If you have been accused of violating the New Jersey Institute of Technology's academic integrity policy, your first line of defense is arming yourself with information about the violation you've been accused of. The procedures and definitions of academic integrity vary in some form from school to school, and the more informed you are about the accusation, the better prepared you will be to combat it. The following information is meant to provide an overview into the school's unique policy, as well as various insights into the ways in which a student defense attorney can enormously help your case and increase your chances of obtaining a positive outcome. Bear in mind, the best way for you to gain a complete understanding of NJIT's academic integrity policy is to reference the school's code directly, which explains at length the provisions and definitions of academic violations.
The New Jersey Institute of Technology is a respected educational institution which employs a strict academic integrity policy, to which all students and faculty are expected to adhere. The policy outlines the types of behaviors that constitute a violation, as well as the range of punishments for those found in violation of the code.
Types of Academic Integrity Violations at the New Jersey Institute of Technology
NJIT groups integrity violations into three categories, although they stipulate that the offenses contained in these categories are by no means comprehensive. Other types of violations may still occur/be accused.
Cheating - The school uses the broad definition of "unauthorized assistance" to define cheating. Per this provision, students are prohibited from copying other students' work, using materials during exams that were not permitted by the instructor including electronic devices, obtaining answers to an examination or other materials that belong to a faculty member, or submitting purchased essays. Any student who colludes with a fellow in their accomplishment of these tasks will also be held liable for cheating.
Fabrication - This occurs when a student falsifies or invents information to be supportive of their findings. This includes the use of citations that are either fake or were not actually consulted in the completion of the assignment, as well as altering one's answers on a test after they have received it back from the professor. It is likewise prohibited for students to skew numbers or information to support their argument.
Plagiarism - Students are prohibited from using others' thoughts, works or ideas and taking credit for them in any way. All ideas that are not original to the student must be attributed to the correct individual. Therefore, students must cite and document the sources consulted to complete an assignment; they may not have anyone else complete papers for them or duplicate someone else's ideas in any way.
Procedures For Academic Integrity Violations at New Jersey Institute of Technology
NJIT outlines five basic phases in the lifespan of a violation claim.
1. If a student suspects a violation on the part of another student, they are to report it to an instructor, who will in turn report it to the Dean. The same applies if the suspicion originates with the instructor and not another student. Unless the offense is so serious as to warrant a potential expulsion, the Dean of Students will permit the instructor to handle the issue. The instructor then takes on the role of investigator and potentially hearing officer.
2. All materials relevant to the claim will be confiscated for the sake of the investigation.
3. An investigation is put underway, and the student is informed. This may occur verbally or in writing.
4. In the event that the student denies they are guilty of the violation, the claim will move forward to a hearing, where it will be adjudicated.
5. The hearing gives students an opportunity to present their case in depth and potentially resolve the claim.
An academic integrity violation, depending on severity, will likely be marked on your academic record. This record may be requested by future employers or graduate school admissions committee. Protecting your record is critical to your future success, and you should by no means accept sanctions for a violation if you believe you can make a case that you are innocent. A student defense attorney is essential in this effort, as they will be able to eloquently and aggressively present your side of the story and increase the chances that you will secure a positive outcome.
Penalties for Academic Integrity Violations at NJIT
Students found guilty of serious academic integrity violations may receive a grade of XF in the class. The X denotes the fact that the student failed not because of poor performance in the course per se, but because of the violation. Therefore, the incident cannot be "passed off" as a class that the student failed for nondescript reasons - the X serves as a black mark of sorts with regard to an integrity infraction. A probationary period will begin simultaneously. At its conclusion, the student can petition the dean to get the X removed. The duration of probation will be determined by the faculty member who leveled the accusation or other authority who made sanctions in the case. In order to get the X successfully removed, the student is given two attempts to complete an Academic Integrity Seminar series. Failure to complete the seminar on both tries will result in the X remaining on record permanently. An accumulation of more than one XF grade could result in expulsion from NJIT. Student employees with XF grades may be discharged from employment.
Students found guilty of any academic integrity violation are entitled the right to appeal this decision and/or a sanction. This appeal must contain evidence of procedural errors in the disciplinary process that substantially affected the outcome in order for it to be granted. Students have 10 business days from a final determination to file this appeal.
Student Defense Attorney
In order to protect your academic record, you are advised to be proactive in fighting an accusation that you violated the academic integrity policy. The ramifications of the violation could follow you for a considerable amount of time following. Now that you are equipped with a great deal more information, you are urged to contact a student defense attorney. Contact defense attorney Joseph D. Lento to review your case as soon as possible.