Honor Code has evolved with BYU



    The Honor Code has changed since it was first initiated in 1948 by students in BYU’s chapter of the Blue Key National Honorary Fraternity and the White Key organization.

    It once dealt solely with academic honesty, with provisions made for a committee to deal with violators.

    The Honor Code changed, however, when President Earnest L. Wilkinson’s administration began to play a role in its promotion.

    President Wilkinson noticed how well the students were governing themselves on the issue of academic honesty. Because of the student’s enthusiasm, other issues were added to the Honor Code.

    Revisions began to be made by the Honor Code Committee, and by 1968 it became a list of seven to 15 rules enforced by the administration. This list included requirements to respect national, state and other authorities, register student organizations, and not to use “psychedelic drugs.”

    In 14 years, a list of 12 rules and a dress code were approved by the Board of Trustees. This revised Honor Code was used for almost 20 years with very few changes.

    In the early part of this decade, the Honor Code was revised again to the code that is still in use today. The Honor Code Council was formed in 1991, and the Honor Code Advisory Council, consisting of students, faculty and staff, was formed.

    The Honor Code Council changed its name last year to the Student Honor Association, as its focus shifted from counseling offenders to promoting honor.

    “Students with the Honor Code Council thought the Honor Code Council would be more effective if they changed the focus from enforcement of the Honor Code to promoting the commitment to honor that the students have made,” said Jeanie Papic, Student Honor Association coordinator.

    So, why has the Honor Code been successful in lasting 50 years?

    “This Honor Code reflects what is in our hearts, and the students here have good hearts,” said Clayton Smiley, a BYU graduate.

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