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Join the Honor Code conversation

| Thursday, October 29, 2015

Dear Fellow Students,

If you were to ask a group of Notre Dame students how we build a sense of community here, many would likely talk about residence hall events, dorm masses, service projects and extracurricular activities. Among the most popular answers you would probably not hear much about the Academic Code of Honor. However, commitment to academic integrity is — and ought to be — at the heart of the idea of a university community.

Academic integrity is, fundamentally, about respect for our classmates and teachers and about driving ourselves and others to grow not only intellectually, but morally and spiritually as well. Thus, especially at a Catholic university like Notre Dame, the codes and procedures designed to promote academic integrity have a pastoral, and not merely academic, purpose. While perhaps less visible than dorm events and extracurriculars, commitment to academic integrity is a crucial part of what the Notre Dame community is and aspires to be.

This year, the University Code of Honor Committee (UCHC) is partnering with the Student Government to develop several avenues by which students can share their thoughts on what academic integrity means, on the extent to which academic dishonesty is an issue on campus and on how well the student body understands the standards and procedures contained in the Academic Code of Honor. The UCHC is also particularly interested in discussing with students whether it should revise the Code of Honor’s procedures for adjudicating and resolving cases of alleged academic dishonesty. By the end of the current school year, the UCHC will use the insights gained from these conversations with students and faculty to propose any necessary revisions to the Academic Code of Honor and to develop new strategies to educate the Notre Dame community about the norms and procedures the Code contains. (To review the current Academic Code of Honor, please see honorcode.nd.edu)

Keep an eye out in the coming weeks for information from the Student Government about how to get involved in the campus-wide conversation on academic integrity. The UCHC and Student Government are currently planning a series of informal coffeehouse conversations to give students a chance to share their perspectives. For those of you who will not be able to attend one of these conversations, we invite you to post your ideas on Onward (found at studentgovernment.nd.edu), tagged with the word “honor.” We welcome your answer to the question, “How can we improve the Academic Code of Honor and raise awareness among students about how it applies to our classes?” as well as any other thoughts on how we, as a university, can deepen our commitment to academic integrity.

 

Abby Davis

Student Co-chair

University Code of Honor Committee

The views expressed in this Letter to the Editor are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

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