School of Law Honor Code
Article I: Prohibited Conduct
The following forms of conduct, or attempts at such conduct, violate the School of Law Honor Code. Specific examples of each form of conduct are provided for purposes of illustration. Each example should be read to include the state of mind set forth in the general description of prohibited conduct of which it is an example.
A. Cheating. Cheating is any conduct in connection with any examination, paper, competition, or other work that may affect academic credit, a grade, or the award of academic or professional honors at the School of Law, done for the purpose of unfairly disadvantaging another student or gaining an unfair advantage, or under circumstances such that a reasonable law student would know that the conduct was likely to unfairly disadvantage another student or result in an unfair advantage.
Examples of cheating include, but are not limited to:
- Giving, receiving, or soliciting prohibited assistance;
- Using or providing sources or materials not expressly authorized, or in a manner prohibited, by the instructor;
- Violating any rule or instruction imposed by the instructor for a course or by an administrator of an exam, except that violating a rule or instruction regarding the allotted time for an examination will be addressed by subtraction of points per Faculty Rule (E)(5) (see /students/pages.aspx?id=1001), unless the student either: (a) uses more than the amount of time that triggers the maximum subtraction of points allowed by Faculty Rule (E)(5), or (b) has engaged in such conduct before;
- Submitting in a given course, except with permission of the instructor or other person in authority after full disclosure, any work prepared in whole or in part for another course or an employer;
- Engaging in conduct intended to compromise anonymous grading;
- Communicating with any unauthorized person during an examination or the preparation of work for which credit may be awarded;
- Acquiring, using, or providing, without permission, examinations, tests, role materials relating to simulations that are used in a course, or other academic material.
B. Dishonesty. Dishonesty is any conduct in connection with any law school document, record, class, academic matter, activity, program, or event that is intended, or that a reasonable law student would know is likely, to misinform, mislead, or otherwise deceive, engaged in for the purpose of gaining a benefit for or avoiding a detriment to oneself and/or another student.
Examples of dishonesty include, but are not limited to:
- Furnishing false, incomplete, or otherwise inaccurate information in connection with an application for admission to, or financial assistance for attending, the School of Law;
- Furnishing false, incomplete, or otherwise inaccurate information to or through the Career Services Office or to a potential employer;
- Failing to promptly update information furnished as described in Examples 1 and 2 above as circumstances change, without waiting to be asked, so that all information furnished continues to be true, complete, and otherwise accurate.
- Altering or submitting altered Washington University or School of Law documents or records;
- Furnishing false, incomplete, or otherwise inaccurate information about one’s own or another student’s attendance in a class or other law school-related meeting or session;
- Furnishing false, incomplete, or otherwise inaccurate information alleging misconduct, including a possible violation of this Code, by another student;
- Furnishing false, incomplete, or otherwise inaccurate information in connection with any investigation, hearing, or other proceeding held pursuant to this Code;
C. Obstructing the Work of Another. Obstructing the work of another is any conduct engaged in for the purpose of impeding the work of another student in connection with any examination, paper, competition, or other work that may affect academic credit, a grade, or the award of academic or professional honors at the School of Law, or engaged in under circumstances such that a reasonable law student would know that the conduct was likely to impede unduly the work of another student.
Examples of obstructing the work of another include, but are not limited to:
- Taking, damaging, or otherwise interfering with another student’s books, class notes, outlines, study materials, or computer;
- Damaging, secreting, removing without permission, or failing to return by the time and in the manner required, any law school property, including library material.
D. Impeding the Administration of the Honor Code.
Impeding the administration of the Honor Code is any conduct engaged in for the purpose of, or under circumstances such that a reasonable law student would know the conduct was likely to result in, preventing the School of Law Honor Code system from operating as intended.
Examples of impeding the administration of the Honor Code include, but are not limited to:
- For any student other than one suspected of possible misconduct, refusing without good cause to provide relevant information or materials when requested to do so by an individual or entity acting in an official capacity under the Honor Code;
- Providing false or misleading information or materials to an individual or entity acting in an official capacity under the Honor Code;
- Disclosing to others confidential information acquired by virtue of participation in an official capacity in the administration of the Honor Code;
- Failing to report, within a reasonable time, conduct that clearly violates the Honor Code.
E. Actionable Plagiarism. Actionable plagiarism is submitting work that uses, without proper acknowledgment, another person’s words, ideas, results, methods, opinions, or concepts, when such use is done: (1) intentionally or (2) without taking reasonable care to comply with the rules of proper attribution after having received formal written notice, issued in accordance with procedures set forth in the Faculty Plagiarism Guidelines
(see /students/pages.aspx?id=1000), that use in the manner undertaken violates the rules of proper attribution. It does not matter whether the appropriated information is published or unpublished; academic or nonacademic in content; or in the public or private domain.
Examples of actionable plagiarism include, but are not limited to:
- Submitting work that uses, without citation, material that is copied verbatim from, or is a paraphrase of, a published source, an electronic source, or another student’s work, with the intention to pass the appropriated material off as one’s own;
- Submitting work that uses improperly attributed material without the intent to pass it off as one’s own, but without taking reasonable care to comply with the rules of proper attribution, after having received formal notice concerning a substantially similar usage under the Faculty Plagiarism Guidelines.
Specific examples of using, without proper acknowledgment, another person’s words, ideas, results, methods, opinions, or concepts, may be found in the Faculty Plagiarism Guidelines at /students/pages.aspx?id=1000.
F. Professional Misconduct. Professional misconduct is any conduct in the context of a clinical course, supervised practicum, Public Service Project activity, or other setting in which legal ethics rules would apply if the student were a member of the Bar, that would violate such rules. A law student who acts in accordance with a supervisory lawyer's reasonable resolution of an arguable question of professional duty is not engaging in conduct that would violate legal ethics rules, and hence has not engaged in professional misconduct.
Examples of professional misconduct include, but are not limited to:
- Breaching client confidentiality;
- Failing to identify or avoid a conflict of interest;
- Breaching the duty of competence owed to clients including, but not limited to, thoroughness and preparation reasonably necessary for the representation;
- Exceeding the authority granted by a client, the supervising faculty or lawyer, applicable ethics rules, or the student practice rule;
- Failing to act with reasonable diligence and promptness in representing a client;
- Knowingly making a false statement of fact or law to a tribunal, failing to correct a false statement of material fact or law previously made to a tribunal, falsifying evidence, or counseling or assisting a witness to testify falsely;
- Impermissibly obstructing another party's access to evidence or altering, destroying or concealing a document or other materials with potential evidentiary value;
- In representing or assisting in the representation of a client, communicating about the subject of the representation with a person the student knows to be represented by another lawyer in the matter, unless the student has the consent of the other lawyer or is authorized to do so by law or a court order;
- In representing or assisting in the representation of a client, stating or implying that the student is disinterested when dealing with a person who is not represented by a lawyer;
- Knowingly assisting or inducing another to violate any legal ethics rule.