Academic Honor Code

UCCS Policies on Academic Honesty and Civility


Academic honesty and integrity are vital elements of a dynamic academic institution. The responsibility for ethical conduct rests with each individual member of the academic community. Alleged academic misconduct shall be dealt with through provisions of the "UCCS Academic Honor Code."

Historically, student academic honor codes have provided the proper direction for the maintenance of high academic standards in universities across the United States. Where standards do not exist or are ignored, faculty members are defrauded, students are treated unfairly, and society itself is poorly served. Although the supervision of these standards is principally the task of faculty, the responsibility for maintaining standards is shared by all members of the academic community.

As instructors, faculty members transmit knowledge and the methods by which it is acquired. They examine and test student work to rate the degree of accomplishment. Instructors establish academic expectations and award credit when requirements are met. To fulfill these responsibilities, instructors must ensure that student work adheres to academic honor code standards, and course grades should reflect any academic dishonesty.

Faculty members have the responsibility to preserve and transmit academic values in the learning environment and in the example they provide to students. To this end, they are expected to instill in their students a respect for integrity and a desire to behave honestly; they must also take measures to discourage student academic dishonesty. To meet these responsibilities, faculty members must follow the policies and procedures stated in the UCCS Academic Honor Code.

Students, as responsible members of the academic community, are obligated to maintain basic standards of integrity, and are expected to take an active role in encouraging other members to respect these standards. If students suspect a violation has been committed, they a responsibility to discuss their suspicion with a member of the faculty or university administration. Students should make themselves familiar with the basic tenets of the Honor Code.

The University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, has an ongoing commitment to maintain and encourage academic integrity. Therefore, the University has created the following standards of academic honesty and procedures governing violations of these principles. Copies of the detailed procedures of the Student Conduct Committee may be obtained at the University Library, from the offices of the Deans of the various schools, from the office of Student Life, or from the Vice Chancellor's office.



Plagiarism is the use of distinctive ideas or words belonging to another person, without adequately acknowledging that person's contribution. Regardless of the means of appropriation, incorporating another's work into one's own requires adequate identification and acknowledgement, unless the material used is considered common knowledge. Plagiarism is doubly unethical because it deprives the true author of the rightful credit and gives that credit to someone who has not earned it. When the source is not noted, the following would constitute plagiarism:

  1. Word-for-word copying;
  2. The mosaic (to intersperse a few words of one's own here and there while, in essence, copying another's work);
  3. The paraphrase (the rewriting of another's work, but still using the same fundamental idea or theory);
  4. Fabrication (inventing or counterfeiting sources); 5. Ghost-written material (submitting another's effort as one's own)

It is also plagiarism to neglect quotation marks on material that is otherwise acknowledged.


Cheating involves intentionally possessing, communicating, using (or attempting to use) unauthorized (by the instructor) materials, information, notes, study aids, or other devices, in any academic exercise, or the communication with any other person during such an exercise.

  1. Copying from another's paper or receiving unauthorized assistance from another during an academic exercise or in the submission of academic material.
  2. Using a calculator when the use has been specifically disallowed. 3. Collaborating with another student or students during an academic exercise

without the consent of the instructor.


This is the intentional and unauthorized alteration or invention of any information or citation in an academic exercise.

  1. Fabrication involves inventing or counterfeiting information; e.g., creating results not obtained, as in a laboratory experiment.
  2. Falsification involves altering results, deliberately changing information to suit one's needs.


This is the submission of substantial portions of either written or oral academic work, which has previously earned credit, when such submission is made without instructor authorization.


This is intentionally or knowingly destroying, stealing, or making inaccessible, library or other academic resource material.

  1. Stealing, destroying, or tampering with library or reference materials, or computer programs or files.
  2. Stealing or destroying another student's notes or materials, or having in possession such materials without the owner's permission.
  3. Receiving assistance in locating or using sources of information in an assignment where such assistance has been forbidden by the instructor.
  4. Illegitimate possession and disposition of examinations or answer keys to tests and examinations.
  5. Unauthorized alteration, forgery, or falsification of official academic records.
  6. Unauthorized selling or purchasing of examinations, papers, or assignments.


This is intentionally or knowingly contributing to the academic dishonesty of another. These examples of academic dishonesty shall not be construed to be comprehensive, and infractions will be dealt with on an individual basis. It is the obligation of each student to assist in the enforcement of academic standards; infractions-whether by students or faculty-should be first brought to the attention of the instructor.


Reporting an Infraction:
If any member of the academic community believes that the Academic Honor Code has been violated, the infraction should be reported to the course instructor within one week of its occurrence. The instructor will then meet with the student, present evidence of the infraction, and request explanation. If the instructor believes that the evidence of the infraction is sufficient to warrant a penalty, he or she will check for previous Honor Code infractions before determining the severity of the penalty. If the instructor deems it appropriate to impose sanctions more severe than the lowering of the course grade, he or she may make such a recommendation to the college dean through the Departmental Chair. If the student contests the instructor's decision, the student should seek guidance by consulting the procedures of the Student Conduct Committee.

Right to a Hearing:
Any student accused of an infraction has the right to have the case considered by an objective individual or group not involved in the incident.

Path of Appeals:
If the alleged infraction cannot be resolved between the student and instructor, the student may appeal the instructor's decision to the Chair of that department. If the student remains dissatisfied with the decision, the appeal may then be taken to the Dean of that college. If the student wishes to appeal the Dean's decision, the student now has two choices: a hearing before an Honor Code Panel of the Student Conduct Committee, or and appeal to the Vice Chancellor.

The Student Conduct Committee:
The Committee, which provides membership for the Honor Code Panels, will be comprised of the following members: All current Student Judicial Board members (7 maximum); Eight (8) resident faculty members; The Dean for Student Life (who serves as the Committee chair and has no vote). An Honor Code Panel will have four members - two students and two faculty selected by lottery - and one Convener appointed by the Committee Chair. Quorum will be four members. The Honor Code Panel will not impose punishment. Its duty will be to render a decision of guilt or innocence and recommend a penalty. The Vice Chancellor will make the final decision.


In any hearing, all steps will be taken in a timely manner, and elements of procedural due process shall be followed. For example, the accused student may confront the accuser and present and question witnesses. The student's prior disciplinary record will not be made available to any of the Honor Code Panel unless and until a determination of guilt has been made. Hearings will be administrative procedures and not judicial in nature. The accused student may seek information and advice from the Chair of the Student Conduct Committee or the student liaison appointed by UCCS Associated Students.


The following sanctions are possible if a student is found guilty of violating the Honor Code:

  • Reduced grade for the assignment
  • Reduced grade for the course
  • Oral reprimand
  • Written reprimand
  • Disciplinary probation
  • Immediate suspension
  • Suspension at the end of the semester
  • Stipulated conditions for re-enrollment
  • Permanent expulsion
  • Non-punitive measures, consistent with the educational mission of the University


Disciplinary records are maintained by the Office of Student Life, consistent with the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974. They will be separate from students' academic records, but considered part of their educational records.