Widgets Magazine

Judicial Affairs cases up this year

Judicial Affairs saw an increase in total cases last year, registering 167 cases in the 2009-2010 academic year compared to 123 cases in the 2008-2009 academic year, according to recently released statistics.

The Office of Judicial Affairs introduced an “early resolution option” (ERO) last academic year that gives students charged with Honor Code violations the chance to admit responsibility and accept a sanction without having to go to a hearing, as long as the faculty complainant also agrees to the option.

“The ERO has been welcomed by students and faculty, and our data from our assessments have been positive,” said Judicial Affairs assistant dean Rick Yuen in an e-mail to The Daily. Of the 102 Honor Code cases that went to hearing in 2009-2010, 43 were resolved through the early option.

The reporting parties for most Judicial Affairs cases are academic departments, and most departments report fewer than five cases a year. In 2009-2010, a notable exception was computer science, with 29 cases. Parking and Transportation Services (P&TS) also reported 32 cases.

P&TS, a new category in this year’s report, encompasses complaints of forging residential parking permits and stealing or altering parking permits from others, Yuen said. The complaints in this category may have been included in other categories in previous years, such as the “University staff” category.

Of this year’s 102 Honor Code cases, which mostly include plagiarism, unpermitted aid and insufficient citation, students were found responsible in 68 cases and not responsible in five cases; 23 cases did not result in a hearing. Of the 63 Fundamental Standard cases, which include driving under the influence and computer misuse, students were found responsible in 18 cases and not responsible in one case; 44 cases did not result in a hearing.

Yuen said that changes in numbers between years may not always be indicative of a trend.

“In a particular year, we may experience a spike or higher number of cases in one department, and this may be due to the type of case, possibly involving larger numbers of students in a class or more students over several classes that year in the department,” he said.

Yuen added that the computer science chair and faculty have been putting forth efforts to promote the Honor Code in their classes, which traditionally see high rates of violations.

About Ellen Huet

Ellen Huet is currently a senior staff writer at The Daily; she joined the staff in fall 2008 and served one volume as managing news editor in fall and early winter of 2010-2011. Reach her at ehuet at stanford dot edu. Fan mail and sternly worded complaints are equally welcome.