Academic Honesty Policy

Month/Year Posted: 
May, 2016
Policy Number: 

Approved by the University Senate on this date: May 10, 2016

Approved by the Provost of Humboldt State University on this date: May 12, 2016

Academic honesty is of serious concern at Humboldt. Students are expected to maintain high standards of academic integrity. Acting in good conscience is integral to our vision statement.

Academic Dishonesty

Academic dishonesty is willful and intentional fraud and deception to improve a grade or obtain course credit. It includes all student behavior intended to gain unearned academic advantage by fraudulent and/or deceptive means.


Cheating is defined as obtaining or attempting to obtain, or aiding another in obtaining or attempting to obtain credit for work or any improvement in evaluation of performance, by any dishonest or deceptive means. Cheating includes, but is not limited to:

Taking information

1. Copying graded homework assignments from another student.

2. Working with others on a take-home test or homework when specifically prohibited by the instructor.

3. Looking at another student's paper or screen during an examination.

4. Looking at text, notes or electronic devices during an examination when specifically prohibited by the instructor.

5. Accessing another student's electronic device and taking information from the device.

6. Allowing another person to complete assignments or an on-line course.

Providing information:

1. Giving one's work to another to be copied or used in an oral presentation.

2. Giving answers to another student during an examination or for a take-home test.

3. After having taken an exam, informing another person in a later section about questions appearing on that exam.

4. Providing a term paper to another student.

5. Taking an exam, writing a paper, or creating a computer program or artistic work for another.

Policy on Cheating

At faculty discretion, cheating may result in an "F" grade on the assignment or examination, or in the course. If a student denies the charge of cheating, s/he will be permitted to remain in the class through the formal hearing process (as outlined in Executive Order 1098) (PDF, req. Adobe Reader).

The instructor shall contact the student with evidence of the cheating in writing within one week of discovery of the event. The Academic Dishonesty Referral form will also be submitted to the Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities with copies to the student and to the student's major department. Student's rights shall be ensured through attention to matters of due process including timeliness of action.

The Student Conduct Administrator located in the Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities shall determine if any further disciplinary action is required. Disciplinary actions might include but are not limited to: requiring special counseling, loss of membership in organizations, or disciplinary probation, suspension or expulsion from the University and the CSU system.


Plagiarism is defined as the act of using the ideas or work of another person or persons as if they were one’s own, without giving proper credit to the sources. Such actions include but are not limited to:

1. Copying homework answers from the text to hand in for a grade.

2. Failing to give credit for ideas, statements of facts, or conclusions derived by another author. Failure to use quotation marks when quoting directly from another, whether it be a paragraph, a sentence, or part thereof.

3. Submitting a paper purchased from a "research" or term paper service or downloaded from the internet.

4. Copying another student’s paper and handing it in as one's own.

5. Giving a speech or oral presentation written by another and claiming it as one's own work.

6. Claiming credit for artistic work done by someone else, such as a musical composition, photos, a painting, drawing, sculpture, or design.

7. Presenting another's computer program as one's own.

Policy on Plagiarism

Plagiarism may be considered a form of cheating and therefore subject to the same policy as cheating which requires notification of the Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities and disciplinary action. However, as there may be plagiarism as a result of poor learning or inattention to format, and there may be no intent to deceive, some instructor discretion is appropriate. Under such circumstances, the instructor may elect to work with the student to correct the problem at an informal level. In any case that any penalty is applied, the student must be informed of the event being penalized and the penalty.

Within one week of discovery of the alleged plagiarism, the instructor will contact the student and describe the event deemed to be dishonest. In this contact, the student and instructor shall attempt to come to a resolution of the event. The instructor may assign an "F" or "O" on the exam or project, or take other action within the structure of the class as deemed appropriate to the student's behavior. A report of this contact and resolution shall be filed with the Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities using the Academic Dishonesty Referral form.

When a case is referred to the Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities, the consequences might be severe. Disciplinary actions might include but are not limited to: requiring special counseling, loss of membership in organizations, suspension or dismissal from individual programs, or disciplinary probation, suspension or expulsion from the University. If the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities determines that no violation has occurred, the instructor will comply with the decision, and refrain from issuing penalties, or remove those already on the student’s record.

Other Forms of Academic Dishonesty

Other forms of academic dishonesty include any actions intended to gain academic advantage by fraudulent and/or deceptive means not addressed specifically in the definition of cheating and/or plagiarism. These actions may include but are not limited to:

1. Planning with one or more fellow students to commit any form of academic dishonesty together.

2. Giving a term paper, speech or project to another student whom one knows will plagiarize it.

3. Having another student take one's exam or do one's computer program, lab experiment, or artistic work.

4. Lying to an instructor to increase a grade.

5. Submitting substantially the same paper or speech for credit in two different courses without prior approval of the instructors involved.

6. Altering a graded work after it has been returned, then submitting the work for regrading, without the instructor's prior approval.

7. Removing tests from the classroom without the approval of the instructor, or stealing tests.

The policy on these and other forms of academic dishonesty is the same as that described above for cheating.

Student Responsibility

The student has full responsibility for the content and integrity of all academic work submitted. Ignorance of a rule does not constitute a basis for waiving the rule or the consequences of that rule. Students unclear about a specific situation should ask their instructors, who will explain what is and is not acceptable in their classes.

For further information on the disciplinary process and sanctions, see the Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities, Siemens Hall Room 211, (707) 826-3504, or Associate Dean of Students, Student Rights & Responsibilities. An Academic Dishonesty Referral Form (PDF, req. Adobe Reader) is provided for use.


Supersedes Academic Honesty Policy dated April 14, 1998