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Academic Integrity Tutorial: Explore Academic Integrity

Core Values of Academic Integrity

"We learned about honesty and integrity - that the truth matters... that you don't take shortcuts or play by your own set of rules... and success doesn't count unless you earn it fair and square".1     

Michelle Obama

Definition of integrity:

                 "The quality of being honest and having strong moral principles".2

Synonyms of integrity are: honestytruthfulnesscharacterdecencymorality

Antonyms of integrity are: deceitdishonestylyinguntruthfulness

The International Center for Academic Integrity defines academic integrity as a commitment, even in the face of adversity, to six fundamental values: honesty, trust, fairness, respect, responsibility, and courage.3 Use the following matching game to reveal the definitions of each value.

Source: Game content is from "The Second Edition of The Fundamental Values" by the International Center for Academic Integritylicensed under CC BY-NC-SA 4.0     

The USask Learning Charter

To optimize the learning experience of every student, "The USask Learning Charter" identifies a set of responsibilities that all members of the university community commit to. For students, "these commitments can be summarized as Engage Respectfully, Learn Actively, Think Broadly and Deeply, and Act Ethically and Appropriately".4 Student Commitment 4 deals specifically with academic integrity.

Source: University of Saskatchewan Learning Charter (2018, 7), Approved by the Teaching, Learning and Academic Resources Committee of Council (TLARC). October 2018.

Academic Integrity Defined

The following are guidelines for behaving with academic integrity:

  • Perform your own work unless specifically instructed otherwise. Check with your instructor about whether collaboration or assistance from others is permitted.
  • Use your own work to complete assignments and exams.
  • Cite the source when quoting or paraphrasing someone else’s work. Discuss with your professor if you have any questions about whether sources require citation.
  • Follow examination rules.
  • Discuss with your professor if you are using the same material for assignments in two different courses.
  • Be truthful on all university forms.
  • Use the same standard of honesty with fellow students, lab instructors, teaching assistants, sessional instructors and administrative staff as you do with faculty.

Academic Misconduct Defined

The antithesis of integrity is misconduct. According to the University's "Regulations On Student Academic Misconduct" (2022)5, academic misconduct can be summarized as follows (please refer to pages 5 - 7 of the Regulations for a complete list):

  • Submitting materials (assignments, essays) from another course for credit, unless approval is obtained from the instructor.
  • Falsifying or fabricating data; for example, making up lab results without doing the work is considered fabrication.
  • Taking someone else's work without their permission (lecture notes, research data, computer files, etc.).
  • Altering exam answers after the exam was given back.
  • Using cheat sheets or dictionaries during an examination when these were not explicitly stated as allowed materials.
  • Asking others for help on a take-home exam.
  • Collaborating on an assignment without instructor approval or submitting work as your own that was completed jointly.
  • Lying in order to change an assignment due date or delay an exam.
  • Posing as another person in an academic context, for example writing someone else's exam, signing someone in, etc.
  • Preventing other students' full access to university materials, e.g., ripping out a required reading from a journal at the library.
  • Helping anyone to do any of the above.
  • Plagiarism, which is defined as presenting the work or idea of another as your own.

Next Step

Please open pages 5-7 of the Regulations on Student Misconduct. You will need it to complete the following learning activities. You should also be familiar with each of these definitions to prepare for the end of module quiz.

1. Obama, Michelle. "How Hard You Work". Speech presented at the Democratic National Convention, Charlotte, NC, September 2012.
2. "Integrity". Oxford Dictionaries online. Accessed October 10, 2018.
3. "Fundamental Values | International Center For Academic Integrity". 2018. licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 4.0.
4. "University of Saskatchewan Learning Charter". 2018, p7. Last modified October 24, 2018.
5. "Regulations on Student Academic Misconduct". 2022, p5-7. The University of Saskatchewan Student Conduct and Appeals website.