Campus / Featured / Honor Code Review / News / May 8, 2013

Text of proposed Honor Code amendments

Passed during the May 2 Student Senate meeting:


[Based on recommendation from p. 11 of HCRC report]

For any case coming before the Honor Board, the respondent and the person bringing the case will each be allowed to consult an adviser of his/her own choosing from the Knox campus community. These advisers will assist in preparing both parties for the hearing and will accompany them to the hearing itself. In cases where there is no stated preference for a particular adviser, the Honor Board Co­Chair will, in consultation with the Associate Dean, appoint someone. Unless a student explicitly requests a current student adviser, this adviser will be a faculty or staff member. Either party may also reject having an adviser, but this choice must be made explicit and should not be the norm in regular Honor Board proceedings. Advisers will be allowed to speak during Honor Board proceedings, but the presiding Chair has the authority to limit an adviser’s involvement when appropriate.


[Based on recommendation from p. 11 of HCRC report]

Given the nature of an Honor Board hearing, it is appropriate that a respondent brings an adviser with her/him. However, other interested parties-friends, family members, etc.-are expressly prohibited from waiting in or near the building where a hearing is being held so that inappropriate interactions before or after the hearing can be avoided.

To be voted on during the May 9 Student Senate meeting:


[Based on recommendation from p. 11 of HCRC report]

Given that “non­accusatory” testimony introduced in Honor Board hearings often involves “medical and psychological difficulties experienced at the time of the alleged academic dishonesty” about which Board members have no expertise (HCRC 11), documentation of such difficulties is required if the Board is to consider them as extenuating circumstances. Such documentation must be provided by the respondent him/herself and should reach the presiding chair at least 48 hours prior to the hearing.


[Based on recommendation from p. 12 of HCRC report]

Whenever possible, evidence in a case will be made available at least 24 hours prior to the hearing so that Board members have ample opportunity to familiarize themselves with it and to formulate appropriate questions. Such evidence will be made available in a secure location to all Honor Board members who will be attending a hearing.


[Based on recommendation from p. 8 of HCRC report, partially quoted here]

Because “there is support from many (including Honor Board members, students, faculty, and administration) to reduce the standard of proof” (HCRC 8), the currently stated burden of proof will change from “beyond a reasonable doubt” to “clear and convincing.” Such a standard more closely aligns with the current practice of the Honor Board and also moves away from overly legalistic language.



[Based on recommendation from p. 8 of HCRC report]

Given that “individuals external to the college, current faculty and both current and past administrators agree that using the language of the legal system … establishes an antagonistic, punitive atmosphere that does not seem appropriate to an academic setting” all current references in the Honor Code to “guilt” will be changed to “responsibility,” as in, “Student X accepted responsibility for academic dishonesty in this case” or “Student X was found responsible for academic dishonesty in this case.” (Note: when the Board does not reach such a verdict, the following language will be used: “Student X was not assigned responsibility for academic dishonesty in this case.”)


Tags:  academic honesty amendments honor code senate

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Matt Barry
Matt Barry is a senior majoring in international relations and double minoring in economics and German. This is his third year working for TKS, having served previously as discourse editor. He has worked for such organizations as the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, Premier Tourism Marketing and the Council on American Islamic Relations-Chicago, where his work appeared in such publications as Leisure Group Travel, Ski & Ride Club Guide and The Chicago Monitor. Matt has written his political opinion column, "The Voice of Reason," weekly for three years, which finished in first place at the 2012 Illinois College Press Association conference and was also recognized at the 2013 conference.

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