It certainly wasn't your plan to attract Palm Beach State College's attention through misconduct. Now, you've received a notice of suspected academic dishonesty, and you feel like, suddenly, all eyes are on you. Suddenly, you've got terrifying deadlines on the calendar, you're skimming your school's student handbook, and you're wondering if you've got a chance at all to turn this around.
There are likely many questions running through your head. What is academic misconduct? What's going to happen next? Is there anything that you can do to get yourself through this situation with your head held high?
Fortunately, there is. At the Lento Law Firm, we're here to support Palm Beach State College students through their academic misconduct violation proceedings.
Palm Beach State College's Academic Misconduct Expectations and Policies
Palm Beach State College has put together a code of conduct to help illustrate the types of behavior that the school deems punishable. This document lists out the types of academic dishonesty that your school does not tolerate. This document also states, succinctly, that a first violation of the school's academic honesty policies will result in a failing grade for the assignment in question; a second violation will result in a failing grade for the class. However, there are other disciplinary measures at stake, which we'll describe in a later section.
The behaviors Palm Beach State College finds punishable include:
- Cheating on exams and graded assignments
- Collaborating with others without explicit authorization to do so
- Knowingly submitting redundant work
- Helping another student cheat
- Plagiarizing, accidentally or otherwise
These are just examples of prohibited behavior. Palm Beach State College's teachers and committees will decide on a case-by-case basis how to respond to unique violations against academic honesty.
What happens after an academic misconduct violation at Palm Beach State College?
Your school's code of conduct details the processes for filing a complaint and executing a misconduct investigation. To start, all misconduct allegations—whether a student or a teacher files them—go to the dean or the dean's designee. The dean will evaluate the allegation and decide how to move forward.
If the dean does not dismiss the allegation, the dean will initiate an investigation, authorizing faculty members to take steps to learn more about the apparent violation. This may involve discussing the apparent violation with other teachers, other students, or anyone else involved. The school will likely examine your past record of conduct. The school could even examine your social media and past assignments.
After the dean and their associates come to a conclusion about what has occurred, they will recommend consequences that (in theory) match the alleged crime. In some cases, the accused may have a chance to tell their side of the story. In other cases, the school will provide a recommendation for disciplinary action quickly, and the accused student will simply have the right to appeal within a limited amount of time.
What types of consequences follow academic misconduct violations at Palm Beach State College?
Palm Beach State College's documentation notes that the school will make an effort to mete out sensible punishments. The types of consequences that are possible in an academic misconduct case include:
- Failing grades for the assignment in question or for the course in question
- Temporary suspension
- Written notification (and a note in the student's permanent file)
- A mandatory behavioral contract
- Suspension from a campus organization or reduction of any privileges that the student may currently enjoy
- Course removal or reassignment
- Educational activities (e.g., mandatory anti-plagiarism training)
- Grade changes
- Dismissal from the college entirely
None of these punishments sound enjoyable, but the real repercussions of academic misconduct violations may occur long after the event has taken place. If Palm Beach State College places a note in your transcript or permanent record that links you to cheating, plagiarism, or dishonest behavior, that could ruin your future in many ways. When future employers or academic institutions request information about you from Palm Beach State College, as they will, they will learn about your alleged misdeeds. This could close doors for you in the future.
This is why you need to deal with this in the best way possible right now. Even though it may seem overwhelming (or, alternatively, like it's not a big deal), you need to reach out to a student defense attorney to learn more about your options in this case.
Palm Beach State College may offer you representation, but it's always best to work with an expert who has targeted experience with student defense instead of a more general legal background. Your student defense attorney will know exactly how to understand your school's complicated code of conduct, prepare for each step of your school's adjudication process, and more.
Your future is important. It's equally important to make sure that this violation doesn't have unfair or disproportionate consequences in your life. At the Lento Law Firm, we're here to help.
Your Palm Beach State College Student Defense Advisor
From the statements you need to make to the high-stakes hearing that you need to prepare for, there's suddenly a lot on your plate with your upcoming investigation and adjudication. If you're feeling overwhelmed, that makes sense. If you're scared or concerned about your future, that's a sign that you're taking this seriously—as you should.
If you're feeling alone, you shouldn't be. At the Lento Law Firm, it's our job to make sure that you feel like you have the resources you need at this time. Attorney Joseph D. Lento is a highly experienced, highly-effective student defense advisor who has helped students nationwide who need a second chance. He can help you with deadlines, documents, and more in order to guide you towards a favorable outcome.
Call the Lento Law Firm today at 888-535-3686 to schedule a consultation.