Case #527

DATE: November 3, 2008
PARTIES: University of Toronto v. Student

Hearing Date(s): September 8, 2008

Panel Members:
Mr. Ronald Slaght, Chair
Professor James Rini, Faculty Member
Ms. Melany Bleue, Student Panel Member

Mr. Robert Centa, Assistant Discipline Counsel for the University
Professor Eleanor Irwin, Dean's Designate, UTSC
Ms. Sarah Crowder, Student Legal Representative, DLS
Ms. Student

Trial Division – s. B.i.1(b) of Code – unauthorized aid – mid term examination – Agreed Statement of Facts – guilty plea – two prior academic offences – mitigating factors that the Student’s family experienced harassment prior to offence, that the Student admitted guilt, cooperated with discipline process, withdrew from all courses and sought counseling – academic status relative to graduation – Joint Submission on Penalty accepted – grade of zero assigned for course; two-year eight-month suspension; two-year eight-month notation on transcript; and report to Provost

Student charged under s. B.i.1(b), and alternatively, s. B.i.3(b) of the Code. The charges related to a mid term exam during which the Student was alleged to have been in possession of, and copying from, text relevant to the subject matter of the exam. The matter proceeded as a plea of guilty based upon an Agreed Statement of Facts and a Joint Submission on Penalty. On the basis of the Agreed Statement of Facts, the Tribunal accepted the plea. The Panel considered an Agreed Statement of Facts pertaining to sanction. Aggravating factors included the Student’s two prior academic offences. Mitigating factors included the harassment the Student's family experienced in the weeks prior to the offence, and the fact that the Student immediately admitted to committing the offence and subsequently voluntarily withdrew from all her courses and sought counseling. The Panel considered the Student’s academic status relative to graduation and found that she was past the half way point to completion. In accepting the Joint Submission on Penalty, the Panel acknowledged that the Student admitted the offence and cooperated with the proceedings. The Panel stated that but for the University’s acquiescence, it would have imposed a suspension of three or more years. The Panel accepted the Joint Submission based on the fact that the Student voluntarily withdrew from her courses, and despite there being no evidence that the Student had learned from her pervious academic sanctions. The Panel imposed a two-year, eight-month suspension; a grade of zero in the course; a two-year, eight-month notation on the Student’s academic record and transcript; and that a report be issued to the Provost.