Honor System

Since 1944, the students of The University of Mary Washington have lived under the Honor System.  Although its constitution has been revised periodically, the Honor Code has remained basically the same throughout the years.  The Honor Council retains sole control of its operation and is responsible to the student body, which derived its authority to establish an Honor System from the Board of Visitors.  Due to the unique nature of the Honor System, final responsibility lies with the Board of Visitors, but all enforcement is in the hands of students.  The Honor System provides that a student shall act honorably in all relationships of campus life.  Lying, cheating, stealing, or breaking one’s word of honor are considered infringements of the system, and the penalty for a violation, as determined by the Honor Council, may be dismissal from the University.

The pledge required on quizzes, examinations, and other classwork means that the work a student submits to a professor is his or her own and has been completed in accordance with the requirements for the course, as laid out by the professor.  All students must understand that, by accepting admission to Mary Washington, they make a commitment to the provisions of the Honor Code.  Upon entering the University for the first time, every student is given a copy of the complete Honor Code and is expected to become familiar with its provisions (see the University of Mary Washington Student Handbook for a copy of the Honor Constitution).  Orientation counselors interpret the Honor System for all new students before they are asked to sign a pledge card stating that they understand what is expected and realize that a plea of ignorance will not be accepted by the Honor Council.  Registration as a student at the University is not considered complete until the Honor Pledge has been signed.

Honor Pledge.

“I hereby declare, upon my word of honor, that I have neither given nor received unauthorized help on this work.”


Signature of Student