Working with Students Accused of Academic Misconduct

Due Process

  • Before instituting or recommending disciplinary action, an instructor must always offer to discuss the incident with the accused student. If the student does not meet with the instructor by the established deadline, or fails to show up for the appointment, the instructor may proceed with action. If the student will not talk about the incident, do not automatically interpret their silence as an admission of guilt.
  • Clearly explain to the student what he or she is being accused of. Present facts and factual evidence
  • Follow the established UWS Chapter 14 procedure as written. Failure to utilize the printed and adopted procedure puts the university (and you) at risk.
  • Allow a student to have another person present when meeting with you.
  • Always provide the student with the Academic Misconduct Reporting form and a copy of UWS Chapter 14 according to the established timeline.
  • Before misconduct occurs, make a reasonable effort to inform students about the general types of conduct which are prohibited
  • The standard of evidence recognized in college disciplinary matters is not "beyond a shadow of a doubt", but rather "a preponderance of the evidence" or "clear and convincing evidence".

Responding to Incidents of Nonacademic Misconduct

  • Make clear statements regarding your expectations for classroom conduct (sleeping, talking, coming unprepared, coming in late, coming drunk or high, use of pagers or cell phones).
  • Intervene early. Inform students of your expectations
  • Have the same behavioral expectations for all students
  • Document all incidents of disruption or misconduct (even if you don't choose to take action right away).
  • Remember that you have the right to ask a disruptive student to leave the classroom. You may also choose to call the police for assistance.