BOULDER, Colo. (AP) — Reports of cheating are up at the University of Colorado Boulder, but officials say it’s because of better reporting, not more violations.
School officials said the Honor Code Office, which collects and investigates reports of cheating on campus, is doing a better job raising awareness about the tools available to faculty to curb academic dishonesty.
This year, the student-run office has been doing more collaboration with the campus community and faculty, encouraging them to learn more about what their office does and how it creates academic integrity, said honor code chair Will Hauptman.
From Aug. 1, 2012, to July 31, the office received 279 reports of cheating, up from 202 during that same period across 2011 and 2012.
“I know the numbers maybe look alarming, but the increase in reports does not mean cheating is on the rise. It does not mean there is some sort of moral or ethical dilemma at CU. It’s a result of many factors. The most prominent in my mind is increased faculty involvement with our process,” said Hauptman.
Students founded the honor code on campus in 1998 as a kind of self-policing way to promote academic integrity on campus. Hauptman said the office defines academic dishonesty as cheating, plagiarism, bribery, resubmission or any other form of unauthorized assistance on a test, paper or assignment.
Once faculty report an incident of alleged cheating to the office, the accused student can either claim responsibility for the report or ask for a hearing. During a hearing, a volunteer panel of students reviews the evidence and decides if the accused student is responsible.
Students who are found responsible or admit responsibility for the alleged violation may be asked to attend a seminar on integrity and writing, they may receive a failing grade on the assignment or if the student is found responsible for repeated or multiple violations, they may be suspended from campus.