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Academic Integrity Awareness

You’ve heard about the importance of academic integrity over and over again…so what is it? And why is it such a big deal?

The importance of academic integrity awareness

If you have received an academic integrity allegation, please click here for more information.

“Demonstrating academic integrity is about producing and submitting assessments in an honest and fair way, acting and communicating ethically, and showing respect for the work of others.”
“By not completing parts of your assessment you have not learnt the subject matter and therefore you are putting at risk your personal integrity and the University's reputation.”
“The University has a duty to ensure that all its graduates have successfully completed their degree with the required level of knowledge to be successful in the professional world.”
Deakin Academic Integrity Committee Outcome Letter 2021

What is Plagiarism?

It’s more than just referencing #yourwork and #yourunderstanding

Deakin defines Plagiarism as “A student using other people’s words, ideas, media, research findings or other information as their own without appropriate referencing.” Student Academic Integrity Policy.

Your work needs to demonstrate your understanding and convey this in your own words. It is important to understand appropriate use of paraphrasing, quoting, intext citation and to abide by referencing guidelines. Students can receive an academic integrity allegation even if their work is referenced, due to the content not being paraphrased into their own words. You can learn more here: Deakin Guide to Referencing.

SASS’s 3 tips to avoid Plagiarism:
  1. Summarise and paraphrase your research as you go. Don’t “copy and paste” even into a draft or an open book exam.
  2. Check your work via Turnitin before final submission.
  3. Access free academic writing support from Deakin’s Study Support services.

Extra tip: If you don’t ask for permission prior to reusing your own previously submitted work, this can be considered self-plagiarism. Always contact your Unit Chair to discuss this first, particularly if you are repeating a unit.

What is Contract Cheating?

Paying for content or uploading your work to a website. It’s not worth the risk #yourwork

Deakin defines Contract Cheating as “A student requesting someone else to produce all or part of an assessment task that is submitted as their own work, including arrangements through a third party.” Student Academic Integrity Policy.

The term Contract Cheating can be a bit misleading as it doesn’t always involve a contract or exchange of money. A simpler explanation is an academic integrity breach that involves an exchange of information, usually for mutual benefit.

Examples include:
Paying a subscription to a website that enables you to access study notes or past assessments.
- Joining a website/ service that requires you to upload past assessments or study notes in order to access study information, assignments, notes or other document.
- A family member or a friend doing part of an assessment task for you.

If you are sharing your work, you are risking it being on-shared to other students. Similarly, if you are accessing a resource that is not readily available to all students, you are receiving an unfair advantage. This includes the assessments of other students that you may come across online. We understand it can be tempting to look at these however is it not worth the risk. It is highly likely that Deakin’s detection methods will pick up where you have copied the assessment from and there may be serious consequences. Put simply the work you submit needs to be your work.

SASS’s 3 tips to avoid Contract Cheating:
  1. Keep your work secure. Never share a copy of your work with another student as your content can easily end up on a website and then be accessed and used by multiple students.
  2. Avoid temptation. Sites that offer “study help” are often too good to be true. Paying for access or uploading your work or study notes to access content is a red flag!
  3. Ask for help. You can seek an extension, contact your Unit Chair, or access Deakin’s Study Support services if you are overwhelmed by a particular assessment and need some extra time or guidance.

Extra tip: If you aren’t sure if a website looks legitimate, DUSA Advocates are happy to take a look. You don’t need to have received an allegation to contact us. We are here to help and provide free confidential advice, whether this is an appointment, or asking us a question via our webform.

What is Collusion?

When collaboration crosses the line #yourunderstanding #yourwork

Deakin defines Collusion as “A student working with another person to submit some or all of the other person’s work as their own or vice versa.” Student Academic Integrity Policy.

Uni is a great chance to make friends and having a study partner can really help you stay motivated. However, sharing notes or compiling a shared document is NOT a good idea. DUSA SASS Advocates have supported a number of students who have received allegations due to more than one student using the same notes to write an assessment or complete an online exam. Unit Chairs and software will often pick up the similarity of the work.

SASS’s 3 tips to avoid Collusion:
  1. We support many students who have received allegations of collusion because they shared their assessment with a friend. If a friend asks for your work and you aren’t sure how to respond, please contact us on our webform. We don’t need to know who they are; we can help you help your friend by providing information about legitimate supports. It is important not to share your work even if it is for a unit, you completed some time ago and the assessment topic is different.
  2. Write you own notes/summaries from lectures and seminars and do not share your notes with anyone.
  3. Ensure you clearly read instructions for group assignments and understand which parts are to be completed by the group and which parts (if any) are to be completed individually. Don’t share your individual sections with others unless it is required as part of the assessment. Check with your Unit Chair if you are unsure.

Our Academic Integrity Awareness Campaigns

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DUSA employs qualified and experienced Advocates who offer confidential advice and support. Watch this video to find out more.

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