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Rules & Regulations:
Discipline: Code Of Behaviour On Academic Matters


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Introduction

The Governing Council of the University of Toronto has approved a Code of Behaviour, which sets out clearly the standard of conduct in academic matters expected of members of the University community. The Code is enforced by the Provost and the Disciplinary Tribunal. Below are extracts from the Code, covering offences, sanctions and procedures as they apply to students. The full text is available from the Office of the Dean, and the Offices of College Registrars.

The University and its members have a responsibility to ensure that a climate that might encourage, or con- ditions that might enable, cheating, misrepresentation or unfairness not be tolerated. To this end all must acknowledge that seeking credit or other advantages by fraud or misrepresentation, or seeking to disadvantage others by disruptive behaviour is unacceptable, as is any dishonesty or unfairness in dealing with the work or record of a student.

Wherever in the Code an offence is described as depending on "knowing", the offence shall likewise be deemed to have committed if the person ought reasonably to have known.

B.I. Offences

1. It shall be an offence for a student knowingly:

(a) to forge or in any other way alter or falsify any document or evidence required for admission to the University, or to utter, circulate or make use of any such forged, altered or falsified document, whether the record be in print or electronic form;

(b) to use or possess an unauthorized aid or aids or obtain unauthorized assistance in any academic examination or term test or in connection with any other form of academic work;

(c) to personate another person, or to have another person personate, at any academic examination or term test or in connection with any other form of academic work;

(d) to represent as one's own any idea or expression of an idea or work of another in any academic examination or term test or in connection with any other form of academic work, i.e. to commit plagiarism;

(e) to submit, without the knowledge and approval of the instructor to whom it is submitted, any academic work for which credit has previously been obtained or is being sought in another course or program of study in the University or elsewhere;

(f) to submit for credit any academic work containing a purported statement of fact or reference to a source which has been concocted.

2. It shall be an offence for a faculty member knowingly:

(a) to approve any of the previously described offences;

(b) to evaluate an application for admission or transfer to a course or program of study by other than duly established and published criteria;

(c) to evaluate academic work by a student by reference to any criterion that does not relate to its merit, to the time within which it is to be submitted or to the manner in which it is to be performed.

3. It shall be an offence for a faculty member and student alike knowingly:
to forge or in any other way alter or falsify any academic record, or to utter, circulate or make use of any such forged, altered or falsified record, whether the record be in print or electronic form.
to engage in any form of cheating, academic dishonesty or misconduct, fraud or misrepresentation not herein otherwise described, in order to obtain academic credit or other academic advantage of any kind.

4. A graduate of the University may be charged with any of the above offences committed intentionally while he or she was an active student, when, in the opinion of the Provost, the offence, if detected, would have resulted in a sanction sufficiently severe that the degree would not have

B.II. Parties to Offences

1.(a) Every member is a party to an offence under this Code who knowingly:

(i) actually commits it;

(ii) does or omits to do anything for the purpose of aiding or assisting another member to commit the offence;

(iii) does or omits to do anything for the purpose of aiding or assisting any other person who, if that person were a member, would have committed the offence;

(iv) abets, counsels, procures or conspires with another member to commit or be a party to an offence; or

(v) abets, counsels, procures or conspires with any other person who, if that person were a member, would have committed or have been a part to the offence.

(b) Every party to an offence under this Code is liable upon admission of the commission thereof, or upon conviction, as the case may be, to the sanctions applicable to that offence.

2. Every member who, having an intent to commit an offence under this Code, does or omits to do anything for the purpose of carrying out that intention (other than mere preparation to commit the offence) is guilty of an attempt to commit the offence and liable upon conviction to the same sanctions as if he or she had committed the offence.

3. When a group is found guilty of an offence under this Code, every officer, director or agent of the group, being a member of the University, who directed, authorized or participated in the commission of the offence is a party to and guilty of the offence and is liable upon conviction to the sanctions provided for the offence.

C.I.(a) Divisional Procedures

NOTE: Where a student commits an offence, the faculty in which the student is registered has responsibility over the student in the matter. In the case of Scarborough and Erindale colleges, the college is deemed to be the faculty.

1. No hearing within the meaning of Section 2 of the Statutory Powers of Procedures Act is required for the purposes of, or in connection with, any of the discussions, meetings and determinations referred to in Section C.I.(a), and such discussions, meetings and determinations are not proceedings of the Tribunal.

2. Where an instructor has reasonable grounds to believe that an academic offence has been committed by a student, the instructor shall so inform the student immediately after learning of the act or conduct complained of, giving reasons, and invite the student to discuss the matter. Nothing the student says in such a discussion may be used or receivable in evidence against the student.

3. If after such discussion, the instructor is satisfied that no academic offence has been committed, he or she shall so inform the student and no further action shall be taken in the matter by the instructor, unless fresh evidence comes to the attention of the instructor, in which case he or she may again proceed in accordance with subsection 2.

4. If after such discussion, the instructor believes that an academic offence has been committed by the student, or if the student fails or neglects to respond to the invitation for discussion, the instructor shall make a report of the matter to the department chair or through the department chair to the dean. (See also Section C.I.(b)1.)

5. When the dean or the department chair, as the case may be, has been so informed, he or she shall notify the student in writing accordingly, provide him or her with a copy of the Code, and subsequently afford the student an opportunity for discussion of the matter. In the case of the dean being informed, the chair of the department and the instructor shall be invited by the dean to be present at the meeting with the student. The dean shall conduct the interview.

6. Before proceeding with the meeting, the dean shall inform the student that he or she is entitled to seek advice, or to be accompanied by counsel at the meeting, before making, and is not obliged to make, any statement or admission, but shall warn that if he or she makes any statement or admission in the meeting, it may be used or receivable in evidence against the student in the hearing of any charge with respect to the offence or alleged offence in question. The dean shall also advise the student, without further comment or discussion, of the sanctions that may be imposed under Section C.I.(b), and that the dean is not obliged to impose a sanction but may instead request that the Provost lay a charge against the student. Where such advice and warning have been given, the statements and admissions, if any, made in such a meeting may be used or received in evidence against the student in any such hearing.

7. If the dean, on the advice of the department chair and the instructor, or if the department chair, on the advice of the instructor, subsequently decides that no academic offence has been committed and that no further action in the matter is required, the student shall be so informed in writing and the student's work shall be accepted for normal evaluation or, if the student was prevented from withdrawing from the course by the withdrawal date, he or she shall be allowed to do so. Thereafter, the matter shall not be introduced into evidence at a Tribunal hearing for another offence.

8. If the student admits the alleged offence, the dean or the department chair may either impose the sanction that he or she considers appropriate under Section C.I.(B) or refer the matter to the dean or Provost, as the case may be, and in either event shall inform the student in writing accordingly. No further action in the matter shall be taken by the instructor, the department chair or the dean if the dean imposes a sanction.

9. If the student is dissatisfied with a sanction imposed by the department chair or the dean, as the case may be, the student may refer the matter to the dean or Provost, as the case may be, for consideration.

10. If the student does not admit the alleged offence, the dean may, after consultation with the instructor and the department chair, requires that the Provost lay a charge against the student. If the Provost agrees to lay a charge, the case shall then proceed to the Trial Division of the Tribunal.

11. Normally, decanal procedures will not be examined in a hearing before the Tribunal. A failure to carry out the procedures referred to in this Section, or any defect or irregularity in such procedures, shall not invalidate any subsequent proceedings of or before the Tribunal, unless the chair of the hearing considers that such failure, defect or irregularity resulted in a substantial wrong, detriment or prejudice to the accused. The chair will determine at the opening of the hearing whether there is going to be any objection to defect, failure or irregularity. 1

2. No degree, diploma or certificate of the University shall be conferred or awarded, nor shall a student be allowed to withdraw from a course from the time of the alleged offence until the final disposition of the accusation. However, a student shall be permitted to use University facilities while a decision is pending, unless there are valid reasons for the dean to bar him or her from a facility. When or at any time after an accusation has been reported to the dean, he or she may cause a notation to be recorded on the student's academic record and transcript in a course and/or the student's academic status is under review. A student upon whom a sanction has been imposed by the dean or the department chair under Section C.I.(b) or who has been convicted by the Tribunal shall not be allowed to withdraw from a course so as to avoid the sanction imposed.

13. A record of cases disposed of under Section C.I.(a) and of the sanctions imposed shall be kept in the academic unit concerned and may be referred to by the dean in connection with a decision to prosecute, or by the prosecution in making representations as to the sanction or sanctions to be imposed by the Tribunal, for any subsequent offence committed by the student. Information on such cases shall be available to other academic units upon request and such cases shall be reported by the dean to the Secretary of the Tribunal for use in the Provost's annual report to the Academic Board. The dean may contact the Secretary of the Tribunal for advice or for information on cases disposed of under Section C.II. hereof.

14. Where a proctor or invigilator, who is not a faculty member, has reason to believe that an academic offence has been committed by a student at an examination or test, the proctor or invigilator shall so inform the student's dean or department chair, as the case may be, who shall proceed as if he or she were an instructor, by analogy to the other provisions of this section.

15. In the case of alleged offences not covered by the above and not involving the submission of academic work, such as those concerning forgery or uttering, library or computer material or library or computer resources, and in cases involving cancellation, recall or suspension of a degree, diploma or certificate, the procedure shall be regulated by analogy to the other procedures of this section.

C.I.(b) Divisional Sanctions

1. In an assignment worth 10 percent or less of the final grade, the department chair may handle the matter if:

(i) the student admits guilt; and

(ii) the assignment of a penalty is limited to at most a mark of zero for the piece of work. If the student does not admit guilt, or if the department chair chooses, the matter shall be brought before the dean.

2. One or more of the following sanctions may be imposed by the dean where a student admits to the commission of an offence:

(a) an oral and/or written reprimand;

(b) an oral and/or written reprimand and, with the permission of the instructor, the resubmission of the piece of academic work, in respect of which the offence was committed, for evaluation. Such a sanction shall be imposed only for minor offences and where the student has committed no previous offence;

(c) assignment of a grade of zero or a failure for the piece of academic work in respect of which the offence was committed;

(d) assignment of a penalty in the form of a reduction of the final grade in the course in respect of which the offence was committed;

(e) denial of privileges to use any facility of the University, including library and computer facilities;

(f) a monetary fine to cover the costs of replacing damaged property or misused supplies in respect of which the offence was committed;

(g) assignment of a grade of zero or a failure for the course in respect of which the offence was committed;

(h) suspension from attendance in a course or courses, a program, an academic division or unit, or the University for a period of not more than twelve months. Where a student has not completed a course or courses in respect of which an offence has not been committed, withdrawal from the course or courses without academic penalty shall be allowed.

3. The dean shall have the power to record any sanction imposed on the student's academic record and transcript for such length of time as he or she considers appropriate. However, the sanctions of suspension or a notation specifying academic misconduct as the reason for a grade of zero for a course shall normally be recorded for a period of five years.

4. The Provost shall, from time to time, indicate appropriate sanctions for certain offences. These guidelines shall be sent for information to the Academic Board and attached to the Code as Appendix "C".


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Revised: August 19, 1998

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