University of Saskatchewan

Western College of Veterinary Medicine

WCVSA Honour Code

The Western Canadian of Veterinary Medicine Students' Association (WCVSA) Honour Code — Revised April 2011

The WCVSA Honour Code provides an opportunity for students to learn to govern themselves in the principles and practices of personal integrity fundamental to the education and operation of a professional organization.

An effective Honour Code requires the full co-operation, participation and enthusiasm of the entire community of the Western College of Veterinary Medicine which includes students, staff and faculty.

Please click on the following links to view specific sections of the Honour Code or download your own copy (PDF 125 KB).

I. Purposes

1. The Honour Code promotes an environment of honesty, integrity, professional responsibility and ethical conduct for the community of the WCVM.

2. The Honour Code provides a fair and just means of dealing with situations that compromise this honesty and professional responsibility. All issues pertaining to the Honour Code must be addressed with regard for the college, the profession and the individual(s) involved.

3. The Honour Code outlines a process to deal with issues that arise between individuals and within classes. Issues that pertain to the entire student body should be dealt with via the WCVSA Executive and Membership. Complaints that come to the Honour Code pertaining to the entire student body shall be presented to the WCVSA Executive via the Honour Code Chair or WCVSA President. The Honour Code Chair shall be a voting member of the WCVSA Executive.

II. HONOUR CODE COMMITTEE (HCC)

1. The HCC Chair will assemble a HCC for each hearing from the elected class honour code committee members. The HCC shall be composed of at least three elected members from any of the first, second, third or fourth year honour code committees, except as under Article II (6) concerning vacancies.

2. The President of the WCVSA shall act as the HCC chair and be a non-voting member. If the WCVSA president is unable to fulfil this role, the WCVSA Academic Vice President will assume the duties of the HCC chair.

3. The HCC shall include the Dean (or designate) to act as a non-voting, advisory member. It is the yearly responsibility of the HCC Chair to establish the identity of this person as a member of the HCC.

4. For each HCC hearing, the assembled HCC will choose a secretary from one of the voting HCC members. The secretary will record the proceedings of each meeting.

5. If the accused or accuser is a member of the HCC, he/she shall not sit on the Committee for the case in question.

6. A vacancy shall be defined as a Committee member absenting him or her from the case for good cause, e.g. a conflict of interest or a scheduling conflict.

7. In the case where a vacancy is created on the HCC, the WCVSA President may use his/her discretion in filling the position for that case.

8. Upon official complaint of a violation of the Honour Code, all persons directly involved in the hearing shall, if necessary, be exempt from such academic responsibilities that would interfere with their participation in such a hearing. It is the responsibility of the student(s) concerned to make arrangements for the carrying out of his/her duties during the period of his/her absence.

III. RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE HONOUR CODE COMMITTEE

1. Senior members of the Honour Code Committee shall meet with the newly elected members of the Committee early each fall and explain the procedures and functions of the Honour Code. This is essential to ensure committee continuity. The Committee Chair shall identify the Dean (or designate) who shall sit on the committee.

2. A copy of the Honour Code shall be provided to each member of the incoming first year class and new faculty members. The Dean (or designate) and Chair of the Honour Code Committee shall review the Honour Code, its relevance and application with the first year class during the first quarter.

3. The Dean (or designate) and the Chair of the Honour Code Committee will review the relevance of Honor Code and its application with all second, third and fourth year students during the first quarter.

4. The Dean (or designate) will promote the importance of the Honor Code at a WCVM Faculty meeting in the fall of each year.

5. The Honour Code shall be outlined in the official WCVM Calendar and the WCVSA Web Page.

6. The Honour Code Committee is responsible for dealing with complaints in a professional manner and in accordance both with the Honour Code Policies, the University of Saskatchewan Regulations on Student Academic Misconduct, and the University of Saskatchewan Standard of Student Conduct in Non-Academic Matters and Procedures for Resolution of Complaints and Appeals.

IV. RESPONSIBILITIES OF STUDENTS AND STAFF

1. Students and staff of the WCVM will respect and uphold the regulations and spirit of the Honour Code.

2. Students are accountable for the policies laid out in the Honour Code, the University of Saskatchewan Regulations on Student Academic Misconduct, and the University of Saskatchewan Standard of Student Conduct in Non-Academic Matters and Procedures for Resolution of Complaints and Appeals. They must therefore be well acquainted with these policies.

3. On a suspicion of a violation of the Honour Code, the student(s) or staff member(s) must notify a member of the Honour Code Committee. Failure to do so may be deemed a violation of the Honour Code.

V. RESPONSIBILITIES OF FACULTY

1. Each faculty member shall inform his/her students of regulations that apply to academic integrity in his/her course. He/she shall make clear to what extent collaborative work or the exchange of aid or information is acceptable to him/her. This should be done at the beginning of the course and prior to examinations.

2. The instructor shall, during a quiz or examination, outline to the class the conditions under which the quiz or examination is to be conducted.

3. A faculty member who observes or knows of a violation of the Honour Code, shall, in all cases, follow one of the courses of action outlined in Article VII.

4. At the first Faculty meeting of the fall term all faculty shall be made aware of their responsibilities to the Honour Code by the Dean (or designate).

5. University regulations require that the WCVM maintain a Committee on Academic Dishonesty. This is a committee of faculty members to which the Honour Code Committee may make recommendations.

VI. DEFINITION OF HONOUR CODE VIOLATIONS

1. Academic Misconduct1 - the following constitute academic misconduct (the following list is taken from the University of Saskatchewan Regulations on Student Academic Misconduct):

a) Providing false or misleading information or documentation to gain admission to the university or any university program 

b) Theft of lecture notes, research work, computer files, or other academic or research materials prepared by another student or an instructor or staff member;

c) Using work done in one course in fulfilment of any requirement of another course unless approval is obtained from the instructor by whom the material is being evaluated;

d) Presenting the work of someone else as one's own;

e) The supply of materials prepared by the student to another student for use by that student as the work or materials of that student;

f) Alteration or falsification of records, computer files, or any document relating to a student's academic performance;

g) Violation of the university’s research integrity policy;

h) Fabrication or invention of sources;

 i) Failure to observe any stated rule with regard to the procedure used in an examination (or an activity undertaken for academic credit) where such a failure could result in the student gaining relatively greater credit;

j) Altering answers on a returned examination; 

k) When prohibited, removing an examination from the examination room; 

l) Seeking to acquire or acquiring prior knowledge of the contents of any examination question or paper with the intention of gaining an unfair advantage;

m) Possessing or using notes or other sources of information or devices not permitted by the course instructor in an examination;

n) Consulting or seeking the assistance of others when writing a "take home" examination unless permitted by the course instructor;

o) Providing false or misleading information with the intent to avoid or delay writing an examination or fulfilling any other academic requirement;

p) Failing to observe the terms of any agreement not to disclose the contents of an examination;

q) Misrepresenting or conspiring with another person to misrepresent the identity of a student writing an examination or engaging in any other form of assessment;

r) Knowingly doing anything designed to interfere with the opportunities of another person to have his or her contribution fully recognized or to participate in the academic program;

s) Preventing others from fair and equal access to University facilities or resources, including library resources;

t) Using or attempting to use personal relationships, bribes, threats or other illegal conduct to gain unearned grades or academic advantages;

u) Knowingly assisting another person engaged in actions that amount to academic misconduct;

v) Plagiarism: the presentation of the work or idea of another in such a way as to give others the impression that it is the work or idea of the presenter.

 Adequate attribution is required. What is essential is that another person have no doubt which words or research results are the student's and which are drawn from other sources. Full explicit acknowledgement of the source of the material is required.

 Examples of plagiarism are:

w) Unprofessional conduct or behaviours that occur in academic or clinical settings or other work placements, or that are related to the student's area of professional practice.

2. Professional Misconduct2 - any conduct, other than academic misconduct, that falls below a standard of conduct accepted in the community, consistent with an informed individual of reasonable intelligence, including, but not limited to:

VII. OPERATION OF THE HONOUR CODE

1. Any student, staff, or faculty member may report a violation or suspicion of a violation to any member of the Honour Code Committee. Alternatively, any student, staff or faculty member may also report such a violation to the Dean (or designate) directly.

2. Any report of an incident of Academic Misconduct shall be reported directly to the Dean (or designate) by the Honour Code Committee. The situation will then be handled in accordance with University of Saskatchewan policies3.

Allegations of Academic Misconduct may be resolved informally between the instructor or invigilator and the student(s) in accordance with Section III. of the University of Saskatchewan Regulations on Student Academic Misconduct.

3. Non-­‐academic, professional, and ethical issues can be dealt with informally by class Honour Code representatives, by the Honour Code Committee as a whole, or by the executive of the WCVSA.

Issues that pertain to the entire student body should be handled jointly by the Committee and the WCVSA executive

The Committee or WCVSA executive shall refer to the University of Saskatchewan Standard of Student Conduct in Non-Academic Matters and Procedures for Resolution of Complaints and Appeals for procedures to deal with professional misconduct4.

The Committee or WCVSA executive shall refer any issues that cannot be handled in this fashion to the Dean (or designate) for guidance

4. An individual accused of an Honour Code violation may choose to have the incident dealt with by the Dean (or designate) according to University policies outlined as referred to earlier.

5. Any individual reprimanded under the policies of the Honour Code or the University of Saskatchewan can appeal the decision. For directions on student appeals, see the University of Saskatchewan Standard of Student Conduct in Non-Academic Matters and Procedures for Resolution of Complaints and Appeals.

VIII. RECORDS OF HONOUR CODE PROCEEDINGS

The identity of individuals involved in Honour Code issues, the details of discussions and the records of issues pertaining to the Honour Code will be kept confidential unless otherwise provided for in the previously footnoted documents. All records shall be maintained by the Dean or designate. The records will be kept confidential for a period of five years, at which time they will be destroyed.

IX. PUBLICITY

Following the resolution of a hearing, the HCC will submit individual, confidential statement(s) to the accused student(s) outlining the decision reached by the HCC and any penalties to be imposed on the student(s). A copy of the statement will be placed in each student’s confidential file. At the discretion of the HCC, a copy of the statement may be given to the individual(s) who brought forth the allegations.

An annual report of the activities of the Honour Code Committee, indicating the number and type (academic misconduct or professional misconduct) of honour code hearings held during the academic year, will be presented at the last WCVSA general meeting of the year, and a copy will be forwarded to the Dean for distribution to the WCVM College Executive Committee.

X. AMENDMENTS

The Honour Code may be amended by a majority vote of the WCVSA membership, with subsequent approval by the WCVM Executive Committee. A review of the Honour Code shall be initiated by the HCC Chair every two years.

XI. RETIREMENT

The Honour Code may be retired at any time by a majority vote of the WCVSA membership, with subsequent approval by the WCVM Executive Committee.

ENDNOTES

1. University of Saskatchewan Council, Office of the University Secretary Web Site: Regulations of Student Academic Misconduct, section II. (http://www.usask.ca/university_secretary/honesty/academic_misconduct.php).

2. University of Saskatchewan, Senate, Office of the University Secretary Web Site: Standard of Student Conduct in Non-Academic Matters and Procedures for Resolution of Complaints and Appeals, section III. (http://www.usask.ca/university_secretary/honesty/nonacdishonesty.php).

3. University of Saskatchewan Council, Office of the University Secretary Web Site: Regulations of Student Academic Misconduct. (http://www.usask.ca/university_secretary/honesty/academic_misconduct.php).

4.  University of Saskatchewan, Senate, Office of the University Secretary Web Site: Standard of Student Conduct in Non-Academic Matters and Procedures for Resolution of Complaints and Appeals. (http://www.usask.ca/university_secretary/honesty/nonacdishonesty.php).