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Academic Integrity

This guides provides resources related to academic integrity and avoiding plagiarism and cheating.

Plagiarism: Definition and Avoiding

What is plagiarism?

According to Merriam Webster’s Online Dictionary, to “plagiarize” means:

  • To steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one’s own;
  • To use (another’s production) without crediting the source;
  • To commit literary theft;
  • To present as new and original an idea or product derived from an existing source.

How to avoid plagiarizing

  • Take good notes
    • Keep track of all the sources you use. You can do this manually or using a citation management toll like Refworks or Zotero
    • When you take notes, be clear about what you are paraphrasing and what you are copying word-for-word.
  • Cite your sources correctly
    • Refer to your sources using in-text citations and a bibliography in the citation style your professor requires. Visit our Citing Sources guide for more information. 
  • Use quotation marks appropriately
    • Any time you copy a source word-for-word, use quotation marks and cite the source. 
  • Paraphrase correctly
    • Changing one or two words in a sentence from another source is not enough to make it a paraphrase. Restate the concept using your own words. Even when paraphrasing, you still need to cite the original source. 

Consequences

  • The consequences of plagiarizing are serious. Depending on the severity of the violation, a student may fail a class, be suspended, be expelled, or be stripped of their degree. For more information on the reporting procedure and disciplinary sanctions, visit UAA's Academic Integrity page for UAA students, or the APU Student Handbook for APU students.

Cheating: Definition and Avoiding

What is cheating?

According to UAA's Student Code of Conduct, cheating includes:

  • Providing assistance without the faculty member's permission to another student, or receiving assistance not authorized by the faculty member from anyone (with or without their knowledge);
  • Submitting work done for academic credit in previous classes, without the knowledge and advance permission of the current faculty member;
  • Deceiving faculty members or other representatives of the university to affect a grade or to gain admission to a program or course;
  • Fabricating or misrepresenting data;
  • Possessing, buying, selling, obtaining, or using a copy of any material intended to be used as an instrument of assessment in advance of its administration;
  • Altering grade records of their own or another student's work;
  • Offering a monetary payment or other remuneration in exchange for a grade

How to avoid cheating

  • Understand expectations
    • Understand UAA & APU's expectations of students by reading through the Student Code of Conduct. 
    • Read through the syllabus carefully and ask your professor about expectations around assignments and exams. Know whether your professor allows group work and what kind of study materials are appropriate.
  • Resist pressure to share assignments with classmates. 

Consequences

  • The consequences of cheating are serious. Depending on the severity of the violation, a student may fail a class, be suspended, be expelled, or be stripped of their degree. For more information on the reporting procedure and disciplinary sanctions, visit UAA's Academic Integrity page for UAA students, or the APU Student Handbook for APU students.