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ROWAN UNIVERSITY POLICY


Title: Academic Integrity Policy
Subject: Academic Affairs
Policy No: AA: 2015:02
Applies: University-Wide
Issuing Authority: Office of the Provost
Responsible Officer: Provost / Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs
Adopted: 
Last Revision: 
11/2/20
Last Reviewed: 11/2/20


I.     PURPOSE

The purpose of the academic integrity policy is to provide students, faculty, and staff with guidelines about what behaviors violate academic integrity expectations, and the process for addressing academic integrity problems.

II.    ACCOUNTABILITY

Under direction of the Provost, all University Deans shall implement this policy and all faculty shall ensure compliance with the policy.

III.   APPLICABILITY

This policy applies to all students, faculty and staff of Rowan University.

IV.   DEFINITIONS

  1. Academic Misconduct: Academic Misconduct includes the alteration of grades; involvement in the acquisition or distribution of unadministered tests; and the unauthorized submission of student work in more than one class.
  2. Cheating: Cheating is an act of deception by which a person misrepresents his or her mastery of material on a test or other academic exercise.
  3. Fabrication: Fabrication refers to the deliberate use of invented information or the falsification of research or other findings with the intent to deceive.
  4. Plagiarism: Plagiarism occurs when a person represents someone else's words, ideas, phrases, sentences, or data as one's own work. When submitting work that includes someone else's words, ideas, syntax, data, computer code, visual images, or other non-textual materials, or organizational patterns, the source of that information must be acknowledged through complete, accurate and specific references. All verbatim statements must be acknowledged through quotation marks and in proper citations.

V.    POLICY

  1. The integrity of academic programs is imperative to Rowan University's mission. While acknowledging the social and collaborative nature of learning, the University expects that grades earned by students will reflect individual efforts and achievements.
  2. All members of the Rowan community are responsible for understanding what constitutes academic dishonesty; upholding academic integrity standards and encouraging others to do likewise; and knowing the procedures, rights and obligations involved in the Academic Integrity Policy. Academic dishonesty, in any form, will not be tolerated. Students who commit an act of academic dishonesty are subject to disciplinary sanctions up to and including expulsion from the university.
  3. Violations of academic integrity are classified into four categories based on the seriousness of the behaviors and the possible sanctions imposed.
    1. A Level 1 violation may occur because of ignorance or inexperience on the part of the student(s) committing the violation and ordinarily include a very minor portion of the course work. A sanction for a level 1 violation will not exceed a failing grade on the assignment. Example: Improper footnoting or unauthorized assistance with academic work on the part of a first-year Rowan University student.
      1. Recommended Sanction(s): Make-up assignment at a more difficult level or assignment of no-credit for work in question, required attendance at an Academic Integrity Seminar and/or Academic Integrity Workshop (see Attachment 5 for descriptions), and/or an assignment designated by the instructor that will increase the student's awareness of academic integrity.
      2. Reporting Mechanisms: Matters involving Level 1 violations are normally adjudicated by the instructor and sanctioned accordingly. A record of this violation will be retained in the Office of the Provost in accordance with State record retention guidelines. The student can appeal the determination in accordance with policy.
    2. Level 2 violations involve incidents of a more serious nature which may involve intent or negligence and which affect a significant aspect or portion of the course. A second Level 1 violation will automatically become a Level 2 violation. A sanction for a Level 2 violation will not exceed a failing grade on the assignment. Example: Quoting directly or paraphrasing without proper acknowledgment on an assignment or failing to acknowledge all sources of information and contributors who helped with an assignment.
      1. Recommended Sanction(s): Reduction of grade or failing grade on the assignment, and/or the imposition of other lesser sanctions as deemed appropriate.
      2. Reporting Mechanisms: Matters involving Level 2 violations are normally adjudicated by the instructor and sanctioned accordingly. A record of this violation will be retained in the Office of the Provost in accordance with State record retention guidelines. The student can appeal the determination in accordance with policy. 
    3. Level 3 offenses are even more serious in nature and involve dishonesty on a more significant portion of course work, such as significant portions of a major paper, hourly or final examination. If a student had previously been found responsible either of one or more violations at Level 2 or higher, or of two Level 1 violations, an additional violation at any level will automatically become at least a Level 3 violation. A sanction for a level 3 violation will not exceed failure for the course and Academic Integrity Probation. Example: Copying from or giving assistance to others on an hourly or final examination, plagiarizing major portions of an assignment, using forbidden material on an hourly or final examination, presenting the work of another as one's own, or altering a graded examination for the purposes of re-grading.
      1. Recommended Sanction(s): A failing grade in the course and Academic Integrity Probation and/or the imposition of other lesser sanctions as deemed appropriate.
      2. Reporting Mechanisms: Matters involving Level 3 violations are adjudicated by the Academic Integrity Review Board. A record of this violation will be retained in the Office of the Provost in accordance with State record retention guidelines. 
    4. Level 4 violations are the most serious breaches of academic integrity. They also include repeat offenses below Level 4 violations and violations committed while already on or after returning from Academic Integrity Probation. Level 4 violations can result in suspension or expulsion from the University. Example: Forgery of grade change forms; theft of examinations; having a substitute take an examination; any degree of falsification or plagiarism relating to a senior or graduate thesis; using a purchased term paper; sabotaging another's work; the violation of the clinical code of a profession.
      1. Recommended sanction: Suspension from the University for one or more semesters with a notation of "Disciplinary Suspension" placed on a student's transcript and/or the imposition of other lesser sanctions as deemed appropriate. In the most severe cases, the sanction may be expulsion from the University and a permanent dismissal notation on the student's transcript.
      2. Reporting Mechanisms: Matters involving Level 4 violations are adjudicated by the Academic Integrity Review Board. A record of this violation will be retained in the Office of the Provost in accordance with State record retention guidelines.
  4. Reporting And Adjudication Of Academic Integrity Violations
    1. A student or University employee who has witnessed an apparent act of academic misconduct or has information that reasonably leads to the conclusion that such an act has or will occur must inform the instructor or the Office of the Provost.
    2. Test center proctors, graduate teaching fellows, or other such surrogates acting on behalf of an instructor who believe that a student has attempted or committed an apparent act of academic misconduct must inform the instructor or the Office of the Provost and turn over all physical evidence.
    3. An instructor who believes that a student has attempted or committed an apparent act of academic misconduct must investigate the matter. Instructors are encouraged to consult with staff in the Office of the Provost.
      1. If the instructor then concludes that misconduct has occurred, he or she must obtain the Report of an Academic Integrity Violation (RAIV) form and must complete as much of the RAIV form as possible prior to meeting with the student, including the appropriate type of violation/level.
      2. The instructor must make reasonable attempts to meet with the student in question as soon as possible. When necessary, such meetings may be conducted by telephone, video conferencing, or electronic mail. In this meeting every effort must be made to preserve the basic teacher/student relationship. The student must be given the opportunity to respond to the allegation and to review and sign the RAIV if he/she so chooses. The student's signature signifies that he/she is aware of the alleged violation and understands where information on next steps in the procedure can be found; signing the form does not indicate an admission of responsibility. The student must be allowed to remain in class and complete course work until a final resolution is reached.
      3. For Level 1 and Level 2 violations, the instructor must indicate sanctions on the RAIV before the student signs the acknowledgement section of the RAIV form. (Instructors do not recommend sanctions for Level 3 and 4 violations.) Instructors may recommend sanctions up to and including a failing grade for the assignment depending on the level of violation. Students must not sign the form if they have additional questions or want to consult staff in the Office of the Provost.
      4. At the conclusion of the meeting the instructor must provide the student with a copy of the RAIV form, whether the student signed the form or not. The instructor must then forward the form and all supporting documentation to the Office of the Provost.
        1. Level 1 violations: The instructor will make the determination on whether a violation has occurred and on the penalty, not to exceed a failing grade on the assignment. Appeals go directly to the Office of the Provost and will be heard by the Academic Integrity Review Board.
        2. Level 2 violations: The instructor will make the determination of whether a violation has occurred and on the penalty, not to exceed a failing grade on the assignment. Appeals go directly to the Office of the Provost and will be heard by the Academic Integrity Review Board.
        3. Level 3 and 4 violations: The Office of the Provost will refer the matter to the Academic Integrity Review Board for adjudication at a hearing. The Board will issue a finding and recommendation for the sanction to the Office of the Provost, which will make the final decisions on both rulings and appeals.
        4. Students reported for Level 3 violations who choose to take responsibility for their violations may waive their right to a hearing. (This applies only to students for which it is their first violation.) In such instances, students will acknowledge their violation in writing, and sanctions will be determined by the Office of the Provost (not to exceed the maximum sanction of failure for the course and Academic Integrity Probation for a Level 3 violation). To do so, students must sign and return the form included in their violation report to the Office of the Provost within 5 business days. (Students who do not return the form within that time frame will be scheduled for a hearing in front of the Board.)*
          *(Policy item D. currently is under University Senate review and is considered interim policy pending approval.)
      5. Additional sanctions, including suspension or expulsion from the university, may be considered by the Office of the Provost when requested by the instructor, requested by the academic unit in which the violation occurred, or when stipulated by the academic integrity policy (i.e. the level of the violation or the existence of previous academic integrity violations by the student).
      6. In the case that an instructor must assign a grade before the case is resolved, the instructor must assign a grade of "IN," which will be changed when the case is resolved.
      7. A student may not withdraw from a course in which he or she has committed or has been accused of committing an academic integrity violation. A student found to have withdrawn from a course in which an academic integrity violation is alleged or determined will be re-enrolled in the course upon receipt of a RAIV by the Office of the Provost. In addition, a student found responsible for an academic integrity violation in a course in which the student has participated but has not enrolled will be retroactively enrolled and assigned an appropriate sanction.
  5. Academic Integrity Review Board
    1. The Academic Integrity Review Board is convened for adjudication of Level 3 and 4 allegations of academic dishonesty and Level 1 and 2 allegations that are appealed.
    2. The Academic Integrity Review Board is chaired by the Associate Provost for Academic Affairs. The Chair shall be a participating but nonvoting member of the Board.
    3. The Board is composed of pool of members.
      1. A minimum of two student members from a pool of between 7 and 14 students who are appointed by the Student Government Association. Student members must be matriculated and in good standing with the University.
      2. Two full-time members of the faculty who are appointed by the University Senate President.
      3. Two members of the administration who are appointed by the Office of the Provost.
      4. Two alternates from each category will also be appointed.
    4. When convening the Academic Integrity Review Board for adjudication of an allegation of academic dishonesty, a quorum of four members, including at least one student, one faculty member and one administrator, must be present.
  6. Rights in Hearings
    1. The University disciplinary system is not a criminal or civil law process and the legal procedures applicable in criminal and civil cases will not apply. This policy is not intended to supersede any existing law or regulation.
    2. The burden of proof rests upon the complainant, who must establish, on the basis of the standard of a "preponderance of evidence," that it was "more likely than not" that the accused student is responsible for the conduct violation based on the weight of the credible information presented.
    3. University disciplinary hearings will accord the following specific rights to all students:
      1. To receive written notice of the alleged violation.
      2. To have reasonable access to the case materials prior to and during any hearing.
      3. To have access to advice by an individual of his or her choosing, including an attorney. However, the advisor may not participate in the hearing. The student must sign a FERPA waiver indicating he/she has consented to have the individual present.
      4. To participate in the hearing, present information on his or her own behalf, call witnesses and question information provided at their hearing. This does not include the right to directly question witnesses.
      5. To receive written notification of the decision reached and a list of any sanctions imposed.
  7. Description of Sanction
    1. A student may receive a single or multiple sanctions for violations of the Academic Integrity policy. Factors to be considered in deciding sanctions can include the student’s past academic integrity violation(s) and the nature and severity of the violation under consideration.
    2. Sanctions which may be imposed upon a student found responsible for a Level 3 or Level 4 include the following:
      1. Notation of Academic Integrity Violation on Transcript: When a student fails a course because of a Level 3 or Level 4 violation, this will be noted on the student's transcript. The notation can be removed from the transcript at the student's request provided the student has had no further academic integrity violations for one calendar year (365) days. The student can have a maximum of one such notation removed in his/her career as a Rowan student.
      2. Academic Integrity Probation: Academic integrity probation is a period of one calendar year (365) days indicating that a student is no longer in good standing with the university vis-à-vis academic integrity because of a Level 3 or Level 4 violation. (This status is distinct from Academic Probation, which concerns academic performance.) Any subsequent Academic Integrity Violation while in this status will likely result in suspension or expulsion from the university.
      3. Suspension: Beginning on the date the suspension takes effect, the student is no longer a registered student, may not attend classes, nor receive grades for the period of the suspension. In addition, while in this status, the student is not permitted to be present on the campus or at a University-sponsored event for any reason whatsoever. The suspension will be noted on the student's academic transcript as disciplinary suspension. The notation will remain on the student’s transcript permanently. The student is not entitled to any refund of any fees after published refund dates.
      4. Expulsion: Beginning on the date the expulsion takes effect, the student may never again be a registered student, may never attend classes, nor receive grades. In addition, the student may never be present on the campus nor at a University-sponsored event for any reason whatsoever. The expulsion will be noted on the student's academic transcript as Academic Integrity Expulsion. The student is not entitled to any refund of any fees after published refund dates.

VI. ATTACHMENTS

  1. Attachment 1, Definition Examples
  2. Attachment 2, Academic Integrity Review Board Procedures
  3. Attachment 3, Academic Integrity Summary Chart for Instructors
  4. Attachment 4, Report of an Academic Integrity Violation (RAIV)
  5. Attachment 5, Descriptions of the AIV Sanctions of Workshop versus Seminar


ATTACHMENT 1

DEFINITION EXAMPLES

  1. Cheating
    1. Examples of cheating include but are not limited to:
      • Copying from another person's work including from online resources.
      • Allowing another person to copy your work, including posting your work to online resources.
      • Using unauthorized materials such as a textbook or notebook during an examination or using technology or online resources to illicitly access unauthorized materials.
      • Using specifically prepared materials such as notes written on clothing or other unauthorized notes, formula lists, etc., during an examination.
      • Collaborating with another person during an examination by giving or receiving information without permission.
  2. Plagiarism
    1. Examples of plagiarism include but are not limited to:
      • Quoting, paraphrasing or even borrowing the syntax of another's words without acknowledging the source.
      • Using another's ideas, opinions or theories even if they have been completely paraphrased in one's own words without acknowledging the source with both in-text citations and in a bibliography or works cited section.
      • Incorporating facts, statistics or other illustrative material taken from a source, without acknowledging the source, unless the information is common knowledge.
      • Submitting a computer program as original work that duplicates, in whole or in part, without citation, the work of another.
  3. Fabrication
    1. Examples of fabrication include but are not limited to:
      • Citation of information not taken from the source indicated.
      • Listing of sources in a works cited or reference page or other report not used in that project.
      • Including a non-existent source in a bibliography or works cited
      • Fabricating data or source information in experiments, research project or other academic exercises.
      • Misrepresenting oneself or providing misleading and false information in an attempt to access another user's computer account.
  4. Academic Misconduct
    1. Examples of academic misconduct include but are not limited to:
      • Intentional deceptive action to gain an academic advantage.
      • Submitting written work to fulfill the requirements of more than one course without the explicit permission of both instructors.
      • Changing, altering, falsifying or being accessory to the changing, altering or falsifying of a grade report or form or other university forms, or entering any university office, building or accessing a computer for that purpose.
      • Stealing, buying, selling, giving away or otherwise obtaining all or part of any unadministered test/examination or entering any university office or building for the purpose of obtaining an unadministered test/examination.
      • Coercing any other person to obtain an unadministered test.
      • Substituting for another student or permitting any other person to substitute for oneself to take a test or examination.
      • Altering test answers and then claiming instructor inappropriately graded the examination.
      • Violating the Network and Computer Use Policy, also known as the "Acceptable Use Policy, Network and System Services" established by Information Resources. Currently available at: https://confluence.rowan.edu/display/POLICY/Acceptable+Use+Policy.
    2. Below are some examples of violations listed in the policy. Students should refer to the policy for the full list of violations.
      • Each user is solely responsible for all functions performed from his/her account(s) on any system.
      • No user may violate Federal Copyright Law. This means he/she may not alter, copy, translate, transmit, or receive software, music, images, text, or any other information licensed to or copyrighted by another party unless the license or copyright explicitly permits he/she to do so.
      • No user may attempt to monitor another individual's data communications, nor may he/she read, copy, change, or delete another individual's files or software, without the prior permission of the owner.
      • No user may send messages that are likely to result in the loss of the recipient's work, system downtime, or otherwise compromise a remote user's system. This includes, but is not limited to, redistribution of computer viruses or trojan horses.


ATTACHMENT 2

ACADEMIC INTEGRITY REVIEW BOARD PROCEDURES

  1. Overview of Hearing Process
    1. Level 1 and 2 violations are adjudicated by the instructor and reported to the Office of the Provost. The Office of the Provost determines whether the student has committed a prior violation and adjusts the level of violation accordingly. The Academic Integrity Review Board annually reviews reports of Level 1 and 2 violations to confirm that classifications of violations and subsequent sanctions that were imposed were appropriate. Level 3 and 4 violations are referred directly to and adjudicated by the Academic Integrity Review Board.
    2. The possible findings and outcomes of hearings conducted by the Academic Integrity Review Board are summarized below. Academic Integrity Violation is abbreviated as AIV.
    3. Appeal of Level 1 Violation

      Possible Findings

      Outcomes

      Student is not responsible for an AIV.

      Student is cleared. Grade must be recalculated without the penalty for the alleged violation.

      Student is responsible for a Level 1 violation.

      Level 1 sanctions are upheld or may be adjusted by the Office of the Provost. The Hearing Board may recommend a sanction for consideration by the instructor or Office of the Provost.

    4.  Appeal of Level 2 Violation

      Possible Findings

      Outcomes

      Student is not responsible for an AIV.

      Student is cleared. Course grade must be recalculated without the penalty for the alleged violation.

      Student is responsible for a lesser (Level 1) violation.

      Student is responsible for a lesser offense. Penalty is lowered as appropriate and course grade is recalculated.

      Student is responsible for a Level 2 violation.

      Level 2 sanctions are upheld or may be adjusted by the Office of the Provost. The Hearing Board may recommend a sanction for consideration by the instructor or Office of the Provost.

    5. Level 3 and Level 4 Sanction Hearings

      Possible Findings

      Outcomes

      Student is not responsible for an AIV.

      Student is cleared. Grade is recalculated without the penalty for the alleged violation and entered to replace the Incomplete.

      Student is responsible for a lesser (Level 1 or Level 2) violation.

      Student is responsible for a lesser offense. Penalty is determined as appropriate. Course grade is recalculated and entered to replace the Incomplete.

      Student is responsible for a Level 3 violation.

      Level 3 sanctions are recommended as appropriate.

      Student is responsible for a Level 4 violation.

      Level 4 sanctions are recommended as appropriate.

  2. Additional Procedural Guidelines
    1. For matters not being adjudicated by the Academic Integrity Review Board (Levels 1 and 2), the Office of the Provost will conduct a review to determine whether the student has any prior violation and then determine appropriate additional procedures.
    2. When applicable the Office of the Provost will be responsible for providing both the student and the instructor with proper notice concerning their participation in a hearing before the Academic Integrity Review Board. In addition, notice of the results of hearings will be provided. In the event that either the student or the instructor does not attend a scheduled hearing, the matter will be heard based on the written record and the information provided by the party in attendance.
    3. Hearings conducted by the Academic Integrity Review Board will be closed to all members of the campus and outside community except those directly involved with the case.
    4. The burden of proof rests upon the complainant, who must establish, on the basis of the standard of a "preponderance of evidence," that it was "more likely than not" that the accused student is responsible for the conduct violation based on the weight of the credible information presented.
    5. Any student appearing at a hearing before the Academic Integrity Review Board for adjudication of an allegation of academic dishonesty may challenge the assignment of any member of the board to his/her case. Upon hearing the details of the challenge, the Chair will either uphold or deny the challenge.
    6. A Board member will withdraw from adjudicating any case in which he/she cannot reach a fair and objective decision.
    7. Because legal procedures will not be formally applied, the Chair will make all determinations on questions of procedure and admissibility of information presented and will not be excluded from hearings or Board deliberations except that s/he will not vote. The Chair will exercise control over the manner in which the hearing is conducted to avoid unnecessarily lengthy hearings and to prevent the harassment or intimidation of witnesses. Anyone who disrupts a hearing or who fails to adhere to hearing procedures may be excluded from the proceeding.
    8. The accused student may submit a written statement to the Board prior to the hearing. Submission of such a statement is not a substitute for participation in the hearing. The student may also provide, in advance or during the hearing, additional documentation that is directly relevant to the case.
    9. With advance approval from the Academic Integrity Hearing Board, the accused student is allowed to call witnesses to present testimony that is directly relevant to the case. Character witnesses are not permitted. The student must sign a FERPA waiver indicating consent to have the witness present. The witness will be called into the hearing only to present testimony and to be questioned by the Board. The student may not address the witness or the Board while the witness is present. If the witness is a Rowan University student, no immunity is implied; any information provided may be used in subsequent hearings. The witness will be informed that he/she cannot be compelled to appear, stay at the hearing, or give any testimony if unwilling. The witness will sign a statement to that effect.
    10. The Board will review all materials and hear all information pertinent to the case from the complainant, the accused and all witnesses. Members of the Board, including the Chair, will be free to ask relevant questions in order to clarify information or resulting issues.
    11. After hearing all the information, the Board will deliberate privately until a decision is reached by a majority vote. A tie vote will result in a finding of "not responsible."
    12. If the student is found "responsible" the Board will recommend the appropriate sanctions to be imposed.
    13. Cases heard by the Academic Integrity Review Board that result in a finding that the student is responsible for an academic integrity violation are automatically reviewed by the Vice President for Student Affairs, who reviews the case and findings and provides a final decision. This will be the final step in the adjudication process.
    14. Following the hearing, the Office of the Provost will provide the accused student with written notification of the decision reached and a list of any sanctions imposed. If the student is found "responsible," a record of the decision will be maintained in the Office of the Provost.

ATTACHMENT 3

ACADEMIC INTEGRITY SUMMARY TABLE FOR INSTRUCTORS



ATTACHMENT 4

REPORT OF AN ACADEMIC INTEGRITY VIOLATION (RAIV)

Instructions for downloadable form:
1) Go to the link, see download at bottom of screen
2) Go to top of screen, click on Edit Document
3) Click/Select boxes in the form
4) Print or email form to the Provost Office.

 


ATTACHMENT 5

Descriptions of the AIV Sanctions of Workshop versus Seminar


The Academic Integrity Workshop addresses skills needed to avoid plagiarism. Students learn and apply skills regarding proper citations, summary of information, appropriate paraphrasing, and synthesis of ideas. Workshops include in-class exercises (as opposed to a “take-home” assignment). The exercises present students with examples of plagiarism of source materials, and students learn to identify how the examples reflect plagiarism.

The Academic Integrity Seminar is ethics-based and includes group discussion regarding decision-making with respect to academic integrity principles. Students complete a “take-home” assignment for which they reflect on their violation and the strategies they will employ in the future to make better decisions with respect to academic integrity. 

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