Students

Student Code of Conduct
1. Introduction

ACAD is committed to sustaining a vibrant learning environment for all members of the ACAD community, where each member is committed to the values of academic integrity, mutual respect and personal responsibility. Students who compromise these values at the College will be subject to disciplinary proceedings as outlined in this document.

2. Definitions and Scope

College – refers to Alberta College of Art + Design (ACAD).

Complainant – refers to any member of the College community who has initiated a complaint under this procedure.

Respondent – refers to any student who has alleged to have committed an act of academic or non-academic misconduct.

Student – refers to a person who is applying or has been accepted for admission to ACAD, or who is or has been registered at the college for credit or non-credit courses.
Support person – refers to a person who aids the student by providing procedural or emotional support.

Balance of probabilities – refers to the standard of proof which is met if the proposition is more likely to be true than not true.

This procedure is applicable to all students, both current and former.

Student conduct directly related to a prohibited ground of discrimination may be referred to Procedure 700.6.1 Harassment /Discrimination.

Nothing in this procedure shall prevent the college from referring an individual matter at any time to the appropriate law enforcement agency.

Timelines in this procedure may, in exceptional circumstances, be extended by the Provost + Vice-President for Research + Academic Affairs or the Vice President for Student Experience + Admissions.

3. Academic Misconduct

Academic misconduct is any activity that results in a student misrepresenting his/her abilities to accomplish activities, assignments, or examinations that contribute to the process of assessing a student’s academic progress at the College. Academic misconduct is considered an extremely serious offense that significantly compromises the vibrancy of the learning environment at ACAD for all students.

3.1 Academic misconduct includes but is not limited to the following:
  • copying or representing the work or the ideas of others, without giving appropriate credit to the authors, as one’s own (plagiarism);
  • resubmitting the same piece of work for evaluation without prior written permission of the course instructor to whom the work is being submitted;
  • misrepresenting material facts for academic purposes, including but not limited to, presenting falsified or concocted research, credentials, assignments, altered or changed results or scores, academic records, transcripts, credentials or other registration records, letters of reference or recommendations, medical or compassionate certificates;
  • impersonating another individual;
  • withholding academic records, transcripts or other documents for the purposes of gaining admission or unfair academic advantage;
  • intentionally obstructing or interfering with scholarly activities of another individual, including but not limited to, tampering or damaging another individual’s work or materials;
  • deliberately and improperly accessing confidential information such as examinations or records;
  • improperly publishing, disseminating or otherwise making public confidential information without prior written consent. Confidential information includes, but is not limited to, academic records, information, data and documents that are not otherwise publicly available;
  • using unauthorized material in examinations;
  • compromising in any way the integrity of examination procedures, class, studio or course assignments; or
  • knowingly assisting in the commission of an academic offence.
3.2 Procedures for Allegations of Academic Misconduct

If an instructor, or a member of the College community, believes there is cause to suspect a student of academic misconduct, the following procedure shall be followed.

Reporting 

  • An instructor, or any member of the College community, who suspects an act of academic misconduct has occurred must, within two (2) working days of first becoming aware of such an occurrence, report the alleged incident to the Registrar (who as Secretary of the Academic Appeals Committee communicates the allegation directly to the Dean of Undergraduate Studies). The report must include the following:
    • identify all parties involved, including any witnesses, and all relevant dates;
    • detail the conduct leading to and constituting the offense; and
    • detail any discussions with the respondent that are directly related to the allegation of academic misconduct, as well as the outcomes of those discussions.
  • The Registrar, as Secretary of the Academic Misconduct Committee, notifies the student involved within two (2) working days of receiving the allegation, and requests a written response from the student within five (5) working days of notification.
  • The Registrar, as Secretary of the Academic Misconduct Committee, will forward all collected information to the Dean of Undergraduate Studies, as Chair of the Academic Misconduct Committee, within two (2) days of receipt of the student’s written response, advising the student and the complainant at the same time and providing the student with a copy of the information sent detailing the alleged incident.

Investigation

  • The Dean of Undergraduate Studies, as Chair of the Academic Misconduct Committee, will investigate the alleged misconduct, meeting with the complainant and the student, and any directly relevant parties to establish a reasonable level of probability that an act of academic dishonesty has occurred.
  • If it appears that there are no grounds for academic misconduct and no action is deemed necessary, no formal record is required and the Dean of Undergraduate Studies will notify the Registrar within five (5) working days of being notified as Chair by the Registrar of the alleged incident.
  • If it appears that there may be grounds for academic misconduct and further action is deemed appropriate the Dean of Undergraduate Studies, as Chair, will arrange a meeting of the Academic Misconduct Committee. This meeting must be held within  (10) working days of the Registrar’s notification of the alleged incident.
  • The Dean of Undergraduate Studies will notify the student and the complainant of the date and time of the hearing, their right to present their respective cases to the Committee should they so wish, and the names and positions of the Committee members. The student who is alleged to have committed an academic offence may choose to be accompanied by a support person (defined above) when he/she is requested to be present at meetings during the process.
3.3 Academic Misconduct Committee

Terms of Reference:

  • The Academic Misconduct Committee shall review all allegations of academic misconduct.
  • The Committee shall determine the procedures for a hearing. The Dean of Undergraduate Studies, as Chair of the Academic Misconduct Committee, shall decide any questions of procedure that may arise during the course of the review.
  • The Committee shall have the right to review any documents, evidence, or request submissions it considers relevant.
  • The Committee must grant the student under investigation the opportunity to appear and be present during the hearing, to give evidence, to make submissions, and to have submissions made on his/her behalf, and to have a support person present.
  • The Committee will consider all relevant material and, within fifteen (15) days of the Chair being notified by the Registrar of the alleged incident, make a decision as to whether, on a balance of probabilities, the student has committed an offence. If the Committee determines an offence has occurred, the Committee will, in accordance with the guidelines set out in Section 3.4, determine which sanctions are appropriate.
  • The Dean of Undergraduate Studies, as Chair of the Academic Misconduct Committee, will complete a final report detailing the findings and sanctions and will communicate the decision to student, the complainant and to the Registrar within five (5) working days of the conclusion of the hearing. The Registrar will record and action any imposed sanctions.
  • Failure by the student under investigation to comply or observe sanctions may lead to the incident being referred back to the Committee for further sanctions.

Composition:

  • Dean of Undergraduate Studies, Chair (non-voting)
  • Registrar, Secretary (non-voting)
  • One (1) student appointed by the Students’ Association for a period of one year
  • Two (2) faculty appointed by the Provost + Vice President for Research + Academic Affairs, one of which shall be from the major or area of study in which the alleged misconduct occurred, if applicable
  • Quorum will consist of four (4) members, including one (1) student, one (1) faculty and the Chair.
3.4 Sanctions for Academic Misconduct

Upon finding a student guilty of an academic offence, the Committee shall impose one or more of the following sanctions:

Minor Sanctions

  1. Warning notice: Written warning that continuation or repetition of prohibited conduct may be cause for additional disciplinary action. This notice shall remain in the student’s file.
  2. Grade reduction:  Grade change that will be noted on the student’s record and transcript. If a grade reduction results in a failing grade for the course, this failing grade does not result in a “Failing Grade with Transcript Notation”.
  3. Failing grade in the course with transcript notation: Failing grade for the course in which the student was involved in academic dishonesty, and a notation on the student’s record and transcript that the failing grade was received as a sanction for a finding of academic misconduct. This entry will be removed when the student notifies the Registrar that the course has been repeated or as per conditions set by the Committee.

Major Sanctions (Major sanctions, with the exception of expulsion, are recommendations from the Committee to the Provost and Vice-President of Research + Academic Affairs for approval.)

  1. Disciplinary probation: Length and conditions of probation period will be determined by the Committee and will be noted on the student’s record and transcript. This entry will be removed upon expiration of the probationary period. Conditions will include consequences of subsequent academic misconduct by the student during the probationary period.
  2. Disciplinary withdrawal: The student will be withdrawn completely from the college. Length of the withdrawal period will be determined by the Committee but will not exceed one academic year and will be noted on the student’s record and transcript. The Committee will specify conditions for re-admission at the end of the withdrawal period.
  3. Expulsion: Recommendation that the student be withdrawn from the college and not be eligible for future readmission. (Requires the review and approval of the President + CEO.)
  4. Denial of admission: Student applicant will be denied admission to the college and, based on the Committee’s recommendation, may not be eligible for future admission. A student applicant record will be created and the decision will be noted on the student applicant’s record. 
  5. Rescission of credential: Irrevocable rescission of a credential previously granted by Alberta College of Art + Design. The decision will be entered on the student’s record and transcript.
3.5 Appeal Process

Within five (5) working days of receipt of the Committee’s decision, the student or complainant may choose to appeal the decision by submitting a written request to the Provost + Vice-President for Research + Academic Affairs. The request must detail the alleged offense and detail the basis of the appeal. All materials compiled and reviewed by the Academic Misconduct Committee shall be submitted to the Provost + Vice-President for Research + Academic Affairs within two (2) working days of the receipt of the request for an appeal. The grounds for appeal are outlined in Section 5.0.

4. Non-Academic Misconduct

Non-academic offences violate established civil and criminal statutes, threaten the safety or well-being of members of the ACAD community; or seriously and adversely affect the college, its educational mission, and compromise the vibrancy of the learning environment at ACAD. All staff and faculty at ACAD strongly support the concept of personal responsibility in relation to student behavior. Students who engage in behaviour that results in disruption of the learning environment at ACAD will be held directly accountable.

4.1 Non-academic offences include but are not limited to the following:
  • disruption or obstruction of college activities;
  • unauthorized entry into, unauthorized use of, or misuse of College property and resources;
  • misappropriation, damage, destruction, or theft of college property or resources, including digital files, or of property in the possession of, or owned by, a member of the College community;
  • physical assault or threat to cause physical injury or bullying;
  • verbal assault, defamation, or harassment towards others;
  • use, possession or storage of any weapon, (or an instrument or device that a reasonable person would believe is a weapon), dangerous chemicals, fireworks, or explosives on college premises, whether or not a license to possess the same has been issued to the possessor;
  • creation of a condition which endangers or threatens the health and safety or well being of themselves or others;
  • use and distribution of alcohol or illicit drugs on college property or among members of the College community, if such distribution is illegal, or the possession of a sufficiently large quantity as to indicate an intention to distribute illegally;
  • any illegal act, or any other act which threatens, endangers, harms or damages College property or members of the College community; or
  • knowingly assisting in the commission of a non-academic offence.

ACAD is committed to an environment free of harassment and discrimination. Matters of harassment and discrimination are covered by Procedure 700.6.1 Harassment/Discrimination.

4.2 Procedures for Allegations of Non-Academic Misconduct
  • Any member of the College community who suspects an act of non-academic misconduct has occurred must report the alleged incident to the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions within two (2) working days of first becoming aware of such an occurrence, detailing the following:
    • identifying all parties involved, including any witnesses, and all relevant dates;
    • detailing the conduct leading to and constituting the offense; and
    • including all documentation to date related to the alleged offense (e. g. ACAD Incident Reports, etc.).
  • The Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions notifies the student involved within two (2) working days of receiving the allegation and provides the student with the opportunity to submit a written response within five (5) working days of being notified.

Investigation 

  • The Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions will investigate the alleged misconduct, meeting with the complainant and the student, and any individuals deemed relevant to discerning a reasonable level of probability that the alleged act of non-academic misconduct occurred. The student who is alleged to have committed the offence may choose to be accompanied by a support person at any meeting requiring the student’s presence throughout this process. This investigation will normally be completed within fifteen (15) working days of receipt of the allegation of non-academic misconduct.
  • Should this investigation conclude that an act of non-academic misconduct has occurred, the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions will review the evidence collected with the Provost + Vice-President for Research + Academic Affairs, and jointly they shall determine the appropriate response. Within two (2) working days of the completion of the investigation, the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions will notify the complainant and respondent of the outcome of the investigation and the sanctions to be imposed.
  • In situations where there is a concern for the well-being and safety of individuals, the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions may temporarily restrict a respondent’s access to campus. The respondent will be advised that an allegation of non-academic misconduct has been filed, and that the respondent’s access to campus has been temporarily restricted pending a meeting with the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions. Within two (2) working days of the implementation of restricted access, the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions will meet with the respondent to discuss the incident and the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions will decide whether the conduct and surrounding circumstances indicate continued restricted access.
  • Failure to comply or observe sanctions may lead to further sanctions.

Appeal

  • Within five (5) working days of receipt of the outcome of the investigation, either the complainant or respondent may choose to appeal the decision to the Provost + Vice President for Research + Academic Affairs, who acts as Chair of the Appeal Committee on Student Conduct. The grounds for appeal are outlined in Section 5.0.
4.3 Sanctions for Non-Academic Misconduct

Upon finding a student guilty of a non-academic offence, the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions shall impose one or more of the following sanctions.

Minor Sanctions

  1. Warning notice: Written notice that continuation or repetition of prohibited conduct may be cause for additional disciplinary action.
  2. Restitution for damages: Restitution not to exceed the cost of damages, period of payment to be determined by the Committee.
  3. Fine: Fine not to exceed $1000, period of payment to be determined by the Vice-President Student Experience + Admissions.

Major Sanctions

  1. Fine: Fine exceeding $1000, period of payment to be determined by the Vice-President Student Experience + Admissions.
  2. Restricted access to specified areas of the college: Length and conditions of restricted access to be determined by the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions and the Provost + Vice President for Research + Academic Affairs.
  3. Disciplinary probation: Length and conditions of probationary period will be determined by the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions and the Provost + Vice President for Research + Academic Affairs. Conditions will include consequences of subsequent misconduct by the student during the probationary period.
  4. Disciplinary withdrawal: Student will be withdrawn completely from the college. Length of the withdrawal period will be determined by the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions and the Provost + Vice President for Research + Academic Affairs, but will not exceed one academic year. Conditions for readmission at the end of the withdrawal period will be specified.
  5. Expulsion: Recommendation that the student will be withdrawn from the college and will not be eligible for future readmission. (Requires the review and approval of the President + CEO.)
5. Appeal Procedures
5.1 Any decision by the Committee on Academic Misconduct or, in cases involving non-academic misconduct the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions and the Provost + Vice President for Research + Academic Affairs, may be appealed by the respondent or complainant on the following grounds:
  • a) alleged bias of any of the Academic Misconduct Committee members or the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions; 
  • b) alleged failure of the Academic Misconduct Committee or the Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions to comply with the principles of natural justice or procedural fairness; 
  • c) the sanctions imposed are inappropriate for the offense (in cases of non-academic misconduct only); and/or
  • d) substantial new evidence that was previously unavailable to the investigative process is now available.
5.2 The following appeal procedures will be followed:
  • Within five (5) working days of notification of the completion of the investigation and the resulting decision, a written request for an appeal must be submitted to the Provost + Vice President for Research + Academic Affairs, as Chair of the Appeal Committee, detailing the grounds of the appeal and the remedy being sought.
  • Within five (5) working days of receipt of the request to appeal, the Provost + Vice President for Research + Academic Affairs will convene the Student Conduct Appeal Committee. The Committee will review the grounds for the appeal, the resulting decision, and all supporting documentation.
  • Within five (5) working days of convening, the Committee shall determine whether there are grounds for appeal.
  • If no grounds are found or determined to exist, the appeal is declined. Within five (5) working days of convening the Committee, the Provost + Vice-President for Research + Academic Affairs will communicate the decision in writing to the complainant and respondent and, as appropriate, to the Registrar or Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions for documentation and action.
  • If grounds are found or determined to exist, the appeal is granted. Within five (5) working days of convening the Committee, the Provost + Vice-President for Research + Academic Affairs will communicate the decision in writing to the complainant and respondent and will advise of the date, time and location of a hearing, their right to be present and heard, and the names and positions of the Appeal Committee. This decision will also be communicated, as appropriate, to the Registrar or Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions for documentation and any necessary action.
  • Within five (5) working days of granting the Appeal, the Provost + Vice-President for Research + Academic Affairs will convene the hearing.
  • Within five (5) working days of the conclusion of the hearing a decision will be rendered. The decision of the Committee is final and may not be appealed. The decision of the Committee will be communicated by the Provost + Vice-President for Research + Academic Affairs in writing to the complainant and respondent and, as appropriate, to the Registrar or Vice-President for Student Experience + Admissions for documentation and action.
5.3 Terms of Reference for the Student Conduct Appeal Committee
  • The Appeal Committee shall review the decision of the Standing Committee on Student Conduct and allow for further appropriate presentation of materials by the relevant parties.
  • The Appeal Committee on Student Conduct shall consider all relevant material and make a decision as to whether, on a balance of probabilities, the student has committed an offence. If there is a finding of an offence, the Committee shall decide whether to uphold the original decision and sanctions or to render a new decision and sanctions, if any, in accordance with the guidelines set out in Sections 3.4 or 4.3.
  • Where an investigation results in a recommendation for expulsion from College, such a sanction shall not be effective until it has been reviewed and approved by the President + CEO. For all other sanctions the decision of the Student Conduct Appeal Committee is final and non-appealable.

Composition:

  • Provost + Vice-President for Research + Academic Affairs, (Chair)
  • One (1) faculty member appointed by the President + CEO, who has not been involved in the investigative process
  • One (1) student appointed by the Students’ Association for a term of one year
6. Documentation
6.1

While the nature of the record will vary, there will always be an institutional record relating to a complaint that has been investigated which may be referred to in the cases of future incidents.

6.2

If an allegation of misconduct is not proven, a letter indicating the disposition of the case will be issued to the student and all documentation pertaining to the case will be sealed and retained in the student's official file in the Registrar's Office. Misconduct documents will be accessed if there is a further incident. While such a record cannot be treated as a foundation for any progressive discipline in the case of a future offense, it can be used to show that the student was aware of the college’s expectations with regard to future conduct.

6.3

All documentation of proven misconduct will be sealed and retained in the student's official file in the Registrar's Office.

6.4

The sealed documentation may only be accessed by the student, the President + CEO,  the Provost + Vice President for Research + Academic Affairs, the Vice President for Student Experience + Admissions, the Registrar, or their designates.

6.5 Student Records and Transcripts and Disposition of Documentation

Penalties imposed for misconduct will appear on student records and transcripts as follows:

Warning notice

Hard copy student record, no transcript entry

Fine or restitution

Hard copy student record, no transcript entry

Restricted access

Hard copy student record, no transcript entry

Grade reduction

Transcript entry of final grade for course

Failing grade

Transcript entry, “Failing grade for academic misconduct”

Entry to be removed when course has been repeated or as per conditions set by the Committee

Disciplinary probation

Transcript entry, "On probation for academic misconduct until (day/month/year)" or “"On probation for non-academic misconduct until (day/month/year)"

Entry to be removed upon expiration of probationary period

Disciplinary withdrawal

Transcript entry, "Withdrawn for academic misconduct until (day/month/year)" or "Withdrawn for non-academic misconduct until (day/month/year)"

Entry to be removed upon expiration of the withdrawal period

Expulsion

Transcript entry, "Expelled for academic misconduct" or "Expelled for non-academic misconduct"

Rescission of credential

Transcript entry, “Credential rescinded for academic misconduct”