You may already know that teenagers' brains aren't completely developed when compared with adult brains. This physiological fact accounts for at least some of their poor decisions and impulsive behavior—not to mention their failure to fully comprehend the consequences of those choices and acts. But did you know that the same is true of most traditional college and university students when it comes to cranial capacity? In fact, the human brain can take up to 25 years before it can be considered mature.
College and university students must make extra effort to gain perspective, act deliberately, consider the consequences of their every action, and apply the logical, decision-making part of the brain—the prefrontal cortex—rather than its freewheeling, ego-driven, and emotionally impulsive counterpart, the amygdala.
During their college years, in particular, young adults need the support and advice of older adults to avoid making devastating mistakes that can haunt them throughout the remainder of their life. That includes parents, older siblings, or other family members, as well as university guidance counselors, advisors, and instructors. Sometimes, if a student has been accused of misconduct and may be facing dismissal from their university or college, they will even require the services of an attorney.
Arizona Colleges and Universities
The Grand Canyon State is home to 85 institutions of higher learning. There are 30 public schools, 13 private non-profit educational institutions, and 42 private for-profit schools. The state's public university system comprises three main schools: Arizona State University, the University of Arizona, and Northern Arizona University, along with their branch campuses. These three universities operate under the aegis of the Arizona Board of Regents; together, they boast a total enrollment of 212,714 and employ 37,541 people.
In addition to the schools belonging to the public university system, there are several other notable institutions in the state of Arizona, including Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Prescott College, Grand Canyon University, Arizona Christian University, and the University of Phoenix, which conducts the majority of classes online and which has gained notoriety due to its aggressive advertising and permissive admissions policy.
Codes of Conduct at Arizona Schools
All students enrolled in Arizona universities and colleges are subject to the rights and responsibilities set forth in their institution's Code of Conduct. Also known as a Student Code or Academic Conduct Code, these are exhaustive documents outlining the particular behavior and academic performance to which students are expected to conform. All misconduct can be classified into one of three types: Academic Misconduct, Sexual Misconduct, and a third category, General Misconduct, which is often a catch-all for behavior that isn't covered under either of the other two. Let's take a closer look at what each category covers.
If you've already guessed that cheating and plagiarism are near the top of the list for acts of academic misconduct, you're correct.
Cheating could mean copying another student's answers on a quiz, heading into an exam with notes or answers written or stashed on one's person, or sourcing verboteninformation on a cell phone or another device during an online test. And then there's contract cheating, which involves paying someone else to do one's work. One popular, if problematic, form of contract cheating is purchasing written material from an “essay mill.” Students can choose a pre-written paper or opt to have an essay custom-written using specific details that they provide. Some of these services also offer proxy exam services; in this scenario, the college student presents their credentials so that another individual can log into their school's account and sit for an exam.
Plagiarism refers to the practice of using another's words or ideas without crediting them properly—or, usually, at all. Some students lift whole sections of text from websites and/or books; others “spin” an article, copying and pasting it but then go through it to change up the adjectives, rearrange the paragraphs here and there, or add in just enough of their own work that the piece will pass muster.
What many students don't realize is that even plagiarizing their own work is a punishable offense. Taking last year's essay and adapting it or submitting the same material as the original in two disparate courses, might seem like a handy, time-saving shortcut, but the act of self-plagiarism is considered cheating.
Any behavior that gives the student a leg up, or disadvantages other classmates, can be subject to academic discipline. Northern Arizona University's Academic Integrity Policy, for example, specifies these infractions in addition to plagiarism and cheating:
- Fabrication or falsification
- Facilitation of another student's misbehavior
- Obtaining an unfair advantage
Most people, when they hear the term “sexual misconduct,” think immediately of rape, sexual assault, and sexual harassment. Just as with academic misconduct, though, sexual misconduct includes a wide range of behaviors and acts, all covered under Title IX, one of the federal laws included in the Education Amendments of 1972. These include but are not limited to:
- Unwelcome sexual advances
- Requests or demands for sexual favors
- Sexual acts enacted against the person's will