Syllabus Statements: Academic Integrity
Syllabus statements are an important way for faculty to accomplish a number of useful goals at the outset of each course: Reduce the number of predictable questions from students, help establish students' expectations about the course at the outset, reduce students’ uncertainty (and increase their comfort level) about you and the course, generate more positive perceptions about who you are and how you will conduct the class, and convey your commitment to supporting them as individuals. These pages offer information about several categories of recommended syllabus statements, each offering examples and downloads of language that can be copied or revised for individual faculty use in course syllabi.
Accumulated research (Lang, 2013) supports the importance of instructors conveying early, firmly and often to students how important maintaining academic integrity is for students, for the instructor, and for the university – otherwise they may assume “Everyone does it, so if I cheat it's just to keep it fair.” We recommend using the term “Academic Integrity” and explaining what it is and why it’s important as opposed to a syllabus statement labeled “Cheating” followed by language that centers on how horrible it is and they will be caught and punished.
Reference: Lang, J. (2013). Cheating Lessons: Learning From Academic Dishonesty. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Syllabus Statements Language Models
Cal Poly will not tolerate academic cheating or plagiarism in any form. Academic dishonesty is addressed both as an academic issue and as a disciplinary incident under the CSU Standards for Student Conduct. Cases of class cheating or plagiarism shall be handled by faculty members under established procedures that include written notice to the student of the incident and the consequent grade. (Cal Poly’s Academic Integrity Website)
Cal Poly is dedicated to nurturing an inclusive and academically excellent community, which can only flourish with honesty, trust, and mutual respect. At the core of academic excellence is the search for knowledge through the open and dynamic exchange of ideas. You and your student peers must have a strong commitment to personal and professional integrity that informs your behavior both before and after graduation, discouraging you from creating a false appearance of achievement by presenting the work of others as your own, or bending or breaking the rules of any situation. Either action can lead to serious consequences, academic and otherwise. Please thoroughly familiarize yourself with the Office of Students’ Rights and Responsibilities page on Academic Integrity, as well as the information found on Academic Programs and Planning website regarding cheating and plagiarism.
Academic integrity is the cornerstone of higher education. As such, all members of the university community share responsibility for maintaining and promoting the principles of integrity in all activities, including academic integrity and honest scholarship. Academic integrity will be strongly enforced in this course. Students who violate WSU’s Academic Integrity Policy (identified in Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 504-26-010(3)) will receive [insert academic sanction (e.g., fail the course, fail the assignment, etc.)], will not have the option to withdraw from the course pending an appeal, and will be reported to the Office of Student Conduct. Cheating includes, but is not limited to, plagiarism and unauthorized collaboration as defined in the Standards of Conduct for Students, WAC 504-26-010(3). You need to read and understand all of the definitions of cheating: (insert link to campus definitions). If you have any questions about what is and is not allowed in this course, you should ask course instructors before proceeding. (Washington State University)
The University Code of Academic Integrity is central to the ideals that under gird this course. Students are expected to be independently familiar with the Code and to recognize that their work in the course is to be their own original work that truthfully represents the time and effort applied. Violations of the Code are most serious and will be handled in a manner that fully represents the extent of the Code and that befits the seriousness of its violation.
Please note that an important element of academic integrity is fully and correctly attributing any materials taken from the work of others. Feel free to consult with me before completing assignments if you have concerns about the correct way to reference the work of others. More generally, please familiarize yourself with Penn’s Code of Academic Integrity, which applies to this course. Of course, I do not anticipate any problems with academic integrity. In the unlikely event that any concerns do arise on this score, I will forward all related materials to Penn’s Office of Student Conduct for an impartial adjudication. (University of Pennsylvania)