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Academic Statute 2011

Category Statutes
Type Statute
Approved by Approved by Council – 11 October 2011
Date Statute Took Effect 1 January 2012
Last Approved Revision
Sponsor Registrar and Secretary to the Council
Responsible Officer
Review Date

Policy Content

 1. Title

1.1. This is the Academic Statute 2011.

2. Commencement

2.1. This Statute shall come into effect on 1 January 2012.

3. Academic Programmes

3.1. The rules governing the courses of study and training of the University of Otago for which degrees, diplomas and certificates of the University may be awarded shall be the Programme Regulations approved and published by the Senate of the University from time to time.

3.2. The Senate may establish and amend the Programme Regulations as it thinks fit, provided that any regulation or change to existing regulations which involves:

(a) a proposal which is required to be submitted for approval to, or which is required to be reported to, the Committee on University Academic Programmes of Universities New Zealand; or

(b) the disestablishing of any degree, diploma or other award of the University; or

(c) the disestablishing of an academic programme of the University; or

(d) the establishment or alteration of any provision relating to the limitation of the number of student places available,

shall be effective only upon confirmation by the Council.

4. Examination and Assessment Regulations

4.1. The rules governing examinations and other assessments of academic performance at the University of Otago shall be the Examination and Assessment Regulations as approved by the Senate of the University from time to time.

5. Academic Misconduct

5.1. For the purpose of this Statute:

(a) Academic Misconduct means a breach of Academic Integrity that is, actions which intentionally or unintentionally are contrary to the values and practices associated with Academic Integrity.

(b) Academic Integrity means the basis for ethical decision-making and behaviour in an academic context as reflected in norms of acceptable academic practice and as informed by the values of honesty, trust, responsibility, fairness, respect and courage.

(c) Without limitation, Academic Misconduct:

(i) includes any instance of a student seeking to gain for themselves or any other person an academic advantage by deception or other unfair means; and

(ii) may arise in connection with the preparation or submission of any written, oral or any other work, including work in electronic form and whether in the course of an examination or not, which counts towards the attainment of a pass in any subject, or of any dissertation, thesis, or other research exercise.

5.2. Subject to the provisions of this Statute, instances of Academic Misconduct or suspected Academic Misconduct will be investigated and responded to under the Student Academic Misconduct Procedures established by the Senate.

5.3. Any work submitted to the University may be subjected to such processes (including electronic processes) of checking for plagiarism as the University may consider appropriate. Students submitting work acknowledge that the University may retain copies of that work in electronic form or otherwise and for such period as the University sees fit for the purpose of checking for plagiarism in any other work which may be submitted to it.

5.4. Complaints relating to Academic Misconduct shall be addressed as follows:

(a) Complaints in relation to doctoral degrees shall be dealt with by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise) who shall in every case act in consultation with the relevant Pro-Vice-Chancellor;

(b) All other complaints shall be dealt with by the Pro-Vice-Chancellor of the Division within which the work was submitted, provided that complaints considered to come within the definition of Level One Academic Misconduct as defined in the University’s Student Academic Misconduct Procedures may be handled by the relevant Head of Department.

5.5. A Pro-Vice-Chancellor or Head of Department may delegate their powers and responsibilities under this Statute and the Student Academic Misconduct Procedures.

5.6. Before any finding is made against a student and a penalty imposed under this Statute, the student concerned must be:

(a) advised in writing of the subject matter of the complaint; and

(b) afforded an opportunity of being heard when the complaint is being determined; and

(c) must be advised of possible penalties if a breach is established.

5.7. The Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise) may deal with a complaint of Academic Misconduct in one or more of the following ways:

(a) dismiss the complaint;

(b) require the student to undertake actions directed to improving the student's understanding of Academic Integrity;

(c) advise or reprimand the student;

(d) require the resubmission of work affected by the complaint either fully, or in part;

(e) disqualify the student from continuing with the degree to which the complaint related;

(f) recommend to the Vice-Chancellor that the student be excluded from the University permanently or for such period as the Vice-Chancellor may determine.

5.8. The Pro-Vice-Chancellors may deal with a complaint of Academic Misconduct in one or more of the following ways:

(a) dismiss the complaint;

(b) require the student to undertake actions directed to improving the student's knowledge and understanding of Academic Integrity;

(c) advise or reprimand the student;

(d) require the submission of alternative work or the resubmission of the piece of work concerned;

(e) direct the award of a lesser mark than otherwise appropriate or the award of no mark for the piece of work concerned or the subject concerned (which direction may include directing the deducting of marks from final examinations);

(f) withhold or withdraw the granting of terms in the subject concerned;

(g) disqualify the student from an entire paper;

(h) direct the cancellation of any pass or passes (including those in special examinations) for any other part of the student’s course undertaken in the same semester, or at the same Summer School, as the paper in relation to which a complaint of Academic Misconduct has been upheld, provided that the cancellation of a pass in a different Division shall be directed only with the agreement of the Pro-Vice-Chancellor of that Division;

(i) recommend to the Vice-Chancellor that the student be excluded from the University permanently or for such period as the Vice-Chancellor may determine.

5.9. A Head of Department may deal with a complaint by exercising any of the powers under clause 5.8 (a) to (e), or may at any point refer the complaint to the relevant Pro-Vice-Chancellor to be dealt with.

5.10. The Vice-Chancellor may exercise any of the disciplinary powers under clause 5.7 (a) to (e) and 5.8 (a) to (h), and in addition may direct that the student
be excluded from the University permanently or for such period as the Vice-Chancellor may determine.

5.11. A student may appeal the imposition of a penalty under this Statute:

(a) by a Head of Department, to the relevant Pro-Vice-Chancellor, whose decision on the matter shall be final;

(b) by the Vice-Chancellor, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise) or a Pro-Vice-Chancellor, to the Appeals Board of the University Council, in accordance with the provisions of the Appeals Statute.

5.12. Any decision imposing a penalty shall draw the attention of the student to their right of appeal under clause 5.11.

6. Repeal

6.1. The Degree Courses Regulations Statute 1991 and the Examinations Regulations Statute 1991 are hereby repealed with effect from the commencement of this Statute. Notwithstanding that repeal, all regulations made under those Statutes shall remain in full effect until amended or repealed in accordance with clause 3.1 of this Statute.