Matters of Conduct and Academic Integrity

Code of General Conduct

All students of Biomedical Graduate Studies (BGS) must conduct themselves at all times in a mature and responsible manner. The rights and property of all persons are to be respected regardless of time or place. For dual degree students (MD-PhD, VMD-PhD), or graduate students who conduct research in a clinical venue, this also includes compliance with rules, procedures and accepted practices in the clinical setting. In addition, BGS students must comply with the University's code of general conduct and other University policies related to student conduct that appear in The Penn Book, Policies and Procedures Handbook of the University of Pennsylvania. These policies include, but are not limited to, policies on sexual harassment, acquaintance rape and sexual violence, open expression, drug and alcohol usage, and the drug-free workplace. The judicial charter contained within that document is not applicable to BGS students. The Charter of Biomedical Graduate Studies Student Judicial System which is applicable to graduate and dual degree students within BGS can be found on the BGS website.

Code of Academic Integrity

The most fundamental value of any academic community is intellectual honesty; accordingly, all academic communities rely upon the integrity of each and every member. Students are responsible not only for adhering to the highest standards of truth and honesty but also for upholding the principles and spirit of the following Code. Violations of this Code include but are not limited to the following acts:

  1. Cheating: using or attempting to use unauthorized assistance, material or study aids in examinations or any other academic work, or preventing, or attempting to prevent another from using authorized assistance, material, or study aids.
  2. Plagiarism: using the ideas, data or language of another without specific and proper acknowledgment.
  3. Fabrication: submitting contrived or altered information in any academic exercise.
  4. Multiple Submission: submitting, without prior permission, any work submitted to fulfill another academic requirement.
  5. Misrepresentation of Academic Records: misrepresenting or tampering with, or attempting to tamper with, any portion of one's own or any other person's transcripts or academic record, either before or after coming to the University of Pennsylvania.
  6. Facilitating Academic Dishonesty: knowingly helping or attempting to help another violate provisions of this Code.
  7. Unfair Advantage: attempting to gain unauthorized advantage over fellow students in an academic exercise.
Code of Clinical Conduct

The relationship of modern biomedical research to the clinical setting may place BGS students in direct contact with patients, patient medical records, or health care workers. BGS students must behave with paramount concern for patients' welfare and with respect for the rights of patients. The expectations of BGS students' conduct in the clinical setting include the following:

  1. Adherence to appropriate standards of behavior in the presence of patients.
  2. Adherence to appropriate standards of confidentiality with respect to information about patients.
  3. Honesty in interactions with clinical colleagues and in recordkeeping.
  4. Respect for the limits of responsibility and activity set forth by supervisors.
  5. Appropriate interactions with colleagues and co-workers.