How to Act with Integrity

Skyler Brown ‘19, Staff Writer

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With hopes of starting the year strong, Honor Council created a list of tips to remind students the best ways in which one can act with integrity at Marymount. As a reminder, Honor Council is a board working to promote integrity and the honor commitment at Marymount. We are composed of eight elected student members as well as three faculty members led by the Dean of Students, Ms. Regan. On campus, we give presentations, make videos, and serve as a recommendation board in the case of any honor commitment violations. Honor Council is unique in the sense that it can provide the students’ perspective in the cases and discussions, making it clear that the opinions of student and faculty members are equally valued. We hope the following tips will help you gain a better understanding of how you can act with integrity!

Communicate with teachers to clarify collaboration guidelines. The amount or method of collaboration varies based on the class and teacher, and often even changes with different assignments. Just because you were able to work directly with your peer on the last assignment, does not mean it is accepted on a later assignment. For example, on one history in-class assignment you may be encouraged to work in a small group, but on a similar homework assignment, your teacher might want students to work individually. By clarifying with teachers you can easily avoid accidentally breaking the Honor Commitment. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and confirm with your teachers on whether or not collaboration is advised.

Courtesy of Skyler Brown ‘19

It is always better to explain topics, rather than blatantly show them, to peers. If your friend is struggling with the math homework, offer to sit down and explain a concept rather than just give her your homework. Not only does this align with the Honor Commitment, but it will benefit your friend along with yourself in the long run. Studies show that by explaining a concept, you can better comprehend it. And rather than copying work, your friend can have the opportunity to understand it. Take pride in your work. Be sure to stand up for yourself and your work. Don’t be afraid to say no if a friend asks to see your copy off your assignment. Just because you refuse, does not mean you cannot help her.

Don’t be afraid to approach teachers about extensions. Unfortunately, obstacles will arise, possibly making it impossible to hand in quality work on time. Instead of breaking the Honor Code to complete an assignment, ask your teacher for an extension. Teachers appreciate honesty and make an effort to work with students. While students may be trepidatious about asking teachers for extensions, by doing this rather than breaking the Honor Commitment, you are able to maintain the trusting relationship between your teacher and yourself. After all, the worst that can happen is that they say no.

 

Courtesy of Skyler Brown ‘19

 

Take a moment to recognize the impact of an assignment before considering to break the Honor Commitment. While not turning in a homework assignment can seem like the end of the world, chances are it is merely one or two points. It most likely has little to no impact on your grade. Rather than resorting to breaking the Honor Code, ask yourself if the consequences are worth the little reward. Chances are, by breaking the Honor Code and coming before Honor Council you will receive a point deduction and additional work.

All of these tips will help you better communicate with your teachers and peers. Keep in mind that teachers want to see you succeed, but cannot read your mind. If you have questions, comments, or conflicts, reach out to them. Likewise, your peers do not wish to put you or themselves in a potentially poor situation. By considering this advice you and your peers can better understand, recognize, and avoid risky situations. Honor Council understands that the intricacies of the Honor Code can be confusing, never be afraid to reach out with questions!

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How to Act with Integrity