FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
1. What happens if I admit to or am found in violation of the Code of Academic Integrity by a hearing panel?
If one admits to a violation of the Code, or is found in violation of the Code by a hearing panel:
1. A hardcopy file is created that contains a copy of the charge form, related documents of e-mails and any evidence submitted. Both the professor and the student have equal access to this file and additional documentation from either side may be added upon request.
2. You have a permanent record of academic dishonesty in the Academic Integrity Office. Your name is entered into a database of violators dating back to the use of the Code. A hardcopy and digital file will be created. This is a permanent entry and is not expunged.
3. GW employees, with a need to know, may inquire in this office whether or not you have a record of violation. This is most commonly done when checking to see if one has a prior record of violation or when a dean's office is writing a letter of recommendation. GW law school applicants are also routinely cross-referenced with the database of violators.
4. Occasionally outside government agencies will inquire as to whether or not your name is part of the database of violators. This information cannot be shared with non-GW personnel without a written release from you or a court ordered subpoena.
5. Notations to your GW Transcript concerning academic dishonesty may or may not be permanent. The notation "Academic Dishonesty" is automatically appended to your GW transcript but may be removed upon written petition after a two year period in most cases (sometimes the notation is placed for less than two years - in some cases, for a more lengthy period). Notations such as "Suspension" and "Expulsion" are permanent entries and part of your record of enrollment.
It is obviously not good to have a record of violation at the university, but depending upon the infraction and the circumstances involved, it is not necessarily a deal breaker. It is possible that at some point in the future you will have to explain why a notation is on your transcript, or answer a question on some application about whether you ever had academic disciplinary actions taken against you. It's best to be open and honest about the incident rather than have it discovered later. In the vast majority of cases, no one besides you and the professor involved, will ever have knowledge of your violation.
2. When is a notation concerning academic dishonesty made to my GW
A notation reading "Academic Dishonesty"
is made to your GW transcript when the sanction rises to the level of
"failure of the course." Normally such a sanction lasts for
at least two years before you may petition to have it removed.
3. Can notations ever be removed from my GW transcript?
Yes, you may petition the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs for removal
of the notation after the specified
amount of time.
4. Can a professor sanction me for academic dishonesty without making
a formal charge?
No, this would not be appropriate and would circumvent the procedures outlined in the Code of Academic Integrity. Along with responsibilities,
students also have certain rights of protection.
5. As a student, how can I join the Academic Integrity Council?
You may submit an application at any time.
6. Is it possible to be suspended or expelled for a single violation?
It is possible, but not likely. Any sanction beyond "failure
of the course" can only be given by an Academic Integrity hearing
panel. It is possible in particularly egregious cases.
7. Does the Code of Academic Integrity cover all GW students?
The Code of Academic Integrity covers all GW students except those in
the Law School or M.D.
8. Can a faculty member "jump" to a failure of the course
sanction or beyond on my first violation?
Yes they can, if they perceive the violation to be particularly egregious or it conforms to their course policy.
9. If charged, is there any scenario where I am required to have a
Yes, if you have a previous record or the proposed sanction goes beyond
"failure of the course."
10. Do I have to attend my hearing?
No, your attendance is not required, but
it is generally in your interest to attend to make your viewpoint known
to the panel. If you are a distance-ed student or cannot be on campus, we are able to set-up hearings via phone or video chat using conference call or Skype.
11. Can I have a hearing if I admit to a violation of the Code?
Yes you may. This happens often when you may agree to a violation, but
you feel the sanction is too severe.
In these cases, the hearing revolves around the appropriateness of the
12. Is lying a violation of the Code of Academic Integrity?
Yes, it is generally classified as falsification or" knowingly making a false statement."
13. Can a student charge a fellow student with a violation?
Yes this is possible or a student can
report an alleged violation to his/her professor and allow him to bring
the charge if warranted.
14. Who constitutes a hearing panel?
Panels are composed of five individuals
selected from the Academic Integrity Council. A complete panel consists
of three student members (one of which is always the Presiding Officer
without a vote) and two faculty members. Ultimately two students and two
faculty members vote and it takes at least a 3/4 vote to find a student
"in violation" of the Code.
15. What is the standard of proof when a student is charged with academic
Faculty or administrators charging a student have the burden of proof.
Panels must feel a "preponderance of evidence" points to a violation of the Code
16. Does a record of violation last forever?
Yes, at this time a record of each violation is kept in the Academic
Integrity Office. Information related to this record is not released to third parties without the written permission of the
*Years are defined as Academic Years (e.g. 2007 is Fall 2007, Spring 2008 and Summer 2008.
*2010 is as of March 18, 2011