Case #851 - Finding

Case 851 - Sanction

DATE: October 15, 2016
PARTIES: University of Toronto v. Y.Y. (“the Student”)

Hearing Date(s): July 8, 2016

Panel Members:
Ms. Johanna Braden, Barrister and Solicitor, Chair
Professor Michael Evans, Faculty Panel Member
Ms. Yusra Qazi, Student Panel Member

Appearances:
Ms. Lily Harmer, Assistant Discipline Counsel, Paliare Roland, Barristers
Mr. Peter Wuebbolt, Barrister and Solicitor, Counsel for the Student
Dr. Martha Harris, Academic Integrity Officer, Office of Student Academic Integrity, Faculty of Arts and Science
Dr. Kieran Furlong, Sessional Lecturer, Department of Economics, University of Toronto
Mr. Mathieu Gilbert-Gonthier, Invigilator of ECOI OOY Exam
Mr. Remi Daviet, Invigilator of ECOIOOY Exam
Ms. Tanya Battersby, Chief Presiding Officer of ECOIOOY Exam
YY., the Student

In Attendance:
Mr. Simon Raposo (Observer)
W.Z. (Mother of the Student)
Ms. Krista Osborne, Administrative Assistant, Office of Appeals, Discipline and Faculty Grievances

Trial Division - s. B.i.1(b) and s. B.i.3(b) of the Code - unauthorized aids - academic dishonesty - copying final examination responses - differences in eyewitness accounts did not undermine credibility of reliability of their evidence given totality of evidence

Student charged with one offence of unauthorized assistance under s. B.i.1(b) the Code. Student charged in the alternative under s. B.i.3(b). The Student was present and represented by counsel. The Student denied the charges.

The charges related to allegations that the Student copied answers to the multiple choice component of her final examination off of the person sitting next to her in the exam room, M.W. Part way through the exam, the exam invigilator noticed the Student looking M.W.’s answers and asked the Student to move across the room. After the exam, the Student’s answers were compared to M.W.’s, and their responses were overwhelmingly similar (they gave the same answer in 25/30 questions) until part way through the exam (when the Student was moved) at which point they were entirely different (only two of 20 responses were the same). There were also eyewitness accounts by the exam invigilators, which were imperfect, however the Tribunal found that, considering the evidence in its totality, the differences in their recollections of events are the normal by product of memories fading over time, and do not undermine the credibility of reliability of their evidence on the crucial issue of whether they saw the Student look at M.W.'s paper while writing her exam. The Panel found the evidence of similarity in the responses, coupled with the eyewitness accounts of the exam invigilators was sufficiently clear, cogent and convincing to discharge the burden of proof on the University. The Student was guilty of the first count of unauthorized assistance; it was expected that the University would withdraw the alternative charge of academic dishonesty under s. B.i.3(b). Penalty to be determined at a later hearing.