The faculty of Claremont McKenna College is firmly committed to upholding the highest standards of academic integrity, and each faculty member has a duty to report suspected cases of academic dishonesty to the College’s Academic Standards Committee (ASC) by notifying the Registrar. Examples of academic dishonesty include cheating on examinations, plagiarism (including improper or unethical use of internet material), or any other violations of academic integrity . The Registrar will prepare the charge materials and notify the student. The Registrar will provide the student with written notice of the charges and the evidence supporting those charges. The student will be given the opportunity to submit a complete written response to the charge and provide supporting documentation or evidence. The student’s written response and supporting documentation and evidence, if any, must be submitted to the Registrar as required in the notification of the charge. Character references or letters of support are not relevant and will not be accepted or reviewed by the ASC.
The Registrar will submit the case to the ASC for review. The ASC will review allegations of academic dishonesty, render a finding in each case, and determine appropriate sanctions for violations. Faculty members may not independently assign penalties to students for suspected violations which have not been assessed by the ASC. The ASC will conduct a suitable investigation, which may include interviews with the instructor, the student, and appropriate witnesses, as well as any other appropriate fact-finding activity. The student’s failure to submit a timely response to charges of academic dishonesty will not impair the ASC’s ability to review and render a decision regarding the charge.
There is no statute of limitation on a faculty member’s ability to bring an academic dishonesty charge to the ASC for review.
At the conclusion of its review, if a majority of the ASC finds the student to have violated the Statement of Academic Integrity based on a preponderance of evidence, of the ASC will find the student responsible and impose an appropriate sanction. Sanctions include, but are not limited to, academic probation, deferment of graduation, application of NC grades (to include the change of grading type from letter-grading to Credit/No-Credit grading), suspension, ineligibility to register, and dismissal from the College. The ASC may also recommend specific grading penalties to the instructor(s) involved. Details regarding Suspension and Dismissal due to a finding of academic dishonesty are provided below.
Suspension for Academic Dishonesty
Violations of the Statement of Academic Integrity usually result in suspension from the College for academic dishonesty. Suspensions for academic dishonesty are for a specific period of time and suspended students are not eligible to register for classes at CMC during the suspension period. In addition, academic course work taken at another academic institution during the suspension period is not transferable to CMC. A notation that the student is suspended for academic dishonesty will appear on the student’s official transcript for the duration of the suspension. This notation will be removed from the official transcript when the suspension expires. A record of the academic dishonesty finding will be retained in the student’s academic file. A student suspended for academic dishonesty may petition the ASC to return to the College after the suspension period has expired.
Dismissal for Academic Dishonesty
Students may be dismissed from the College for reasons of academic dishonesty. This action is recorded permanently on the student’s transcript. A record of the academic dishonesty finding will be retained in the student’s academic file. Students found to have committed academic dishonesty twice will be dismissed from the College. Students may be dismissed on a first offense in particularly egregious cases. Students dismissed for academic dishonesty may not return to the College in the future.
Academic Dishonesty Appeal Procedures
A student who has been found responsible for academic dishonesty may appeal the decision reached by the ASC by submitting a request for an appeal to the Registrar within ten (10) days of receipt of the ASC’s decision. An appeal consists of a written statement outlining and documenting any new information to serve as the specific grounds for appealing the ASC’s decision. New information is the only acceptable grounds for an appeal. New information may only be introduced upon appeal if it has arisen after the original ASC review and only if it may substantially impact the original finding. Information that was known to the student at the time the case was originally reviewed by ASC but which the student chose not to share in the original response to the charge is not considered new information.
The Registrar will convene an appeal committee to review the appeal. The appeal committee consists of three individuals:
- The CMC Dean of the Faculty, who serves as chair;
- The department or program chair of the CMC faculty member who brought the original case. In the event that the faculty member who brought the original case is the department or program chair, the Registrar will appoint another CMC department chair in a relevant subject area. In the event that there is no department or program chair, or the case involves a non-CMC faculty member, the Registrar will appoint another tenured CMC faculty member with expertise in a related subject area or the chair of the cognate department at CMC.
- A tenured CMC faculty member selected by the Dean of the Faculty who has expertise in a subject area relevant to the case.
The appeal committee may not include faculty members presently serving on the ASC or the student’s academic advisor(s). The appeal committee will consider the merits of an appeal based on the information provided in the student’s appeal statement, the materials reviewed by the ASC, and the ASC decision, as explained by the ASC Chair or his/her delegate. Character references or letters of support are not relevant and will not be accepted or reviewed by the appeal committee. An appeal is not a new review and the appeal committee will not meet with the student. An appeal is not an opportunity for the appeal committee to substitute its judgment for that of the ASC merely because it disagrees with the finding and/or sanction(s). Based on this information the appeal committee may:
- Uphold the original ASC decision if the basis for the appeal is unsubstantiated; or
- Return the case to the ASC for reconsideration in light of the new information presented in the appeal; or
- Overturn the ASC’s original finding of academic dishonesty on the basis of clear and compelling new information presented in the appeal.
Only one appeal is permitted and the decision of the appeal committee is final.
Disciplinary Suspension and Dismissal
Disciplinary issues are handled by the Dean of Students and information on disciplinary suspension or dismissal is available from the Office of the Dean of Students.
All policies in this section apply equally to students enrolled on-campus and in off-campus study programs.