The Importance of Academic Integrity at the University of Maryland Global Campus
The University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC) is committed to ensuring that its students maintain high standards of academic integrity. The UMGC’s philosophy on academic integrity emphasizes the importance of honesty, trust, fairness, respect, responsibility, and courage. Students are expected to uphold these six fundamental values while pursuing their academic goals. The university community relies on these values for collective success.
The Definition of Academic Integrity
Academic integrity refers to a student’s commitment to honesty and ethical behavior during their academic journey. It involves avoiding any form of cheating, plagiarism or dishonesty in schoolwork or exams. The UMGC views an individual with academic integrity as someone who takes ownership and responsibility for their work.
However, it is not sufficient to simply identify the value of academic integrity. It is even more crucial that students understand what behaviors may violate this value.
Some forms of misconduct that may attract discipline from UMGC include falsifying data or information required in coursework, self-plagiarism or requesting another student to complete coursework for them.
Inquiry Committee and Investigation Process
In an online-based learning system such as UMGC’s setting, the process by which violations are investigated differs from traditional physical universities.
Faculty members, contributing staff or students can report individuals suspected of violating academic policies by submitting written reports within 30 days after witnessing such actions. Upon receipt of the report, AVP will inform both parties involved in the allegation about the pending investigation/complaint.
An Inquiry Committee then investigates any reported violations composed by three staff members who have no affiliation with either party involved in the violation case. Both parties shall have had equal opportunities to provide evidence before the committee commences deliberation.
Further questions related to specific allegations during an investigation will require consultation with a faculty member offering staff guidance on this matter.
Consequences for Academic Misconduct at UMGC
After thorough assessment and deliberation, the Inquiry Committee can make a ruling in line with their considerations. Students found guilty of academic misconduct can receive several sanctions, including a letter of reprimand, forced completion of plagiarism or misconduct seminars, suspension of university rights or financial restitution.
The punishments increase in severity depending on the level of violation, with students potentially facing expulsion from their academic program or even the university.
Appealing University Sanctions
A student who is unhappy with an inquiry’s decision has the right to appeal within 30 days of receiving their punishment notice. Students will submit appeals in writing to the university president highlighting their case’s inconsistencies and flaws.
The appeals process allows for reduced punishment if there is evidence that supports grounds for lesser sanctions or exoneration from all allegations leveled against an accused student. The decisions issued by the university president are final, accompanied by either upheld conclusions and sanctions or acquitted violations and dropped charges.
The Role of an Attorney-Advisor to Guide Accused Students
Being accused of academic misconduct creates immense pressure on students pursuing their studies. The Spodek Law Group through defendant attorney-advisor Todd Spodek offers guidance regarding academic misconduct accusations leveled against UMGC students.
UMGC requires graduate students seeking legal advice on such matters to do so through independent counsel obtained outside UNCG who specializes in handling these types of cases since the institution itself does not provide legal services.
Through experienced legal counsel during these trying times, Todd Spodek provides UMGC students facing disciplinary actions a lifeline to navigate this complex issue after thoroughly reviewing each accepted case’s specifics.
No student has to let accusations affect his/her career plans as the fight is far from over when faced with academic integrity violations at UMGC. Therefore invoking highly effective consultation options available guarantees someone on your side advocating for your academic rights.
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