The Honor Code


I have neither given or received, nor have I tolerated others' use of unauthorized aid.

This statement is written on all homework, quizzes, and exams at Valparaiso University. Every student must write out the Honor Code in full and sign it for all work submitted for academic credit. The Honor Code expresses the promise of the student not to cheat through either action or inaction. The use of these words allows unproctored examinations and expresses the faith of the faculty in the student body.

The student initiated Honor System, administered by the Honor Council and its constituent bodies, is recognized and approved by Valparaiso University as an integral part of the regulations under which students in the undergraduate colleges become members of the university community. Therefore, it is impossible for anyone to become a member of the university without both explicit and implicit adherence to the Honor System.

The basis upon which the Honor System at Valparaiso University is founded is in every way consistent with the highest principles of ethics and morality. It presumes that students are able and willing to accept the duties and responsibilities for maintaining principles of honorable conduct for the sake of the community and themselves. The provisions of the Honor Council Constitution are also designed to protect the rights of those accused of Honor Code violations so that the Honor System will function with justice and fairness to all.

Under the Honor System all written examinations are taken in an atmosphere free from the surveillance of a proctor, unless requested otherwise by the student in the class using a form available in the offices of the deans. Every student has the responsibility to keep academics free of dishonesty, that is, to neither give nor receive unauthorized aid. Non-toleration of the use of unauthorized aid is a further responsibility that is inherent in the Honor System. Each student is obligated to report to the Honor Council any violation of the Honor System of which the student becomes aware, free from the pressure of ensuing penalty.

Read the full Constitution here.


Convocation Readings | Integrity


Music - Loraine Brugh


From Søren Kierkgaard:

Truth always rests with the minority, and the minority is always stronger 
than the majority, because the minority is generally formed by those who 
really have an opinion, while the strength of a majority is illusory, formed 
by the gangs who have no opinion — and who, therefore, in the next instant 
(when it is evident that the minority is the stronger) assume its opinion… 
while truth again reverts to a new minority.1



From the 4th chapter of Proverbs:

 (Proverbs 4:10-13, 23-27)

Hear, my child, and accept my words,
 that the years of your life may be many. 
I have taught you the way of wisdom;
 I have led you in the paths of uprightness. 
When you walk, your step will not be hampered;
 and if you run, you will not stumble. 
Keep hold of instruction; do not let go;
 guard her, for she is your life. 
Keep your heart with all vigilance,
 for from it flow the springs of life. 
Put away from you crooked speech,
 and put devious talk far from you.
Let your eyes look directly forwards,
 and your gaze be straight before you. 
Keep straight the path of your feet,
 and all your ways will be sure. 
Do not swerve to the right or to the left;
 turn your foot away from evil.


From Plato:

(Crito 49a-b)

Do we say that there is no way that one must ever willingly commit injustice, 
or does it depend upon circumstance? Is it true…that there is no sense 
in which an act of injustice is good or honorable? Or have we jettisoned 
all our former convictions in these last few days?...Surely the truth is just 
what we have always said. Whatever the popular view is, and whether the 
consequence is pleasanter than this or even tougher, the fact remains that to 
commit injustice is in every case bad and dishonorable for the person who 
does it.



From Sophocles:

(Philoctetes, lines 96-97)

I would prefer even to fail with honor than to win by cheating


Music – Loraine Brugh & String Quartet



 From the Quran:

 (Surat al-Maida, 8)

You who believe! show integrity for the sake of Allah, bearing witness with 
justice. Do not let hatred for a people incite you into not being just. Be just. 
That is closer to taqwa. Fear [and respect] Allah. Allah is aware of what you 


From Friedrich Nietzsche:

(Beyond Good and Evil)

It is the business of the very few to be independent; it is a privilege of the 
strong. And whoever attempts it, even with the best right, but without being 
OBLIGED to do so, proves that he is probably not only strong, but also daring 
beyond measure. He enters into a labyrinth, he multiplies a thousandfold the 
dangers which life in itself already brings with it; not the least of which is 
that no one can see how and where he loses his way, becomes isolated, and is 
torn piecemeal by some minotaur of conscience. Supposing such a one comes 
to grief, it is so far from the comprehension of men that they neither feel it, 
nor sympathize with it. And he cannot any longer go back! He cannot even go 
back again to the sympathy of men!2


 From the Analects of Confucius

(Book 15, Chapter 8)

The Master said, “The determined scholar and the man of virtue will not seek 
to live at the expense of injuring their virtue. They will even sacrifice their 
lives to preserve their virtue complete.”3


From the 27th chapter of Job:

 (Job 27:1-6) 

Job again took up his discourse and said: 
‘As God lives, who has taken away my right,
 and the Almighty, who has made my soul bitter, 
as long as my breath is in me
 and the spirit of God is in my nostrils,
my lips will not speak falsehood,
 and my tongue will not utter deceit. 
Far be it from me to say that you are right;
 until I die I will not put away my integrity from me. 
I hold fast my righteousness, and will not let it go;
 my heart does not reproach me for any of my days.

Music – Loraine Brugh




Contact Information

Honor Council (General)
Meier Hall, Rm 146
Valparaiso University

Honor Council (Appeals)