Case #807

DATE: April 7, 2016

PARTIES: University of Toronto v C.D.
Hearing Date(s): February 29, 2016
Panel Members:
Roslyn M. Tsao, Chair
Richard B. Day, Faculty Member
Jeffery Couse, Student Member
Appearances:
Tina Lie, Assistant Discipline Counsel
Kristi Gourlay, Manager, Office of Student Academic Integrity
Ralph Tassone, Instructor of the Course
Lesley Mak, Associate Director, Academic Program Services at Rotman Commerce
In Attendance:
Krista Osbourne, Administrative Assistant, Appeals, Discipline and Faculty Grievances
Trial Division – s. B.i.1(a) and s. B.i.3(b) of the Code – forged documents and academic dishonesty – Student forged three Verification of Student Illness or Injury Forms – Student deliberately misled the Course Instructor with respect to two quizzes and an examination that he purported to have submitted but in fact had not – not necessary to know exactly what happened to the alleged quizzes and examination - hearing not attended – reasonable notice of hearing provided as per the Rules of Practice and Procedure – finding on evidence – finding on guilt – University submission on penalty accepted – grade assignment of zero in the four affected courses; 5-year suspension from the University, or a suspension until the Governing Council decision on expulsion, and a corresponding notation on the Student’s academic record and transcript; recommendation of expulsion; case reported to Provost for publication
Student charged with three offences under s. B.i.1(a) and two offences under s. B.i.3(b) of the Code. The charges related to allegations that the Student forged Verification of Student Illness or Injury Forms to obtain academic accommodation and that the Student engaged in academic dishonesty, fraud or misrepresentation to obtain academic advantage by representing that he had written and submitted two quizzes and two final examination answer booklets in a Course when in fact he had not. The Student was not present at the hearing. The Panel concluded that reasonable notice of the hearing was provided pursuant to Paragraph 9(c) of the Rules of Practice and Procedure.
Student was found guilty with respect to the forged document charges. The Student admitted to forging three Medical Notes at a meeting with the Dean’s Designate, and the Panel accepted evidence from the purported examining physician to support a finding of guilt on these charges. The Panel took into account the fact that the Student was fully aware that he was engaging in dishonest/fraudulent conduct at the time of committing the forgeries on the three separate occasions.
Student was found guilty with respect to the academic dishonesty charges. The Student maintained that he had written two quizzes and that he had submitted two booklets for the final examination of the Course, but no quizzes had been submitted, and only one examination booklet had been submitted. The Panel noted that it is not necessary to know exactly what happened to the alleged quizzes and examination answer booklet; the Panel needs only to find that offences occurred on a balance of probabilities. The Panel took into account the clear and convincing evidence of the Course Instructor with respect to his marking protocols and examination invigilation and concluded that it was more likely than not that the Student attempted to mislead the Course Instructor about two fictitious quiz results and a missing examination booklet that was purportedly submitted. The Panel noted that the circumstances relating to the offences about the missing quizzes and the final examination in the Course were symptomatic of calculated behaviour and misconduct.
The Panel noted that the Student had not participated in the hearing process and showed no indication of remorse, emphasizing its concern about the likelihood of repetition and the detriment to the University occasioned by the offences. The Panel also noted that the offences spanned multiple occasions and over a year in time, and that the third-year Student was well aware of the elements of academic dishonesty. The Panel imposed a grade assignment of zero in the four affected courses; a 5-year suspension from the University, or a suspension until the Governing Council decision on expulsion, and a corresponding notation on the Student’s academic record and transcript; a recommendation of expulsion; and that the case be reported to the Provost for publication.