The Honor System

The heart of all academic and social conduct at Hampden-Sydney is the Honor System, and the heart of the Honor System is individual responsibility. It presumes that every student is a gentleman who will conduct himself in a trustworthy and honest manner; it assumes further that every student is concerned with the strict observance of those principles for his own sake, for the sake of his fellow students, and for the sake of the College. Students, faculty members, and administrators place the highest value on integrity and honesty, and all support the Honor System.

The Honor System is administered by students elected to office by the student body. In the orientation of freshmen and transfer students, Student Court members explain the Honor Code. Before formally matriculating at the College, a student must sign a statement acknowledging that he understands the Honor System and that an infraction is punishable by dishonorable suspension or dismissal. The Honor System pledge, which students write on their tests and other college work, is "On my honor I have neither given nor received any aid on this work, nor am I aware of any breach of the Honor Code that I shall not immediately report."

Infractions of the Honor Code are cheating; plagiarism; lying; stealing; forgery; intentionally passing a bad check; knowingly furnishing false information to the College; failing to report Honor Code violations; altering or using College or other documents or instruments of identification with intent to defraud or deceive; taking a book or other library materials out of the library without checking it, or them, out at the desk; removing any section of library materials, such as tearing or cutting out a page, or parts of a page; and unauthorized access to or use of College computer files, including attempts to gain unauthorized access or use. Suspected violations are investigated by student officers; trials are conducted by the Student Court.

Students convicted of an infraction of the Honor Code that involves a course will receive the grade of F in that course.

The aim of the Honor System is to instill and emphasize the highest standards of character and conduct, and to maintain community trust. A student's obligation under the Honor System does not stop at the limits of the campus but applies in all places at all times.

Further details about the Honor System and the Code are published in The Key: Hampden-Sydney College Student Handbook.