Caltech Accreditation

Honor Code Work Plan

Phase I: October 2006-March 2007

  • Reconvene Honor Code group with newly appointed student members and additional faculty members
  • Meet with the Student Faculty Conference groups to coordinate efforts
  • Review survey results from survey conducted by the Board of Control last spring.
  • Set up three student focus groups in during second term to further explore further the results of the survey and to get a better understanding of
    • How the honor code influences student academic and social interactions
    • What core values the students have around the Honor Code
    • Whether effective structures are in place to support and implement the honor code
    • These will help with preparation for the SFC
  • Set up two faculty focus groups in February to discuss their views of the Honor Codes effectiveness at Caltech.
  • Set up one student affairs/resident associate focus group in February to discuss their views regarding how the honor code is working in the non academic realm.
  • Contact deans of students and student judicial board chairs at comparable institutions to learn about the wording, applications and functioning of other honor codes and compare them with ours.
    • Develop standard set of questions
    • Identify contacts
    • See how Faculty at these schools utilizes anti-plagiarism software.
    • Focus on how well honor codes apply to non academic matters.
  • Prepare for Student Faculty Conference by participation on SFC Honor Code Committee

Phase II: April -December 2007 Campus Discussions

  • WASC Honor Code Committee will coordinate with SFC Honor Code Committee to develop tentative recommendations that will be presented at the conference.
  • Follow up discussions will take place throughout campus in an attempt to answer the following questions: How effective is the honor code in guiding behavior in academic matters; how does the honor code influence student behavior in the non academic realm; what are the obligations of all members of the Caltech community under the honor system; and how can we improve communication and trust in the honor system by all those who study and work at Caltech. We will have focus groups and open meeting as well as utilize the tech and the Caltech WASC website for this purpose.

Phase III January - June 2008 Findings and Recommendations

We hope to have finding and recommendations that improve campus wide understanding of the application of the honor code to the way we treat each other. We also hope to come up with effective ways to communicate about the honor code to all segments of campus; and finally we hope to improve adherence to the honor code in general. The work plan will depend on what these recommendations are.