Academic Honesty


Academic honesty is a matter that the University and the Department of Philosophy take very seriously. Students must familiarize themselves with the rules regarding academic honesty. Ignorance of the rules regarding or the nature of academic dishonesty is not a defense against a charge. Potential punishments include expulsion from the University or revocation of a degree or diploma.

Many cases of plagiarism result from confusion or ignorance rather than from genuine intent to deceive.Note, however, that these are not excuses: "The critical consideration is the impression created in the mind of the others, not the subjective intent of the student. This determination involves an objective evaluation of the manuscript. No intent to deceive is required to establish plagiarism." (University Council policy on Student Academic Misconduct)

The University Guidelines for Academic Conduct describes the University's expectations for both student and faculty conduct.

The definition of academic dishonesty that follows is copied from the University of Saskatchewan Council's policy document on Student Academic MisconductNote especially the definition of plagiarism.

Academic Misconduct

"Academic Misconduct" is what the university calls cheating. The Regulations on Student Academic Misconduct  of the University of Saskatchewan Council provides the following list of academically dishonest behaviour:

  • Providing false or misleading information or documentation to gain admission to the University or any University program;
  • Theft of lecture notes, research work, computer files, or academic materials prepared by another student or an instructor;
  • Using work done in one course in fulfillment of the requirements of another course unless approval is obtained from the instructor by whom the material is being evaluated;
  • Presenting the work of someone else as one's own;
  • The supply of materials prepared by the student to another student for use by that student as the work or materials of that student;
  • Alteration or falsification of records, computer files, or any document relating to a student's academic performance;
  • Violation of the university's research integrity policy

Excerpt from the Research Integrity Policy

Definition of Research Misconduct.  Definitions of research misconduct include, but are not limited to:

    • The intentional fabrication or falsification of data, erroneously reporting research procedures, or data analysis; the use of someone else’s data or ideas and claiming it as one’s own; plagiarism; or other deceitful acts or improprieties in proposing,conducting, reporting, or reviewing research;
    • Failure to comply with pertinent federal, provincial, international, or University guidelines for the protection of researchers, human subjects, the public, and the welfare of animals; or failure to meet other legal requirements that relate to the conduct of research;
    • Failure to conduct research in the manner in which it has been approved by the University’s Research Ethics Boards;
    • Failure to disclose any conflict of interests when asked to undertake reviews of research grant applications or to test products for sale or distribution to the public;
    • Failure to disclose conflict of interests prior to any commitment or expenditure of research funds and failure to notify their respective unit head should a conflict arise at a later point;
    • Failure to disclose to the University any financial interest in a company that contracts with the University of Saskatchewan to undertake research, particularly research involving the company’s products, or to provide research-related materials or services. Financial interest means ownership, direct or indirect beneficial interest, substantial stock holdings, a directorship, honoraria or consulting fees, but does not include minor stock holding (<$10,000) in publicly traded corporations;
    • Misuse of funds acquired for the support of research; and,
    • Failure to comply with terms of research funding agreements or university policy on Research and Scholarly Activities and the Administration of Research Funds.
  • Fabrication or invention of sources;
  • Failure to observe any stated rule with regard to the procedure used in an examination (or any activity undertaken for academic credit) where such a failure could result in the student gaining relatively greater credit;
  • Altering answers on a returned examination;
  • When prohibited, removing an examination from the examination room;
  • Seeking to acquire or acquiring prior knowledge of the contents of any examination question or paper with the intention of gaining an unfair advantage;
  • Possessing or using notes or other sources of information or devices in an examination not permitted by the course instructor;
  • Consulting or seeking the assistance of others when writing a "take home" examination unless permitted by the course instructor;
  • Providing false or misleading information with the intent to avoid or delay writing an examination or fulfilling any other academic requirement ;
  • Failing to observe the terms of any undertaking of non-disclosure given in connection with an examination;
  • Misrepresenting or conspiring with another person to misrepresent the identity of a student writing an examination or engaging in any other form of assessment;
  • Knowingly doing anything designed to interfere with the opportunities of another person to have his or her contribution fully recognized or to participate in the academic program;
  • Preventing others from fair and equal access to University facilities or resources including library resources;
  • Using or attempting to use personal relationships, bribes, threats or other illegal conduct to gain unearned grades or academic advantages;
  • Knowingly assisting another person engaged in actions that amount to academic dishonesty;
  • Plagiarism: the presentation of the work or idea of another in such a way as to give others the impression that it is the work or idea of the presenter.  Adequate attribution is required. What is essential is that another person have no doubt which words or research results are the student's and which are drawn from other sources. Full explicit acknowledgment of the source of the material is required. Examples of plagiarism are:
    • The use of material received or purchased from another person or prepared by any person other than the individual claiming to be the author. [It is not plagiarism to use work developed in the context of a group exercise (and described as such in the text) if the mode and extent of the use does not deviate from that which is specifically authorized].
    • The verbatim use of oral or written material without adequate attribution.
    • The paraphrasing of oral or written material of other persons without adequate attribution
  • Unprofessional conduct or behaviours that occur in academic or clinical settings or other work placements, or that are related to the student's area of professional practice.

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