I have been invited to a meeting about Academic Integrity.
On making contact with the Students’ Union Advice Service, we will:
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A student contacted the Advice Service as she had received a letter inviting her to attend an ‘Academic Misconduct Board’ to discuss an allegation of Contract Cheating. This is where the University has concerns about whether the work a student had submitted is their own work. The University were concerned about the disparity between the first part of the assignment and the second part which seemed to differ substantially in style and quality. They also had concerns that the ‘Author’ on the properties page of the submitted document was not the name of the student.
The student adviser advised the student about the University’s Academic Integrity Regulations and the procedure the University uses to investigate and establish whether unfair practice has taken place. The adviser also advised the student on the potential level of penalty they could face if a case were to be found.
The University had made the student aware that she could submit a written statement for the Panel to consider ahead of the Academic Misconduct Board taking place.
The adviser established with the student how they had put the work together in order to try and provide an explanation that could allay the concerns that had been put forward by the University. The student had finished the first part of her assignment which she had spent quite a lot of time on, prior to then breaking up with her boyfriend. She had left completing the second part of her assignment until the last minute due to what was going on at the time, which meant that she had rushed it. She could also provide an explanation for the Author of the work being a different name to her own as she could provide evidence of having two different profiles on her laptop.
The adviser advised the student on what information and evidence to include in her statement to the Panel and gave feedback on a draft of it before the student submitted it to the University.
The adviser agreed to attend the meeting with the student and gave them some guidance on how the meeting would be conducted and the kind of questions the panel might ask her. The adviser also advised the student to re-familiarise herself with her work and be prepared to answer detailed questions on it’s content in case the Panel wanted to test her knowledge at the meeting.
The adviser attended the meeting with the student. After the module leader who had raised the concerns had presented their case the student presented their own explanation with the help of the Student Adviser, and answered all of the questions put to them by the Panel.
The Panel adjourned for a brief period while they came to a decision on whether in their view contract cheating had occurred. All parties were then called back into the meeting where the student was informed that based on all of the evidence presented to the Panel (including the student’s written statement and supporting evidence) that the outcome to the meeting was that there was ’no offence found’.