9. Academic Integrity and Plagiarism

In this course module, we consider a common bump in the road: issues of academic integrity. At some point in your career, you will undoubtedly find yourself trying to understand a student’s intention in a piece of writing that misuses a source and make a judgment call. This module shows you the different types of plagiarism you may encounter, how to help students understand plagiarism, and UM’s policies and procedures for dealing with academic integrity problems.

Beyond Plagiarism

The Beyond Plagiarism site, created jointly by Sweetland and the library, is an excellent resource for information on citation and academic integrity. The site is a work in progress, but the modules on “Understanding Sources” and “Using Sources” can be a valuable resource. We recommend that you spend some time going through the modules, and consider assigning them to your students as well.

What Is Plagiarism?

In the introduction of her essay  Plagiarisms, Authorships, and the Academic Death Penalty, Rebecca Moore Howard notes that,

most published discussions of student plagiarism proceed from the assumption that plagiarism occurs as a result of one of two possible motivations: an absence of ethics or an ignorance of citation conventions. (788)

Her statement clearly outlines the way we typically think about plagiarism either they did it on purpose, or they didn’t mean to. The library has a useful chart that demonstrates which activities fall into the intentional and unintentional categories of plagiarism: Types of Plagiarism

Please take time to explore these resources that explain the different types of plagiarism:

Council of Writing Program Administrators, Defining Plagiarism?

The Citation Project-The results section has useful information about why students plagiarize.

What Should I Do if I Suspect a Student Has Plagiarized?

If you suspect a student has plagiarized, your best course of action as a GSI is to refer the case to your professor.

Procedures for Resolving Academic Misconduct in LSA

See the faculty FAQ for further information.

Even if you decide to resolve a plagiarism case without involving the Dean’s office, we still encourage you to report the incident. If there is a repeat offense, the university should know about previous academic misconduct.