As a member of Rappahannock Community College’s student body, you are held to the highest standard of honor and integrity. The College considers you a responsible adult and, therefore, requires you to accept the full weight and consequence of that status. Acting in accordance with the principles of academic integrity is a responsibility you hold not only to the College and your fellow students, but also to your conscience and yourself.
Academic Dishonesty Defined
Students are expected to conduct themselves in an honorable manner in all of their academic work. All forms of academic dishonesty are prohibited at Rappahannock Community College. Cheating on quizzes, tests, and examinations, unauthorized cooperation between students, substitution for another person during an examination, unauthorized help from others, plagiarism, and the unauthorized use of software, databases, or expert advice that is contrary to the instructions of the professor are acts of academic dishonesty.
It is vital that students understand what constitutes plagiarism so that they may avoid it in their academic work. Plagiarizing is using the work of another individual, either word for word or in substance, and representing it as one’s own work without proper citation. There are three types of plagiarism as listed in Donald A. Sears’ book Harbrace Guide to the Library and Research Paper, 3rd Edition (New York: Harcourt, 1972, p. 45). They are:
- Word-for-word plagiarism: The submission of the work of another source without proper acknowledgment of that source by footnote, bibliography or reference in the paper.
- Patchwork plagiarism: Submitting a work that is stitched together from a variety of sources that does not indicate direct quotes or acknowledgment of those sources.
- Unacknowledged paraphrase: Restatement or rewording of another author’s original thought or idea must be acknowledged. Restatement by means of paraphrase does not remove the necessity of giving credit to original sources.
- Collaboration with another person in the preparation or editing of assignments submitted for credit without approval from the instructor.
- Furnishing false information to the College including, but not limited to, forgery, alteration or use of College documents, or instruments of identification with intent to defraud.
Knowingly witnessing any forms of cheating and not reporting it to a professor, school official, or testing center personnel.
Addressing Allegations of Academic Dishonesty
If a faculty member has reason to believe that a student has engaged in an act of academic dishonesty, the faculty member will:
- make the student aware of his or her suspicion in a manner and place that ensures the confidentiality of their conversation, and
- address the matter with the student in a timely manner, typically within 24 hours of either observing the offense or observing/receiving evidence of the offense.
If the faculty member remains convinced of the student’s act of academic dishonesty, the faculty member shall inform the student in confidence, and in a timely manner, of the specific details of the dishonest action and specifics of the disciplinary action that will be administered as specified in the syllabus for the course. The faculty member will also inform both the academic dean and the Dean of Student Development of the details of the dishonest action and the specifics of the disciplinary action.
Having accused and found evidence of the student’s action of academic dishonesty, faculty members must administer one of the following disciplinary actions as specified in the course syllabus:
- A formal warning: An oral or written statement to the student that he or she has committed an act of academic dishonesty that is prohibited at the institution and might result in more severe disciplinary action if the student be found guilty of engaging in any subsequent act of academic dishonesty.
- A formal warning and the requirement that the student repeat or re-submit the quiz, test, examination, exercise or assignment in question.
- A formal warning and the assignment of the grade of “F” (numeric grade of zero) on the quiz, test, examination, exercise, or assignment in question.
- Removal of the student from the class and the assignment of the grade of “F” in the course.
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