Academic Integrity Policy

I.  Opening Statement 

The State University of New York at Fredonia holds that the life of the mind and personal  integrity go hand in hand, and are inseparable. Adherence to this philosophy is essential if we are  to facilitate and promote the free and open exchange of ideas upon which our University mission  relies. An essential component of the academic experience at Fredonia is the conviction that  academic goals must be achieved by honorable means. It is expected, therefore, that all students  attending the State University of New York at Fredonia will support and abide by all provisions  of the following Academic Integrity Policy. It is further understood that by enrolling in courses,  students are agreeing to the rules and regulations set forth below. 
In order to protect the value of the work accomplished by each student and instructor, our  academic community depends upon certain honorable standards of behavior from all its  members. Fredonia trusts all students will refrain from participating in any behavior that will  inhibit the pursuit of honest academic advancement. To help students avoid activities that can be  construed as dishonest or as violations of academic integrity, a partial list of prohibited behaviors  and activities is outlined below. This policy is not intended to limit decisions of faculty of  professional programs that operate under more restrictive policies and/or have externally  monitored procedures for addressing violations of academic integrity. 

II.  Violations of Academic Integrity Policy 

Violations of academic integrity are described within four broad, overlapping categories: Fraud,  Plagiarism, Cheating, and Collusion. Some examples of violations of academic integrity are  described in the four categories listed below. If a student has any questions about what may or  may not be an academic integrity violation, the student should discuss this with their professor. 

 A. Fraud

Behaving deceptively, misrepresenting one's self or another person, and falsifying official  print and/or electronic documents are actions that seriously undermine the integrity of any social institution and may result in criminal prosecution. 

In a University setting, fraudulent behavior includes, but is not limited to: 

1. Forging or altering official school documents, whether in print or electronic  form, such as grade reports or transcripts, enrollment documents, transfer credit  approvals, etc. 
2. Forging or tampering with any University correspondence or medical excuses. 3. Tampering with attendance records, such as one student signing for another  student. 
4. Tampering with or interfering with grading procedures. 
5. Misreporting or misrepresenting earned credentials, including academic status,  class standing, and GPA. 
6. Taking an exam in place of another student. 
7. Failing to disclose necessary information on official University forms. 
8. Falsely claiming that an electronic system or computer equipment is at fault  for the student's inability to complete academic course work (e.g., inability to complete  assignments due to problems with software or the printers/computers in a certain lab) or to complete administrative functions (e.g., inability to make schedule changes via "Your  Connection.") 

B.  Plagiarism 

Plagiarism consists of presenting the work of others as one's own. It is unethical to copy directly the words or work of other authors or artists without giving them credit. It is also unethical to rearrange or add a few words to another author's text while leaving the  majority unaltered or to take an author's unique idea or discovery and to represent it as one's own. 

Specific examples of plagiarism include, but are not restricted to, the following examples: 

1. Copying the work of another author and/or artist without giving proper credit  in the text or reference to the artwork, presentation or performance; neglecting to cite the original in a footnote; and/or failing to identify full and proper documentation in the list of works cited or sampled for presentation or performance. 
2. Implying that another author's words, works, or ideas are one's own. Quoting without the use of quotation marks falsely implies originality and is, therefore, an act of plagiarism. 
3. Incorporating material into a paper or assignment without acknowledgement,  verbatim corrections, or other suggestions that were made by someone other than oneself,  the instructor, or an assigned editor. 
4. Taking information from one source (such as the Internet) and citing it as coming from another source (such as a required text or article). 

C. Cheating 

In all academic situations, any behavior that subverts the purpose of an academic assignment constitutes cheating, whether one actively commits the act of dishonesty on one's own behalf or enables someone else to do so. All materials prepared and/or assigned for a course by an instructor are for the students’ educational benefit. Unless  expressly permitted by the course syllabus, students may not photograph, record, reproduce, transmit, distribute, upload, sell, or exchange course materials without the prior written permission of the instructor. “Course materials” includes all instructor prepared and assigned materials, such as lectures, lecture notes, discussion prompts,  study aids, tests and assignments, and presentation materials such as PowerPoint slides,  Prezi slides, or transparencies and course packets or handouts. (Exceptions to accommodate students with disabilities may be granted with appropriate documentation.)  Students are prohibited from selling to others any materials produced or shared by the instructor as well as any assignments prepared by the student in connection with a course.  Students are also prohibited from uploading to external commercial websites any materials produced or shared by the instructor or any assignments prepared by the student in connection with a course, unless the instructor has given permission for the student to do so.  These course-related materials include, but are not limited to, the course syllabus, lecture notes, PowerPoint slides, assignments, quizzes or exams.

Specific examples of cheating include, but are not limited to, the following: 

1. Copying someone else's work or permitting one's own work to be copied. All  work should be original to the student. Whether involvement in the copying process is  active or passive, these acts constitute violations of academic integrity if a student is at all  complicit. 
2. Using unsanctioned materials, notes, software, and or equipment (such as a programmable calculator).
3. Intentionally providing or seeking questions to an exam that will be given in a  later section or used as a make-up exam. 
4. Communicating or sharing information during an exam obviously constitutes  cheating, as does taking an exam for someone else. 
5. Reusing work from another course without explicit instructor permission. 6. Reusing work in a repeated course without explicit instructor permission. 

D. Collusion

Most colleges and universities support opportunities for collaborative learning. However,  unauthorized collaboration is considered collusion. Unless collaboration is expressly permitted by the instructor, students should work independently. Even when an instructor authorizes collaboration, collusion may still occur. In all cases, work submitted should reflect an individual’s own effort. 

Specific examples of collusion include, but are not limited to, the following situations: 

1. Two or more students study a problem and one student formally writes and/or  types the results, the other members of the group copy the results, and each individual submits the work as their own. 
2. A pair or larger group of students work on a series of problems or tasks, each student completes a portion of the problem set or task, the students combine their work,  and each student submits the entire problem set or task as their own. 
3. A course instructor assigns a task or problem to be completed outside of class  and explicitly instructs students not to discuss the task or problem with one another.   A  pair or larger group of students discuss or work together on the task or problem, and each individual submits the results as their own. 

III. Violations of Academic Integrity Procedures 

A. Classroom Level 

1. An instructor who suspects a violation of the Academic Integrity Policy will collect all information and materials related to the offense. The instructor will contact the student to present their charge(s) and the student will be given an opportunity to answer and explain. If the instructor and the student then agree that no violation has occurred, the matter is resolved and the process ends at this point. 
2. If, however, the instructor finds that a violation has occurred, whether the student admits or does not admit guilt, the matter must be reported to their Department Chairperson using the Academic Integrity Incident Report Form. 

B. Departmental Level  

1. For all cases in which the instructor finds that the student has plagiarized,  cheated, colluded, or committed any act of academic dishonesty (i.e., see II. above), the instructor will submit an Academic Integrity Incident Report Formto the Department Chairperson. The instructor will maintain copies of all information and materials related to the offense and will disseminate the copies per request of the Department Chairperson or the Academic Integrity Review Board. 
2. After appropriate consultation and review of the materials, the Chairperson and the instructor will jointly decide if the case is to be dismissed. If the case is not dismissed due to insufficient evidence of academic dishonesty, the Chairperson and the instructor may attempt to resolve the case at the Department level or send the case on to the Academic Integrity Review Board. If charges are going to be brought against the student,  even at the department level, the Department Chair will contact the Office of Student Conduct to determine if the student has a previous record of academic misconduct on file.  If the student has a prior violation of the Academic Integrity Policy on file, the case must be sent on to the Academic Integrity Review Board for adjudication. The Academic Integrity Review Board will consider repeated violations of any or all of the provisions in the Academic Integrity Policy as grievous. 
3. If the student has no prior record of academic dishonesty, the Chairperson and  the instructor must decide if the case is a serious enough violation to result in suspension or expulsion. If so, the case must be sent on to the Academic Integrity Review Board for adjudication. If the charges are less serious, the Department may propose departmental sanctions including but not limited to one or more of the following sanctions: a formal  warning; grade reduction on the assignment; the requirement that the student redo the assignment in order to receive credit; a grade of zero being assigned to the particular assignment; and/or a failing grade being given for the course. 
4. At this stage of the process, the Department Chair sends the Academic Integrity Incident Report Form to the appropriate Dean to inform the Dean of the alleged academic dishonesty.  In the case of a student enrolled in a teacher education program,  this report should also be sent to the Dean of the College of Education, Health Sciences and Human Services. The Academic Integrity Incident Report Formwill serve as a routing slip and require appropriate signatures. 

C. Notification of Departmental Sanction or Referral for Hearing by the Dean 

1. The Dean will communicate the proposed departmental sanctions or referral to the Academic Integrity Review Board to the student. The Dean will also include a description of the charges to the student. If the student drops or withdraws from the course, judicial proceedings will still continue.  
2. If departmental sanctions are being proposed, the student must accept the  proposed sanctions within 5 working days by signing the Academic Integrity Incident Report Form(if applicable), or appeal (See Section III.D below) of the departmental decision. If the student does not appeal, the departmental sanctions will be imposed and the Dean will send the final version of the Academic Integrity Incident Report Form to the academic department that originated the Academic Integrity Incident Report Form, the Office of Student Conduct, the Associate Provost for Curriculum, Assessment, and Academic Support, the Chair of the Academic Integrity Review Board, and the student’s academic advisor.  
3. Because a student may plagiarize and/or violate the provisions of the Academic Integrity Policy in more than one department, the Office of Student Conduct will maintain the final copy of the Academic Integrity Incident Report Form in the student's file. 

D. Appeal Process

1. Within 5 working days of official notification, the student may decide to appeal the departmental proposed sanctions. If so, they must officially respond and notify (via the student’s official University email account) the Dean that sent the sanction letter.  The Dean should then forward the notice of the student’s intent to appeal to the Provost, the appropriate Department Chair, the Director of Student Conduct, and the Chair of the Academic Integrity Review Board, who will call together the members of the Board for a formal hearing. The Director of Student Conduct will at this time schedule a meeting with the student for clarification of the appeal and hearing process. Throughout the appeal process, the charged student is assumed not responsible and in most  circumstances, they have the right to remain in class. 
2. After the same 5 working days, if the student has not accepted the sanctions or appealed, the University will act upon the assumption that the student has accepted the departmental decisions and any sanctions therein. 
3. If the department has recommended sanctions outside the departmental purview (e.g., suspension or expulsion), or if it is second alleged offense at the university,  the Chair of the Academic Integrity Review Board and Director of Student Conduct will be notified by the Dean and a hearing will be scheduled in a timely manner.  All original materials for the hearing will be transmitted to the Director of Student Conduct and a  copy sent to the Chair of the Academic Integrity Review Board.  
4. With all decisions in the appeal process, enforcement of sanctions and  notification of outcomes to all parties involved will be the responsibility of the office of the appropriate Dean and the Provost. 

E. Academic Integrity Review Board 

1. The Academic Integrity Review Board will be convened to hear and rule on a case under any of the following circumstances: (1) the student who has been charged has chosen to appeal the department decision, (2) for a suspension or expulsion level case, or (3) whenever a second or subsequent academic misconduct violation is submitted. Before the hearing, the student will attend a meeting with the Director of Student Conduct (as  noted in part III.D.1. above) who will fully inform the student about the process and  possible outcomes. The student may decide at this point to drop or continue with the appeal process, if that was the reason for the hearing. If the student drops their appeal related to department sanctions, but it is a second alleged violation, the hearing will still  occur.  
2. A charged student has the right to select a willing student, faculty member, or an administrative staff member of the University to advise them throughout the review process. To avoid conflicts of interest, this advisor may not be selected from the members of the Academic Integrity Review Board. If the student wishes to have an attorney present at the hearing as an advisor, the Chair of the Academic Integrity Review Board will need to be notified at least 72 hours in advance of the hearing. The attorney may advise the student during the hearing, but will not be permitted to respond for the student. 
3. The Chair of the Academic Integrity Review Board will establish an ad-hoc committee of individuals to hear each individual case which comes to the Academic  Integrity Review Board. Members will undergo training before serving on a convened hearing Board. For each hearing, members must include at least one individual from each of the following categories:  
a. The Chair of the Academic Integrity Review Board is a full-time tenured faculty member, appointed by the Provost and subsequently approved by the University Senate. The Chair’s term will be two years with the option of renewal, pending reappointment and approval. The Chair of the Board will have the responsibility of determining whether a hearing should be held, convening a Board for each hearing, presiding over hearings, and preparing written hearing reports. 
b. The Director of Student Conduct, or another representative of the Office of Enrollment & Student Services, will provide the Board access to pertinent student disciplinary records and will participate as an ex-officio, non-voting member of the Academic Integrity Review Board. Before witnesses speak or before questions are asked, the Director of Student Conduct or other representative from the Office of Enrollment & Student Services will present a brief summary of the case, based on the evidence submitted and the interview with the student. 
c. At least one, but preferably two, undergraduate (or graduate, if pertinent) student representatives. These two students should have majors in different academic units. Students may be selected from the pool of students serving as University Judicial Board members. 
d. A Chairperson from an academic department other than the department in which the charge originated. 
e. At least one faculty member, but preferably two, from departments other than the department initiating the charges and the Department Chair in III.D.3.d. above. Such members may be selected from the pool of faculty serving as members of the University Judicial Board. 
f. Other parties and witnesses may be invited by the Chair of the  Academic Integrity Review Board or by the student. These witnesses may be called before the Academic Integrity Review Board to provide testimony. Normally, the faculty member bringing the charges is also invited to the hearing to answer any questions that arise. 
4. After the presentation of the summary of the case by the Director of Student Conduct, the student will answer to the charges by pleading responsible or not responsible, and providing any additional information that they wish. The Chair of the Academic Integrity Review Board (after prior consultation with the assembled Board)  may call witnesses. The student who has been charged may also call witnesses. The student will be given the opportunity to add any additional information relevant to the case before the close of the hearing. All participants in the hearing will be informed that deliberations are to remain strictly confidential. Hearings of the Academic Integrity Review Board will be recorded to provide a record of the proceedings and these recordings will be stored in the Office of Student Conduct. 
5. After the hearing, the Academic Integrity Review Board will deliberate in private and make a formal decision. In the final determination, each of the members of the acting Board, including the Chair of the Academic Integrity Review Board, and excluding the Director of Student Conduct, will cast a single and equally weighted vote.  In the event of a tie vote concluding a case, the Chair of the Academic Integrity Review  Board will cast an additional vote. Voting will be conducted by written ballot, and will be tallied by the Chair of the Academic Integrity Review Board. The results will be disclosed to acting Board members, who are not to disclose either the Board’s determination or any specifics related to the voting. 
6. Within 5 days of the final determination of the case, the Chair of the Academic Integrity Review Board will complete a written hearing report and will send electronic copies to the Provost and the Dean that referred the case. The final report of the Academic Integrity Review Board will include the following: 
a. A determination of “Not Responsible” (no violation of the Academic Integrity Policy has been found) or “Responsible” (the student has been found  responsible for the charged violation on the basis of the evidence submitted or has  admitted guilt). 
b. If the student has been found “Responsible” for violating the Academic Integrity Policy, the penalty must be specified. Sanctions or penalties imposed should be commensurate with the offense and will take into account any previous  violations of the Academic Integrity Policy as evident in the student disciplinary records on file. 
7. Within 5 days, the Provost will send an official notification letter informing the student of the hearing outcome, sanctions imposed, if any, and an explanation of the appeal process. A copy of this letter will also be sent to the Director of Student Conduct. If the student has been suspended or expelled, a copy of the official letter will also go to the President’s Office. On the same day that the Academic Integrity Review Board’s decision is communicated to the student by the Provost, the instructor, Chairperson in whose department the charge originated, Chairperson of the student’s major department,  the student’s academic advisor, and the Vice President for Enrollment & Student Services will be informed of the Board’s decision electronically (i.e. via Fredonia e-mail). If the student is a teacher education student, the Dean of the College of Education, Health Sciences and Human Services, will also be notified. 
8. Should the student decide to appeal the Academic Integrity Review Board’s decision, they may do so in a written justification to the President of the university, but  only if/when the substance of the presented case has changed (i.e., additional and  significant new evidence is discovered) or if there has been some sort of procedural error that would affect the outcome of the hearing. The written appeal must be received within 5 working days following the student notification of the hearing outcome. 

IV.  Maintenance of Academic Integrity Records 

Records of all academic integrity violation cases will be kept in the Office of Student Conduct for 10 years.