Brigham Young University (BYU) is a private Idahoan university established in 1875 and sponsored by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. BYU's sprawling campus boasts 179 undergraduate majors and 88 graduate programs. BYU's original campus is in Provo, Utah, and the university also has multiple study centers in other locations, where students can earn university credits. Undergraduate students can expect multiple career and educational opportunities after graduation – but only if they demonstrate personal integrity principles and avoid academic misconduct charges.
Although everyone makes mistakes, some college students commit errors that lead to probation, suspension, or even expulsion. With a heavy course load and the responsibilities of everyday life, some students may try to take the easy way out to keep up with their peers. In other instances, the charges are baseless, but there is a lack of evidence that supports the student's claims. Without the help of an experienced advisor, students could face disproportionate penalties that impact their educational pace and may even delay graduation.
What is Academic Misconduct at Brigham Young University?
BYU's Academic Honesty Policy outlines behavioral expectations and invites students to build their character by emphasizing the values of morality, integrity, honor, and consideration of others. Since BYU is part of the Church Educational System, maintaining principles of academic integrity receives heavy emphasis by administrators. According to the Academic Honesty Policy, students must avoid committing any form of academic misconduct, which includes:
Cheating is one of the most common forms of academic misconduct. Multiple methods of cheating exist, and examples include:
- Copying from a student's exam/quiz or allowing others to copy
- Using calculators, tablets, or other unauthorized devices during an exam or academic exercise
- Collaborating with others without the approval of the instructor
- Taking a test for another student or soliciting this service from others
- Using third-party websites to view test/quiz questions
Plagiarism is when students use the work or material of others without citing their sources. Although the essence of the act is the same, there are different ways that students commit plagiarism. BYU does not tolerate any form of plagiarism, whether intentional or by accident.
BYU lists five forms in its policy:
- Intentional Plagiarism: The act of deliberately representing another person's work or ideas as original without providing attribution.
- Inadvertent Plagiarism: The act of using another person's work without knowing that this action is unethical. Although it is not a deliberate action, unintentional plagiarism incurs penalties as it means the student isn't following the rules.
- Direct Plagiarism: Copying material from a source word-for-word without providing a reference.
- Paraphrased Plagiarism: Summarizing the idea or words of another author and claiming it is one's work.
- Insufficient Acknowledgement: The act of providing sources for some of the information in their work but omitting others.
The fabrication or falsification of documents/information is a grave offense that may incur a suspension or permanent dismissal. Some ways that students engage in this form of misconduct include:
- Claiming the use of a source that does not exist
- Distorting data and intentionally adding information that the student knows is false
- Using bogus data in assignments and research exercises
- Providing falsified documents, certifications, or licenses
Miscellaneous Forms of Academic Misconduct
Some forms of academic misconduct don't fall within a specific category. Examples of such actions include:
- Using information to gain an unfair competitive advantage over one's peers
- Collaborating with others to cheat on tests or academic exercises
- Bribing/manipulating other students to engage in misconduct for personal gain
- Changing grades and data in official records
- Unauthorized entry into libraries, buildings, and other similar places to access information or data
- Submitting the same work for different classes without informing professors
How does Brigham Young University Handle Academic Misconduct Allegations?
Instructors may impose sanctions on students after consulting with the department chair. Some of the penalties enforced by professors include:
- Providing the student with a written or verbal reprimand
- Asking the student to re-do work affected by academic misconduct
- Deducting grades from the exam
- Reducing overall course grade
- Failing the test/academic exercise
- Dismissing the student from the course
In some cases, the department, college, or university execute the penalties, which include:
- Probationary status: Students on probation lose some of their academic privileges and must demonstrate acceptable academic conduct before removing the probation.
- Temporary dismissal: Depending on the case, students may receive a temporary suspension or may need to start over the next semester.
- Permanent dismissal: Students that commit especially severe violations or have multiple incidents of academic misconduct may receive a permanent discharge.
- Notation on academic record: BYU administrators may place a temporary or permanent inscription on the student's academic transcript describing the violation.
Students do have a right to appeal under four conditions:
- The evidence cannot reasonably lead the administration to come to an accurate conclusion regarding the allegations
- Sanctions proposed are disproportionate to the alleged charge
- The presence of irregularities in the process the Honor Code Office adopted
- The emergence of new evidence that can change the outcome of the case
Students appealing sanctions must send a written request to the Dean of Students within five days of receiving their outcome letter. Appeals undergo review according to the Administrative Review Process, and their decision is final.
Academic Integrity Attorney
College is a time for students to hone their skills, build meaningful relationships with others, and learn how to navigate life as young adults. An overly harsh or bogus academic misconduct charge negatively impacts a student's educational path, and in some instances, prevents them from graduating.
No student should suffer permanently for a momentary lapse in judgment. An attorney-advisor like Joseph D. Lento understands what's at stake, helping students and their families navigate the investigations and appeals process without confusion.
Don't let a mistake or bogus charge harm your graduation prospects. If you or someone in your family receive notice from BYU regarding allegations of academic misconduct, don't face the situation alone.
Call the Lento Law Firm today for an expert and through consultation and learn more about your options at 888-535-3686.