Responding to an Allegation of Academic Misconduct

If a faculty member has questions regarding the integrity of your assignment, the Student Code of Conduct, Boise State policy 2020, indicates that the faculty member should let you know of his or her concerns and provide you with the opportunity to respond. The opportunity to share your perspective can be via phone, email, or in-person. If you chose not to engage in such a discussion a decision will be made without your input. While the decision is yours, the Office of the Dean of Students encourages you to participate.

There are a few reasons such an allegation could arise including:

  • There was not an act of misconduct and an explanation is needed to verify this.
  • Some part of the assignment was misunderstood or the policy has been inadvertently violated. Note that knowledge of the policy is each individual’s responsibility and lack of knowledge does not remove the possibility of a “responsible” finding.
  • A decision was made to violate the policy; often extenuating circumstances are involved.

Before responding to your faculty member, carefully and honestly consider your decisions. Review the definition of academic misconduct and the procedures from Section 7 of the Student Code of Conduct, which can be found excepted in the links to your left. Do your actions fit into any of the above scenarios?

  • If your actions do not violate the code, intentionally or unintentionally, be prepared to provide a detailed explanation of the steps you have taken to complete the assignment.
  • If your choices have violated the code, intentionally or unintentionally, a positive step forward is to accept responsibility for the choices you have made by being transparent about your actions.

Continue attending class and completing assignments during this process until the matter is completely resolved, including the appeal process if there is one.

It is likely that the conversation will begin with the faculty member asking you to explain how you completed the assignment. Whether you know that you violated the code, intentionally or unintentionally, or you believe that you acted with academic integrity, respectful and honest dialogue will facilitate the most productive conversation.

At the end of the conversation the faculty member may let you know his or her decision regarding the allegation or s/he may notify you via email after taking time to consider the information you have shared. If you have been found “responsible,” the notification will also include the outcome or “sanction” the faculty member has assigned. Faculty members may assign sanctions ranging from a warning to failure in the course.  The Office of the Dean of Students may also assign an educational outcome.

If you feel that the process or outcome has met one of the three criteria for appeal and you wish to do so, you have 10 days from the date of the notification to file. You can find the appeal form here. You may also contact The Office of the Dean of Students and make an appointment to discuss the allegation, process, or outcome.

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