Academic Integrity Policy and Procedures, CAS

Academic Integrity Policy

Procedures for Violations of Academic Integrity

The Honor Council, consisting of both faculty and students, is charged with upholding academic integrity and adjudicating the Plagiarism and Cheating Policy in the College of Arts and Sciences. Honor Council proceedings are confidential.

Procedure for a single violation:

  1. When an instructor has reason to believe that plagiarism or cheating has occurred, they shall follow the process outlined below:
    1. The instructor shall promptly contact the student(s) involved, provide appropriate documentation of cheating or plagiarism, discuss the matter, determine whether they believe an infraction has occurred, and decide on a penalty. Although initial notification may take place via written communication, when possible, the instructor and student(s) should meet face to face to discuss the incident. An instructor may impose penalties for plagiarism or cheating ranging from a grade reduction on an assignment or exam to failure in the course.
    2. The instructor and student shall both sign a report form that details the incident and includes the documentation and penalty. The student’s signature merely acknowledges that the conversation has happened: it is not an admission of guilt.
    3. Within three working days of contacting the student(s), the instructor shall submit the report form and accompanying documentation of the incident to the Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences.
    4. If the instructor suspects plagiarism or cheating during a final exam period, and timely resolution is not possible, the professor shall assign the student(s) involved a grade of "I" and provide the student(s) with a written explanation. Whenever possible, the faculty member shall offer to meet with the student(s) no later than the first week of classes the following semester to complete the steps outlined above.
    5. The form and documentation will be placed in a confidential file.
  1. Upon receiving the form, the Dean's office shall arrange for a meeting with the student(s) in question and designated members of the Honor Council. The Honor Council representative shall reach out within five working days of receipt of this form to schedule a meeting. The meeting shall typically include the faculty and student co-chairs of the Honor Council (or designated Honor Council members).
  2. If more than one student is accused of plagiarism or cheating, the Honor Council co-chairs (or representatives) shall meet separately with each student.
  3. In the meeting, the Honor Council co-chairs shall provide the student a copy of the form filed by the reporting instructor, noting on the form the date on which it was delivered to the student, and determine if the student contests the accusation or the penalty imposed by the instructor.
  4. If the student in question does not contest the accusation and accepts the penalty prescribed by the instructor, the Honor Council shall:
    1. convey to the student how academic dishonesty violates the Willamette Ethic and Code of Conduct, harms the community, and undermines the educational mission of the College;
    2. provide exercises or assignments that will educate the student on what constitutes plagiarism and cheating, and verify that the exercises or assignments have been completed;
    3. inform the student of the potential consequences of a second violation of plagiarism or cheating.
  1. A student has the right to contest the accusation or the penalty imposed by the instructor. If the student contests the accusation or penalty, the Dean's office will refer the case to the full Honor Council for a hearing and ruling. In adjudicating an appeal, the Honor Council shall observe the following procedures:
    1. The student and instructor may each address the Honor Council and present documentation to support their positions. Each may have a single support person present with them, if they so desire, but that person is not permitted to speak on the student’s behalf or otherwise take part in the hearing in any way. 
    2. Within five working days of the hearing, the Honor Council shall render a judgment as to the validity of the charge and the suitability of the penalty, and will provide written notification to the student and the instructor of their findings.
    3. Appeals of the Accusation of Plagiarism or Cheating: For adjudicating appeals of plagiarism or cheating, the Honor Council will apply a reasonable person standard. If the majority of members attending the hearing determine that a reasonable person may conclude that plagiarism or cheating occurred, then the appeal should be denied.
    4. If the Honor Council finds a reasonable person would not have concluded that plagiarism or cheating occurred and considers the plagiarism or cheating accusation to be invalid, it will recommend that the instructor accept Honor Council’s findings and reverse whatever penalty the instructor had imposed on the student. If the instructor rescinds the charge of plagiarism or cheating based on the Honor Council's findings, the Dean's office shall expunge the student’s plagiarism and cheating file. 
    5. The instructor is not obligated to abide by the Honor Council ruling. If the instructor declines to rescind the accusation, the student may appeal.
    6. Appeals of the Judgment or Penalty for Plagiarism or Cheating, as well as of the instructor’s response, shall be brought before the Dean. The ruling of the Dean shall be final.
    7. The Dean's office shall record on the form the final disposition of accusation and penalty, and provide written notification to the student, instructor, and Honor Council. The form will be placed in the student's confidential file.
  2. If a student has only one violation, upon the student’s graduation, their Honor Council file will be expunged. While this one violation will not appear anywhere in the student's educational record from Willamette, the student may be asked to disclose any such incidents in applications for programs or grants at other institutions. 
  3. The student cannot circumvent the plagiarism and cheating proceedings by withdrawing from the class. If the final penalty for the academic dishonesty is an "F" in the course, the student shall not be permitted to withdraw.

Procedure for prior or multiple violations:

  1. If the student's file contains a prior violation, the new violation will be reviewed per the process for a single violation. If the new charge is upheld, the Dean's office shall promptly initiate a hearing by the Honor Council to determine if an additional sanction is appropriate. The student may address the Honor Council on their own behalf. Sanctions for multiple violations may include, but are not limited to, placing the student on academic probation, academic suspension, or dismissal. Within five working days of the hearing, the Honor Council shall communicate its findings in writing to the student and to the Dean. If the Honor Council recommends dismissal, their recommendation shall also be communicated to the President of the University. The Honor Council shall inform the student of their right of appeal.
  2. The accused student may appeal the Honor Council's recommendation to the Dean. The appeal must be filed with the Dean's office within five days of the date of the letter providing official notification of the sanction. In reviewing the student's appeal, the Dean’s office shall seek input from the reporting instructor(s) and the Honor Council, who may provide context to be considered in the Dean's deliberations.
  3. Except for dismissal, the decision of the Dean is final. Students can appeal dismissal to the President, or his/her designee, for final judgment.
  4. In the event that the final judgment is suspension or dismissal, a student will first be notified in person by the Dean (or Dean's representative) followed by written communication. Seven working days shall elapse before the suspension or dismissal of a student becomes effective after the appeal process is completed unless the President determines an otherwise appropriate period for the suspension or dismissal to take effect.

Effective Date: January 16th, 2024
Last Revision Date: 
Next Anticipated Review: August 1st, 2024
Responsible University Office: Dean’s Office
Responsible University Administrator/Primary Contact: Faculty Associate Dean of Curriculum, CAS

Back to Top