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Honor court to focus on increasing student education, building culture of integrity next year

A module educating students about integrity and the honor system might be mandatory for incoming students as early as the fall of 2013.

In its overhaul of UNC’s honor system, the honor system task force has pinpointed a lack of student knowledge as one of the main issues.

Zealan Hoover, student body vice president and a resident adviser, said he asked his residents what they thought the punishment would be for cheating on an exam.

“Very few people know that they could be suspended for cheating on a test,” he said. ‘That’s an entirely different issue.”

Amanda Claire Grayson, the incoming student attorney general, has been working on the module.

The program will likely include a slide of text followed by a slide with questions, and should take no longer than 10 minutes to complete, she said.

The module is in its early stages, but task force members said they are adamant in their push for student outreach.

Other ideas proposed include a mandatory one-hour class for incoming students and a promotional video to raise awareness.

Jan Boxill, chairwoman of the faculty and the committee, said she has created two subcommittees in order to focus the task force’s efforts.

One subcommittee is focused on addressing issues in the short term by reviewing honor system reports from 2002 and 2010 and making recommendations.

The other is dealing with the overall reshaping of the honor system in the long term.

“We want to look more globally at the system, promote a culture of honor and integrity and streamline the system to make it more effective,” Boxill said.

The subcommittee focusing on long-term goals is especially concerned with molding a culture of integrity at the University, said Kevin Guskiewicz, chairman of the Exercise and Sport Science Department.

“Is there a declining adherence to the honor system?” he said. “We’re looking at the language of the honor system in the past and looking at how we fit into it now.”

The short-term committee is working to find one to two faculty liaisons in each department on campus in order to cultivate more faculty support and involvement.

“The purpose of a faculty liaison is that someone will be available to ask questions and be an expert for that department,” Boxill said.

These changes come amid criticism from Student Attorney General Jon McCay that the task force is moving slowly.

“We’re moving slowly for a reason,” said Boxill. “There’s so much and there are so many stakeholders and so many people interested in this.”

But the committee is working to produce tangible results as soon as possible, she said.

“We want to make something happen, as opposed to just writing reports.”

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