CHAPTER 8 – HONOR SYSTEM

8.01. Honor Code, How Administered.

There shall be in the College of Law an Honor Code administered by the Dean’s Office. The Honor Code presently in effect, an official copy of which is on file in the Office of the Dean of the College, is approved as the Honor Code for the College and the procedures set out in such code shall be utilized in the administration of the same.

Source: Faculty minutes, December 12, 1929, and August 29, 1990.

8.02. Amendment of Honor Code.

Amendments to the Honor Code may be proposed by the Student Bar Association or by members of the faculty from time to time but no amendment will be effective until the proposed amendment has been approved by the faculty of the College of Law.

Source: Faculty minutes, November 20, 1952.

8.03. Honor Pledge.

A. There shall be printed on each examination blue book and each objective examination the following “HONOR PLEDGE: I have not been guilty of cheating, or assisting others to cheat, nor have I seen any cheating during the course of this examination.” A student taking an examination under the Honor System shall sign such pledge with the examination number assigned to him or her or report to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs or his or her designate any reason why the student cannot conscientiously so sign such pledge. A faculty member receiving an unsigned honor pledge shall report the exam number for that student to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, or his or her designate, for further inquiry.

B. Unless other arrangements are made by the Professor before hand, on all graded written assignments, the student shall sign and date, or report to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs or his or her designate any reason why the student cannot conscientiously do so, the following Honor Pledge: “I have not been guilty of cheating, plagiarism or assisting others to cheat or plagiarize, nor have I seen any cheating or plagiarism during the course of this writing assignment.”

C. Prior to the examination, the Professor or his or her designate should explain the Honor Pledge to the class and should reiterate what can or cannot be done or used during the exam.

Source: Faculty minutes, November 17, 1965, April 26, 1978, August 29, 1990, March 17, 1999, and May 7, 2003.

8.04. Administration Committee to Act on Honor Council Reports.

A. Jurisdiction. All Honor Council reports and all reports of “no prima facie case” from a prosecutor shall be considered by the Administration Committee, which shall make its decisions by majority vote.

B. Student Participation. Student members of the Administration Committee shall participate fully in committee deliberations on Honor Code cases and shall have a right to vote on such matters in the Committee and in faculty meetings under Rule 8.05. The defendant in Honor Code proceedings shall have no right to preclude such participation and voting.

C. Excuse and Challenge for Cause. The Dean may excuse a member of the Administration Committee from participation in a proceeding upon request of the member. A challenge for cause may be made by any counsel appearing in the proceeding and shall be sustained and the challenged member excused from further participation in the proceeding, unless a majority of the remaining members vote to override such challenge. Challenge for cause shall be made at the earliest time that the cause is known to, or through the exercise of reasonable diligence would be known to, the counsel making the challenge.

D. Powers Where Prosecutor Reports No Prima Facie Case. Where the Honor Code prosecutor reports that he or she has received an allegation of an Honor Code violation, but has found that there is no prima facie case under the Honor Code, the Administration Committee may direct the prosecutor to prosecute if the Administration Committee finds material error in the legal analysis or otherwise finds the decision inappropriate. It may also ask the prosecutor for additional assistance in reaching this decision.

E. Powers where Honor Council Reports. In acting upon an Honor Council report, the Administration Committee shall utilize the following standards:

(1) The Administration Committee may reverse a finding of no violation if the Administration Committee finds gross error in the proceeding below;

(2) The Administration Committee may increase the sanction recommended by the Honor Council if the Administration Committee finds a gross abuse of discretion;

(3) The Administration Committee may reverse a finding of a violation if the Administration Committee finds material error in the proceeding below;

(4) The Administration Committee may decrease the sanction recommended by the Honor Council if the Administration Committee finds the sanction is inappropriate.

In any case where the Administration Committee could alter (in any way) or reverse the findings or recommendations of the Honor Council, the Committee may order a new hearing (in whole or on limited issues) before the Honor Council or it may order the Honor Council to reconsider its recommendations.

F. Finality of Action. The decision of the Administration Committee shall be final in all cases, except as provided in Rule 8.05.

G. A written opinion shall be prepared by the Presiding Officer for the Administration Committee, describing and explaining any decision made on Honor Code matters.

H. The Administration Committee shall consider the recommendation of the Honor Council concerning the public posting and reporting of Honor Council findings, recommendations, and opinions in the case. It shall determine whether the Honor Council recommendation shall be followed or overruled and whether the Administration Committee’s opinion should or should not be publicly posted or reported. In making these determinations, the Administration Committee shall not be bound in any way by the Honor Council recommendation. The Administration Committee may decide that the material should be posted and reported, but that names and identifying characteristics should first be deleted. Where an individual has been found to have committed no Honor Code violation, no opinion permitting public identification of that person shall be posted or reported without the permission of the individual. All postings must be reviewed by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs for compliance with state and federal law, including but not limited to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act [FERPA]. 20 USCA § 1232g.

I. Appearance by Defendant and Prosecutor. The defendant shall have a right to appear before the Administration Committee, with counsel if represented, to make an argument on a question of law or a statement in mitigation, but may not introduce new evidence going to the issue of guilt. If the defendant chooses to appear before the Committee, the prosecutor shall be extended the same right.

J. The Administration Committee shall maintain the confidentiality of all information that may lead to the identification of any person involved in Honor Code matters except as permitted by Subsection H.

Source: Faculty minutes, February 9, 1966, April 26, 1978, August 29, 1990, March 17, 1999, November 15, 2000, and May 7, 2003.

8.05. Faculty Review of Administration Committee Decision.

A. Jurisdiction. Where the Administration Committee imposes or confirms a sanction of suspension or expulsion, the defendant may within ten days of notification of Administration Committee action, request faculty review of the sanction.

B. Form. The request shall be by written petition, to which shall be appended all documents before the Administration Committee and any written decision of the Committee. A copy of the petition shall be served upon the prosecutor, who may respond in writing.

C. Publication. Any decisions by the faculty pursuant to this rule shall be posted on an official College bulletin board, unless the faculty determines that such publication is inappropriate.

D. Review Discretionary. The faculty shall, by majority vote, decide whether or not to review the case.

E. Power. If review is granted the faculty may either affirm or reduce the sanction. It may not increase the sanction, review the finding of guilt, or receive evidence.

F. Participation; Vote. Student, staff, and faculty members of the Administration Committee may participate fully, and vote, in deliberations on Honor Council matters. Reduction of sanction shall require a decision by simple majority vote.

G. Appearance by Defendant and Prosecutor. The defendant shall not have the right to appear before the faculty, but the faculty may, by majority vote, permit the defendant to appear. In this case, the prosecutor shall be given the same privilege.

Source: Faculty minutes, April 26, 1978, and March 17, 1999.

8.06. Reporter of Decisions.

The Dean shall be responsible for the maintenance of two copies of a Reporter of Decisions in Honor Code cases, which shall contain a copy of all opinions of the Honor Council and the Administration Committee that the Administration Committee has decided should be published pursuant to Rule 8.04(H). One copy of this Reporter shall be kept on closed reserve in the Library, and one in the Dean’s Office.

Source: Faculty minutes, April 26, 1978, August 29, 1990 and March 17, 1999.

8.07. Faculty Advisors to Prosecution and Defense Counsel; Presiding Officer.

The Dean shall appoint one or more members of the faculty to serve as Honor Code prosecution faculty advisors and one or more faculty members to serve as Honor Code defense counsel advisors, and one faculty member to serve as Presiding Officer. Prosecutors and defense counsel appointed pursuant to the Honor Code, Article I, Section B, shall be informed of the names of such persons. No faculty advisor shall sit on Administration Committee or faculty deliberations of a case on which they provided advice.

Source: Faculty minutes, April 26, 1978, and August 29, 1990.

8.08. Faculty members shall not act as prosecutors or defense counsel before the Honor Council.

Source: Faculty minutes, April 26, 1978.

 

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