New honesty policy makes academic board more accessible

By Rosia Gonzalez and Kelly Finla
October 16, 2003

In previous years, the academic honesty board would only meet if a student contested a charge, or violation to the academic policy. The newly re-written academic honesty policy makes the academic board more accessible to students and gives it a more active role in Cabrini’s intellectual happenings.

“The board is going to be a permanent standing body comprised of both faculty and students that are meeting to promote the value of academic honesty. They are not just there to respond to cases of academic dishonesty,” Dr. Catharine O’Connell, dean for academic affairs, said.

The board, comprised of four full-time students, four full-time faculty members and one ADP student, plans to motivate others to stick to Cabrini’s core values of honesty, trust, fairness, respect, and responsibility.

“The board has the ability to apply additional punishment if it feels the faculty is being too lenient,” junior Amanda Brown, a secondary education and math major, said. Brown is the academic board chair and the primary student representative on the academic board.

To be fair and have a vast variety of knowledge, the students on the board are trying to get representation from different years and different majors. The board is also very small in number so that everyone can attend meetings.

“We want there to be a sense of consistency and common purpose among the people on the board,” O’Connell said.

The board meets biweekly to discuss the honesty policy and explain it to new members. Members discuss potential offenses so hearings are uniform, Brown said.

Although there have been no instances of plagiarism thus far, this year, Academic Affairs has requested that faculty members put the new policy on all syllabi. If they haven’t yet done so, they are encouraged to do it for next term.

“It’s a new policy so it takes a little while to have full implementation,” O’Connell said.

If a professor suspects a student of dishonesty, he or she fills out a form. The student must sign the form. Many students, according to Brown, think that by not signing the form that they are not acknowledging the charge; this is not the case. Meeting and discussion is all that is needed for formal acknowledgement.

There are varying degrees of charge and penalty, based on the student’s year and offense.

“A freshman accused of glancing at someone else’s test is not going to receive the same penalty as a senior,” Brown said. “A senior’s supposed to know better.”

Through the introduction of the new academic honesty policy, O’Connell hopes to increase awareness of the importance of academic honesty, educate students about what constitutes academic dishonesty – particularly plagiarism, and to achieve greater consistency in enforcement.

“I want everyone to know about the policy because there seems to be some ignorance about what the rules are,” O’Connell said.

For more information about Cabrini College’s academic honesty policy, visit:

Academic Honesty

or to get a print copy, be sure to get the new, dark-blue Cabrini catalog.

Posted to the Web by Angelina Wagner

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Rosia Gonzalez and Kelly Finla

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