Academic Dishonesty

Students attending South Texas College are responsible for adhering to standards of academic integrity. Academic integrity is the pursuit of scholarly activity in an open, honest and responsible manner. Academic integrity is a basic guiding principle for all academic activity at South Texas College and students are expected to act in accordance with this principle. Failing to adhere to academic integrity constitutes academic dishonesty. Academic dishonesty is considered to be a violation of the behavior expected of a student in an academic setting as well as a student conduct violation. A student found responsible for academic dishonesty is subject to appropriate academic penalty as determined by the faculty member. Students who engage in academic dishonesty also face additional sanctions from the Office of Student Conduct, including expulsion from the College, as outlined in the South Texas College Code of Student Conduct.

Students are responsible for adhering to course requirements as specified by the faculty member in the course syllabus. Students assume full responsibility for the content and integrity of the coursework they submit. Information from instructors regarding the rules and guidelines for examinations, papers, projects, presentations, and other assignments are included in the course syllabus.Academic dishonesty or academic misconduct that occurs in relation to a formal academic exercise is defined below:

  • Cheating – Using or intending to use unauthorized materials, information, notes or study aids in any academic exercise; or any other actions taken to gain unfair advantage over others.
  • Plagiarism – Using someone else’s words, ideas or images and submitting that work for credit as if it were one’s own without appropriate acknowledgment to the author.
  • Multiple Submissions – Multiple submissions are submissions of the same or substantially the same work for credit in two or more courses, including but not limited to courses being retaken for credit. Multiple submissions include the use of any prior academic effort previously submitted for academic credit at this or a different institution. Multiple submissions will not include those situations where the prior written approval by the instructor in the current course is given to the student to use a prior academic work or endeavor.
  • Fabrication – The intentional and unauthorized falsification or invention of information or citation in an academic exercise.
  • Collusion – Unauthorized collaboration with another person in the preparation of an academic assignment. All assignments are to be completed individually unless the course instructor indicates otherwise.
  • Complicity – Assisting or attempting to help another student commit academic dishonesty.
  • Failing to Report Academic Dishonesty – Failing to report an incident of academic dishonesty to your course instructor.

Student Conduct, Discipline, and Due Process Rights

In these cases faculty maintain (initial, original) jurisdiction over these matters and may administer discipline in accordance with class syllabi and program/ department standards. Faculty are required to notify the student of their right to appeal any imposed sanctions as described within The Code of Student Conduct under Section 8: Student Discipline in the Classroom. Faculty are encouraged to notify the Office of Student Conduct of instances of academic dishonesty to ensure that institutional standards for academic dishonesty are maintained.

Due Process Rights

  1. In instances where a student is alleged to have committed a violation of academic dishonesty, the instructor of record will inform the student at the earliest possible date after becoming aware of the violation.
  2. The student may request a meeting to review the information that was used to determine that a violation has occurred.
  3. The student may appeal the decision of the course instructor to the appropriate program chair. This appeal must be made in writing and received by the program chair within 5 days of the student receiving notice of the course instructor’s decision.

Both the faculty member and the student have to right to request mediation services from the Office of Ombuds Services to help facilitate the discussion. The Office of Ombuds Services will serve in the capacity of third party neutral and will not be placed in a position to determine if the student has committed an act of academic dishonesty or violation of the Code of Student Conduct.