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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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Academic Dishonesty and/or Disruptive Student Behavior

Allegations of academic dishonesty, e.g. cheating and plagiarism, are first addressed by the instructor. Academic sanctions, such as a failing grade or dismissal from the program, will be determined by the instructor and academic program. Academic sanctions may be appealed in accordance with the University's Grade Appeal process. 

After attempting to talk with the student and consulting with the department chair, the instructor may choose to refer the matter to the Office of Student Conduct for consideration of disciplinary action above and beyond the academic sanctions imposed. The Office of Student Conduct may elect to defer a decision on disciplinary consequences until grade appeal issues are resolved, if a case is being contested. 

Complete, accurate documentation is essential. You may be asked to appear as a witness in a University Conduct Board hearing. Students who are suspended or expelled at public universities in Minnesota have the right to request a Chapter 14 contested case hearing before an administrative law judge, in addition to an appeal to the college president.

Before assigning an academic sanction or referring a student to the Office of Student Conduct, instructors must make a good faith effort to give the student an opportunity to question the evidence and tell his/her side of the story before imposing consequences. As a guiding principle, think about how you would want to be treated if you were the subject of an allegation.

Students should be afforded the following due process considerations:

  1. Oral or written notice of the allegations.
  2. An explanation of the evidence supporting the complaint.
  3. An opportunity to present their side of the story.
  4. A written notice of the decision and any applicable sanctions.
  5. An opportunity to appeal the decision and sanction(s).


  • A copy of your course syllabus if it outlines behavioral expectations and/or academic integrity expectations and possible consequences, e.g. failing grade for the course.
  • Copies of suspected plagiarism along with plagiarized sources. Also include prior writing samples if the suspicious assignment is markedly different from the students typical writing style.
  • E-mails or other communication you have received from the student related to the allegations.
  • Brief description of any lectures to the class about expected classroom behavior or definitions of cheating.

For consultation or other assistance, contact Mary Dowd, Office of Student Conduct, 389-2121,

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