Academic integrity is of the utmost importance at Deerfield Academy and must be one of the guiding principles in the life of every student. At the core of academic integrity is a bond of trust between teacher and student. By affixing their name to a piece of work, students pledge that, unless properly cited, the work is entirely their own. Students occasionally benefit from cooperative and collaborative learning; however, when work is submitted by teams or individuals, each student must be able to independently explain and defend the claims and ideas presented and must acknowledge the collaboration. Furthermore, students should be thoughtfully cautious in providing aid to their peers—donors of unauthorized aid may be in violation of the school’s Academic Integrity guidelines.
Academic dishonesty in all its various forms can be broad and complex, and no policy on academic integrity can list and describe every possible transgression. The Academy expects that each student will work to understand this complexity and will adhere to the highest standards of honesty. If there is doubt about the guidelines for academic integrity, students should discuss questions with a teacher.
Plagiarism is the use of another person’s ideas or work without proper acknowledgment. The source of the plagiarized material may, for instance, be another student’s paper, a conversation with a peer, an exchange with a tutor or parent, an encyclopedia, a scholarly text, or an Internet site; the source does not change the degree or seriousness of the plagiarism. Plagiarism usually occurs in two forms: 1) copying and 2) receiving outside writing help.
The first form of plagiarism (copying) may consist of the following:
The second form of plagiarism occurs when students receive unacknowledged help in preparing an assignment. Such outside help includes proofreading, editing, and assistance from, but not limited to, parents/guardians, proctors, tutors, or classmates. While students are encouraged to discuss assignments with faculty and other students, all writing should be their own. Again, when in doubt, students should acknowledge any help they receive.
A student will receive a failing grade for any assignment in which plagiarism occurs. In order to ensure adherence to this policy and to resolve questions of authorship, the Academy reserves the right to electronically screen papers and other submitted work for authenticity.
If ever in doubt, students should speak with their teachers and document their sources.
When a student submits work to a teacher in a course, the teacher expects that the work has been completed and submitted only in that course. Using the same assignment for credit twice is a shortcut that provides an unfair advantage. Students are credited for completing a course only when they have met in good faith all the requirements of/for that course specifically.
In cases where overlap between assignments in two different courses might lead the students to perform fruitful, interdisciplinary work, they may submit the same assignment for credit with approval from both teachers—who may attach additional expectations.
During any quiz, test, or examination, or graded work, students may not access any electronic or smart device unless explicitly allowed by their teacher or by a documented academic or medical accommodation. Prohibited devices include—but are not limited to—phones, tablets, computers, smart speakers, smart wearables (watches, glasses, headphones).
Before they enter Deerfield, all new students are required to take a math placement test to determine an appropriate class. Students who have already taken a language they wish to continue studying at Deerfield will take a placement test to determine what level class they should take. If the placement in either department is deemed inappropriate after the student arrives, then the section teacher may suggest a change of level. Students may also request such a change and should consult with their teacher and their academic advisor before contacting the Dean of Studies, Lydia Hemphill.
Study abroad is available to all students from their sophomore to senior years, although typically students who choose to go abroad will do so during their junior year.
In order to garner Honors distinction a student must have a cumulative term average above 90.0%. High Honors requires an average of 93.0% or above. Exemplary students with a grade point average of 92.0 or higher may qualify for admission to the Cum Laude Society, a national honor society.
Because of its commitment to rigorous academics, Deerfield offers a wide range of accelerated and Advanced Placement courses. All of Deerfield’s classes are appropriately challenging, but AP and accelerated courses provide an extra challenge for ambitious students.
All students are assigned a faculty advisor at the beginning of their time at Deerfield. After their first year students may choose a new advisor, or continue with their original one, depending on the relationships they have developed with Deerfield’s faculty. Advisors are responsible for submitting course requests and writing an advisor report every term. They are available for any questions a student may have and are involved in every major academic or athletic decision a student makes while at Deerfield. In addition, faculty eat lunch with their advisees every Thursday and may schedule outside events for their advisees. Advisors are a key component of the Deerfield experience, as they provide guidance and friendship to students throughout their time at Deerfield.
The Pursuit of Excellence Policy states that students may miss up to five class days a year if an unusual and extraordinary opportunity arises, including opportunities in a variety of academic, athletic, and artistic fields. The Academic Affairs Office determines the legitimacy of pursuit of excellence requests on a case-by-case basis.