Student Handbooks

MBA Student Handbook - Honor Code - Academic Process

A complete discussion of the Honor Code is available in the "Honor Code and Student Conduct" segment of the Student Handbook. A discussion of expected academic behavior of Atkinson School students is available in the segment of the Student Handbook titled "Expectations of Academic and Professional Behavior."

The Honor Code and Academic Honesty
The Atkinson School has two processes through which it investigates academic Honor Code violations, determines responsibility and applies consequences to a student found responsible of a violation: 1) direct resolution between the student and the faculty member or administrator making the charge, and 2) a formal hearing of the Honor Code Council. All Honor Code processes will be conducted in a manner that protects the privacy of people involved in the case, to the best of our ability. 

Consequences for a student found responsible for violating the honor code will vary based on the severity and type of violation, and may include (but are not limited to) one or more of the sanctions listed below. Any behavior found to be a violation of the honor code, is a violation of the honor code regardless of the severity of the violation or the severity of the consequence.

  • verbal or written warning
  • verbal or written reprimand
  • required written statement by the student found responsible, acknowledging the violation and reaffirming his/her commitment to follow the honor code
  • required submission of additional course work
  • assignment of the grade of “F” for a course deliverable or test
  • assignment of the grade of “F” for a course
  • withdrawal from the course
  • loss of scholarship
  • behavioral probation (exclusion from participating in leadership activities, career management programs, courses involving travel to another site, and other activities in which the student would be seen as a representative of the university)
  • skill building or training
  • suspension for two semesters
  • permanent dismissal from the MBA program.

Recommendations for suspension or dismissal will be reviewed by the Senior Associate Dean before enforced.


Process for an Alleged First Violation of Academic Honesty

The process for accusations of violations of academic honesty are described below. An accused student may not withdraw from the course to circumvent the conclusion of the process.

Step 1. A faculty member who thinks an academic violation of the Honor Code has occurred, should document the alleged violation, notify and discuss the situation with the designated administrator, and personally meet with the student to determine if a violation of the Honor Code has occurred.

The faculty member may choose to meet the student alone or in the company of the designated administrator.

If, after meeting with the student, the faculty member does not think a violation of the honor code has occurred, the faculty member should notify the designated administrator that a violation has not occurred, and the process is over.

However, if, after meeting with the student, the faculty member thinks an academic violation of the honor code has occurred, then the following Honor Code process will occur.  

Step 2(a).  If the student accepts responsibility for violating the Honor Code, the faculty member will implement one or more of the following consequences as appropriate for the situation:

  • verbal or written warning
  • verbal or written reprimand
  • required written statement by the student found responsible, acknowledging the violation and reaffirming his/her commitment to follow the honor code
  • required submission of additional course work
  • assignment of the grade of “F” for a course deliverable or test
  • assignment of the grade of “F” for a course
  • withdrawal from the course
  • loss of scholarship
  • behavioral probation (exclusion from participating in leadership activities, career management programs, courses involving travel to another site, and other activities in which the student would be seen as a representative of the university)
  • skill building or training
  • suspension for two semesters
  • permanent dismissal from the MBA program.

If the student accepts responsibility and the consequence(s), the process moves to Step 3.

Step 2(b). If the student contests the allegation that he/she violated the Honor Code or if the student contests the consequences, the faculty member will notify the designated administrator who will refer the case to the Honor Council for a hearing and a recommendation. The designated administrator will meet with the student to explain the Honor Council process. The process will move to Step 4 - the Honor Council hearing.

Step 3. If the student accepts responsibility and the consequence of the violation of the Honor Code, the faculty member will notify the designated administrator of the decision and consequence(s). The designated administrator will document the student’s file in regard to the violation of the Honor Code for academic honesty.

The designated administrator will meet with the student to explain that consequences of this first violation of the Honor Code, potential consequences of a second violation, and the process of documentation of the student’s file. Step 3 concludes the process. A student who accepts responsibility and the consequence gives up the right to an appeal.

Documentation will be removed from the students file at graduation except in the case where a violation of academic honesty constitutes part of the case for dismissal of a student.

Step 4. Step 4 is an Honor Council Hearing and it occurs if the student contests the allegation that he/she violated the Honor Code or the consequence(s) of the violation.

Step 4(a): The Honor Council will conduct a private hearing within five working days of referral by the designated administrator. The student and instructor may address the Honor Council and present documentation.

Step 4(b): If the Honor Council Hearing is occurring because a student is contesting that he/she violated the honor code and the student is found responsible for violating the Honor Code, then the consequences will be determined by the Honor Council. Consequences should be commensurate with the incident and will include one or more of the following: 

  • verbal or written warning
  • verbal or written reprimand
  • required written statement by the student found responsible, acknowledging the violation and reaffirming his/her commitment to follow the honor code
  • required submission of additional course work
  • assignment of the grade of “F” for a course deliverable or test
  • assignment of the grade of “F” for a course
  • withdrawal from the course
  • loss of scholarship
  • behavioral probation (exclusion from participating in leadership activities, career management programs, courses involving travel to another site, and other activities in which the student would be seen as a representative of the university)
  • skill building or training
  • suspension for two semesters
  • permanent dismissal from the MBA program.

If the Honor Council Hearing is occurring because a student is contesting the consequence(s) for an admitted violation of the Honor Code, then the Honor Council can uphold the original consequence(s) or determine new consequence(s) as noted above.

Within two working days of completion of the hearing, the Honor Council shall communicate its decision(s) in writing to the designated administrator who will communicate the decision to the instructor and student. 

Step 5:  The student and instructor may accept the Honor Council’s decision or appeal the decision to the Senior Associate Dean by notifying the designated administrator. The appeal must be received by the designated administrator in writing (email or paper document) within five working days of the decision of the honor council.  The designated administrator will organize the appeal process by informing the Senior Associate Dean.

If the Honor Council recommends suspension or permanent dismissal of a student, the decision will be automatically reviewed by the Senior Associate Dean.

Step 6: After reviewing the case, the Senior Associate Dean may uphold the Honor Council's decision or remand the decision back to the Honor Council. The Senior Associate Dean may include comments or issues to be considered further by the Honor Council. After further deliberation about the Senior Associate Dean's Office's concerns, the Honor Council shall reaffirm or alter its decision. At this point, the decision of the Honor Council is final.

The designated administrator will document the student’s file with the final disposition and provide written notification to the student, instructor, and Honor Council. Documentation will be removed from the student’s file at graduation, except in the case where a violation of academic honesty constitutes part of the case for dismissal of a student.

If the consequence is suspension or permanent dismissal, the student will be notified in person by the designated administrator, followed by written communication. Seven working days shall elapse before the suspension or dismissal of a student becomes effective, unless the Senior Associate Dean determines an otherwise appropriate period for the suspension or dismissal to take effect.


Process for an Alleged Second Violation of Academic Honesty
A student found responsible for a second violation of academic honesty will generally be suspended or permanently dismissed from the Atkinson Graduate School of Management.

The procedures for processing accusations of violations of academic honesty when the accused student has on record a previous violation of the Honor Code in regard to academic honesty are described below.  An accused student may not withdraw from the course to circumvent the conclusion of the process.

Step 1. A faculty member who thinks an academic violation of the Honor Code has occurred, should document the alleged violation, notify and discuss the situation with the designated administrator, and personally meet with the student to determine if a violation of the Honor Code has occurred.

The faculty member may choose to meet the student alone or in the company of the designated administrator.

If, after meeting with the student, the faculty member does not think a violation of the honor code has occurred, the faculty member should notify the designated administrator that a violation has not occurred, and the process is over.

However, if, after meeting with the student, the faculty member thinks an academic violation of the honor code has occurred, then the following Honor Code process will occur. 

Step 2(a).  If the student accepts responsibility for their second academic violation of the Honor Code, the case will be forwarded directly to Senior Associate Dean for a resolution.

The consequence for a second offense will generally be suspension or permanent dismissal from the Atkinson Graduate School of Management. However, consequences should also be commensurate with the incident and will include one or more of the following:  The Senior Associate Dean will communicate his/her decision in writing to the student, instructor and designated administrator.

  • verbal or written warning
  • verbal or written reprimand
  • required written statement by the student found responsible, acknowledging the violation and reaffirming his/her commitment to follow the honor code
  • required submission of additional course work
  • assignment of the grade of “F” for a course deliverable or test
  • assignment of the grade of “F” for a course
  • withdrawal from the course
  • loss of scholarship
  • behavioral probation (exclusion from participating in leadership activities, career management programs, courses involving travel to another site, and other activities in which the student would be seen as a representative of the university)
  • skill building or training
  • suspension for two semesters
  • permanent dismissal from the MBA program

If the decision involves suspension or dismissal, the student will be notified in person by the designated administrator, followed by written communication. Seven working days shall elapse before the suspension or dismissal of a student becomes effective, unless the Senior Associate Dean determines an otherwise appropriate period for the suspension or dismissal to take effect.

Step 2(b). If the student contests the allegation that he/she violated the Honor Code, the faculty member will notify the designated administrator who will refer the case to the Honor Council for a hearing and a recommendation. The designated administrator will meet with the student to explain the Honor Council process. The process will move to Step 3 - the Honor Council Hearing.

Step 3. Honor Council Hearing.

Step 3(a): The Honor Council will conduct a hearing within five working days of referral by the designated administrator. The student and instructor may address the Honor Council and present documentation.

Step 3(b):  If the Honor Council finds the student responsible for a second academic violation of the Honor Code, the consequences will be determined by the Honor Council.  The consequence for a second academic offense will generally be suspension or permanent dismissal from the Atkinson Graduate School of Management. However, consequences should also be commensurate with the incident and will include one or more of the following: 

  • verbal or written warning
  • verbal or written reprimand
  • required written statement by the student found responsible, acknowledging the violation and reaffirming his/her commitment to follow the honor code
  • required submission of additional course work
  • assignment of the grade of “F” for a course deliverable or test
  • assignment of the grade of “F” for a course
  • withdrawal from the course
  • loss of scholarship
  • behavioral probation (exclusion from participating in leadership activities, career management programs, courses involving travel to another site, and other activities in which the student would be seen as a representative of the university)
  • skill building or training
  • suspension for two semesters
  • permanent dismissal from the MBA program.

Within two working days of the hearing, the Honor Council shall render a decision in regard to whether the student has been found responsible or not responsible for the allegation of the Honor Code. The council will communicate its decision in writing to the designated administrator, who will communicate the decision to the instructor and student.

Step 3(c):  The student and instructor may accept the Honor Council’s decision or appeal the decision to the Senior Associate Dean by notifying the designated administrator. The appeal must be received by the designated administrator in writing (email or paper document) within five working days of the decision of the honor council.  The designated administrator will organize the appeal process by informing the Senior Associate Dean.

If the Honor Council recommends suspension or permanent dismissal of a student, the decision will be automatically reviewed by the Senior Associate Dean.

Step 4: After reviewing the case, the Senior Associate Dean may uphold the Honor Council's decision or remand the decision back to the Honor Council. The Senior Associate Dean may include comments or issues to be considered further by the Honor Council. After further deliberation about the Senior Associate Dean's Office's concerns, the Honor Council shall reaffirm or alter its decision. At this point, the decision of the Honor Council is final.

If the consequence is suspension or permanent dismissal, the student will be notified in person by the designated administrator, followed by written communication. Seven working days shall elapse before the suspension or dismissal of a student becomes effective, unless the Senior Associate Dean determines an otherwise appropriate period for the suspension or dismissal to take effect.