This document defines terms, establishes policy, and outlines the process for adjudicating perceived and/or actual violations of academic honesty at GHC.
Students, faculty, staff, and administrators at GHC are equal members of the larger academic community. The Academic Integrity policy serves as a guide for ethical decision-making within that community. Faculty, staff, and administrators have a responsibility to model ethical collaboration for students, and students have a responsibility to make judicious choices regarding authorship and work ethic as representatives of GHC, the USG, and as participants in the legacy of academic scholarship.
These definitions are not intended to be exhaustive, and cases may arise that fall under the heading of academic dishonesty without being specifically named or detailed here.
- Academic Integrity
- The adherence to ethical and professional principles, standards, and practices by individuals or institutions in education, research, and scholarship. Within this document, the terms academic integrity and academic honesty are synonymous.
Attempting to gain advantage by working outside of an ethical standard constitutes cheating. Various forms of cheating may include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Giving or receiving unauthorized help with any assignment, including before, during, or after an examination
- Using notes or texts during a test, quiz, or exam period, unless specifically approved by the instructor
- Non-verbal communication or signaling that conveys information during a test, quiz, or exam period
- Use of personal electronics (phone, watch, etc.) during a test, quiz, or exam period, unless specifically approved by the test proctor
- For tests, quizzes, or exams given via remote delivery, navigating away from the test source for any reason may constitute cheating, unless specifically approved by the instructor.
- For tests, quizzes, or exams given via remote delivery, violating the terms of the monitoring software or the directions of the proctor may constitute cheating, unless specifically approved by the instructor.
- Unauthorized collaboration: occurs when two or more people work to complete an assignment that is intended to be completed individually.
- Contract cheating: when a person contracts with a third party to produce work for which they themselves will take credit.
- Hearing Officer
- Any individual given the authority to render a decision which results in a sanction for misconduct.
- It is a violation of academic honesty to misrepresent material or fabricate information in an academic exercise, assignment or proceeding (e.g., false or misleading citation of sources, the falsification of the results of experiments or of computer data, false or misleading information in an academic context in order to gain an unfair advantage).
- Appropriation of ideas, data, or methods from others without permission or acknowledgment, particularly relating to the music industry and IT sector.
Plagiarism is a broad term that describes a range of unethical behaviors that may occur in an academic setting. At its most basic, plagiarism is the act of adopting the work of someone else as one’s own. Some of the most common variations of plagiarism may include the following:
- Submitting the work of another person as one’s own
- Paraphrasing or summarizing of the works of another person without acknowledgment
- Quoting the work of another person without citation
- Using the research of another person without that person’s permission
Variations of plagiarism may include, but are not limited to:
- Plagiarism by aggregation: a paper may cite sources properly, but the paper contains almost no original work
- Self-plagiarism: submitting one’s own work that has already received credit or fulfilled an assignment in another course without express consent of the instructor, even if changes have been made to the original submission. If the student wishes to continue a research project or examine a previously studied issue from a new angle, it is the student’s responsibility to seek the instructor’s approval first.
- Inadvertent plagiarism: failure to credit sources or include citations due to forgetfulness, distraction, or lack of understanding of the procedure.
- Copy/Paste plagiarism: taking a large proportion of material directly from an internet source, word-for-word, without proper citation or acknowledgement.
- Synonym plagiarism: replacing single words or phrases with synonyms in order to present another’s work as one’s own.
- Records Manager
- The designated entity or contracted service charged with the role of preserving and protecting records of academic integrity violations. The records manager adheres to the security and confidentiality protocol outlined in the IT Data Classification and Security Policy (IT.PO.240).
- Disciplinary action or consequence after a student is found to be in violation of the academic integrity policy.
- Written notice
- Communication through institutional email addresses or a printed letter delivered to the address on record. Written notice becomes a matter of public record and should adhere to all privacy and record-keeping policies as outlined in GHC IT policies.
Content / Policy
In matters of academic dishonesty, ignorance is not a valid defense. The student is responsible for understanding the ethical expectations of the college, including legitimate use of sources, appropriate exam procedures, and the consequences of violating these responsibilities. The Academic Integrity Policy must be referenced in the course syllabus for every course, and it must be housed in an accessible location on the GHC website.
Due Process for Students Suspected of Academic Integrity Policy Violations
A student suspected to be in violation of the Academic Integrity Policy has the right to due process. In such cases, the instructor is considered the hearing officer and should follow the three steps of required due process:
- The hearing officer gives the student written notice of the alleged violation(s) within 14 days of the incident.
- The student is given a written explanation of the alleged violation, by the hearing officer.
- The student may submit a written response to the hearing officer within 14 days of the hearing officer’s written explanation.
At each stage of this process, the hearing officer is responsible for reporting to the Records Manager, according to protocol established by that entity or service, and following the expectations for data trustees, data stewards, and data users within the college as outlined in the IT policies and standards.
As a result of an alleged academic integrity violation, an instructor may determine punitive action and/or require the student participate in additional education. An instructor may determine punitive action up to and including a grade of F for the course.
An appeal is an opportunity for a student to seek appropriate due process and new findings after a hearing officer has rendered a decision. Appeals must be submitted in writing by the last day of the term in which the violation occurred.
Appeals based solely on the assertion of innocence will not be considered. Appeals of the hearing officer’s decision may be made under the following circumstances:
- The student feels there is a legitimate conflict of interest or bias with an individual serving as a hearing officer;
- A request to introduce new and compelling evidence which was not available at the time of a hearing and which could apparently result in a different final decision;
- The specific citation of a violation of due process as it is defined in this policy;
- The documentable failure of the decision to comply with specific GHC or USG policies;
- The documentable error of facts substantial enough to apparently result in a different final decision; or
- A mercy appeal requesting a less severe sanction.
Appeals Submissions Procedure:
- Appeals of a decision by an instructor are to be submitted to the division chair.
- Appeals of a decision by a division chair are to be submitted to the dean of the school.
- Appeals of a decision by a dean are to be submitted to the chief academic officer.
- The decision of the chief academic officer may be reviewed by the president upon request by the student.
- The decision of the president is final, and may not be appealed.
No appeal will be considered if it violates this order of operations. Appeals are generated by the student sending a written request for appeal, including all details and facts of the case at that point, and including the decision of the original hearing officer. All steps of this process must be reported to the records manager, according to protocol established by that entity or service, and following the expectations for data trustees, data stewards, and data users within the college.
The hearing officer is responsible for requesting a records search from the records manager in order to determine if a student has a record of prior violations. If the student has been sanctioned for one previous violation, that may impact the severity of the hearing officer’s decision in the current case. If this is the third violation of the academic integrity policy, it becomes a violation of the Student Code of Conduct and follows that policy.
REPORT AN ACADEMIC INTEGRITY VIOLATION