Creating an Atmosphere of Academic Integrity in the Classroom

  • Tell your students that academic integrity is important to you and set an example of fairness and honesty for them.
  • Convey your excitement about the process of discovery and learning. Help students recognize that the intellectual project they are engaged in—either through their own work or through the course—is an important pursuit. Student sometimes understand education as a series of classes that they have to check off to get a degree; you can show them that the process of inquiry is meaningful in its own right.
  • Create assignments that are challenging and reward students for active, creative thought. Setting high standards will help students see your assignments as meaningful, while providing them with opportunities to use independently the knowledge they have gained will instill an interest in learning for its own sake.
  • Clarify your expectations and explain what you mean by honesty. Students are not always sure about how and when to cite or what constitutes unfair collaboration.
  • Once you have explained your expectations, hold students accountable for their own integrity and take action against students found cheating. The perception that cheating is rampant and unpunished often frustrates honest students who fear they cannot succeed without cheating.

Inspired by Donald L. McCabe and Gary Pavela’s site Ten Principles of Academic Integrity

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