Encouraging Student Academic Integrity
While we would like to think that all of our students steer away from academic misconduct and know all of the university policies regarding this important issue, we occasionally encounter the students who don’t. By being pro-active and setting aside some time to discuss your expectations, students are more likely to be honest. Implementing some of the ideas below is a great start!
Foster a Productive Classroom Environment
- Clearly state course goals and expectations at the beginning of the semester and include them in your syllabus. For more ideas on syllabus development, see Tips for Creating a Syllabus.
- Define what academic misconduct means and include the definition in your syllabus. Explain what is meant by cheating, fabrication, interference, plagiarism, and violation of course rules. You can find definitions of these terms in the Code of Student Rights, Responsibilities, and Conduct.
- Reinforce reasons why original thought and doing one’s own work is valued in an academic setting.
- Inform students of the consequences of academic misconduct and procedures you will follow along with their rights if they are accused of academic misconduct.
Establish Ground Rules
- Inform students in writing of the testing and grading system for the course.
- Clearly state the level of collaboration that is allowed for each assignment.
- Let students assist you in establishing rules for the class.
Make Connections with Students to Lessen Likelihood of Academic Misconduct
- Decrease anonymity by learning students’ names, meeting with them individually, and using minute papers or journal entries to learn more about them.
- If students aren’t doing well in the course, talk to them and provide them with strategies to help them improve.
- Seek feedback from students. Find out how the class is going. Administer an informal course evaluation early in the semester or schedule a student focus group.
General Procedures for Responding to Student Academic Misconduct
- Consult the IUPUI Guidelines for Dealing Student Academic Misconduct for information on expectations, policies and procedures. Be sure to review the Academic Misconduct Process, the Faculty Disposition Form, and Sample Letter all available at this site.
- Arrange to meet the student. During the meeting, talk in a professional and courteous manner. Advise the student of the alleged act of misconduct and the information upon which the allegation is based. Ask the student for his or her comments regarding the allegation. Discuss the consequences to the student, and the process by which the student may appeal.
- Complete and sign the Faculty Disposition form.
- Give the student an opportunity to read the referral form and to sign it.
- Send the referral form, signed by all parties, to the appropriate dean of students.
Authored by Terri Tarr (February, 2001)
Carroll, J. (2002). A handbook for deterring plagiarism in higher education. Oxford Centre for Staff and Learning Development: Oxford, England.
Gallant, T.B. (2008). Academic integrity in the twenty-first century: A teaching and learning imperative (ASHE Higher Education Report vol 33, no. 5). San Francisco : Jossey-Bass.
Indiana University (n.d.). Code of student rights, responsibilities, and conduct. Retrieved from http://www.iupui.edu/code/
Office of Student Rights, Responsibilities and Conduct (2011). IUPUI guidelines for dealing with student academic misconduct. Retrieved from: http://life.iupui.edu/conduct/resources/staff.html#academic
Svinicki, M. & McKeachie, W. J. (2010). McKeachie's teaching tips : Strategies, research, and theory for college and university teachers. (13th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.