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EIU Office of Student Accountability & Support

Academic Dishonesty

Why report academic misconduct to the Office of Student Accountability & Support?

You keep the process educational

Insisting on honesty and holding students responsible is sound educational practice. Following our process lessens the likelihood of outside challenge to the University and its faculty's judgment in dealing with what is an educational matter.

Your students benefit

Reporting academic misconduct emphasizes to the student the seriousness of the incident, and the high value we place on learning. All students learn that integrity is valued, and that they need not resort to cheating to compete with those who are dishonest in their educational endeavors.

Eastern benefits

Accurate records document the extent of academic misconduct, and repeat offenders can be identified.

What sanction should you impose for an academic integrity violation?

The value that we place on education should be reflected in our response to academic misconduct. Instructors should use their discretion in assigning an academic penalty, and they should follow any statements in their class syllabus with regard to grading. 

The University has a web-based academic integrity tutorial mandated for academic misconduct violations.  Its completion will be normally be required in addition to the academic penalty imposed by the instructor. If it is a repeat violation, if it involves theft, false identity, or is otherwise premeditated or blatant, other disciplinary sanctions, up to and including, disciplinary probation, suspension or expulsion, will be pursued by the Office of Student Standards through the University's disciplinary system. Your recommendations will be considered in responding to these situations.

What about confidentiality?

It does not violate laws on confidentiality to discuss this case with the student standards staff or with your department chair or dean. It would violate confidentiality, though, to reveal to other students the name of a violator and the sanction imposed, or to threaten to publicize the student's transgressions to the rest of the faculty. You may seek counsel from colleagues without revealing the name of the student involved in an incident, just as it would be acceptable (and very beneficial) to discuss cheating in general terms with the class, especially at the beginning of each term.

What happens to a Report of Academic Misconduct on completion?

Once the report is completed, it becomes part of the student's conduct record maintained in the Office of Student Accountability & Support for six years and then destroyed (unless there is a suspension or expulsion). Subject to the same confidentiality laws as other student records, it may only be released within the University to those with a legitimate educational need to know, and cannot be released outside of EIU without the student's permission. Other than in the case of suspension or expulsion, no notation of student misconduct appears on the academic transcript. 

What if there is a dispute with the student over this allegation?

In resolving a disputed case of misconduct the instructor and the student must be treated fairly. This means that:

  • The University's procedures must be used to resolve the allegation.
  • The instructor who confronts misconduct may be considered to be too close to the situation to resolve factual disputes arising from it. A student standards process relieves you of that role.
  • It must appear that it is "more likely than not" that the misconduct occurred in order to hold the student in violation and impose sanctions.

The Office of Student Accountability & Support is here to help resolve misconduct allegations. While we don't “take sides,” it may be readily evident to us that your suspicions are supported by a preponderance of the evidence (defined as “more likely than not.”) Meeting with us often clarifies for the student the likelihood that a board will draw the same conclusions that you did, and avoids the necessity of a formal hearing. Occasionally the student will decide otherwise, and a hearing is scheduled to resolve the issue. 

 

PLEASE SEE LINK ON OUR MAIN PAGE TO REPORT AN ACT OF ACADEMIC MISCONDUCT.

Related Pages

Contact Information

Office of Student Standards

Martin Luther King University Union
600 Lincoln Avenue
Charleston, IL 61920
217-581-3827
Fax: 217-581-6489


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