Case #819

DATE: June 8, 2016

PARTIES: University of Toronto v S.M.
Hearing Date(s): May 10, 2016
Panel Members:
Jeffrey S. Leon, Chair
Louis Florence, Faculty Member
Lu Zhao, Student Member
Lily Harmer, Assistant Discipline Counsel
Deepak Paradkar, Counsel for the Student
Naveen Batish, Counsel (Student-at-Law) for the Student
Martha Harris, Office of Student Academic Integrity, Faculty of Arts and Science
In Attendance:
Christopher Lang, Director, Appeals, Discipline and Faculty Grievances
Mr. S.M., the Student
Trial Division – s. B.i.1(d) and s. B.i.1(b) of the Code – plagiarism and unauthorized aid – Student submitted an assignment with verbatim excerpts from another student’s computer program – Agreed Statement of Facts – guilty plea – finding on Agreed Statement of Facts – finding on guilty plea – Joint Submission on Penalty – prior academic offences on similar plagiarism and unauthorized aid charges – Joint Submission on Penalty accepted – though the Student had completed his degree requirements, the University will respond to serious misconduct, regardless of when it occurs in the student’s academic career – grade assignment of zero in the Course; 3-year suspension; 4-year notation on the Student’s academic record and transcript; case reported to Provost for publication
Student charged under s. B.i.1(d), s. B.i.1(b) and, in the alternative, s. B.i.3(b) of the Code. The charges related to allegations that the Student copied and used verbatim excerpts from another student’s computer program in his assignment. The parties submitted an Agreed Statement of Facts and a Joint Submission on Penalty. The Student admitted that he located the other student’s programs on a publicly accessible software program hosting service without the student’s knowledge or permission. The Panel accepted the Student’s guilty plea and found the student guilty of an academic offence of plagiarism and unauthorized aid. The Panel took into account the Student’s prior charges of academic misconduct. The Panel emphasized that though the Student had already completed the course requirements for his degree at the time of the hearing, the University should still respond to serious misconduct. The effect of the proposed suspension would have a significant effect on the Student in that he would not receive his degree until after his suspension was over. While specific deterrence may be less of a factor in this case, the Panel expressed hope that as a graduate of the University the Student would henceforth conduct himself in an appropriate manner. The Panel accepted the Joint Submission on Penalty and imposed a grade assignment of zero in the Course; a 3-year suspension; a 4-year notation on the Student’s academic record and transcript; and that the case be reported to the Provost for publication.