PlagiarismThe following statement has been adopted by the UTC Faculty Council and is published in the Student Handbook.
To plagiarize means to take someone else's words and/or ideas (or patterns of ideas) and to present them to the reader as if they are your own. Plagiarism, then, is an act of stealing. It is also a stupid act because it doesn't help you learn, and it is a dangerous act because you can be severely punished for it.
You should be on guard against plagiarism at any time when writing a paper to be turned in. In some papers you will write, you will be assigned to use only your own ideas and will probably not have to worry about plagiarism. At any time, however, that you read anything in preparation for a paper or consciously recall anything that you have read or heard, you must be prepared to provide documentation. Generally, when you use someone else's ideas and/or words, you will either quote that person directly or you will paraphrase or summarize that person's words. You must let the reader know which you are doing.
1. If you quote the source directly, you must
a. put quotation marks before and after that person's words;
b. let the reader know the source by (a), putting a footnote number at the end of the quotation or (b), putting at least the source's name in parentheses after the quotation marks.
2. If you paraphrase (a paraphrase is about the same length as the original, but indifferent words) or if you summarize (a summary is a severely shortened version of the original), you must
a. introduce the source in some manner at the beginning of the passage being paraphrased (or summarized) so that a reader can tell where your idea stops and the other person's begins;
b. state the ideas taken from the source in your own words and your own arrangement. It is possible to plagiarize sentence patterns as well as exact words. A handy rule: If, in a paraphrase or summary, you use a stretch of more than three words in their exact order from a source, you should put those words into quotation marks;
c. provide an exact source citation for the ideas paraphrased or summarized. This may be done either by footnote number at the end of the passages or by parenthetical reference to the work and page(s). This citation provides credit to the author being used and allows the reader access to the material for further study.
3. You must also provide a footnote for any chart, graph, figure, table, summary, or other data taken directly from another source or any information derived from such materials.
When you are assigned a research paper or project, check with your instructor to determine what particular footnote style you should follow. If, at any time, you have questions or doubts as to whether or not you are plagiarizing, check with your instructor before you complete your paper.
Personnel Files and Release of
The University shall maintain official personnel files on every employee. Under state law, personnel records are considered public records and may be inspected or copied by any citizen of Tennessee during business hours, in accordance with reasonable rules of the office having custody of such records. The Academic Personnel Office can provide information to faculty about records maintained about them and can permit them, upon request, to review the material. (For a list of documents that must be included in personnel files, see Personnel Policy and Procedures Manual; Section 130.)
Adjunct Faculty/Student Relationships in the Classroom
The following statements cover important aspects of the University's understanding of expectations for student/faculty relationships in the classroom and its general philosophy governing student rights and responsibilities.
Freedom of Expression
Free and pertinent discussion is welcome at the University. Students should feel free to take reasoned exception to the data or views offered in any course of study and to reserve judgment about matters of opinion. They are responsible, however, for learning the content of any course of study for which they are enrolled.
Academic EvaluationFaculty are expected to evaluate student performance honestly and professionally, based solely on academic considerations and not on opinions or conduct in matters unrelated to academic standards. Students are responsible for meeting the academic standards and requirements of each course in which they are enrolled. In order to make clear to students the basis for academic evaluation, each faculty member normally should satisfy the following general guidelines: a) provide written course objectives, criteria and methods of student evaluation to the students near the beginning of each course; b) provide written make-up examination policy near the beginning of each course; c) return graded exercises to the student promptly; d) provide a mid-term grade in writing to students by the middle of the semester or term at the latest; e) make themselves reasonably available to students for conferences and make reasonable efforts to assist students who are having difficulty in their courses. However, the burden of taking advantage of such opportunities falls on the student. A student alleging unfair evaluation may appeal (see the section dealing with grade appeals).
The University expects that all academic work will provide an honest reflection of the knowledge and abilities of both students and faculty. Cheating, plagiarism, fabrication of data, providing unauthorized help and other acts of academic dishonesty are abhorrent to the purposes for which the University exists.
Students with Disabilities
The University is obligated, under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 to make reasonable accommodations to provide qualified students with disabilities the opportunity for full participation in academic programs and activities. Reasonable accommodation may include increasing physical accessibility, modifying teaching/testing practices, acquiring equipment/devices, and providing qualified readers or interpreters. Faculty who have students with disabilities in their classes are expected to be sensitive to special needs of those persons. The Office of Students Affairs (425-4534) can be contacted for additional information regarding possible classroom modifications and services.
Make-Up Examination Policy
Students are responsible for meeting all course requirements, including graded exercises which are administered in class. Along with other course requirements, policies covering make-ups for graded exercises normally are announced at the beginning of the course. In the event of an impasse between the instructor and the student over the questions of make-up, the student may appeal to the department head, director or program coordinator.
Final examinations are to be given at the scheduled time during final exam week. If an emergency should arise, or if there are scheduling difficulties, the faculty member should see the dean.
Attendance Policy and Excuses
At the beginning of the semester faculty members will state to their classes their policy on absences. It is the student's responsibility to inform the instructor when illness or participation in a University activity prevents attendance. The instructor will decide whether the student may make up work missed and what effect the absences may have on the requirements of the course.
When absences are occasioned by University projects, students should check with their instructors, informing them of the possibility of the out-of-town trip and the classes to be missed. If the instructor wishes written confirmation of the organized trip before granting an excuse, a list of the student's classes along with the instructors' names and dates of the trip should be submitted to the office of the appropriate dean. All excuse requests must be submitted at least three days before the event. This list should be signed by the faculty advisor of the organization, who certifies as to the accuracy of the information. The dean returns the approved list to the faculty advisor, who issues copies to the students.
Complaints or grievances will arise occasionally in the faculty-student relationship and should be clarified at the earliest possible time and at the level closest to the locus of the complaint. Students who have such complaints are urged to address them directly to the faculty member in an appropriate setting. It is understood that some issues may need to be addressed to the nearest administrator, generally the department or program unit head. Every effort should be made to resolve such matters informally by conversation. A matter unresolved on the departmental level may be brought to the appropriate dean and, after that, the provost. Specific policies for grade appeals and for allegations of sexual harassment are found elsewhere in this hand book and the Student Handbook.
Grade Change Policy
Changing of a semester grade, once it has been reported to the records office by the instructor, may be made only in cases of computational error or for removal of an incomplete. Students are not permitted to do additional work, or to re-write a paper, etc., after the end of the semester in order to receive a change of grade. Refer to Grade Appeals Procedure.
Course and/or Instructor Evaluation
Course and/or instructor evaluation by students is required by The University of Tennessee
at Chattanooga. Such evaluations form one constituent of the overall evaluation of the
faculty which includes, in addition, a
self-evaluation, evaluation by the department head and
evaluation by dean or other administrator.
A faculty member who chooses not to return papers to the student should keep graded exams and papers for a minimum of the next regular semester following the completion of a term, until the possibility of a grade appeal is past. In the event the faculty member goes on leave, papers should be kept until one semester after return from leave.
Inclement Weather Operations Policy
The University will maintain normal operating hours during inclement weather (snow days) unless a public notice is made to close the University. Notice will be given to the appropriate news media early on days of inclement weather. A skeleton force has been charged with coming to the University to perform required functions during inclement weather.
Should the University be closed, all employees, except those designated in the skeleton force, shall be guided by the Personnel Policy and Procedures on Days of Administrative Closing.
Grade Appeals Procedure (Undergraduate)1
Preamble: It is the prerogative and responsibility of members of the faculty to determine in accordance with their best judgment the grade for each student.
Whenever students feel that their rights and interests have been seriously jeopardized by way of unfair, arbitrary or malicious exercise of faculty grading prerogatives, and desire to appeal the grade, the following appeal procedures shall be followed.1. Conversation with the Instructor. The student who desires to appeal must within five working days of receiving notification of the grade seek an appointment with the faculty member who awarded the grade for the purpose of requesting clarification of the basis for the evaluation. If the student is unable to locate the faculty member personally, the request may be presented to the head of the department2 in which the course is offered. During these conversations, the student shall have access to all of the exams and papers not returned to the student for the period covered by the grade. Provision of material returned to the student is the responsibility of the student. A faculty member who chooses not to return papers to the student should keep graded exams and papers for a minimum of the next regular semester following the completion of a term (see Keeping Papers in Section 5.3.1.). If the complaint is not resolved by way of such discussions and the student is still convinced that the grade is arbitrary or unjust, a formal appeal may be made to the Faculty Grade Appeals Committee.
2. Appeal to the Faculty Grade Appeals Committee. Within five working days of the conversation with the faculty member who awarded the grade, the student desiring to proceed with a formal appeal shall present in writing the reasons on which the appeal is based, together with any and all supporting documents. Such appeal shall be addressed to the Faculty Grade Appeals Committee and be personally delivered to the head of the department in which the course in question is offered.
The Faculty Grade Appeals Committee shall consist of three (3) faculty members and two (2) alternate faculty members elected annually by the Faculty Council. In addition, two (2) non-voting faculty members shall be selected at the time of an appeal by the head of the department (or dean of the school if appropriate) in which the appealed course is offered. The chair shall be the dean of the academic unit involved. Should the dean be the course professor involved in the appeal, the Provost will serve as chair. The chair shall not vote on an appeal except in cases of a tie vote. A quorum for this committee will consist of four (4) voting members counting the chair.
a. Procedure after Appeal. Upon receipt of a formal appeal, the head of the department involved shall notify the faculty member who awarded the grade and shall immediately appoint two members of the department faculty to serve on the Faculty Grade Appeals Committee. The head shall forward those names, and the written appeal, together with all relevant material and information concerning the case to the dean of the college or school, who will as soon as possible call a meeting of the Faculty Grade Appeals Committee.
b. Responsibilities of the Grade Appeals Committee.
1) The responsibility of the Grade Appeals Committee is to hear undergraduate student appeals whenever students feel that their rights have been seriously jeopardized by way of unfair, arbitrary or malicious exercise of faculty grading prerogatives and desires to appeal the grade. The committee reviews grades after a student who is appealing has followed the current published procedures.
2) As soon as possible after the committee is formed, the dean shall inquire of
the student and the faculty member involved whether either desires a hearing
before the committee. If no hearing is requested, the committee shall
determine the appeal and issue its ruling on the basis of the record. If either
party requests a hearing, such a hearing will be held within ten (10) working days
of the request, at which time both the student and the faculty member shall
be afforded the opportunity to present further evidence. Within five (5)
working days after the hearing, the committee shall, on the basis of all the
material before it, determine the appeal and issue its ruling as it deems appropriate,
either upholding the grade or requesting the faculty member to change it accordingly.
Either party shall have the right to appeal to the Chancellor of the
c. Appeal to the Chancellor. Within five working days of the decision of the Faculty Grade Appeals Committee, the student or the faculty member may present, in writing, a request for review by the Chancellor of the University. In such event, the Chancellor shall immediately request the complete record of the case from the Faculty Grade Appeals Committee and shall make a decision on the basis of the record. In the event that a decision of the committee against the student is upheld by the Chancellor, the student may appeal to the President in writing. If the Chancellor upholds a decision of the Faculty Grade Appeals Committee against the faculty member, the faculty member shall be requested to change the grade in accordance with the committee's ruling. The Chancellor has the ultimate authority on this campus to decide whether the grade will be changed and to effect such a change.
Grade Appeals Procedure (Graduate)
The grade appeals procedure for graduate students is identical to the grade appeals procedure for undergraduate students with the exception that the Graduate Council Petitions committee will serve as the Grade Appeals Committee.
Student Rights and Responsibilities
Within the limits of its facilities and resources, The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga is open to all students who are qualified by its admission standards. The UTC Student Handbook represents the University's considered deliberations on such matters as faculty/student relations, student conduct and related considerations that focus the shared integrity of an academic arena. Faculty performance in the professional role of teacher, researcher or advisor is an important influence on the academic and community environment of the University.
By registering in the University, the student neither loses the rights nor escapes the duties of a citizen. Students should conduct their personal lives in the context of mutual regard for the rights and privileges of others. Therefore, it is expected that students will demonstrate respect for the law and for the necessity of orderly conduct in the affairs of the community.
Students are responsible for being fully acquainted with the University catalog(s),
UTC Student Handbook and other regulations
relating to students and for complying with them in
the interest of an orderly and productive community.
Failure or refusal to comply with the rules and policies established by the University
subject the offender to disciplinary action up to and including suspension from the University.
As members of the academic community, students are encouraged to develop the capacity for critical judgment and to engage in a sustained and independent search for truth. The freedom to learn, in particular, is in a large measure dependent upon appropriate opportunities and conditions in the classroom, on the campus and in the larger community. Students should exercise this freedom with responsibility.
The responsibility to secure and to respect general conditions conducive to the freedom
to learn is shared by all members of the academic community. This University has a duty to
develop policies and procedures which provide a safeguard to this freedom. Such policies
and procedures are developed at this institution
with the participation of all members of the
Honor System at UTC
Faculty members have a general responsibility to make students aware that the Honor Code governs all their academic work at UTC. Faculty members should stress that, although the Honor Code applies only to student work, the principles which it embodies, especially the principle of giving proper credit for another's ideas, are binding upon all members of the academic community. The Honor System at UTC places responsibility for maintaining academic honesty on the student, but faculty are free to supervise examinations and other graded work in whatever way deemed appropriate.
Either through their own observation or through reports from students, faculty members may confront suspected violations of the Honor Code. The faculty member's handling of an incident of this sort should be guided by the following considerations:
1. The faculty member will need to make a preliminary judgment about the seriousness of the incident and to judge whether it is a possible violation of the Honor Code. If the incident appears to be a violation of the Honor Code, the faculty member must then decide whether the seriousness of the incident and the evidence are sufficient to justify a formal report to the Honor Court. In reaching both of these decisions, faculty members are strongly encouraged to consult with the chair of the Honor Court. If a faculty member chooses not to report an instance of apparent academic dishonesty to the Honor Court, the faculty member should not penalize the students involved without their knowledge and consent.
2. In the event of a contested case, a student who is accused of or penalized for academic dishonesty has a right to a hearing before an individual or committee selected by the Chancellor. This right is provided by a state law, the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act (Public Acts 1974, Chapter 725, Tennessee Code Annotated 4-5-301 et seq.). A student may choose as an alternative a hearing before the Honor Court.
3. If a hearing of either type is held, a faculty member may be asked to attend as a witness. The faculty member has the obligation, when called upon, to present a clear and impartial account of the incident in question and to present to the hearing body any relevant evidence, especially written evidence, at the faculty member's disposal. The faculty member's role in such a hearing is not that of a prosecutor.
4. Faculty members are sometimes concerned about legal liability they may incur as the result of handling cases of academic dishonesty. Should a student choose to be represented by legal counsel at an Honor Court or APA hearing, an attorney from the UT Office of the General Counsel will be present to represent the interests of the University.
5. Faculty members are strongly encouraged to report suspected violations of the Honor Code to the Honor Court. The Honor Court is empowered to impose penalties more severe than those which an individual faculty member can impose. Only through the process of reporting suspected violations will it be possible to identify and deal with students whose academic work is habitually dishonest. There are, however, cases of apparent academic dishonesty which are so ambiguous that they are not readily resolved through the process of a formal hearing. Faculty may choose to handle such cases through a conference with the parties involved as long as students are informed of their right to a hearing. Again, the chair of the Honor Court is available to consult with faculty about any instance of suspected academic dishonesty.
6. Faculty who penalize cheating students by awarding an uncontested grade of "F" on a paper/test or as a final course grade are strongly encouraged to submit the name of the student and the actions taken to the chair of the Honor Court. The chair of the Honor Court should solicit such names and actions from the faculty at the beginning of every semester.
The following is taken from the UTC Student Handbook and contains information of which every faculty member should be aware.
Honor Code Pledge: I pledge that I will neither give nor receive unauthorized aid on any test or assignment. I understand that plagiarism constitutes a serious instance of unauthorized aid. I further pledge that I will exert every effort to ensure that the Honor Code is upheld by others and that I will actively support the establishment and continuance of a campus-wide climate of honor and integrity.
The Honor System is designed to foster a campus-wide climate of honesty and integrity in order to ensure that students derive the maximum possible benefit from their work at The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. The student becomes subject to the rules and regulations of the Honor Code upon registration. Each student is obligated to exert every effort to ensure that the Honor Code is upheld by himself/herself and others.
The Honor System is administered by the Honor Court, a committee consisting of eight students and four faculty members. The procedures which govern the Court's work are described below. Any student accused of violating the Honor Code has a right to a hearing either before the Honor Court or in accordance with the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act (see C below).Although the Honor Code applies only to student work, the principles which it embodies, especially the principle of giving proper credit for another's ideas, are binding upon all members of the academic community. The Honor System is designed to foster these principles and to develop in students rigorous standards of personal integrity by placing on students the primary responsibility for academic honesty. When it functions effectively, the Honor System creates a vastly more favorable climate for learning than does the presumption that students will be honest only when no opportunity is afforded them for dishonesty. In order to function effectively, however, the Honor System must have widespread support among students seriously committed to the ideals upon which it is based.
The Honor Code is a means by which the student can maintain their own integrity and also be loyal to the community which has admitted them to membership. Any person duly registered for any course is a student in The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and acquires the privileges and responsibilities of membership in this community. The Honor Code of the university is based upon the assumption that the student recognizes the fundamental importance of honesty in all dealings within this community. The very nature of education makes it a cooperative enterprise between student and teacher and between student and student. Any act of dishonesty violates and weakens this relationship and lessens the value of the education the student is pursuing.
1. All students become subject to the rules and regulations of the Honor Code upon registration at The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.
2. The Honor Code is violated by various types of misrepresentation or acts of dishonesty which bear on the academic evaluation of a student. The following are a few examples (not all inclusive) of violations of the Honor Code:
a. Failure to adhere to the Honor Code Pledge.
b. Bringing unauthorized material into examination area.
c. Making use of unauthorized assistance during an examination or in preparing
a graded assignment.
d. Incorporating words or ideas of another author in a research paper without giving proper credit to their source.
e. Making unacknowledged use of another's computer program.
f. Unauthorized use, or misuse, of the University's computing facilities. This includes:
1. Logging on an account without the knowledge and permission of the owner.
2. Changing, deleting, and adding to the programs, files and data without authorization of the owner.
3. Theft of program data and machine resources.
4. Attempts to thwart security of the computer system(s).
5. Attempts to disrupt the normal operations of the computer system(s), including hardware and software.
g. Assisting in any act of dishonesty, including, but not limited to, the above examples.
C. Right to a Hearing
Any student accused of violating the Honor Code is guaranteed the right to a hearing either before the Honor Court or in accordance with the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act (Public Act 1974, Chapter 725, Tennessee Code Annotated 4-507 et seq.). The procedures of the Honor Court are described below. The Uniform Administrative Procedures Act provides the student the right to a hearing before an individual or committee selected by the Chancellor. This individual or committee submits to the Chancellor a recommendation for the disposition of the case. The responsibility for the final decision rests with the Chancellor. At either type of hearing the student has the right to confront his or her accuser and cross-examine witnesses.
D. Duties and Powers of the Honor Court
The Honor Court shall perform the following:
1. Decide the question of guilt or innocence on suspected Honor Code violations.
2. Recommend appropriate disciplinary action.
3. Function as a study committee continually evaluating the nature and administration of the Honor Code.
4. Serve as an advisory committee reporting to the Chancellor of the university, Faculty Council and SGA.
E. Composition of the Honor Court
The composition of the Honor Court shall consist of eight student members (two appointed by the Faculty Council; two appointed by the President of the SGA, who shall assume office upon approval of the Senate; one appointed by the Office of Student Affairs; three appointed by the Senate (from outside the Senate) and four faculty members or their alternates, who shall be appointed by the Faculty Council. The chair shall be one of the faculty members of the court and shall not vote. The Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Dean of Students shall serve as an ex officio member of the Honor Court and shall not vote.
F. Procedures of the Honor Court
1. Both students and faculty may report suspected violations of the Honor Code
to the chair of the Honor Court. The chair will provide a form on which these
reports may be made. A student whose grade has been reduced because of a
suspected violation of the Honor Code may also appeal to the Court. Upon receiving
the report or appeal, the chair will either schedule a hearing before the Honor
Court or, at the discretion of the accused party, refer the case to the Chancellor for
disposition in accordance with the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act. An
Honor Court hearing will not be held, however, if the necessary witnesses, either students
or faculty, are unwilling to appear.
2. An Honor Court hearing requires a quorum of six voting members. One of the members of the Court will serve as secretary and record minutes for the hearing. At the discretion of the chair of the Honor Court, a recording of the hearing may be made. A copy of this record will be made available to the accused party upon payment of a reasonable fee for transcription. No record is kept of the deliberation of the Honor Court which follows the hearing, except for a record of any votes that may be taken.
3. Hearings of the Honor Court are closed to all except witnesses, the accused, the person bringing the accusation, any legal representatives, and members of the Court.
4. Members of the Honor Court who are relatives or close personal acquaintances of the accused party will excuse themselves from the hearing.
5. At the beginning of the hearing, the chair will read the report of the suspected violation. The accused party has the right to state his or her position and to present a written statement. The accused party, the accuser and the Court may call and question witnesses. All persons except members of the Honor Court will be dismissed before the Court begins its deliberation. A verdict of guilty and a recommended penalty must be supported by a majority of the voting members of the Court who are present and voting. The accused party will be asked to return at the conclusion of the deliberation for the announcement of the decision of the Court. If the accused is found to have violated the Honor Code, the accused will be advised of the right of appeal to the Chancellor.
6. Both the accused party and the party reporting the suspected violation will be notified in writing by the Chair of the Honor Court of the decision of the Court. Written notification will also be sent to the Chancellor and the Dean of Students.
G. Honor Code Penalties
1. If a student is found guilty of violating the Honor Code for the first time, normally the Court will place the student on disciplinary probation for one year and will recommend to the instructor that the student be given a grade of F in the course. In very serious cases the Court may recommend suspension or dismissal for a first offense. In very unusual situations, where circumstances warrant, the Court may recommend a lesser penalty.
2. If a student is found guilty of a second offense, the Court will recommend to the instructor that the student be given a grade of F in the course and will recommend to the Chancellor that the student be suspended from the university for the subsequent fall or spring semester. In the case of a student who will graduate at the end of the current semester, the Court will recommend that graduation be delayed until the end of the semester during which the suspension is in effect. In very serious cases the Court may recommend dismissal for a second offense.
3. If a student is found guilty of a third violation of the Honor Code, the Court will recommend to the instructor that the student be given a grade of F in the course and will recommend to the Chancellor that the student be dismissed from the university. If a student who would otherwise graduate at the end of the current semester is dismissed, they will not be allowed to graduate.
Any attempt to withdraw from the course or the university prior to an Honor Court hearing shall not exempt the student from the penalties imposed by the Court. The student will be reinstated in the course/university if necessary.
The Chancellor will serve as the appeals officer for both the accused party and the person reporting the violation. Recommendations for suspension or dismissal may not be appealed to the Petitions Committee. Appeals to the Chancellor must be made in writing within five (5) business days of receiving writing notification of the decision of the Court.
Plagiarism is defined in the Student Handbook as adopted by the UTC Faculty Council. It is located near the beginning of this Appendix.
1 It is recognized that the following time frames are maximal, and that in cases where a failing grade prevents a student from continuing in the course, the appeals procedure can be accelerated.
2 Refers also to director of programs.