplinary action pursuant to the Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy. The Office of the Dean of Students may also initiate disciplinary action against a student with repeated academic honesty violations.

EXHIBITS

There are no exhibits associated with this policy.

REVIEW PROCESS

Responsible Party (Reviewer): Senior Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs and Provost 

Review: Every five years, or as necessary 

Signed original on file in Employment Services and Operations.

POLICY HISTORY

Issue #1: 05/22/1984

Issue #2: 06/11/1986 

Issue #3: 06/18/1988 

Issue #4: 11/15/1993

Issue #5: 06/22/2015 

REFERENCES 

Academic Honesty Report

Withdrawal Prevention Form

PS 04.A.01 Student Rights and Responsibilities​​

Last updated 3/14/2022 5:48 PM