She said more people are interested in the honor system since it was connected to the NCAA football investigation this summer. In July, it was found that former defensive end Michael McAdoo had plagiarized a paper for a class, and the plagiarism was not detected by the professor or the Honor Court.
Boxill said she has been looking at honor systems at other universities in evaluating the current system. Student-run systems are mostly found at Southern universities, she said.
“The student-run honor system is a dying breed,” Boxill said.
Anne Whisnant, deputy secretary of the faculty, said faculty members at other universities typically preside over academic issues and students preside over issues of student misconduct, such as social and behavioral issues.
Jean DeSaix, a member of the committee, said she thinks the honor system needs to be reformed because anyone other than a faculty member would have a hard time bringing a proceeding to the Honor Court, despite the fact that it’s a student-run system.
“This seems very backward to me,” she said.
Another issue discussed at the meeting was adopting Turnitin, an online program which electronically recognizes plagiarism.
Whisnant said there are some reservations about adopting the program, such as whether it is appropriate for UNC and how effective it is.
DeSaix said the program could be helpful with lab reports because the system keeps track of all papers ever submitted, so it would keep students from copying papers that were used in previous semesters.
“Students will know that they can’t get away with that anymore,” she said.
Boxill stressed that changes need to be made to UNC’s system, which was created more than 50 years ago, but said reforms most likely will not represent a complete overhaul.
“The biggest thing is looking at what is different about education in the 21st century.”
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