Administrative Sanctioning Guidelines

Effective September 25th, 2017

The intent of the Administrative Sanctioning Guidelines (“Guidelines”) is to create a structured and consistent approach driven by an educational agenda. The point system emphasizes desired behaviors while also creating a system in which decision-making is transparent. This provides students and faculty an indication of likely sanctions to occur, while still allowing for professional judgment by our professional administrators. Our hope is that this clarity might guide process and policy discussions with students and help faculty understand expected outcomes of the process.

The Guidelines separate out Academic Integrity (AI) Training as educational opportunities rather than as disciplinary actions. All students who violate academic integrity standards will be required to complete AI Training. Disciplinary actions (i.e., warning, probation, suspensions and dismissal) will imposed based on point value and professional judgement of professional staff. The point value system stems from objective criteria, rather than subjective considerations like intent. These objective criteria can then become the basis for extending preventative education to students, using the guidelines as a framework.

The purpose of this focus is not only to provide an objective baseline for determining disciplinary actions, but also to provide a basis for counseling students on the importance of academic integrity and the increasing seriousness of violating integrity as they progress in their academic and professional careers.

(NOTE: in response to an academic integrity violation, an Academic Sanction can also be imposed by the faculty. These guidelines do not apply to Academic Sanctions)


Credit: These guidelines were adapted from the Plagiarism Reference Tarriff by

First: Calculate the point value of an Academic Integrity Violation based on five criteria

The criteria become a transparent, consistent starting point for the sanctioning process. The intent of the scoring process is NOT to replace the judgment of the University’s professional administrators, but to provide guidance to ensure consistent and fair sanctioning across the general campus.

Criteria #1: Violation History

The guidelines support the principle that students with a history of academic integrity violations warrant a more serious disciplinary response. A Violation is determined to have occurred when a student previously accepted responsibility or was held responsible for an academic integrity violation.

1st Violation

25 points

2nd Violation

75 points

3rd/+ Violation

150 points


Criteria #2: Type of Violations

The guidelines support the principle that more serious violations warrant more serious disciplinary actions.

Basic Violations, include, but are not limited to: limited unauthorized collaboration; submitting a portion of the same material more than once without prior authorization; giving your own academic work to others when doing so wasn't explicitly prohibited; having ubiquitous smart technology (e.g., cell phone, apple watch) accessible during an exam; attendance/participation points misrepresentation

15 points

Assignment Misconduct includes, but is not limited to: looking online for a solution to assignment and copying that solution/answer; copying a portion of another student's assignment or working extensively with another student on an individual assignment; making your work available to another student (directly or indirectly) when it was specifically prohibited to do so

25 points

Limited Plagiarism, includes but is not limited to: paraphrasing from sources without attribution; verbatim copying from sources without attribution when what was copied wasn't a critical aspect (key, central ideas) of the assignment and wasn't more than 50% of the assignment

25 points

Extensive Plagiarism, includes but is not limited to: plagiarism when the aspects copied are critical aspects of the assignment and/or constitute more than 50% of the assignment; allowing another (e.g., friend/relative/roommate/classmate/tutor) to edit/write/translate one's writing without acknowledging that help; extensively copying from another student’s assignment; limited or extensive plagiarism that includes false citations

75 points

Exam Cheating includes, but is not limited to: copying from another or allowing another to copy; having an aid directly related to the exam (e.g., "cheat sheets"; course related notes; text book; whether electronically or hard copy); copying or plagiarizing on take-home exam

100 points

Falsification/Fabrication includes, but is not limited to: altering a graded assessment and submitted for re-grade; fabricating data for a lab or research assignment; submitting data you didn't yourself collect; lying/giving a false excuse to miss or receive unfair accommodation on an assessment

125 points

Fraud includes some of the most egregious violations - e.g., stealing or fraudulently obtaining answers to an assessment prompt/exam before submitting the assessment for grading; changing/helping to change any recorded assignment or course grade on an instructor's or university record; illicitly obtaining an assessment completed by another (without their knowledge) and submitting it (in part or whole) as one's own; submitting fake or false documents (e.g., medical notes)

225 points

Contract Cheating is any behavior by which a student arranges to have another person (“the provider”) complete (in part or total) an assessment (e.g., exam, test, quiz, assignment, paper, project, problems) for the student. If the provider is also a student, both students are in violation

225 points


Criteria #3: Student Time at UC San Diego

The guidelines support the principle that students further along in their academic study should be more knowledgeable about academic integrity. Thus, the seriousness of disciplinary actions increases concurrently with the amount of experience a student has at UC San Diego1.

Freshman Admit (Quarter 1)

25 points

Freshman Admit (Quarter 2-3) or Transfer Admit (Quarter 1)

30 points

Freshman Admit (Quarter 4-6) or Transfer Admit (Quarter 2-3)

35 points

Freshman Admit (Quarter 7+) or Transfer Admit (Quarter 4+) or Masters Level (Quarter 1-2)

40 points

Masters Level (Quarter 3-6)

45 points

Masters Level (Quarter 7+)

50 points

Ph.D. Level (Quarter 1-2)

100 points

Ph.D. Level (Quarter 3+)

125 points


1. All Extension & Summer Session Students will receive points according to the freshman schedule.

Criteria #4: Value of Assessment

The guidelines support the principle that violations are more serious when they occur in more highly valued work. Thus, the seriousness of disciplinary actions increases concurrently with the value of the assessment. The chosen 20% point approximates the value of a midterm exam or more.

The worth of the assessment in question is  < 20% of total course points possible

25 points

The worth of the assessment in question is  > or equal to 20% of total course points possible

50 points

The assessment in question is culminating academic work (e.g., undergraduate or master’s thesis; dissertation, ISP, cumulative exam)

75 points


Criteria #5: Additional Considerations

The additional considerations address common, but atypical situations, such as students who may have had very specific training in class on academic integrity or students who have taken action to hide their violation.

Evidence that actions were taken to hide the violation from detection

25 points

Evidence that the program/class/instructor offered enhanced academic integrity education to the students

25 points

Evidence that the student had previously completed AI Training through the AI Office

50 points

Evidence that the student failed to follow-through on AI Training assigned as a result of a previous violation

75 points

Evidence that someone was contracted to complete an entire assessment (e.g., exam, paper, assignment) for the student

100 points

Second: Determine Administrative Sanctions based on point value

The sanctions assessed by University administration in response to an academic integrity violation are threefold:

i) all students (except those being dismissed) are assessed a $50 AI Administrative fee (posted to their student account).

ii) all students (except those being dismissed) are assigned mandatory Academic Integrity (AI) Training.

iii) the following disciplinary action(s) are imposed based on accumulated points:




Disciplinary Actions





●      A Written reprimand that a violation has occurred




Probation Until Graduation

●      Repeat violations lead to automatic suspension.




Quarter Suspension

●      Plus Probation Until Graduation if not already imposed for previous violation

●      Suspension for Academic Dishonesty is listed on transcript during the length of the suspension

●      Student may not attend UCSD classes through UCSD or UCSD Extension




Year Suspension

●      Plus Probation Until Graduation if not already imposed for previous violation

●      Suspension for Academic dishonesty is listed on transcript during the length of the suspension

●      Student may not attend UCSD classes through UCSD or UCSD Extension 






●      Termination of student status for an indefinite period. Readmission to the University shall require the specific approval of the Chancellor of the campus to which a dismissed student has applied. Readmission after dismissal may be granted only under exceptional circumstances.


Per the University of California Policy on Student Conduct and Discipline, other or more serious consequences may be assessed at the discretion of the Appropriate Administrative Authority. In particular, students with a history of violations will usually be given a higher level sanction than previously received, regardless of the total point value accumulated for the violation under consideration.