Policy on Academic Integrity

Plagiarism and cheating are condemned at all institutions of higher learning.  These acts detract from the student’s intellectual and personal growth by undermining the processes of studying, reading, note-taking and struggling with one’s  own expression of ideas and information.  Moreover, cheating inevitably involves secrecy and exploitation of others.   Plagiarizing means “presenting somebody else’s words or ideas without acknowledging where those words and ideas come from” (Ann Raimes, Keys for Writers, 5th ed., p.127).  

Examples include: 

  • copying material from the Internet or other sources and presenting it as your own 
  • using any author’s words without quotation marks; using any quotation without credit 
  • changing any author’s words slightly and presenting them as your own 
  • using ideas from any published sources (even in your own words) without exact credit.  Note: This includes all material from the Internet or electronic databases. 
  • using long passages in a paper that have been written or rewritten by a friend or tutor 
  • turning in any assignment written by someone else 

However, using quotations or borrowed ideas while giving exact credit is good academic procedure. 

Other types of academic dishonesty include unauthorized collaboration or copying of students’ work (cheating); falsifying grades or evaluations; and others.  They are treated as equivalent to plagiarism. 

When detected and verified, plagiarism and other academic dishonesty will be punished severely.  Normally, the first offense will result in a failure on the specific assignment; a second offense or a particularly flagrant first offense will result in failing the course.  A second verified instance of plagiarism, after report of a first verified instance, will normally result in failing the course in which the second instance occurs.  In cases of multiple reports, where the faculty member, Chair, and Dean recommend suspension or dismissal from the College, the final decision will be determined by an Academic Grievance Committee (AGC) drawn from the Faculty Rights and Responsibilities Committee.  The AGC decision is final.  Know what plagiarism is and  how to avoid it; for guidance see Raimes or any other college writing handbook.  

Please note: in this matter, ignorance is never an acceptable excuse.