Academic Integrity Policy

Students, faculty, and administrators share responsibility for the determination and preservation of standards of academic integrity. Not only must they adhere to their own personal codes of integrity but they must also be prepared to educate others about the importance of academic integrity, to take reasonable precaution to discourage violations of academic integrity, and to adjudicate violations.

For students, education about the importance of academic integrity begins during the admissions process. The centrality of integrity to the academic enterprise is reinforced during new student orientation when students engage in discussion about academic integrity. Specific mention of academic integrity and course-specific guidelines should be presented in all classes. Programs and instruction about academic integrity guidelines also should be offered throughout the students' undergraduate career.

Faculty and students are expected to uphold standards of academic integrity by taking reasonable precaution in the academic arena. Reasonable precaution involves implementing measures that reduce the opportunities for academic misconduct but do not inhibit inquiry, create disruption or distraction in the testing environment, or create an atmosphere of mistrust.

The vitality of academic integrity is dependent upon the willingness of community members to confront instances of suspected wrongdoing. The faculty have a specific responsibility to address suspected or reported violations as indicated below. All other members of the academic community are expected to report directly and confidentially their suspicion of violation to a faculty member or a dean or to approach suspected violators and to remind them of their obligation to uphold standards of academic integrity.

All forms of academic dishonesty including cheating, plagiarism, misrepresentation, and obstruction are violations of academic integrity standards and are defined below:

  • Cheating includes copying from another's work, falsifying problem solutions or laboratory reports, or using unauthorized sources, notes or computer programs.
  • Plagiarism includes the presentation, without proper attribution, of another's words or ideas from printed or electronic sources. It is also plagiarism to submit, without the instructor's consent, an assignment in one class previously submitted in another.
  • Misrepresentation includes forgery of official academic documents, the presentation of altered or falsified documents or testimony to a university office or official, taking an exam for another student, or lying about personal circumstances to postpone tests or assignments.
  • Obstruction occurs when a student engages in unreasonable conduct that interferes with another's ability to conduct scholarly activity. Destroying a student's computer file, stealing a student's notebook, and stealing a book on reserve in the library are examples of obstruction.

Last Updated: August 3, 2012