One of the most common reasons for academic dishonesty is the students' difficulty managing the demand of their professional and social lives. Even with both facets properly managed, expectations and stress can add additional weight to the already overwhelming workload. Institutions, like Miami University, take academic dishonesty very seriously, and the consequences can impact the student beyond the academic world. Academic dishonesty is a broad term that refers to any action which is an attempt to improve the likelihood of gaining an unfair advantage in an educational setting.
What Is the Miami University Code of Academic Conduct?
Outlined in the Student Code of Student Conduct, are the rights and responsibilities of Miami University students. In matters involving academic misconduct, the disciplinary process is outlined and also the various issues that can lead to a student being accused. "Traditional" academic misconduct offenses are detailed, in addition to offenses that may involve a greater degree of culpability, including abuse and/or fabrication (for example, forgery, alteration, etc.) of documents which is specifically prohibited. Miami University expects elevated principles of its students, such as academic integrity.
What Are Examples of Academic Dishonesty at Miami University?
Academic dishonesty can encompass various forms, but the following are examples of such concerns at Miami University:
- Plagiarism, or presenting the work of another as your own individual work without crediting the source(s)
- Improper manipulation of materials, information, data, or methods
- Using or attempting to use any information, resources, or aids in the completion of assignments or assessments
- Unauthorized work with another individual or group of individuals without permission
- Completing an assignment with materials that were not available to all other students
- Falsely having another individual complete an assignment and submitting it as your own, including using technology in the same manner
What Is the Procedural Process for Academic Dishonesty at Miami University?
Academic dishonesty can be reported not only by faculty but other staff and students and students as well. Once the act is reported to the instructor of the course or the individual responsible for the assignment or assessment and the report is deemed credible, the incident is forwarded to the Assistant Director for Academic Integrity. A report is sent to the Assistant Director, and both the instructor and Assistant Director determine if the incident meets the criteria for academic dishonesty. The student is notified and given a copy of the report from the instructor at the time of referral to the Assistant Director, which at times, can take up to one business week. The student is given a notice which provides an explanation of the academic integrity process, options and sanctions for the possible academic violation, and scheduling for a procedural review. If the student does not attend the procedural review, the report is then forwarded to the specific chair and/or department which will conduct a hearing.
No later than two class days before the hearing, the student must choose one of two resolution options which are:
- Accept responsibility for the act as accused and the proposed sanction, or
- Appeal and request a hearing with the department chair of the program in which the violation occurred.
If the student accepts responsibility, they may no longer exercise an option to appeal or request a hearing. The hearing is conducted by the department chair or, if requested by the student, a designee. Hearings may be held in person, via teleconference, video, or other means. Students are also permitted to bring an advisor and up to two individuals for support. The instructor will present information supporting the alleged academic dishonesty, which also may include witness(es). The student is given an opportunity to respond with a written statement, present witnesses, or pose questions to the instructor or their witness(es). The hearing is allowed to continue even if the student is absent.
How Are Sanctions Determined?
At the conclusion of the hearing, the hearing officer will review the documents and testimony to determine whether the accused student is in violation of the academic integrity policy. Even if the officer deems the student is not in violation of code, the student may still be directed to participate in an educational course coordinated by the Assistant Director for Academic Integrity. If the hearing officer finds the student responsible for any act of academic dishonesty, one or more of the following sanctions can be issued:
- Any possibility of previous occurrences of academic dishonesty will be reviewed.
- If there was no previous act, the hearing officer will either:
- Issue a letter grade of F or the percentage grade of zero (0) for any academic assignment during the duration of the specific course
- A reduced grade for the course
- Letter grade F for the entire course and a transcript footnote of “Academic Dishonesty”
- Required participation in an academic integrity seminar. Failure to complete the seminar may keep the student from graduation.
- Required participation in an additional educational seminar. Failure to complete the seminar may bar the student from graduation.
- Recommendation for suspension or dismissal.
- If there is a record of a previous suspension, the student may be dismissed from Miami University.
If found responsible for academic dishonesty, the student may appeal the sanction in writing within five university class days. The Assistant Director for Academic Integrity will forward all appeal documents to the department dean and notify the instructor and hearing officer. The hearing officer can submit a response to the appeal in writing.
The Best Academic Violation Attorney-Advisor for Miami University-Oxford
The prospect of facing an allegation of academic integrity without guidance is frightening. With your educational and professional future at stake, it is imperative to request the assistance of an experienced legal advisor. Having an attorney-advisor like Joseph D. Lento in your corner can ensure the intricacies and specifics of preparing for an academic dishonesty investigation and potential hearing are in the capable hands of an expert.
If you or your child is facing any type of student disciplinary hearing at Miami University, your academic and professional future may be at stake. Don't risk your future career and your reputation by entering such proceedings at a disadvantage. Attorney Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm have many years of successful experience helping students deal with unfair allegations, disciplinary processes, and other school-rights-related issues. Contact the Lento Law Firm today at 888-535-3686.