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Council clarifies academic misconduct rules

The Division I Legislative Council reinforced Tuesday the membership’s belief that academic standards and policies governing misconduct are the responsibility of individual schools and their accreditation body at a meeting in Indianapolis.

The Council approved an interpretation that clarifies the membership’s position that it is a school’s responsibility to decide whether or not misconduct involving current or future student-athletes or school staff has occurred and, if it has, to make sure the case is handled according to policies applicable to all students.

“This clarification of the current rules is a first step toward a broader membership discussion of academic misconduct that will occur in the new governance structure,” said Kevin Lennon, vice president of academic and membership affairs.

The Legislative Council also confirmed that schools that determine academic misconduct has occurred must report it to the NCAA when:

  • a staff member is involved in arranging for false credit or transcripts for a student-athlete or future student-athlete;
  • a student-athlete or prospect is involved in arranging for false credit or transcripts; or
  • a student-athlete competes while ineligible as the result of academic misconduct.

Other academic offenses by student-athletes (cheating on a test, plagiarizing on a paper) do not need to be reported if the cheating doesn’t result in a student-athlete getting  a grade he or she didn’t earn that makes him or her fraudulently eligible to compete. However, all cases must follow the same academic policies the school has for all its students.