Academic Code: Student Disciplinary Procedures
These procedures supplement the Student Disciplinary Procedures of New York University, as approved by the vote of the Wagner school faculty on December 16, 2010.
As permitted under New York University by-laws and disciplinary procedures, the faculty of the Wagner Graduate School of Public Service adopts the following procedures for informal resolution of complaints and for cases of formal student discipline. The procedures described below are not exclusive and are not intended to prevent informal resolution.
B. Disciplinary Violations
Students of the Wagner School and New York University have joined an academic community that presumes certain behaviors and norms. As members of this community, students are expected to conduct their academic work with the highest integrity and to avoid any behaviors that jeopardize the well-being of others or disrupt educational activities.
All students are required to review and acknowledge Wagner's online Academic Oath explaining these policies and procedures prior to the beginning of classes. Each student "signs" the Academic Oath, indicating understanding of the academic code, resources to consult regarding academic integrity, and potential ramifications of violations. Student Services administrators maintain date and time stamped records of each student's electronic acknowledgement.
Accusations of behaviors that constitute disciplinary violations of either academic dishonesty or community offenses are covered by these procedures.
1. Charges of Academic Dishonesty
Academic disciplinary violations include, but are not limited to: cheating on exams or assignments, submitting your own work towards requirements in more than one class without the explicit prior permission of the instructors, providing your work for someone else to submit as his or her own, collaborating on work intended to be done individually, forgery of academic documents, and plagiarism. Cheating consists of violating the rules for taking exams or working on assignments; examples include but are not limited to copying others’ work, using unauthorized aids, and using external material on closed book exams. Plagiarism consists of presenting ideas or words without adequate acknowledgement of their source. Academic disciplinary violations are based on fact rather than intent.
Any of the following acts constitutes plagiarism:
- Using a phrase, sentence, or passage from another person's work without quotation marks AND attribution of the source. (Both quotations and attribution are necessary.)
- Using text from a source that is rearranged, paraphrased or discussed without attribution to the source;
- Submitting work where a central idea for a section/paragraph is taken from a source, written in the student's own words and not cited in the text;
- Submitting work completed by another (including work that was accessed via the internet) copied in its entirety or modified without attribution to the source.
In addition to the examples of plagiarism noted above, below we provide several websites that discuss plagiarism further. For research resources and to help you learn about appropriate citation of the many different sources you will use in your work at Wagner, see our Writing webpage. In addition, consult these resources for understanding and avoiding plagiarism:
- Bibliographic and Footnote Style Guide - Citing Sources, New York University Libraries,
- "Plagiarism: What is It and How to Recognize and Avoid It," The Writing Center at Indiana University,
- "Principles Regarding Academic Integrity," Northwestern University,
- "Sources," Dartmouth College
2. Offenses Against the Community
Offenses against the community are behaviors that jeopardize the physical or emotional health or safety of its members or disrupt educational or Wagner community activities (classroom activities or other official school sponsored events such as town hall meetings). These include, without limitation, damaging premises, interference with access to academic facilities or offices, and physical or other interference with or harassment of others.*
C. Disciplinary Procedures
Complaints can be filed by faculty members, students and administrators and will be fielded by the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs. Every instance of suspected academic dishonesty or offenses against the community should be reported to the Associate Dean, who will maintain a list of complaints.
Upon receiving a complaint, the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs will consult the list to determine if this is a first offense by the accused party. If so, informal resolution between the parties may take place, with guidance from the Associate Dean, and with faculty determining any academic penalty for the infraction. However, if there are other known offenses by the same party, the Associate Dean must advise the faculty Chair of the Discipline Committee. Informal or formal resolution through the Disciplinary Committee must then proceed.
If informal resolution by consent is not possible for any reason, the Associate Dean will conduct a preliminary investigation to determine whether or not it is necessary to proceed with formal hearings.
If the Associate Dean determines that the complaint may warrant proceeding with a formal hearing, the Associate Dean will consult with the Chair of the Discipline Committee. If they determine that a formal hearing is warranted, the Associate Dean will notify the student (hereinafter the 'Student') against whom the complaint was filed in writing of the charges within 48 hours. Multiple complaints concerning the same student will automatically trigger involvement of the Discipline Committee Chair, and may require a formal hearing. The written complaint will state the policies that have been alleged to be violated by the Student. The Chair will then create a Hearing Panel from the available Committee members.
1. Discipline Committee
The Disciplinary Committee will be composed of three faculty members, including the Chair, and the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, or two faculty and one administrator. Student representation will be solicited as needed for hearings or other matters. The students will be selected by the Dean's office from a pool of students either self-nominated or nominated by the Wagner Student Association.
2. The Hearing Panel
The Hearing Panel will consist of three people, including the Chair (two faculty members and one student or one faculty member, one administrator and one student). Any committee members with conflicts of interest should excuse themselves from serving. In advance of the hearing, the Chair will present the case materials to the Hearing Panel. The Chair will also ask that the complainant and the Student submit the names of all witnesses that they would like present at the hearing. The Hearing Panel has the discretion to limit the number of witnesses appearing at the hearing as it deems appropriate, and the Chair may request certain witnesses to attend the hearing and to testify.
The Hearing Panel shall control the conduct of the hearing proceedings. The Chair shall instruct everyone participating in the disciplinary proceeding of the confidentiality of such proceedings. The hearing shall not be governed by formal rules of evidence.
The hearing shall not be governed by formal rules of evidence.
Following the hearing, the Hearing Panel shall meet in closed session. The Hearing Panel shall first vote on whether the Student has committed the alleged disciplinary infraction, and then, if necessary, the Hearing Panel will decide the disciplinary sanction to be imposed. A majority vote of the Hearing Panel is necessary for a valid decision.
The Student has the right to have the Hearing Panel request the presence of a reasonable number of witnesses on his or her behalf, though the Hearing Panel cannot compel the attendance of such witnesses.
An audio recording of the hearing shall be made. In addition, the Chair shall prepare minutes of the hearing, which include:
- A short statement of the charge against the Student;
- A summary of the findings of fact and conclusions made by the Hearing Panel;
- A statement of the decision of the Hearing Panel; and
- The penalty imposed by the Hearing Panel.
The Chair shall inform the Dean of the Hearing Panel's findings. The Dean shall promptly provide the Student with a copy of the Hearing Panel's decision, and all appropriate notations in the Student's record shall be made.
4. Rights of the Student
The Student has the right to be informed in writing of the charge(s) against him or her and the name(s) of the person(s) who filed the complaint.
The Student has the right to consult with an adviser or counsel of his or her own choosing (who may be an eligible and consenting faculty member) to assist him or her in the preparation of the defense. No member of the Committee or Dean shall be eligible to serve as an adviser under this section. The adviser or counsel may assist the Student in the preparation of the Student's case for the initial hearing and any appeal. The adviser or counsel may also appear at any prehearing and hearing and shall have the right to examine by putting questions directly to the witness, or by asking questions through members of the hearing body. The method shall be determined by the hearing body and may be altered by it at any time.
5. Disciplinary Sanctions
As stated previously, academic penalties may be imposed by the faculty member in whose course or assignment the infraction was made. These may include failing the assignment, failing the course, requiring additional academic work, lowering the student's overall grade, or a combination.
At the discretion of the Discipline Committee, additional sanctions may be imposed beyond the academic penalties — whether the case was heard by informal resolution or through a formal hearing. Such decisions based on current findings and any record of prior infractions, may include any one or more of the following disciplinary sanctions:
- Warning: Notice to the Student, orally or in writing, that continuation or repetition of the conduct found wrongful, or participation in similar conduct, within a period of time stated in the warning, shall be a cause for disciplinary action.
- Censure: Written reprimand for violation of specified regulation, including the possibility of more severe disciplinary sanction in the event of conviction of another violation of a University regulation within a period of time stated in the reprimand.
- Disciplinary Probation: Exclusion from participation in privileges or extracurricular University activities as set forth in the notice of disciplinary probation. Notification that a more severe disciplinary sanction may be imposed if the Student commits a second disciplinary offense while on disciplinary probation.
- Restitution: Reimbursement for damage to or misappropriation of property. Reimbursement may take the form of appropriate service to repair or otherwise compensate for damages.
- Monetary Fines: For any offenses as determined by the Committee.
- Suspension: Exclusion from classes and other privileges or extracurricular activities as set forth in the notice of suspension.
- Dismissal: Termination of student status for an indefinite period. The conditions for readmission, if any permitted, shall be stated by the panel in the order of dismissal.
- Expulsion: Permanent termination of a student's status.
- Community Service: Specific service as deemed appropriate given the violation.
Appeals of the Hearing Panel's decision shall be brought to the Dean. The Student may appeal from any adverse determination but only on the grounds that (i) the procedure followed at the hearing deprived the respondent of a fair opportunity to respond adequately to the complaint or (ii) the evidence in the record taken as a whole does not substantially support the Hearing Panel's action. The appeal must be in writing, must state the basis for the appeal, and must be received by the Dean within 20 working days of the date on which the final report of the Hearing Panel was given to the Student. The appeal shall be limited to a review of the record of the hearing, including the Hearing Panel's decision, and of any materials presented as evidence at the hearing. The Dean's decision shall be made within 20 working days of the date on which the Student's appeal was received. The Dean shall have the power to stay the sanction imposed by the Hearing Panel pending the appeal. The Dean shall prepare a written decision on the appeal and may affirm the Hearing Panel's action, modify it in any respect (including the imposition of a more severe sanction), reverse it, or remand the case for further proceedings by the Discipline Committee. Any decision by the Dean, other than a remand, shall be final and binding.
7. Criminal Investigations/Convictions
The Wagner School recommends that students receive degrees upon the faculty's certification to the President that students are qualified to earn them. The President recommends qualified candidates to the Board, which ultimately confers all degrees. Wagner reserves the right to withhold, delay, or rescind its certification of qualification in the case of any student who has not complied with Wagner's academic integrity and conduct standards, University rules, or federal, state or local law while an enrolled student. Where the facts are beyond legitimate dispute, such as when a student has committed a crime as evidenced by the student having entered a guilty plea, plea of nolo contendere or similar plea, or having been convicted of the crime, Wagner may withhold, delay, or rescind a degree following a faculty vote without further proceedings. In other cases, the student may request a hearing under the disciplinary procedure described in the Academic Code before the faculty considers whether to withhold or confer a degree or rescind its prior recommendation to confer a degree. If there is insufficient time for the hearing prior to the date the degree would otherwise be awarded, the Wagner School may, if the Dean or faculty so elects, withhold the degree pending the completion of the disciplinary process and the faculty's consideration of that process. Similarly, where a student is involved in a matter that is expected to be resolved, such as judicial proceedings that are expected to result in a judicial resolution of a charge of crime or fraud, the Wagner School may, if the Dean or faculty so elects, defer consideration of whether to withhold or confer a degree or rescind its prior recommendation to confer a degree, pending the resolution of such charges, even if this may delay the faculty's consideration of a candidate beyond his or her expected graduation date.
All students are required to advise the Dean of any criminal investigation or conviction, or any investigation or legal judgment for civil fraud. Students need not advise the Dean of misdemeanor offenses. Notice must be given in writing, no later than two weeks after the student learns of the investigation, conviction or legal fraud judgment. A failure to provide such notice may itself constitute grounds for withholding, delaying or rescinding a degree.
8. Recording/Record Keeping
The records of all disciplinary cases, preliminary assessments and hearings shall be kept and maintained by the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs on behalf of the Chair in a confidential manner. The Committee will keep and maintain such records until all appeals have been completed or the time for an appeal has expired. Student files, at a minimum, shall reflect the Hearing Panel's affirmative findings of a disciplinary infraction while the Student is enrolled at Wagner.
The Committee shall be responsible for preparing an annual reporting summary to ensure that the Wagner community is made generally aware of disciplinary outcomes.
*In cases involving sexual assault, harassment and other forms of sexual misconduct the policies and procedures outlined in the New York University policy will be followed.