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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

What is 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:

  • 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 quizzes/test/examinations to/from other students for the purpose of or having the effect of securing an advantage over other students.
  • using unauthorized electronic equipment;
  • submitting academic work previously submitted in another course without authorization;
  • 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. Plagiarism may take two main forms, which are clearly related:

  • Stealing or passing off as one's own the ideas or words, images, or other creative works of another.
  • 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. Therefore:

  • “Invented” information may not be used in any laboratory experiment or academic exercise.
  • One should acknowledge the actual source from which cited information is obtained.
  • Students must not change or resubmit previous academic work without prior permission of the instructor.

Other Specific Examples of Academic Dishonesty

  • Allowing another student to copy during a test;
  • Giving homework, term paper or other academic work to another student to plagiarize;
  • Submitting any work that is not one’s own;
  • Falsifying information to a faculty member or College official;
  • Altering a graded work after it has been returned, then submitting the work for re-grading;
  • Stealing tests or other assessment items;
  • Forging signatures on College documentation;
  • 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;
  • Accessing computerized College records or systems without authorization (see GRCC AUA);
  • Providing material or information to another person with knowledge that such aid could be used in any of the violations stated above;
  • Unauthorized recording, reproduction, retransmission or redistribution of course materials (e.g. lectures, handouts, podcasts, exams, student projects, group work, online material, etc.).

Consequences of Academic Dishonesty at GRCC

Students who commit acts of academic dishonesty may not only receive College sanctions, but possibly jeopardize future employment and educational opportunities. Graduate and professional degree programs and employers may request information from the College regarding a student’s disciplinary record in an effort to investigate moral and ethical character.

According to College policy, academic and/or administrative sanctions may be applied in cases of academic dishonesty. In all cases, students will have a right to utilize the Student Disciplinary Grievance Procedure. Withdrawal from a course does not exempt a student from any pending charges of academic dishonesty.

Sanctions that may be imposed by the faculty member/department/administration include, but are not limited to:

  • Giving a warning – an oral explanation by a College official of violation and possible consequences if misconduct continues;
  • Assignment of a reduced or a failing grade on an assignment, paper, project or exam;
  • Lowering the grade for the course;
  • Assignment of an E in the course;
  • Termination from a program;
  • Expulsion from GRCC.