Consequences of Malpractice:

Although it is hoped that, with communication of shared expectations, vigilance on the part of students and teachers, and support throughout the program in pursuing ethical behavior in all areas, we can prevent malpractice, realistically we must also provide for those occasions where it does occur with clear consequences and/or penalties.

IBO has a “zero tolerance” for malpractice. “Plagiarism must be viewed as going well beyond the mere breaking of rules and into an area of far greater seriousness. Plagiarism must not be seen as simply an item in a long list of school rules in a handbook.  It must be viewed as a serious academic offence with a community attitude that shows no tolerance and imposes severe penalties when it is discovered.” (Article 4.7)

Consequences will vary according to the nature of the assignment and the frequency of infraction. A test, project, or paper will necessitate a stronger consequence than a homework paper.  A second offense will be treated more severely than a first one.

Consequences for documentable malpractice on a teacher-generated assignment or test:

  • Student conference with teacher
  • Zero on the test or assignment with no allowable make up for their HCPS grade
  • Parent contact from teacher
  • Notification of the coordinator.
  • Conference with parents, teacher, and student may be held.
  • Referral to the administration who may then decide on additional consequences, depending on the severity of the malpractice and whether it is a repeat offense, such as
    • Parent conference with administrators
    • Recommendation for removal from Honor Societies
    • In-school suspension
    • Suspension
    • Referral to law enforcement in cases of theft of tests, hacking or forgery.

In the case of suspected but unprovable malpractice– student reported cheating, for example – or in the case of academic infringement, the following will happen:

  • Student conference with teacher
  • Parents will be notified by the teacher.
  • Coordinator will be notified. A conference with parents, teacher and student may be held.
  • Subsequent incidents of suspected malpractice will necessitate a conference with administrators to determine an action plan to ensure the student knows what appropriate behavior is.
  • The teacher may require the student to do the assignment or take the test again, with a failing grade entered in the grade book until completion of the second attempt.

If malpractice is suspected after an assessment has been submitted as final or has been sent for examination or moderation, then the coordinator must inform IB Cardiff who will then initiate an investigation, notifying the parties and gathering evidence. For all cases of malpractice, the following must be submitted to IB Cardiff:

  • A statement from the teacher of the subject concerned or the supervisor of the Personal Project or Extended Essay
  • A statement from the coordinator
  • A statement from the student that directly addresses the allegation that his/her work is not authentic. The student should make this statement after conferring with counsel, parents or guardian.
  • A summary of the interview with the student by the coordinator about the allegation of plagiarism.  The interview should be held in the presence of the student’s parents or guardian or other designated representative.

If an incident occurs in the context of the school year, school consequences as listed above may apply.

Depending on the disposition of the Final Award Committee, the student may suffer any of the following penalties:

  • In the case of academic infringement, marks will be withheld for that part or component. The student may still be eligible for a grade in the subject and a certificate or diploma
  • In the case of academic malpractice, no grade will be awarded for the subject. No MYP Certificate or IB Diploma will be awarded.  The student is still eligible to receive scores, and in the case of the diploma program, a certificate for each subject completed. The student may schedule retake exams one year after the session in which the malpractice occurred.
  • “If the case of malpractice is very serious, either because of its nature or because the student has already been found guilty of malpractice in a previous session, the committee may decide that the student will not be eligible to register for future exams.” (Article 12.7)

Students will be notified of the committee’s decision through the coordinator. Reconsideration is open only if the student establishes the existence of facts previously unknown to the committee. Appeals and arbitration are possible only on the grounds that procedure has not been followed.