Academic Honesty Policy

Table of Contents

  1. Aims of the policy
  2. Understanding academic honesty and malpractice
    2.1 Academic honesty
    2.2 Malpractice
  3. Maintaining academic honesty
  4. Roles and responsibilities of the school community
    4.1 Teachers
    4·2 Students
    4·3 Parents
    4·4 School Librarian
  5. Consequences of Academic dishonesty for students
  6. Appendix
    6.1 Undertaking by students
  7. Bibliography

Dr. Pillai Global Academy values personal integrity and academic honesty. These virtues are inculcated and encouraged in every member of the school community: students, faculty and administration. It expects parents to value these virtues equally and to motivate their wards in adhering to the strict norms followed at the school.

The aim of this policy is to:

  1. Promote a culture that encourages academic honesty.
  2. Enable students to understand what constitutes academic honesty and dishonesty.
  3. Teach students the importance of acknowledging accurately and honestly all ideas and work of others.
  4. Learn to differentiate between collaboration and collusion.
  5. Communicate to students that plagiarism is a serious academic offence.
  6. Explain to students precisely what penalties will be imposed should they be found guilty of malpractice.

Definitions:

What constitutes Academic Honesty?
Academic honesty is:

  1. The production of original pieces of work.
  2. The acknowledgement of the authorship of creative material used to produce the work.
  3. Understanding and respecting intellectual property rights.
  4. Proper conduct during an examination.

What is Academic Dishonesty / Malpractice?
Academic dishonesty refers to the following malpractices:

Cheating
The improper taking or tendering of any information or material which shall be used to determine academic credit.
Examples include but are not limited to the following:

  1. Copying from another student’s test or homework paper.
  2. Allowing another student to copy from a test or homework assignment.
  3. Using unauthorised materials during a test, such as the course textbook, notebook, formula lists, notes or crib sheets, including those stored in a calculator.
  4. Collaborating during an in-class or take-home test with any other person by giving or receiving information without authority.
  5. Having another individual write or plan a paper, including those bought from research paper services.
  6. Submitting the same paper / project in more than one class.

Plagiarism
The attempt to represent the work of another, as it may relate to written or oral works, computer-based work, mode of creative expression (e.g. music, media or the visual arts), as the product of one’s own thought, whether the other’s work is published or unpublished, or simply the work of a fellow student.

When a student submits oral or written work for credit that includes the words, ideas, or data of others, the source of that information must be acknowledged through complete, accurate, and specific references, and, if verbatim statements are included, through use of quotation marks as well. By placing one’s name on work submitted for credit, the student certifies the originality of all work not otherwise identified by appropriate acknowledgements. A student will avoid being charged with plagiarism if there is an acknowledgement of indebtedness.

Examples of plagiarism include:

  1. Quoting another person’s actual words without acknowledging its source.
  2. Using another person’s idea, opinion, or theory, without acknowledging its source, even if it is completely paraphrased in one’s own words.
  3. Drawing upon facts, statistics, or other illustrative materials – unless the information is common knowledge.
  4. Submitting a paper purchased from a term paper service as one’s own work.
  5. Failing to accurately document information or wording obtained on the World Wide Web.
  6. Submitting anyone else’s paper as one’s own work.
  7. Violating federal copyright laws, including unauthorised duplication and/or distribution of copyrighted material.
  8. Offering, giving, receiving or soliciting any materials, items or services of value to gain academic advantages for yourself or another.

Misrepresentation
Any act or omission with intent to deceive an instructor for academic advantage. Misrepresentation includes using computer programmes generated by another person and handing it in as your own work, unless expressly allowed by the instructor; lying to an instructor to increase your grade; lying or misrepresenting facts when confronted with an allegation of academic dishonesty.

Conspiracy
The planning or acting with one or more persons to commit any form of academic dishonesty to gain academic advantage for yourself or another.

Fabrication
The use of invented or fabricated information, or the falsification of research or other findings with the intent to deceive for academic professional advantage; also the falsification or misrepresentation of experimental data, and violating the professional ethics that are established in clinical activities, science labs, research projects or internships.

Examples include:

  1. Citing information not taken from the source indicated.
  2. Listing sources in a works cited that are not used in the academic exercise.
  3. Inventing data or source information for research or other academic exercise.
  4. Submitting any academic exercise as one’s own (e.g. written or oral work, sculpture, computer program, etc.) that was prepared totally or in part by someone else, including on-line sources.
  5. Taking a test for someone else or permitting someone else to take a test for you.

Collusion
The act of working with another person on an academic undertaking for which a student is individually responsible. Unless working together on an individual assignment has been approved beforehand, it is not allowed. On group projects, students must stay within the guidelines set by the instructor and this Rule. If the instructor provides additional guidelines, they must be followed. Failure to do so also constitutes a violation of these policies.

Duplicate Submission
Submission of the same or substantially same paper / project in more than one class unless prior permission has been obtained from the current instructors.

Academic Misconduct
The intentional violation of school policies by tampering with grades or taking part in obtaining or distributing any part of a test, quiz, or graded assignment.

Examples include:

  1. Stealing, buying, downloading, or otherwise obtaining all or part of a test and / or test answers.
  2. Selling or giving away all or part of an unadministered test and/or test answers.
  3. Asking or bribing any other person to obtain a test or any information about a test.
  4. Misrepresenting the truth, including using or handing in computer programmes generated by another person as one’s own work, lying to an instructor to increase a grade, and lying or misrepresenting facts when confronted with an allegation of academic dishonesty.
  5. Changing, altering, or being an accessory to changing and / or altering of a grade in a grade book, on a computer, on a test, on a “change of grade” form, or on other official academic records of the school which relate to grades.
  6. Continuing to work on an examination or project after the specified time has elapsed.

Improper Computer / Calculator Use
Examples of improper computer and / or calculator use include but are not limited to:

  1. Unauthorised access, modification, use, creation or destruction of calculator-stored or computer-stored data and programmes.
  2. Selling or giving away all or part of the information on a calculator, computer disk or hard drive, which will be used as graded material.
  3. Sharing a calculator or computer while leaving answers on display or in memory.

Differentiating between Collaboration and Collusion
Collaboration involves working together with other students. A number of students may work together in a team and produce a piece of work as a collaborative exercise, provided the teacher has asked for group work or specifically allowed collaboration. There are numerous occasions where collaboration between students is permitted and even actively encouraged.

Working together is collaboration.
Allowing another student to copy one’s own work when the permission has not been given amounts to collusion.
Even if you have ‘collaborated’ with another student in the process of data gathering, the work you present must be your own.
For example during a lab investigation, students are often allowed to collect data as a team effort. However, the presentation of the data has to be independent, individual work.
Collusion is malpractice and will be penalised.

Roles and Responsibilities

Role of the Dr. Pillai Global Academy Community

It is the expectation of Dr. Pillai Global Academy that every member of the school community must strictly follow the tenets of academic honesty. Hence the responsibilities of each stakeholder are laid down clearly so that any kind of malpractice can be prevented.

Responsibilities of the Head of the School

  • Must have a clear understanding of IBO philosophy on academic honesty.
  • Must lay down clear rules that will help in meeting the expectations of the IBO on the tenets of the academic honesty.
  • Must ensure that students receive guidance on academic writing and how to conduct research work and acknowledge resources.
  • Must establish a school policy that promotes academic honesty.

Academic Honesty for CIE Community

  • Students are encouraged to complete written assignments from home independently.
  • Teachers are asked to discuss with students what constitutes academic honesty.
  • Parents are oriented about the kind of help that they can give to their wards.

Academic Honesty for Secondary 1 and Secondary 2 Commuities:
Role of Teachers

  • To ensure that the students are introduced to the idea of intellectual property rights at an early age.
  • To explain to students what constitutes a malpractice, especially plagiarism and the difference between collaboration and collusion.
  • To train students to include basic bibliography / citation in their work.
  • To strictly follow the guidelines for conduct of examinations.

Specific Responsibilities of Teachers in IB Diploma Programme

  • Teachers must be familiar with the IBO publication “Academic honesty: guidance for schools”.
  • Teachers must speak to students about plagiarism, giving examples so that students have a clear idea of what constitutes plagiarism in various subjects.
  • Teachers must speak to students regularly during the drafting of work, when the student/teacher interaction is more collaborative than evaluative.
  • Teachers must be vigilant while assessing students’ work. The telltale signs of malpractice are:
    1. Changes in a candidate’s style of writing.
    2. Work which is error-free, quite different from work that was done during class.

Hence, it is better for the subject teacher to assess these pieces of work, as he/she is the best person to detect such anomalies.

  • Teachers are expected to read and check candidates’ work for authenticity before its submission. This includes all internal assessments.
  • Teachers are expected to use Turnitin to check major assignments and are also required to use it for final versions of the Extended Essay and the TOK essay.
  • Any issues of authenticity arising from plagiarism or collusion before the submission of work for assessment will be decided within the school, initially by the subject teacher and then through discussion with the IBDP Coordinator.
  • If the coordinator or teacher has reason to suspect that any part of a candidate’s work, which counts towards the final IB Diploma grade in that subject, may not be authentic, that work will not be accepted or submitted for assessment. In such cases, as per the IB directive, one of the following courses of action may be adopted:
    a) The candidate can be allowed one opportunity to revise and resubmit the work, which must be completed on time for the coordinator to send the work to the examiner by the appropriate IB deadline.
    b) If there is insufficient time, an F will be entered next to the candidate’s name on the appropriate mark sheet. This will result in no grade being awarded for the subject concerned. This will mean that no IB Diploma is awarded.
    c) The subject teacher must give an opportunity to the student to prove ownership of the work through appropriate questioning of the student’s knowledge and understanding of the content.
    d) If plagiarism is detected after a candidate’s work has been accepted and submitted for assessment, the International Baccalaureate’s Curriculum and Assessment office (IBCA) is informed.
  • Teachers who are found indulging in, encouraging or permitting academic dishonesty will be dealt with severely and will be liable for disciplinary action, which may include employment termination.

Role of Senior Students

  • To ensure that all work submitted for assessment is authentically theirs.
  • To acknowledge the work and ideas of others.
  • To review their own work before submission for assessment to identify any passages, computer program, data, photographs and other material, which require acknowledgement.
  • To be aware that teachers have the right to refuse to sign their cover sheet if they do not believe the submitted work to be theirs. The onus of proving ownership of the completed work falls on the students. Hence they are encouraged to keep all rough drafts and other materials, which could help in establishing ownership safely.

Role of Parents

  • To monitor or provide inputs towards their wards’ work.
  • To promote independent work by their wards.

Role of School Librarian

  • Must be fully aware of issues associated with plagiarism and help students getting acquainted with the do’s and don’ts of academic honesty practices.
  • To issue the exemplars of student’s work available in the library only for referencing in the library.
  • To teach good academic practice for documenting sources used by students.
  • To use their expertise to trace the origins of suspect work submitted by the student.

Consequences of Academic Dishonesty for the Students:

  • Any student who has been found to be academically dishonest in any of the above ways or otherwise will have a record of their offence put into his or her student file, and this will be communicated to the student’s parents.

For First Offence:

  • Submitted assignment/exam paper is rejected, and student is asked to resubmit his work.
  • A warning is issued to the student. The teachers give guidance and counseling.

For a Subsequent Offence:

One or more of the following actions may be taken, depending upon the severity of the offence:

  • The student is pardoned, but a close vigil is maintained on him/her.
  • Parents are informed about the incidence, including the reasons for the appropriate action taken by the school.
  • A stern warning is issued about the possibility of expulsion in case of another repeat offence.
  • If the work has been submitted to the IB for assessment of IB, it will not be accepted, and, if there is time for him or her to redo the work before the school’s internal deadline for this work, the student will be allowed one chance to resubmit another piece of work in its place.
  • If there is no time for the student to produce new work, he or she will not receive a grade for that subject and will therefore not receive an IB Diploma.
  • If a teacher or the IB Coordinator has reason to believe that a piece of work to be submitted to the IBO is not authentic, that work will not be accepted. This will result in no grade being awarded for the subject.
  • Any student caught in the act of malpractice is required to sign an undertaking accepting the fact that he has done so and committing to never do so again. The parents of the student will be summoned and the case explained. The student will be sent for counselling to the school counsellor. A committee will be set up comprising the subject teacher, the DP Coordinator, the principal and the school counsellor.
  • Submitted assignment / exam paper is rejected and student is awarded zero marks.
  • In extreme cases, the penalty may include dismissal from the school.
APPENDIX A
Dr. PILLAI GLOBAL ACADEMY, NEW PANVEL
Undertaking by students

I, Mr./Ms. ________________________________________, student of Dr. Pillai Global Academy studying in grade _________________, hereby undertake to abide by the terms mentioned in the Academic Honesty Policy.

Signature of the student : _________________________
Date : _________________________

Bibliography

  1. International Baccalaureate Organisation, “General Regulations.”, Diploma Programme, Wales, United Kingdom: IBO (UK) Ltd., March 2011, accessed via www.ibo.org. Web.
  2. International Baccalaureate Organisation, “Academic Honesty”, Diploma Programme, Wales, United Kingdom: IBO(UK) Ltd., March 2011, accessed via www.ibo.org. Web.
  3. “Academic Honesty Policy of St. Petersburg College”, St. Petersburg College, Florida, United States: 2012, accessed via www.spcollege.edu/AcademicHonesty. Web.

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