The Honor Code at Lynchburg College is based on the expectation that students will not lie, cheat, or steal in academic and non-academic matters. The Honor Code has a dual function of protecting both academic integrity and personal integrity.
The importance of honorable conduct has been emphasized at Lynchburg College since its founding in 1903. A professor of history wrote, “The College…stands for all that is noble…and will be sadly disappointed in any student who so forgets her precepts as not to stand for her teachings in every…honorable way.” During the 1933-1934 academic session, students and faculty adopted a formal honor code for the College. At that time students stated, “It is not too much to require of any person that he be honest and that he conduct himself in an honorable way.” With modifications, the Honor Code has been in continuous operation since its adoption, succeeding because most students in each generation have respected it and have given it a high place in their obligations as Lynchburg College students.
In describing the importance of honor in the College, Dr. John M. Turner, Jr., former dean of the College, wrote:
Honor makes possible excellent academic achievements without a system of police proctoring. Honor makes possible satisfying social relations in a spirit of confidence and trust.
The heritage that we have at Lynchburg College is a most valuable one. May all of us preserve the spirit of honor, strengthen it by our conduct, and thus transmit this valuable heritage to those who follow us.
Because the Honor Code is of central importance in the College community, every student is placed on his/her honor and is expected to adhere to the Lynchburg College Honor Pledge:
I understand the importance of honor in any community. Only by maintaining a strict standard of honor can we expect to achieve any measure of academic or social excellence. I, therefore, pledge that during my tenure as a student at Lynchburg College, I will not lie, cheat, or steal either in College affairs or in the environs of the College, nor tolerate such actions by fellow students.
Students are expected to abide by the Honor Codes themselves and not to tolerate actions by fellow students that breach the Code. In matters of honor, any reluctance to report a violation is transcended by each individual’s responsibility to the entire student body. If a student witnesses or discovers any infraction of the Honor Code, he/she shall ask the person(s) at fault to report the offense to the appropriate professor, the Office of the Dean of Students, or the Student Judicial Board, which have been granted authority to address such matters. A charge of a possible Honor Code infraction is resolved through a hearing conducted by either the Student Judicial Board or the Administrative Board, as assigned by the Office of the Dean of Students.
The academic integrity section of the Honor Code includes the following A-level violations:
(A1.1) Cheating: Using or attempting to use unauthorized materials, information, or study aids in any educational exercise
(A1.2) Fabrication: Falsification or invention of any information or citation in an educational exercise
(A1.3) Facilitating Academic Dishonesty: Intentionally or knowingly helping or attempting to help another to violate any provision of the Academic Integrity Code
(A1.4) Plagiarism: Representing the ideas or language of another as one’s own in any educational exercise. Read the Statement on Plagiarism.
Recognizing the difficulty of adjudicating academic violations, which can entail conflict between the rights of the accused and the faculty member’s academic freedom rights, the following options are recommended:
Suggested action(s) by the faculty member
- A faculty member may resolve an academic integrity violation through one of the following actions:
- Grant no credit for the examination or assignment in question (treat as a missed assignment).* This action may be appealed in accordance with the grade review policy detailed in the applicable academic catalogue.
- Assign a grade of “F” or score of zero for the examination or assignment in question.* This action may be appealed in accordance with the grade review policy detailed in the applicable academic catalogue.
- Recommend to the Office of the Vice President and Dean for Academic Affairs that the student be dropped immediately from the course with a grade of “F.” This grade cannot be changed by student-initiated withdrawal.
- Meet with the student to confer about referral of the matter to the Office of the Dean of Students for review through student disciplinary procedure as a possible Honor Code infraction. If the faculty member refers the case to the Office of the Dean of Students, final grades for the academic work in question and for the course are not issued until disciplinary review of the matter is concluded which may include student-initiated appeal. If the student is found not to have violated the Honor Code, then the professor must adhere to the disciplinary decision, grading the academic assignment as legitimate work. If the student is found responsible for having violated the Honor Code, then the professor may implement one of the grading options detailed in Parts 1, 2, and 3 above (Additional appeal through the grade review policy is not available). If the alleged violation occurs during final examinations, an Incomplete (grade not reported by instructor) shall be given to the student until the allegation is completely resolved.* When implementing Part A, B, or C above, faculty are strongly encouraged to notify the Office of the Dean of Students that an academic integrity violation has occurred and that he/she has dealt with the incident. Such notification is necessary to identify recurring problems and to maintain accurate academic integrity records; however, no new action to address the violation will be taken by the Office of the Dean of Students. If the alleged violation occurs during final examinations, an Incomplete (grade not reported by instructor) shall be given to the student until the allegation is completely resolved.
- When implementing Part 1, 2, or 3 above faculty are strongly encouraged to notify the Office of the Dean of Students that an academic integrity violation has occurred and that he/she has dealt with the incident. Such notification is necessary to identify recurring problems and to maintain accurate academic integrity records; however, no new action to address the violation will be taken by the Office of the Dean of Students.
Suggested action(s) by a student witness
- Address the student, encouraging him/her to report the infraction to the professor.
- Inform the professor of what was witnessed.
- Inform the Office of the Vice President and Dean for Academic Affairs of what was witnessed.
- Inform the Office of the Dean of Students of what was witnessed.
Action(s) by the Office of the Dean of Students
- Review the report of a possible academic integrity infraction in accordance with disciplinary procedures described in the Honor and Student Conduct Codes and Regulations.
- Resolve a charge of a possible Honor Code infraction through a judicial board hearing.
- If a student is found to be responsible for an academic integrity violation, the judicial board issues appropriate sanctions. The standard sanction for an academic integrity violation is suspension. However, mitigating and aggravating circumstances of the incident may affect the sanctions imposed. Expulsion may be issued for more serious circumstances, and lesser sanctions (typically not fewer than 50 hours of community service and a period of disciplinary probation, or the equivalent) may be issued for less serious circumstances.
The personal integrity section of the Honor Code includes the following A-level violations:
(A2.1) Lying: Any statement, action, or behavior with the intent to deceive or mislead
(A2.2) Stealing: Knowingly taking, appropriating, or carrying out actions to take or appropriate something that is not yours without the permission of the owner
(A2.3) Possession or use of false identification for any purpose, including purchase of alcoholic beverages
(A2.4) Eluding or Evading: Any statement, action, or behavior with the intent to prevent the truth from becoming known, including but not limited to running or hiding from College personnel and destroying evidence being sought
The standard sanction for a personal integrity infraction is suspension from the College; for more information, refer to the section titled Sanctioning Guidelines.