All violations are reported by the Office of Academic Affairs to the Office of Student Services. Breaches of the Code of Academic Integrity and the General Code of Conduct are grounds for disciplinary action and are permanently noted in a student’s academic record. All violations are cumulative and may accumulate throughout a student’s studies at University of the People, regardless of which course the violations take place in. All General Code of Conduct violations will be defined as severe violations (see below), unless the Office of Academic Affairs decides otherwise. Therefore, the process for a student’s first three violations as described below will typically apply only to Code of Academic Integrity violations.
Violations are normally subject to the following sanctions by the University:
First violation: Warning is issued by the course instructor, the student is issued a zero by the Office of Academic Affairs on the assignment, and a permanent note is added to the student’s record.
Second violation: Student is issued a zero on the assignment or exam in question. The student may also receive a failing grade in the course as determined by the Office of Academic Affairs.
Third violation: Student is issued a failing grade in the course.
Fourth violation and up will be treated as severe violations (see below).
Sanctions, however, may vary based on past disciplinary records, and the University retains the absolute discretion to determine the appropriate sanction to be imposed for any infraction, depending on the severity of the violation. Sanctions may also be cumulative; no sanction must necessarily be exhausted before another sanction is imposed.
In cases where an act of academic misconduct remains undiscovered until after credits have been issued or a degree is awarded, University of the People reserves the right to revoke any credits or degree based on new revelations about academic issues including, but not restricted to, admission credentials, coursework, research, theses, or other final projects.
If academic misconduct is discovered, the Office of Academic Affairs has the authority to award a grade of Fail (F) rather than a Withdrawal (W) for that course.
Once a student has accumulated more than three violations, or when a violation was defined as severe at the discretion of the Office of Academic Affairs, the following violations will all constitute severe violations.
In cases where a student is determined to have committed a severe violation:
The Office of Academic Affairs may decide to suspend the student’s access to University services such as Moodle and Yammer, even if such suspension affects the student’s ability to complete his or her courses.
The student will be contacted by a University official to advise the student of his or her alleged violation and to describe the investigation and disciplinary process, including the possible sanctions that may be imposed. The student will be given seven calendar days within which to submit a written response to the Office of Student Services at [email protected] for the English programs and [email protected] for the Arabic Division.
If a student does not respond to the allegations found against them the student forfeits the right to a decision by the Student Affairs Committee and may receive a failing grade in the course and be subject to dismissal from the University, depending on the severity of the violation as recommended by the Office of Academic Affairs.
However, if a response is submitted, his or her case is referred to the Student Affairs Committee. Following receipt of the student’s written response, the Student Affairs Committee will conclude whether the student violated the General Code of Conduct or Code of Academic Integrity and, if so, will determine what disciplinary sanctions will be imposed on the student in respect to such violation.
Such sanctions may include censure and a warning to avoid future violations, immediate removal of the student from his or her course(s) that term, suspension from the University, or permanent dismissal from the University. The Office of Student Services will communicate with the student regarding the investigation and determinations of the Student Affairs Committee.
Please note that students may appeal the decisions to the Appeals Committee, who will decide only on whether the original procedure of the decision correctly adhered to University policies and procedures, not the outcome of the decision. Any appeal must be sent to the student’s program advisor within 30 days of receiving the decision.