Family Member FAQ
The following is a list of questions that family members often ask when their student is accused of academic dishonesty. Family members encourage their student to refer to the University’s Academic Regulations and the Academic Integrity Policy; and seek assistance by contacting the Student Ombudsperson.
1. My student received an email or a letter from the Department Chair requesting an interview. What is the purpose of this meeting?
If the Department Chair has contacted your student; it is because the Instructor has expressed a concern regarding your student’s academic work. The email message or letter your student received should state a concern regarding an allegation of academic dishonesty regarding a specific assignment your student has submitted.
The purpose of the meeting is an attempt to discover the circumstances of the alleged academic dishonesty; as well as to outline the discipline process.
During the meeting, the specific concern regarding your student’s academic work will be explained. Your student will then be given an opportunity to verbally respond to the accusation of academic dishonesty as well as to present any information or documentation to support his/her response.
At the end of the meeting, the Department Chair shall inform your student of his/her discipline recommendation; and, where appropriate, refer the case to the Faculty Dean.
2. What happens if my student does not attend the interview?
Not attending the interview means that your student forefeits his/her right (to defend themself) to respond to the allegation(s). The discipline process will continue, with the student “in absentia” and an appropriate penalty will be determined. This means: decisions that may affect your student’s academic standing will be made without their input. Your student will be notified, in writing, of any discipline outcome or penalty.
Students are strongly encouraged to participate in any proceedings and decision-making that may have an impact on their academic standing; and, suggest that you encourage your student to contact the Students' Ombudsperson for assistance.
3. What happens when a case is forwarded to the Faculty Dean?
The Faculty Dean will request to meet with your student to discuss the specifics of the accusation of academic dishonesty. Your student will be given an opportunity to verbally respond to the accusation. If your student has any additional information or documentation not presented or discussed during the meeting with the Department Chair, it should be brought to the Dean’s attention at this time.
At the end of the meeting, the Faculty Dean shall inform your student of his/her discipline decision; and, inform your student of his/her right to appeal.
4. What if my student disagrees with the discipline?
Your student has the right to appeal the decision of the Faculty Dean. Appeals of this type are submitted to the Senate Students Appeals Board for review.
It should be noted that dissatisfaction with a penalty will not be considered sufficient grounds for an appeal.
5. Can I accompany my student to meetings or hearings?
Persons who are not members of the university community, such as parents, family members, friends, legal counsel or others are not permitted to participate in the university’s discipline process.
6. Does my student need a lawyer?
No, students do not need a lawyer. Meetings, hearings and other proceedings at Brock University do not follow the same procedures used in courtrooms. The University investigates charges of academic dishonesty and resolves issues in an atmosphere that is collegial, transparent of process, civil and guided by the principles of natural justice.
The University’s Academic Integrity Policy allows students to be accompanied to any interview, meeting or hearing by one member of the University community to act as an advisor; and encourages students to contact the Students’ Ombuds Office for assistance.
7. Will I be notified of any sanctions imposed on my son/daughter?
No, parents or guardians will not be notified of any accusation of academic dishonesty or sanction for academic misconduct. The University’s policies regarding the confidentiality and release of student information guides what, when, and to whom information may be made available.