Academic Honesty

Academic Honesty Policy

Heidelberg University values integrity in academic pursuits.  It expects students to complete their work honestly and to report academic dishonesty.
Dishonesty in any form, including but not limited to academic cheating or falsification on any official college record, will result in disciplinary action.  Academic dishonesty is punished according to the procedures outlined below.
Academic dishonesty is submitting the work of another person as your own, allowing another person to submit your work as his or her own, or assisting another person to do either.  It includes such behaviors as the following:

  1. Plagiarizing.  Plagiarism is quoting from a source or using ideas paraphrased from a source without proper documentation according to the standard set by your instructor.  This includes internet sources and computer sources, such as CD-ROM encyclopedias.  Submitting another person’s work –for example a test, lab report, or paper- as your own is plagiarism.
  2. Giving or receiving assistance during an exam.
  3. Using unauthorized materials during an exam.
  4. Acquiring copies of an exam illegally.
  5. Stealing materials from another person’s files, including computer files, or using such stolen materials.
  6. Using other dishonest methods to complete course work.

Procedure for Dealing with cases of Academic Dishonesty

The following shall be the order of procedure for dealing with cases of academic dishonesty:

  1. If an instructor believes that he or she has appropriate evidence to bring charges of academic dishonesty against a student, the instructor will notify the Provost.  The notification to the Provost will include the evidence for bringing the charge.  While it is the right of the instructor to determine grades, including penalties for academic dishonesty, the instructor will consult with the Provost in order to maintain a consistent administrative approach to academic honesty issues on the campus.
  2. The instructor will notify the student.  When possible, the instructor will meet with the student and discuss the evidence. 
  3. Thereafter, if the instructor is convinced that academic dishonesty has occurred, the student will receive no credit for that grade component, and no makeup for that grade component will be permitted.  The instructor will notify the Chair/Director and Provost of that action, including a summary of the evidence of academic dishonesty.  
  4. Where there is evidence of serious and/or repeated dishonesty, the instructor may recommend to the Provost more serious penalties, as described below.  Such instances might include cheating on examinations or major projects; turning in the work of another person under the student’s name, including purchasing work from other sources; theft of another’s work; or other serious breaches of academic honesty.

Review by the Provost

After receiving notification from the instructor, the Provost will review the evidence to determine if an additional penalty is warranted.   The Provost may impose an additional penalty.  Depending on how serious the incident is and on whether the incident is a first or subsequent offense, one or more of the following penalties may be imposed:

  1. Special research or service assignments appropriate to the case,
  2. A lowered course grade,
  3. Dismissal from the course with a grade of “WF”,
  4. Dismissal from the Honors Program
  5. Probation,
  6. Dismissal from the university.

Appeal to the Academic Policy Committee

If a student wishes to appeal the penalty of the faculty member or Provost, he or she may appeal to the Academic Policies Committee within 48 hours of receipt of the decision.  An appeal may be made if there is new evidence, if the proper procedures were not followed, or if the penalty involves dismissal from the university.
The letter of appeal must state specifically how the decision was in error and must be accompanied by evidence to substantiate that claim. The committee shall investigate the charge of error and respond in writing to the student, the instructor, the Chair/Director, and the Provost, within 15 working days of the receipt of the appeal.
This committee will review the evidence and will make its recommendation for dismissal of charges or for penalties to the Provost.  The Provost will make final determination of the penalty to be assigned.

Appeal to the President of the University

The student has final recourse for appeal to the President of the University.  An appeal may be made only under the same provisions described above.  The President will review the evidence and either uphold or change the earlier decisions.
In all cases, a statement of the action taken against the student will be entered in the student’s file in the Office of Academic Affairs.  A copy will be sent to the instructor and to the student’s advisor.  At the time of graduation, the student may request that the statement of action be removed from the file.