Assistant Principal Andrey Aristov ’80 Addresses Students on Violations of Academic Integrity

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This year, Mr. Aristov will continue to provide examples of infractions of Loyola’s Academic Integrity policy for each edition of the Loyalist.  These examples are not intended to embarrass or pillory students who’ve broken the school’s code, but rather to educate the entire student body on what is and is not acceptable, the consequences of breaking school policies, and alternatives to consider when they might be faced with similar situations.  Every case will remain anonymous.

 

In August, a senior taking his SAT exam at Loyola placed his calculator on his desk during a section of the test that strictly forbade access to calculators.  Despite the student’s insistence that this was an accidental oversight, the proctor reported the incident to both the College Board and Loyola’s administration.  As a result of this infraction, the student’s SAT scores were cancelled by the College Board.  Additionally, the student received a first strike on his record that included two days of JUG, copying the Academic Integrity policy, and presenting a letter to his parents.  Since he is a senior, he will not be allowed to graduate with magna or summa cum laude.

 

In June, a sophomore submitted an outline and major research paper that were subsequently tagged as plagiarized by his English teacher. The student challenged these findings and would not accept the conclusions. The student’s defense was that since the teacher did not identify the earlier drafts as plagiarized, the final product could not be tagged as such.  This argument was rejected however since it was only the final copy that was reviewed by Turnitin.com.  It’s unreasonable to expect a teacher to always be able to tell whether something has been copied by simply reading it.  Because the student persisted in his claim that his work was original, another English teacher was asked to step in as an independent reviewer.  This teacher read the outline, paper, and the evaluation provided by Turnitin.com and concluded that both works were indeed heavily plagiarized.  Because this was the student’s second strike, he received a zero on both assignments, suspended for one day, served five days of JUG, and placed on Disciplinary Probation for the semester.  He will also not be allowed to graduate with any academic recognition.

 

In June, a junior in a music class downloaded a sample of sheet music from a website and submitted portions of it as his own work.  This was the culminating project for the year and was therefore a major assignment that had a huge impact on the final course grade.  The teacher immediately identified the work as plagiarized since it was well beyond the skill set the student had demonstrated in earlier assignments.  It was also rather easy for the teacher to find the original music on-line.  In addition to all the consequences for a first strike mentioned above, this student received a D in the class, a non-college-recommending grade, and will also be barred from graduating with either magna or summa cum laude.

 

Mr. Andrey Aristov

Assistant Principal

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