I am doing my final year of undergraduate. Mostly I am working on my Honours project but I have a few units from earlier years that I am still doing as I did some out of order.
Another student, call him John, sent me a message on Facebook (via the message people who are not your friends feature.), saying basically:
"Can you send me the solutions to the Assignment from unit X, that you took last year. In exchange, I will tell you what the future minitest questions are for unit Y that we are both doing this year."
Attempted Collusion is not explicitly mentioned in the Universities Academic misconduct guide.
Unit Y has weekly minitests, that are worth in total something like 15% of our final grade. The minitests happen during tutorials. There are 3 tutorials each week, on different days, with roughly a third of the class in each. Each minitest is the same, across all streams. They are mostly a way to check up and see that you understand the content.
They have at the top of each page:
IT IS NOT PERMITTED TO TAKE THIS PAPER AWAY FROM THE TUTORIAL SESSION OR TO DIVULGE ITS CONTENT
John is in the first tutorial of the week. So he would find out the questions first, then could tell me them so I could study for them, for when my tutorial is.
What he apparently doesn't realize is that I too am in the first tutorial group (with him).
I guess Unit X is using the same assignment as last year. Or a similar one. Or that John thinks it is.
A complicating factor is that I really dislike John. He doesn't seem to have realised this. I find him personally annoying, and consider him a poor student. I don't understand how he has managed to pass enough units to have not been suspended for poor performance. It may be he is very good at exams, or it may be that he has been cheating all along.
I have a number of options, and could do one or more of them:
- Ignore it, and block him on Facebook.
- Tell him no, and refer him to the universities plagiarism/cheating policy
- Speak to the Professor of Unit Y about it (that we are both studying).
- Speak to the Professor of Unit X about it.
- Speak to the Head of School (sub-department), who is above both units
- Speak to the University Dean. Who is in charge of enforcing the Academic Misconduct policy. (Will probably mean going though channels)
In my case, by coincidence, Unit X is being taught by the Head of School (who I have never studied under). But in the General Case both options exist, and I can approach him, either as the Head of School or as the Professor of the unit, I guess.
I think that ignoring is probably a bad option, if someone sees that I have been asked about this, and left it without response, they might think this is normal behaviour for me.
If I go to faculty, he may be suspended. I worry that I am a bit too willing for that possibility as I don't like him. On the other hand it isn't my job to decide the consequences of his actions.
Update: I have spoken to the coordinator of Unit Y. Who said if I wanted he would take it to the Dean but that it would involve me having to do stuff. He also said to contact the coordinator of Unit X (who happens to he head of school). He is out of the country for a week so I sent him an email (CCed to the coordinator of Unit Y). I also responded to John, saying No, and referring him to the Academic Misconduct policy.
Update2: I got a response from the Coordinator of Unit X, saying he would look into it. Unit X coordinator is on long-service leave (Not sure how that is going with him still coordinating the unit. He may be doing only light administrative tasks. Or it may be he forwarded it to the new coordinator).