You’ve heard it espoused by Australian universities across the board, but what exactly is academic integrity and how do you ensure your assessment adheres to it? 

Put simply, academic integrity is the moral code of conduct that governs academia. It is the standard by which your university will measure right and wrong. 

The International Centre for Academic Integrity, defines it as “a commitment to five fundamental values: honesty, trust, fairness, respect, and responsibility”, and the courage to uphold them “even in the face of adversity” (ICAI, 2014). Thus emphasis on the avoidance of cheating or plagiarism. 

Plagiarism is presenting the language, thoughts, expressions or ideas of another author as your own. Save tears by using online tools like Grammarly to detect plagiarism in your text.

Cheating meanwhile involves deceptive or dishonest action in relation to academic work, and is specifically used in reference to exams.

But while plagiarism and cheating are relatively easily defined, every university will have their own value system and definition of what constitutes misconduct and the corresponding consequences. Therefore, we highly recommended you familiarise yourself with those that govern your own university.

Academic integrity can mean a lot of things which is why we recommend reading your universities guidelines. Key points typically include;

  • Not writing or dictating any assessment for your students.
  • Not sharing your past assessments with students. 
  • Coaching students to find the answer and not just telling them.

Below is a synopsis and shortcut to the resources offered by Vygo universities on academic integrity.

Griffith University, Queensland

Griffith University defines misconduct as the misrepresentation of academic achievement; the undermining, and the breach of the ICAI’s core values. If you are a Griffith student you can enrol on this online tutorial to help you better understand the university’s policies on academic integrity and find out more on the Griffith website.

Queensland University of Technology (QUT), Queensland

QUT expects their students to undertake assessment in a manner that is “fair, honest and accountable”, in accordance with the academic integrity policy and Student Code of Conductavailable on their website. You can read about what they consider academic (5.3.6) and student (2.1.4) misconduct to be through the links above as well as their process of identifying academic misconduct (5.3.7) and consequences of non-compliance with the Student Code of Conduct (2.1.5). 

The University of Queensland (UQ), Queensland

UQ values “honesty, responsibility, transparency, respect and trust.” It believes academic integrity to be central to intellectual and personal development as it teaches a student to “uphold values, develop proper skills in research, thinking and writing” as well as how to conduct themselves in an ethical manner. If you are a UQ student you can enrol in the UQ Academic Integrity Tutorial using your Edge account. 

Monash University, Victoria

Monash values honesty, integrity and responsibility. It lists what they expect from their students under the “student responsibilities” section of their webpage about academic integrity and makes a unique reference to “collusion” as well as plagiarism. Monash defines collision as the “unauthorised collaboration on assessable work (written, oral or practical) with other people.” This includes presenting “group work as your own or as the work of another person.” Read more about on their website.

For more information about your university academic integrity policy, contact your local student support services. 

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