Case #623

DATE: November 30, 2011
PARTIES: University of Toronto v. M.B.


Hearing Date(s): October 26, 2011

Panel Members:
Mr. Bernard Fishbein, Chair
Prof. Gabriele D’Eleuterio, Faculty Member
Mr. Omar Gamel, Student Member


Appearances:
Ms. Lily Harmer, Assistant Discipline Counsel for the University

In Attendance:
Prof. Eleanor Irwin, Dean's Designate
Mr. Christopher Lang, Director, Appeals, Discipline and Faculty Grievances
Mr. Jason Marin, Administrative Assistant, Appeals, Discipline and Faculty Grievances


Trial Division – s. B.i.1 (c) and s. B.i.1(a) of Code – impersonation and forged documents – Student had another student submit her final exam in his name – hearing not attended – Student recently updated his address – University's policy on updating address - reasonable notice provided – Student admitted to commission of offences at Dean's meeting – finding of guilt – not premeditated - could have been impossible to detect - grade assignment of zero for course; five-year suspension; seven-year notation on transcript; report to Provost

Student charged und er s. B.i.1 (c) and s. B.i. 1 (a) of the Code. The charges related to allegations that the Student had another student submit the exam she wrote in the Student's name while he submitted his exam with a made-up name and student number. The Student did not attend the hearing. The University had tried to contact the Student through email and by courier to the Student's address on ROSI, which the Student updated recently in order to register for a fall course. The Universi ty also pointed to its policy requiring students to provide a current and valid postal address as well as the address for a university-issued e-mail, and that failure to do so would not be considered "an acceptable rationale" for failing to receive official correspondence from the University. The Panel found tha t it wa s reasonable for the University to rely on its policy, stating that to find otherwise would impose extraordinary costs on the University while also aiding and abetting a student seeking to evade receiving notice. The Panel concluded that reasonable notice had been provided . The Dean's Designate testified that the Student admitted to committing the offences. The Student claimed that he acted on the suggestion of the other student communicated to him by a note in the exam room. In light of the uncontradicted evidence, the Panel found the Student guilty under s.B.i. 1 (c) and s. B.i. 1 (a). As for penalty, the University proposed a five-year suspension, stating that it regarded the offences as very serious and the only reason it was no t seeking a recommendation for expulsion was because the Student's conduct did not appear to be premeditated. Had the Student written down the correct student number of the other student involved, the offence would likely never have been detected. The Panel accepted the submi ssion by the University and imposed a grade assignment of zero in the course; a five-year suspension; a seven-year notation on the Student's transcript; and a report be issued to the Provost.