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Academic Honesty

The development, understanding and practice of integrity and academic honesty are expected of all students at Grand Rapids Community College.  Personal integrity is important in all aspects of life, and students are expected to conduct themselves with honesty and integrity, both in and out of the classroom.  Acts of academic dishonesty will not be tolerated, and students engaging in such conduct may be subject to classroom and/or institutional disciplinary actions.

Academic dishonesty

Academic dishonesty is any form of cheating and/or plagiarism which results in students giving or receiving unauthorized assistance in an academic exercise or receiving credit for work which is not their own.


Cheating includes, but is not limited to the following:

  1. Using any sources not authorized by the faculty member (textbooks, notes, websites, the work of other students) to complete examinations or other assignments. Giving or receiving content information relating to placement tests/assignments/quizzes/test/examinations to/from others unless authorized by the instructor.
  2. Using unauthorized electronic equipment;
  3. Submitting academic work previously submitted in another course without authorization;
  4. Altering or tampering with grades.


Plagiarism is intentional or unintentional use of the intellectual creations of another source, person or organization without proper attribution.  Credit must be given for every direct quotation, for paraphrasing or summarizing a work (in whole, or in part, in one's own words), and for information that is not common knowledge.  Students must not change or resubmit previous academic work without prior permission of the instructor.  Plagiarism may take two main forms, which are clearly related:

  1. Stealing or passing off as one's own the ideas or words, images, or other creative works of another.
  2. Using a creative production without crediting the source, even if only minimal information is available to identify it for citation.


Fabrication is defined as intentionally falsifying or inventing any information or citation on any academic exercise. Use of fabricated information in any sense, presented as fact is not tolerated. Therefore:

  1. “Invented” information may not be used in any laboratory experiment or academic exercise, including exams, essays, classroom or virtual discussions, etc. 
  2. One should acknowledge the actual source from which cited information is obtained.

Other Examples of Academic Dishonesty

  1. Allowing another student to copy during a test;
  2. Giving homework, term paper or other academic work to another student to plagiarize;
  3. Submitting any work that is not one’s own;
  4. Falsifying information to a faculty member or College official;
  5. Altering a graded work after it has been returned, then submitting the work for re-grading without the instructor’s knowledge/approval;
  6. Stealing tests or other assessment items;
  7. Forging signatures on College documentation;
  8. Giving false or misleading information to a faculty member in an effort to receive a postponement or an extension on a test or other assignment;
  9. Accessing computerized College records or systems without authorization (see GRCC AUA);
  10. Providing material or information to another person with knowledge that such aid could be used in any of the violations stated above;
  11. Unauthorized recording, reproduction, retransmission or redistribution of course materials (e.g. lectures, handouts, podcasts, exams, student projects, group work, online material, etc.);
  12. Impersonation of another person to complete an academic activity.

Consequences of Academic Dishonesty at GRCC

Students who are found responsible for committing acts of academic dishonesty may be subject to classroom penalties and conduct sanctions.  Withdrawal from a course does not exempt a student from any pending charges of classroom misconduct.

The faculty member may make a referral to the conduct office where a further determination may be made regarding documentation, additional investigation and/or potential institutional sanctions. Additionally, a faculty member may impose one or more of the following penalties for any academic dishonesty violation:

  1. Giving a warning – an oral explanation by a College official of violation and possible consequences if misconduct continues;
  2. Assignment of a reduced or a failing grade on an assignment, paper, project or exam;
  3. Resubmission of the assignment, paper, exam, or project in an alternate format.
  4. Lowering the grade for the course;
  5. Assignment of an “E” in the course.

Appeals for Academic Honesty penalties imposed by the faculty member that result in a lowering of an overall grade should be directed to the Grade Grievance Process.  Appeals for sanctions imposed by the conduct administrator should be directed to “Requesting a Hearing” (as described in section 4 of the Student Code).