Student Code of Conduct and Plagiarism

As with all educational programs sponsored by Brigham Young University, students enrolled in BYU Independent Study courses are expected to demonstrate a high sense of personal honor, integrity, and courtesy in all coursework and examinations, as well as all interactions with students, teachers, and program staff.

Academic Dishonesty

Students must avoid every form of academic dishonesty and misconduct, including but not limited to plagiarism, fabrication or falsification, and cheating on examinations or assignments. Students commit themselves to academic work of integrity—that is, work that is their own, work that adheres to the scholarly and intellectual standards of accurate attribution of sources, and work that appropriately and accurately portrays research and data.

“Plagiarism” is a form of intellectual theft involving the unauthorized use or close imitation of the words, ideas, or data of another as one’s own without providing proper attribution to the author through quotation, reference, or footnote. Plagiarism may occur with respect to unpublished as well as published material. Copying another student’s work and submitting it as one’s own individual work without proper attribution is a serious form of plagiarism. Examples of plagiarism include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Direct plagiarism: Verbatim copying of an original source without acknowledging the source
  • Paraphrased plagiarism: Paraphrasing, without acknowledgment, of ideas from another that the reader might mistake for the author’s own
  • Plagiarism mosaic: Borrowing of words, ideas, or data from an original source and blending this original material with one’s own without acknowledging the source
  • Insufficient acknowledgment: Partial or incomplete attribution of words, ideas, or data from an original source
  • Attributing someone else's work as your own, regardless of whether it was created by a human or an artificial intelligence, is considered plagiarism and constitutes a breach of academic honesty

“Cheating” is a form of dishonesty where a student attempts to give the appearance of knowledge or skill that the student has not fairly obtained. Examples of cheating include, but are not limited to the following:

  • copying from another person’s work during an examination or while completing an assignment
  • allowing someone to copy from you during an examination or while completing an assignment
  • using unauthorized materials during an examination or while completing an assignment
  • collaborating on an examination or assignment without authorization to do so
  • taking an examination or completing an assignment for another, or permitting another to take an examination or to complete an assignment in your place.

“Fabrication or falsification” is a form of academic dishonesty where a student invents or distorts the origin or content of information used as authority. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • citing a source that does not exist
  • attributing to a source ideas and information that are not included in the source
  • citing a source for a proposition that it does not support
  • citing a source in a bibliography when the source was neither consulted nor cited in the body of the paper
  • distorting the meaning or applicability of data
  • inventing data or statistical results to support conclusions

Other Student Misconduct

Students must at all times be respectful and courteous in interactions with instructors, staff, and other students. It is a violation of the Student Code of Conduct to interact with others in a way that is dishonest, profane, or unduly disrespectful.

Disciplinary Action

When BYU Independent Study reasonably suspects that a student may have engaged in any violation of this Student Code of Conduct, the student will be given notice of the allegations and a fair opportunity to respond. Upon review of the available information, including the student’s response, BYU Independent Study will conclude, based on a preponderance of the evidence (i.e., whether it was more likely than not), whether the student engaged in the misconduct.

When a student is found to have violated this Student Code of Conduct, BYU Independent Study will use its discretion in appropriately addressing the situation and may impose a wide range of disciplinary actions commensurate with the violation found to have occurred. Examples of possible disciplinary actions include but are not limited to the following (or any combination thereof):

  • reprimanding the student in writing
  • requiring work affected by the academic dishonesty to be redone
  • administering a lower or failing grade on the affected assignment or examination
  • administering a lower or failing grade for the course (even if the student withdraws from the course)
  • removing the student from the course
  • rescinding the grade of the affected assignment or course
  • prohibiting re-enrollment in the course
  • prohibiting participation in any additional BYU Independent Study courses

Students may appeal disciplinary action through the process set forth in the Academic Grievance policy.

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