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Avoiding Academic Misconduct

Very few students actually set out to engage in academic misconduct. Most often, things like procrastination, lack of preparation, and lack of awareness of where to get help are what lead students to make poor choices. Here are some simple things you can do to make sure you act with integrity, no matter what.

Understand What the Rules Are

Not knowing the rules is not an excuse for academic misconduct! Make sure you are aware of what is allowed and what is not. Ask your professors, lab instructors, and TAs for help, get help from Writing Support and librarians, and read the Student Code of Conduct and Discipline.

Cite Your Sources

Always give credit where credit is due. If an idea is not yours, cite where you got if from. Learn how to cite your sources properly. Writing Support has lots of resources on the different citation styles.

Be Organized

When you are working on your assignments, keep all your research notes organized. Never cut and paste text from a source directly into your assignment or your rough notes, and always record where you found your information.

Be Prepared

Don’t leave things until the last minute. Study Skills can help you plan out your schedule for the year so that you have plenty of time to get your assignments done. Make an appointment with them at the beginning of the term, and they’ll help you work out a schedule for all your courses so that you aren’t overwhelmed when everything is due at the same time.

Read Your Syllabus

Get clarification if you aren’t sure whether something is allowed. Ask your professors, lab instructors, and TAs what their expectations are.

Don’t Share Your Work

Friends don’t ask friends if they can copy their assignments! If someone hands in an assignment that is similar to one you handed in, you will both be held responsible. Even if you took a course last year, if someone else hands in work that is the same or substantially similar, it will be flagged as plagiarism. The University uses software (Turnitin) that tracks prior assignments, so any essays/assignments submitted in other years, or even at other universities, will be in the system.

Ask For Help

There are lots of placed to go for help. Writing Support holds workshops on writing well and citing sources properly. Librarians can help you find and cite good sources for your assignments. Your instructors can help too.

Contact Us:

Michael Lisetto-Smith

E: mlisettosmith@wlu.ca
T: 519.884.0710 x3640
Office Location: Arts C-Wing, Room 2C5B, Waterloo Campus