Each college and university in Wisconsin has its own set of rules that reference academic integrity. Of course, these rules vary depending on the school, but at the core of each policy, schools promote honesty and responsibility in all scholarly endeavors.
When an institution suspects that you have somehow violated its academic integrity policy, you will be required to undergo the disciplinary process. This process generally entails an investigation and/or hearing to determine if you are “responsible” for committing the misconduct you were accused of.
If your school happens to determine that you're responsible for academic misconduct, here's some good news: you have the right to appeal. I've provided all the information you need to know about academic appeals and the appeals process. If you have further questions, don't hesitate to contact the Lento Law Firm today.
What is an Academic Appeal?
An appeal is a letter that contests the validity of a school's adverse disciplinary decision. When an appeal is filed, a panel is responsible for reviewing the initial decision and your reason for why this decision is unjust. Then they will conduct a hearing to ultimately decide if there is a valid reason to affirm your appeal and reverse or reform the decision.
When is it Appropriate to Appeal?
You should appeal if you genuinely believe that you didn't do what you were accused of. I've taken on the role of an appeal advisor for a number of students, and I can attest to the fact that a minor misunderstanding or misjudgment can snowball into a serious problem for students. From faulty plagiarism detection software to group projects gone wrong, I can assure you that innocent students get accused of academic misconduct all the time. You shouldn't be labeled a cheater for something you didn't do. This is why the appeals process exists.
Another reason to appeal is if you feel your sanction is too harsh. The severity of a sanction should be proportionate to the action you committed.
You should not appeal if you have admitted guilt in any capacity to the school. If your reason for appealing is to give the panel an explanation as to why you committed academic misconduct, you're wasting your time. Being unhappy with a determination isn't enough to justify an appeal in the eyes of an appeals panel. An element of injustice must be involved.
Here are some other reasons for appealing that won't be relevant to the panel:
- You were under stress when the incident occurred
- You did not realize you were violating your school's policies
- Other students did what you did, but didn't get caught
- Your professor didn't tell you it was against school policy
Overall, the appeals process only concerns whether the violation occurred, not why it occurred.
There are many perks to getting an attorney to guide you through this process. If you aren't confident in your writing skills or don't know where to start, you can communicate your ideas to an attorney. They can craft an appeal that is clear, concise, and detailed and that describes your account of events convincingly. This will maximize the chances of your appeal being granted.
Wisconsin Academic Appeal Advisor
Being falsely accused of academic misconduct can throw a wrench in your plans to graduate. When your college or university makes a decision that hinders your academic progress, you have every right to appeal. Attorney Joseph D. Lento has successfully helped a wide range of students in all stages of their educational journey prevail in the appeals process. Contact him today at 888-535-3686 to get back on track.
- Alverno College
- The Art Institute of Wisconsin
- Bellin College
- Beloit College
- Blackhawk Technical College
- Bryant and Stratton College Glendale
- Bryant and Stratton College Milwaukee
- Bryant and Stratton College Wauwatosa
- Cardinal Stritch University
- Carroll University
- Carthage College
- Chippewa Valley Technical College
- College of Menominee Nation
- Concordia University Wisconsin
- DeVry University Wisconsin
- Edgewood College
- Fox Valley Technical College
- Gateway Technical College
- Globe University Appleton
- Globe University Eau Claire
- Globe University Green Bay
- Globe University La Crosse
- Globe University Madison East
- Globe University Madison West
- Globe University Wausau
- Herzing University Brookfield
- Herzing University Kenosha
- Herzing University Madison
- ITT Technical Institute Green Bay
- ITT Technical Institute Greenfield
- ITT Technical Institute Madison
- Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College
- Lakeland College
- Lakeshore Technical College
- Lawrence University
- Madison Area Technical College
- Madison Media Institute
- Maranatha Baptist Bible College
- Marian University
- Marquette University
- Mid State Technical College
- Milwaukee Area Technical College
- Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design
- Milwaukee School of Engineering
- Moraine Park Technical College
- Mount Mary College
- Nicolet Area Technical College
- Northcentral Technical College
- Northeast Wisconsin Technical College
- Northland College
- Northland International University
- Ripon College
- Saint Norbert College
- Sanford Brown College West Allis
- Silver Lake College of the Holy Family
- Southwest Wisconsin Technical College
- University of Phoenix Madison Campus
- University of Phoenix Milwaukee Campus
- University of Wisconsin Colleges
- University of Wisconsin Eau Claire
- University of Wisconsin Green Bay
- University of Wisconsin La Crosse
- University of Wisconsin Madison
- University of Wisconsin Milwaukee
- University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
- University of Wisconsin Parkside
- University of Wisconsin Platteville
- University of Wisconsin River Falls
- University of Wisconsin Stevens Point
- University of Wisconsin Stout
- University of Wisconsin Superior
- University of Wisconsin Whitewater
- Viterbo University
- Waukesha County Technical College
- Western Technical College
- Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College
- Wisconsin Lutheran College
Regrettably, an academic misconduct finding of responsibility can derail an accused student's academic and professional goals and some students and parents do not recognize this concern until it may be too late. If a student is found responsible for academic misconduct charges, in addition to the short-term consequences such academic and disciplinary sanctions, there will be long-term consequences. Internships, graduate school opportunities, and employment opportunities can all be adversely impacted by a finding of responsibility.
For these reasons and more, it is critical to properly address such concerns as early as possible in the disciplinary process. There are times, however, that it necessary to appeal an adverse outcome, and Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm have unparalleled experience passionately fighting for the futures of his clients at universities and colleges in Wisconsin and throughout the nation. He does not settle for the easiest outcome, and instead prioritizes his clients' needs and well-being. Joseph Lento is a licensed attorney in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, is admitted as an attorney pro hac vice in state and federal court if needed when representing clients nationwide, and serves as an academic misconduct advisor to students facing disciplinary cases in Wisconsin and throughout the nation. Make certain your or your student's interests are protected at all stages of the academic misconduct disciplinary process, including the appeal stage - Contact National Academic Misconduct Advisor Joseph D. Lento today at 888-535-3686.