Policy on Student Misconduct in Academic Studies

I.  Preamble

Students are expected to meet all course requirements ethically and responsibly. A student who in any manner engages or assists in any form of academic misconduct including but not limited to cheating, fabrication, plagiarism, or facilitating academic dishonesty, whether in an examination or other course obligation, is guilty of academic misconduct and shall be subject to discipline.

II.  Student Misconduct in Academic Studies

Any student who observes academic misconduct before, during or after an examination or in any of the requirements established by the instructor for a given course is obliged to take personal responsibility for the situation by immediately reporting the matter to the instructor or course assistant. Any faculty member who observes or receives notice of alleged academic misconduct is required to take appropriate steps. Steps faculty members shall take are to gather the relevant information and whenever feasible meet with the student to discuss/review what appears to be a breach of this policy. If, following this initial fact finding process, the faculty member believes that the accusation has merit, the faculty member shall, depending on the seriousness of the offence, either:

  • Verbally admonish the student;
  • Issue a written notice to the student that his or her behavior may be in violation of campus policy and that, if repeated, such behavior will be subject to the disciplinary process;1 or
  • Submit a written description of the incident and supporting materials, if any, to the Dean or Dean's designee for consideration of formal discipline.2

Upon receipt of written materials, the Dean shall meet with the accused student.

The student has five (5) business days from the date of the notice of alleged violation to respond to the Dean to schedule a meeting. If the student does not schedule a meeting, the Dean will determine the student’s responsibility for the alleged policy violation(s) and assign disciplinary sanctions based on the information provided without the student’s participation, unless the Dean decides that a hearing is warranted.

At the meeting, the student shall be presented with the allegation, as well as copies of any supporting documentation provided by the instructor. The Dean shall review the materials with the student, discuss the applicable University or campus policies and explain the disciplinary sanctions which the student may face if s/he is found to have violated the Student Academic Misconduct Policy. The accused student shall be provided with an opportunity to respond.

After considering the accused student's response, the Dean shall determine whether there are sufficient grounds to believe that the allegation has merit. If merit is found, the Dean shall request that the student enter a plea which shall be one of the following: "responsible," "not responsible," or "no contest."

If the plea is "responsible" or "no contest," the Dean's determination shall become final and discipline shall be imposed.

If the plea is "not responsible," in accordance with Section 103.00 of the University of California Policies Applying to Campus Activities, Organizations and Students, the accused student or the Dean may request a hearing. If no hearing is requested, the Dean's determination shall become final and the discipline shall be imposed.

III.  Hearing Process

If a hearing is held, its purpose shall be to weigh the evidence and to determine by majority vote of the Hearing Committee whether the student is responsible for misconduct. The following apply in the event of a hearing:

A.  Timeline & Communications

The hearing shall be held within 30 business days of the date on which the Dean meets with the accused student. However, all deadlines contained within this policy may be extended by the Dean or Hearing Coordinator, based on the totality of the circumstances and for good cause shown and documented.

The accused student shall be given a minimum of 10 business days’ advance written notice of the time and place of the hearing, as well as the composition of the Hearing Committee.

The hearing notice shall include a brief statement of the factual basis of the charge(s) and the policy/policies or regulations alleged to have been violated. If the Dean determines that either previous accusations or previous discipline involving the same student(s) are relevant to the case, all documents relating to same shall be made available for consideration at the hearing. The accused student shall be provided with copies of these documents prior to the hearing.

B.  Hearing Committee

An ad hoc Hearing Committee composed of two members of the faculty, two students, and the president of the student body shall be appointed to hear the case3. The faculty members shall be appointed by the Dean and shall not:

  • Be instructors in the course(s) in which the alleged incident(s) of misconduct occurred, or
  • Have been instructors in a course in which a previous accusation of misconduct has been made against the student(s) currently accused.

The student members shall be appointed by the president of the student body and shall not be classmates of the accused student unless the alleged misconduct involves students from more than one class.

The president of the student body shall serve as Hearing Chair and shall not have voting power except in a tie vote. It will be his or her responsibility to forward to the Dean a written summary of the committee's findings of fact, as described in this policy.

The student may, for good cause, submit one written challenge to the assignment of one or more particular Hearing Committee member(s) to the Hearing Chair within two (2) business days of learning about the composition of the Hearing Committee. No written challenges will be accepted beyond this timeframe. The Hearing Chair will provide a written decision within two (2) business days of receipt of the written challenge. Example of good cause: Involvement in the incident or a close personal relationship with the responding student or expected witnesses in the proceeding could, depending on the circumstances, warrant disqualification of the Hearing Committee member.

C.  Hearing Coordinator

The Assistant or Associate Dean of Students Affairs shall serve as Hearing Coordinator. The Hearing Coordinator will assist the Hearing Committee with administrative and procedural aspects of the hearing. The Hearing Coordinator will not participate in deliberations and will not make recommendations to the Hearing Committee regarding the final decision.  The Hearing Coordinator will:4

  1. Notify the president of the student body, set the time and place of the hearing, and facilitate the scheduling of witnesses, where possible. Once the hearing is scheduled, the accused student is ultimately responsible for the appearance of his or her witnesses at the hearing.
  2. Hold a pre-hearing meeting with the accused student in order to discuss the charge(s), the hearing process, the rights of the accused student, the list of witnesses, the hearing schedule and the date prior to the hearing by which the parties will exchange exhibits.
  3. Meet with the Hearing Committee and provide it with a description of its responsibilities. Included shall be a description of accusations that have been considered by past hearing committees as well as their findings.

D.  Student Rights

The accused student shall have the following rights:

  1. The student shall have access to any document relating to the charge.
  2. At all stages of this process, the student shall have the right to choose an Advisor and a Support Person. The Advisor and/or the Support Person may be any person (including an advocate, attorney, friend, or parent) who is not otherwise a party or a witness involved in this process. The Advisor’s primary role is to provide guidance through the process. The Support Person’s primary role is to provide emotional support. The Advisor and the Support Person shall not speak on behalf of a student or otherwise disrupt any meetings or proceedings in any manner. The University reserves the right to exclude an Advisor or Support Person who does not abide by these procedures. Any fees/costs associated with the presence of an Advisor and/or Support Person shall be the responsibility of the student. If the student chooses an Advisor and/or Support Person, the student must submit to the Hearing Coordinator at least five business (5) days prior to the hearing or any meeting related to the charges the name(s) of their one (1) Advisor and/or one (1) Support Person who will be present at meetings during the process. Failure to do so may result in delay of the hearing date and will extend the period in which the hearing must be held from 30 to 45 business days. If the student chooses an advisor who is an attorney, the School of Pharmacy shall be advised by University counsel.
  3. The student shall have the right to testify on his/her own behalf, including the presentation of relevant testimony and/or exhibits and of his/her own witnesses.
  4. The student shall have the right to be present during all testimony. (If the accused student does not appear at the time of the scheduled hearing, s/he shall have waived the right to be present at the hearing, and the hearing shall be held in the accused student's absence.)
  5. The student shall have the right to cross-examine all School of Pharmacy witnesses.

E.  Hearing Procedures

In keeping with the University’s and School of Pharmacy’s educational purpose, students and reporting parties are expected to present to the Hearing Committee on their own behalf at the hearing.

  1. The written notice from the Dean will be entered as part of the record at the hearing.
  2. The student and School of Pharmacy each have the right to present their case, including the presentation of relevant testimony and/or exhibits, and the right to cross-examine the other party and witnesses.
  3. The chair of the Hearing Committee has the discretion to limit each party to those witnesses whose names were disclosed to the other party as arranged at the pre-hearing meeting.
  4. The student has the right to hear all individuals who present at the hearing and to ask questions of all individuals who present at the hearing. The student shall ask questions in accordance with the mechanism specified by the Hearing Committee.
  5. The Hearing Chair will determine the content and order of questioning. Subject to the approval of the majority of the Hearing Committee, the Hearing Chair has the discretion to limit evidence to that which is relevant to the issues before the Hearing Committee and to exclude evidence that is unnecessarily repetitive or cumulative.
  6. The hearing will be audio recorded by the University. At the conclusion of the hearing, the student may request to listen to the recording. Any such review by the student shall take place in a location specified by the Hearing Coordinator (or designee) in the presence of a designated staff member. The failure to record all or part of a hearing, including, but not limited to, a failure resulting from a recorder malfunction, will not be grounds for invalidating the hearing or for appeal.
  7. Formal rules of evidence and witness presentation will not apply apart from those specified in this policy. The Hearing Committee may consider the form in which information is presented, as well as the credibility of any party or witness at the hearing, in weighing the information and reaching its decision.
  8. The School of Pharmacy shall bear the burden of proof.
  9. Unless otherwise agreed by the parties, the School of Pharmacy shall present its case first.
  10. Findings shall be based on a preponderance of the evidence standard.
  11. No inference shall be drawn from the silence of the accused.

F.  Standards of Deliberation

The Hearing Committee will deliberate in private and reach a decision based on a preponderance of the evidence standard. The Hearing Committee shall attempt to reach consensus on a decision, but the majority shall make the decision if consensus cannot be reached.

The Hearing Committee shall take into account the information provided by the Dean and by both parties, as well as the information presented at the hearing. The Hearing Committee will make its own findings of fact, findings of policy violation(s), and credibility determinations based on all of the information before it.

G.  Notice of Hearing Decision

Upon completion of the hearing, the Hearing Committee shall prepare a written report that includes findings and a conclusion regarding the student’s responsibility for the alleged violation. The Hearing Committee shall not make recommendations regarding disciplinary action.

The Hearing Committee shall submit its report to the Dean after the hearing is completed. A copy of the report shall be provided to the student.

If the Hearing Committee concludes that the accused student is responsible for the violation, the Dean shall determine such disciplinary action as he/she deems appropriate in accordance with School and University policies relative to student conduct and discipline. Under no circumstances shall the discipline imposed be more severe than that proposed prior to the hearing. The Dean shall communicate his/her decision in writing to the student.

IV.  Appeal

Final authority for student discipline rests with the Chancellor. The accused student therefore may submit a written appeal to the Chancellor within ten (10) business days of his/her receipt of the Dean's decision. The Chancellor shall provide a copy of the appeal to the School of Pharmacy. The School of Pharmacy shall be given an opportunity to file a written response with the Chancellor within ten (10) business days of receipt of the appeal. The Chancellor shall issue a written decision within fifteen (15) business days of receipt of the School of Pharmacy's response.

If, as a result of an appeal, the Chancellor determines that the accused student is not responsible for the charges, the Chancellor shall, upon the request of the accused student, have the record of the hearing sealed and have any reference to the disciplinary process removed from the student's record. In such case, the record of the hearing may be used only in connection with legal proceedings or as otherwise required by law.

V.  Records

Regardless of the findings and conclusion of the Hearing Committee, a full set of records (including all written statements regarding the accusation, the decision of the committee and the Dean's subsequent action, if any) shall be maintained by the Office of Student and Curricular Affairs in a manner consistent with University records retention policies.


  1. The faculty member shall provide a copy of the written notice to the Dean or Dean's Designee. Although the notice will not be placed in the student's file at that time, evidence of the behavior as detailed in the written notice may be introduced in any subsequent disciplinary action in order to enhance the penalty. (See University of California Policies Applying to Campus Activities, Organizations and Students, Policy on Student Conduct and Discipline, Section 104.80.)
  2. All references to the Dean are intended to include the phrase "or Dean's designee."
  3. If the president cannot serve, or if the accused student is a member of the same class as the president, the president shall appoint a member of the Student Council to serve in his or her place.
  4. If the Assistant or Associate Dean of Student Affairs cannot serve, the Dean shall appoint a member of the faculty to serve in his or her place.


This policy is based upon PACAOS Grounds for Discipline 102.01 (Academic Misconduct) https://ucop.edu/student-affairs/policies/student-life-policies/pacaos.html; specific link: https://policy.ucop.edu/doc/2710530/PACAOS-100

Revised/approved by CEPC 6.16.21

Go toPolicies and Requirements