Academic Integrity & Discipline Appeal Process

Academic Integrity

MiraCosta College highly values academic integrity. At the core, this means an honest representation of one's own work. MiraCosta College also promotes the approach that education is best accomplished as a cooperative, collaborative enterprise in which students are encouraged to work with and learn from each other. The line between academic integrity and collaborative education is not always easy to define and may vary from one discipline to the next and from one instructor to the next. Many aspects of cheating and plagiarism are universally recognized, while others are subject to debate. This policy provides some broad, general guidelines and allows instructors to be more restrictive according to their preferences and practices.

Examples of academic dishonesty include but are not limited to the following:

A. Cheating: Copying from another student or using unauthorized aids or persons during an examination.

B. Plagiarizing: Copying someone else's work or ideas and misrepresenting them as one's own.

C. Falsification: Making up fictitious information and presenting it as factual or altering records for the purpose of misrepresentation.

D. Facilitation: Helping another student to cheat, plagiarize, or falsify.

Remedies for violations of academic integrity may include a verbal warning, a lowered assignment grade, submission of an academic integrity report to the Vice President, Student Services, or designee (for placement into the student's permanent discipline file), or a recommendation to the Vice President, Student Services, for suspension from the class for repeated or egregious offenses at the discretion of the instructor. Instructors may consult with the Vice President, Student Services, for identification of appropriate remedies per state statutes and codes.

Academic Dishonesty Discipline Appeal Process

A student who is determined by a faculty member to have been academically dishonest (cheating, plagiarizing, falsification of information, helping other students to cheat, etc.) has the right to appeal a faculty member's decision. The appeal process is as follows:

A. Within ten (10) instructional days (excluding weekends and holidays), the student may appeal the faculty member's action by contacting the department chairperson who must respond in writing within ten (10) instructional days of the appeal having been submitted.

B. If the student wishes to appeal the department chairperson's decision, s/he may make a final written appeal to the Vice President, Instructional Services, within ten (10) instructional days of receiving the chairperson's decision. The vice president's decision is final and will be mailed to the student within ten (10) instructional days.

C. A successful appeal of a faculty member's determination that a student has been academically dishonest does not automatically change the final grade in the course. To appeal the final grade in the course, the student must follow the procedures outlined in Administrative Procedure 4231 on grade changes.

(Source: MCCD Board Policy and Administrative Procedure 5505. All MiraCosta College board policies and administrative procedures are located on the Board of Trustees webpage.)