ACADEMIC HONESTY POLICY
Honesty in all academic work is expected of every student at all times. This means each individual does his or her own work without assistance from other sources on any assignment or exam unless otherwise directed by the instructor. A violation of academic honesty can include but not be limited to:
- Falsifying documents
- Submitting the same assignment in multiple classes without permission
- Copying or sharing work from another student
- Aiding and abetting cheating
- Using any form of technology without permission: i.e. cell phones, lap tops, etc.
It is the responsibility of each student to understand BFIT’s expectations for academic honesty and to seek help in understanding the policy if necessary. It is important to note that ignorance is not an acceptable excuse.
To preserve the College’s reputation and integrity, cases of academic dishonesty will be reported and may face disciplinary action. Documentation of alleged violations, proceedings, and any resulting sanctions will be kept on file in the office of the Director of Advising until a student has graduated from the college. This file may be utilized in the event of any urther infraction of institutional rules or policies. The student’s advisor will be notified during any instance of academic dishonesty.
With any suspected act of dishonesty, the instructor will provide documentation of the incident and any supporting evidence to the Director of Advising. Students will be contacted by the Director of Advising to discuss the incident and method of prevention for the future. Based on the student’s conduct history, the Director of Advising may refer the case to the Student Conduct Board.
The range of sanctions and the procedures followed are outlined below; however, implementation of sanctions will lie with the Hearing Office or Student Conduct Board and may be adjusted. Faculty may be solicited for further information, appearing before the Student Conduct Board, or for recommendations for sanctioning.
To submit an incident report, click here (DOCX 25.4KB). Complete the form and submit it to:
Procedures and Sanctioning
- A first violation of academic honesty will result in a meeting with the Director of Advising and may result in a failing grade for the assignment as well as an educational component to allow the student to learn from the process. Educational sanctions may include online modules, research or reflection essays, or other means to educate oneself or others on academic honesty.
- A second violation of the academic honesty policy, whether this be in the same or a different course, will result in a meeting with the Director of Advising or the Student Conduct Board, and may result in a grade of F for the final course grade. Due to the repeat nature of the incident, the student may be subject to increased sanctioning including academic probation for a minimum of one semester and increased educational sanctions.
- A third violation of the academic honesty policy will result in an automatic F for the course in which the infraction occurred and may include further disciplinary action including suspension or expulsion form the college. All documentation and evidence will be placed in the student’s file and, in this case, may become a permanent record regardless of the student’s graduation status at the college. A mandatory meeting will take place with the Dean of Academic Affairs and the student will have the opportunity to bring one member of the college’s faculty or staff to serve as a support person. The support person will have the opportunity to speak on the student’s behalf at the student’s request.
Students will receive written notification within one week after meeting with a Hearing Officer or the Student Conduct Board
To initiate the appeal process, students will submit their appeal, electronically, in writing ot the Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs. Appeals must be received by the Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs, electronically, within five (5) class days of the outcome of the conduct meeting.
Students must base an appeal on one or more specific aspects of the original conduct meeting:
- Procedural error
- Finding not supported by the evidence
- Excessive or inappropriate sanction
- New evidence not previously available
It is up to the student appealing to be persuasive and professional in the appeal letter. Appeal arguments should detail any information that was not available at the time of the original conduct meeting, as well as any additional information that is provided by witnesses.The outcome of an appeal is final.
The Appeal Officer may make the following decisions:
- Uphold previous decision
- Revise previous decision
- Overturn previous decision
- Refer the case back to the original Conduct Officer for a hearing (in case of procedural errors).
NOTE: If multiple violations of academic honesty occur within a timeframe prior to required meetings taking place, the violations will be treated as individual occurrences and subject to disciplinary actions as outlined above.
Violations to Academic Honesty
- A violation of Academic Honesty consists of any attempt to
falsify, fabricate, or tamper with data, information, records, or any
other material that is relevant to a student’s academic career. Below
are some specific examples of Academic Dishonesty:
- Cheating on exams or assignments by the use of books, electronic
devices, notes, or other aids when these are not permitted, or by
copying from another student.
- Collusion: two or more students helping one another on an exam or assignment when it is not permitted.
- Ringers: taking an exam for someone else, or permitting someone else to take one’s exam.
- Submitting the same paper in more than one course without permission of the instructor.
- Plagiarizing: copying someone else’s writing or paraphrasing too
closely, even if it is only some of your written assignment, without
- Falsifying documents or records related to credit, grades, status (e.g. assignments or transcripts), or other academic matters.
- Altering an exam or paper after it has been graded in order to request a grade change.
- Stealing, concealing, destroying, or inappropriately modifying
classroom or other instructional material, such as posted exams, library
materials, laboratory supplies, or computer programs.
- Preventing relevant material from being included in the grading process on any assignment or examination.
- Presenting fabricated excuses for missed assignments or tests.
- Electronic Devices: electronic communication devices, including
cellular phones, beepers, speakers, calculators and headphones must be
secured in a closed container and should be turned off during any
How to Prevent Academic Dishonesty
- Prepare thoroughly for exams and assignments.
- Take the initiative to prevent other students from copying exams
or assignments (for example, shielding answers during exams and not
lending assignments to other students unless specifically granted
permission by the instructor).
- For each course, check the syllabus for the section dealing with
academic honesty. There may be requirements specific to each course.
- Avoid looking in the direction of other students’ papers during exams.
- Use a recognized handbook for instruction on citing source materials in papers.
- Utilize the Academic Support Center, Director or Assistant
Directors of Advising, Advisors, and Faculty members for assistance in
- Discourage dishonesty among other students.
- Refuse to assist students who cheat.
- Do not sit near students with whom you have studied during exams.
- Do not sit near friends during exams.
- Many cases of plagiarism involve students improperly using
Internet sources. If you quote an Internet source, you must cite the
URL for that source in your bibliography. Copying (or closely
paraphrasing text or figures from a website without citing it and
placing it in quotation marks is plagiarism. It is no different from
doing the same thing with printed sources. Professing ignorance of this
rule will not be accepted as a legitimate basis for appealing an
accusation of academic honestly.
Academic Honesty Tutorial
In each class during the first week of the semester, instructors will
ask students to complete the tutorial link below. This tutorial will
serve as a brief, yet comprehensive overview about Academic Honestly.
Students will learn what academic honesty means, how to prevent a
violation of academic honesty, and the role students have with academic
Link to Tutorial