Students who violate the Code of Academic Integrity undermine the atmosphere of trust that best enables learning and academic excellence. They cheat themselves, their fellow students, and their faculty by breaking the bond that is at the heart of intellectual honesty and academic integrity. Below is some general advice that might help you better understand and avoid academic dishonesty, or the appearance of it, in and out of the classroom.

Knowing the Code
Knowing Instructors' Policies
Avoiding Dishonesty
If You Are Suspected Of Dishonesty 

I. Knowing the Code

Students are responsible for knowing the Code of Academic Integrity. Ignorance of the code is not a valid reason for committing an act of academic dishonesty.

  • Learn how honesty, trust, fairness, respect and responsibility are all important for creating an atmosphere of integrity.
  • Familiarize yourself with the behaviors (plagiarism, cheating, false information, duplicate submissions, etc.) that are considered academically dishonest.
  • Learn what happens when there is a Violation of the Code.
  • Take the Academic Integrity Quiz

II. Knowing Instructors' Policies

Students are responsible for knowing the integrity policies of their instructors.  Talk to your instructors, read your syllabi and learn what they are.

  • Instructors expect students to act with integrity in and out of the classroom.
  • Instructors may ask you to sign an integrity pledge at the beginning of the semester or whenever you submit a written assignment.
  • Just because an instructor does not explicitly address academic integrity does not mean you are exempt from the Code in that class.
  • Instructors can impose sanctions for integrity violations at the course level that include failing you for the assignment or for the entire course.
  • Integrity violation reports are referred to the appropriate Associate Dean and may be referred to the Community Standards Board where additional sanctions may be applied including notation on official transcripts, probation, suspension or dismissal from the college, and/or degree revocation.

III. Avoiding Dishonesty

Students are expected to act with integrity and avoid academic dishonesty, or the appearance of it, inside and outside the classroom. 

In general:

  • Do all your work with integrity – even if others (e.g., instructors, students) do not emphasize this or seem to place it as a high priority in the course.
  • Don't procrastinate in preparing assignments and studying for exams. Desperation is no excuse for academic dishonesty. 
  • When in doubt, ask your instructor for clarification about an assignment or practices that might be seen as dishonest rather than chance doing something that violates the Code.
  • Don't share your work with other students; don't lend your work to help other students; don't leave unfinished assignments lying around for others to find.
  • Protect your passwords and computer files; don't let others use your computer; don't e-mail your work to other students.
  • Don’t submit work done in one course for a different course unless you have the explicit permission of the instructor that this duplicate submission is acceptable.
  • Do not engage in collusion, falsify documents or forge signatures. 

In written assignments:

  • Learn the different expectations for research and citation in different disciplines and departments. Expect differences and pay attention to them. Follow the rules of each course for any given assignment. Learn how to quote, how to paraphrase, and how to explain your use of others' ideas according to the research and citation standards of the discipline and department of the course you are taking. Check out Guides by Subject.
  • Familiarize yourself with different aspects of plagiarism,  the basic rules of copyright, and the proper use of citations
  • Check your papers for possible a act of plagiarism by using turnitin or one of the other free tools available on the web. 
  • Acknowledge when you have received the help of others, such as suggestions or proofreading, but do not work with another person to write your essay unless you have permission of your instructor.
  • Keep photocopies of drafts and notes, including electronic files, as a record that you did, in fact, do the work on your own.  Maintain a copy of all final work turned in.
    In tests and exams: 
  • Do not sit near friends. Do not let someone look at your answers. Keep your eyes pointed in the vicinity of your own paper.
  • Do not bring in notes or books except those expressly permitted by the instructor.
  • Do not use cell phones, smart phones or any other device during a test.
  • Do not talk or communicate in any way with others in or out of the room.
  • Report to the proctor or instructor immediately if others are giving information about tests and exams before or during them.

IV. If You Are Suspected Of Dishonesty

All members of the Canisius College Community are expected to report violations of the Code of Academic Integrity.  If you are suspected of violating the Code

  • Try to remember that the person bringing the issue to your attention is obligated by the Code to investigate allegations of dishonesty. 
  • Familiarize yourself with the section of the Code of Academic Integrity entitled “Procedures for Adjudicating Violations of the Code of Academic Integrity”.  It explains the procedures for handling alleged violations and the appeals process.
  • Determination of dishonesty is based on the facts of the incident and whether it is more likely than not that a person is responsible for the alleged violation(s).
  • Students may seek the advice of the college ombudsman in appeals by contacting the Academic Affairs Office (888 – 2120). The role of the Ombudsman is to provide explanations of college policies and advise on handling situations governed by those policies.