Skip to main content

Academic Integrity Information and Resources for SAU Students: For NSS Students

A guide for faculty, staff, and students on how to promote practices leading to academic integrity campus wide.

Academic Integrity

Acting with academic integrity is consistent with the SAU mission  to enable “... students to develop intellectually, spiritually, ethically, socially, artistically and physically to enrich their own lives and the lives of others.”   The University seeks to “teach, learn, and work in a climate of mutual respect, honesty, and integrity where excellence and academic freedom is cherished."   It is our culture.  Academic integrity leads to personal integrity in all aspects of our lives.  We take academic integrity issues seriously and the goal of this discussion is to prevent academic dishonesty from happening.

Avoiding academic dishonesty of any kind includes:

  • Not cheating
  • Doing your own work
  • Appropriately citing sources
  • Giving credit for others’ contributions
  • Accurately reporting information
  • Holding others accountable for upholding academic integrity

Where are resources to help students?

SAU has many great resources for students. 

  • Students can meet with their instructor and/or submit a rough draft before the paper is due. 
  • The Student Success Center has writing tutors available to help you with any stage of your writing process, including how to properly paraphrase and cite your sources to help avoid plagiarism.  You can schedule a face-to-face session with a writing tutor by clicking on TutorTrac.  
  • Reference librarians are another important resource for all students. 

All of these options require students to work ahead so they have time to incorporate others’ feedback into their papers. 

So, let’s take a look at a few scenarios to make this easier to understand.

Scenario 1:  A friend and I worked together on a homework assignment and now our professor reported us for cheating.  But he never said we couldn’t work together, so why are we in trouble? 

Professors at SAU will not necessarily discuss every unauthorized behavior (although most include the academic integrity policy in their syllabus).  As a SAU student, you’re expected to know and behave with the basics of integrity.  This includes completing your own homework.  If your professor does not explicitly state whether group or partner work is acceptable, you can ask the professor if it’s okay prior to working together in order to avoid committing academic misconduct. 

Scenario 2:  It is late at night and your paper is due at 9:00 a.m. the next day. You used a lot of material from a couple of books, but you didn't quote anything and, therefore, you didn't include any citations or footnotes. Is this plagiarism or just sloppy work?

This is plagiarism. Submitting someone else's work for credit as if it were your own is plagiarism.

Scenario 3:  A friend asks for your help with an assignment.  You’re in a hurry so you give it to her.  Without your knowledge, she proceeds to copy it word-for-word and then turns it in.  Your instructor completes an incident report on whom? 

Incident reports would be completed on both students.  Do not share your work in a way that gives your friends an opportunity to plagiarize your work.  We all want to be helpful to our friends but spending a few minutes to talk through the assignment with your friend is best.  This way they can turn in their own answers or responses and this will help them learn the material and keep you out of the trouble. 

Scenario 4:  Beth is writing a paper on The Bay of Pigs Invasion of 1961. She starts by introducing John F. Kennedy  and mentions that he served as the 35th President of the United States from January 1961 until his assassination in November 1963.  Does she need to cite this?

No, this fact is common knowledge and does not need to be cited.  However, when in doubt, ask.  Additionally, using someone’s exact words, citing the author but failing to use quotation marks and/or the page number is also plagiarism.  You can also be in trouble if you borrow too many words and too much sentence structure from the original author.   If you are unsure about when to use quotations, footnotes, or in-text citations, be sure to talk to your professor before submitting the paper.  

 

Page Contributor

Information provided by Beth Cook, Director of Reading and Study Skills, Student Success Center.