Colleges in Arkansas try to maintain their reputation as academic institutions by enforcing their codes of academic conduct. However, universities often overreach in an attempt to penalize acts that might not constitute misconduct. If this happens to you, having a lawyer as your advisor to guide you through the process can be the best move you make, as it shows your school that you are serious about defending yourself against the charge and protecting your professional future.
Academic Misconduct in Arkansas
Every school in Arkansas has its own way of defining and dealing with academic misconduct. However, despite the variance between schools, there are still a handful of similarities between nearly all of them. One is the types of conduct that violate a school's code of integrity. These typically include:
- Cheating. Using prohibited materials during a test, including your notes, would give you an unfair advantage over your classmates. Therefore, colleges often explicitly outlaw cheating during a test in order to make it evident that all students are on a level playing field.
- Plagiarism. Similarly, plagiarism – or taking credit for the works and ideas of others – would give a student an unfair advantage over others, and so is explicitly prohibited by the academic code of conduct at most schools in Arkansas.
- Distributing materials. Not all academic misconduct stem from what happens in a classroom or on graded assignments. Distributing academic materials, like upcoming tests or answer keys, without authorization can lead to misconduct allegations.
- Forging or altering documents. Another example of academic misconduct is forging or altering official school documents, like your transcript or other forms.
- Complicity. Even if you did not benefit from academic misconduct, you can still be accused of committing it if you failed to report someone else's deeds or helped them cover it up.
Unfortunately, most schools deliberately use vague language when discussing academic misconduct, in order to allow them to prosecute novel methods of misconduct that might fall outside of strictly defined rules. This leads to innocent students being accused of misconduct for things that appeared to break the rules but really did not.
Penalties for Academic Misconduct
Worse, the penalties for an act of misconduct in Arkansas can lead to expulsion, in the most severe cases, or a mark on your academic record. Even just a warning can be a huge obstacle once you graduate, though, as interested employers can use it as a reason for denying you a job that you applied for, especially if the market is competitive.
Joseph D. Lento: Arkansas' Academic Misconduct Advisor
Joseph D. Lento is a student discipline defense attorney who can serve as your advisor if you have been accused of academic misconduct at a college in Arkansas. With his help and guidance, you can rest assured that you are doing all you can to protect your rights, in the present, and your professional career, for years into the future. Contact Joseph D. Lento online or by phone at 888-535-3636 if you have been accused of breaking your school's code of academic conduct and want to get serious about your defense.
Arkansas colleges and universities where Joseph D. Lento can help as your or your student's academic misconduct advisor during investigations, hearings, and appeals include, but are not limited to, the following schools:
- Arkansas Baptist College
- Arkansas Northeastern College
- Arkansas State University Beebe
- Arkansas State University Main Campus
- Arkansas State University Mountain Home
- Arkansas State University Newport
- Arkansas Tech University
- Black River Technical College
- Bryan University
- Central Baptist College
- College of the Ouachitas
- Cossatot Community College of the University of Arkansas
- Crowley's Ridge College
- East Arkansas Community College
- Ecclesia College
- Harding University
- Henderson State University
- Hendrix College
- ITT Technical Institute Little Rock
- John Brown University
- Lyon College
- Mid South Community College
- National Park Community College
- North Arkansas College
- NorthWest Arkansas Community College
- Ouachita Baptist University
- Ozarka College
- Philander Smith College
- Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas
- Pulaski Technical College
- Remington College Little Rock Campus
- Rich Mountain Community College
- South Arkansas Community College
- Southeast Arkansas College
- Southern Arkansas University Main Campus
- Southern Arkansas University Tech
- University of Arkansas
- University of Arkansas at Little Rock
- University of Arkansas at Monticello
- University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff
- University of Arkansas Community College Batesville
- University of Arkansas Community College Hope
- University of Arkansas Community College Morrilton
- University of Arkansas Fort Smith
- University of Central Arkansas
- University of Phoenix Little Rock Campus
- University of Phoenix Northwest Arkansas Campus
- University of the Ozarks
- Williams Baptist College
It is an unfortunate reality that academic misconduct charges can upend an accused student's life if not properly addressed, and Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm have unparalleled experience passionately fighting for the future of his clients at colleges and universities in Arkansas 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 for students facing disciplinary cases in Arkansas and throughout the nation. Make certain your or your student's interests are protected - Contact National Academic Misconduct Advisor Joseph D. Lento today at 888-535-3686.