Academic Hearing Panel

Whenever a student feels he or she has been unfairly sanctioned by either a faculty member or dean, the only recourse for the student is to file an appeal with the Office of Student Conduct. All appeals conforming to section F of policy 3-01.8 (Administrative Policy  Regarding Student Cheating and Plagiarism) will be adjudicated by the Academic Hearing Panel (AHP). Student must file an appeal within fifteen working days of the receipt of the Cheating/Plagiarism Sanction Form.

Following the filing of the appeal a hearing with the panel will be set where:

  • The burden of establishing that cheating or plagiarism occurred is on the person who claims the act took place.
  • The instructor shall provide documents, if any, in support of the decision and shall make a statement, orally, in writing, or both, of the facts and the basis for the decision.
  • The student may make a statement in writing, orally, or both.
  • Both the instructor and student may ask questions of the other at an appropriate time during the hearing.
  • Both may present witnesses.
  • Both have the right to hear all testimony and examine all evidence.
  • At the hearing, the student may be accompanied by one other person of his or her choice. That person may act as an advisor to the student, but may not participate in the hearing procedure in any manner whatsoever. No party may be represented by legal counsel.
  • All matters pertaining to the conduct of the appeal hearing shall be under the sole authority of the Academic Hearing Panel.

Also, if a student was previously sanctioned and did not, through an appeal, successfully remove that sanction, the Office of Student Conduct will initiate a hearing with the AHP. In other words, all cases of plagiarism involving potential repeat offenders go directly to the AHP. 

In addition to serving as the appeals body for students who feel unjustly sanctioned, the AHP serves to determine and administer more severe disciplinary sanctions, such as suspension and dismissal from the university--sanctions beyond those that can be administered for academic purposes by faculty and deans.

A description of the Academic Hearing Panel (or AHP) is as follows:

  • Composition – appointed by the Provost: a minimum of ten KSU Faculty, five having Graduate Faculty Status (staggered, serving terms of two years), a minimum of five current KSU Graduate Students (serving a one-year term), and a minimum of five current KSU Undergraduate Students (serving a one-year term). The Provost will appoint one faculty member as chair at the beginning of each fiscal year.
  • Charge – For the purpose of holding a hearing, the chair will select a hearing committee of three AHP members (two faculty and one student).  The committee selections should be based on graduate/undergraduate status (graduate faculty and student for cases involving an accused graduate student, undergraduate faculty and student for cases involving an accused undergraduate student) and be consistent with eligibility standards set in (H)(4) of this code.  The AHP will conduct hearings based on allegations of academic misconduct and determine if the accused student is in violation of this policy. Once the AHP has determined that a violation has been committed, the student will be assessed an academic sanction (as defined in (D)(1)) or a disciplinary sanction as defined in this policy (D)(2) or a combination of both.  The severity of the offense and the student’s overall behavior regarding academic honesty will determine the sanction(s) assessed against the student.
  • Training – Annual training will be offered in a joint effort by persons appointed by the provost and the vice president for enrollment management and student affairs, and convened by Judicial Affairs.
  • Eligibility – Faculty who are current instructors of the accused student, faculty of the instructor’s department, and any student appointed to the AHP who shares a class, residence, or known affiliation with the accused student are not eligible to sit on the AHP hearing committee for that respective accused student. 
  • Records – All AHP hearings are closed to the public and are recorded, minimally audio, using current technological equipment available (i.e. DVD).  All technological recordings shall be destroyed in accordance with University recordkeeping protocol.