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Academic Integrity

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Faculty Resources for Academic Integrity

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Maintaining Academic Integrity

Since creativity and innovation cannot exist without acknowledgement of the foundation of knowledge built by others, due credit must always be given to prior knowledge.

The staff and students of Nanyang Technological University recognize the great contribution of past scientists and researchers in their respective fields and are committed to meeting the highest standards of scholarship through personal honesty and academic integrity. These high standards of scholarship are considered the shared responsibility of both staff and students in maintaining the University’s reputation for excellence.

Academic integrity and scholarly practice in staff is demonstrated by the appropriate acknowledgement of the writings or ideas of others in their teaching and research, and in the demonstration of critical analysis in their teaching. Professors can educate students in academic integrity by providing them with guidelines for appropriate referencing, together with examples of past assignments that demonstrate good referencing techniques as well as critical analysis and synthesis of the ideas from the student’s perspective. Students should also be given ample opportunity to practice referencing, citation, and analytic skills in their assignments.

Samples for assignments

To help your students understand the importantce of academic integrity, we suggest you make us of the following sample statements when assigning projects.

1. Sample Course Outline Statement

Here is an example of a statement about the importance of academic integrity which you should include in your course outlines. This statement has been adapted from the NTU Policy on Academic Integrity. This is just a sample which you can feel free to use or to adapt for your own course outline.

The foundation of good academic work is honesty and maintaining academic integrity. These principles uphold the standards of the University, thus, the responsibility for maintaining integrity in all the activities of the academic community lies with the students as well as the faculty, and the University. Everyone in this community must work together to ensure that the University values of Truth, Trust and Justice are upheld.

As an NTU student, you should actively seek to equip yourselves with strategies to avoid participating in any and all forms of academic dishonesty including plagiarism, academic fraud, and facilitating academic dishonesty. You should seek advice from learning resources staff and from your lecturers. Faculty should also actively seek to work with students to help them maintain the high standards of scholarship and academic work. Remember, when you are in doubt, ask your professor!

2. Sample Assignment Cover Page

A cover page with the student’s signature declaring that the assignment is his/her own work, as defined by the University’s Honour Code, should be provided by Schools. A digital version of the cover page should be used for soft copy submission of assignments.

This is a sample of a cover page which you can use for students to attach to their assignments before submission.

assignment submission declaration

(You can also download a copy (.DOC) of this Assignment Submission Declaration cover page.)

Designing assessments to minimise plagiarism

  • Plagiarism is a teaching, learning, and assessment issue
  • Teaching and assessment are our responsibility
  • Educate students about plagiarism and provide an explicit definition
  • Provide examples of correct paraphrases, quotes and acknowledgements
  • Allow the students to submit their assignments in Turnitin, the plagiarism detection system, by creating the assignment within Turnitin
  • Quote the NTU Honour Code in your syllabus and clarify the penalties for cheating
  • Develop new models of evaluation
  • Require reflective journals and outline, draft, and final product
  • Require an oral report or a one-to-one interview where you can quiz the student
  • Mark for process as well as product
  • Move to advanced levels of evaluation – Interview, essay, self-assessment, reflective journal, presentation, debate, and portfolio
  • Be specific about expectations and criteria for assignments
  • Change assignment topics each semester
  • Set topics/case studies which are new to reduce copying
  • Randomize questions and answers for electronic quizzes

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Tools for reducing plagiarism

Turnitin (text matching)

Turnitin is available to all faculty through NTULearn. It is a text-matching software that allows students and faculty alike, to check their work with a large database of online academic articles and student assignments from institutions around the world. A report is then produced showing such similarities and their sources. The report is accessible by students too in order for them to learn their mistakes in citations and to improve their academic writing skill. It is important for both faculty and students to note that while Turnitin detects matching text, it does not detect plagiarism or cheating. However, it will show the matching text and compare it with the other documents they match. The Turnitin reports will show the matching text and the reader has to decide if the text is accurately referenced and cited or if it is plagiarized.

See:

iThenticate (for research)

iThenticate, is used widely by researchers for professional plagiarism prevention. It covers a broad range of journals, including InfoTrac OneFile, Emerald Journals and SAGE Reference.

Detecting plagiarism in coding

MOSS is a plagiarism detection software developed specifically for programming courses by Alex Aiken, Alcatel-Lucent Professor of Computer Science out of Stanford University. It is available to educators upon application to the researchers.

jplag is another source code plagiarism tool available to faculty.

External Resources

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