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EDUC 1300 - Fall '23 - Medina: ACC Guidelines on Academic Honesty

ACC Guidelines for Academic Honesty

Austin Community College has strict rules and punishments for academic dishonesty, which includes plagiarism.

All colleges, schools, and universities, including Austin Community College, consider plagiarism a scholastic offense and punish students for it. To avoid such charges, you must document your writing.

ACC Administrative rule 6.1202.01 has the guidelines on plagiarism (and academic dishonesty in general).

"...Academic misconduct refers to any activity that compromises academic integrity or subverts the educational process, including but not limited to the following:

  1. Violation of rules contained in the course syllabus;
  2. Violation of College rules regarding the use of academic facilities, including labs and testing centers;
  3. Using or providing unauthorized information during exams;
  4. Using or providing unauthorized materials or devices during exams;
  5. Using or providing unauthorized assistance in labs, on field work, in scholarship, or on a course assignment;
  6. Submitting plagiarized work for an academic assignment or requirement;
  7. Falsification, fabrication, or dishonesty in creating or reporting laboratory or research results;
  8. Falsification, fabrication, or dishonesty in creating any assignment;
  9. Serving as, or enlisting the assistance of, a substitute for a student in any assignment, exam or course requirement;
  10. Alteration of grades in an effort to change the earned or assigned grade or credit;
  11. Alteration or unauthorized use of academic records or forms; and
  12. Engaging in activities that unfairly place other students at a disadvantage, such as taking, hiding, or altering resource materials."

Academic Dishonesty

You are expected to demonstrate integrity in all of your academic endeavors and plagiarism is a violation of that integrity. There are different forms of academic dishonesty:

  • Cheating: “I copied off of someone else’s exam.”
  • Fabrication: “I made up the results for that lab exercise.”
  • Plagiarism: “I didn’t write that part of my paper—I just cut and pasted the text directly from the Web.”
  • Multiple Submissions: “I submitted the same paper for two of my classes.”
  • Facilitating Academic Dishonesty: “I let my roommate copy my homework—it’s no big deal.”

Source: Dougherty, K., Lee, S. (2012). Avoiding plagiarism: A workshop on citation [PowerPoint slides].

Real Life Examples of Plagiarism

The following articles all describe real life examples of plagiarism and its consequences. (The following citations are not formatted to style).

Best Practices for Avoiding Plagiarism

The entire section below came from a research guide from Iowa State University.  To avoid plagiarism, one must provide a reference to that source to indicate where the original information came from (see the "Source:" section below).

"There are many ways to avoid plagiarism, including developing good research habits, good time management, and taking responsibility for your own learning. Here are some specific tips:

  • Don't procrastinate with your research and assignments.
    Good research takes time. Procrastinating makes it likely you'll run out of time or be unduly pressured to finish. This sort of pressure can often lead to sloppy research habits and bad decisions. Plan your research well in advance, and seek help when needed from your professor, from librarians and other campus support staff.
  • Commit to doing your own work.
    If you don't understand an assignment, talk with your professor. Don't take the "easy way" out by asking your roommate or friends for copies of old assignments. A different aspect of this is group work. Group projects are very popular in some classes on campus, but not all. Make sure you clearly understand when your professor says it's okay to work with others on assignments and submit group work on assignments, versus when assignments and papers need to represent your own work.
  •  Be 100% scrupulous in your note taking.
    As you prepare your paper or research, and as you begin drafting your paper. One good practice is to clearly label in your notes your own ideas (write "ME" in parentheses) and ideas and words from others (write "SMITH, 2005" or something to indicate author, source, source date). Keep good records of the sources you consult, and the ideas you take from them. If you're writing a paper, you'll need this information for your bibliographies or references cited list anyway, so you'll benefit from good organization from the beginning.
  • Cite your sources scrupulously.
    Always cite other people's work, words, ideas and phrases that you use directly or indirectly in your paper. Regardless of whether you found the information in a book, article, or website, and whether it's text, a graphic, an illustration, chart or table, you need to cite it. When you use words or phrases from other sources, these need to be in quotes. Current style manuals are available at most reference desks and online. They may also give further advice on avoiding plagiarism.
  • Understand good paraphrasing.
    Simply using synonyms or scrambling an author's words and phrases and then using these "rewrites" uncredited in your work is plagiarism, plain and simple. Good paraphrasing requires that you genuinely understand the original source, that you are genuinely using your own words to summarize a point or concept, and that you insert in quotes any unique words or phrases you use from the original source. Good paraphrasing also requires that you cite the original source. Anything less and you veer into the dangerous territory of plagiarism."
Source: Vega García, S.A. (2012). Understanding plagiarism: Information literacy guide. Iowa State University. Retrieved from [Accessed January 3, 2017]

Plagiarism and Online Information

It iis very easy to plagiarize websites.- but remember --  your professor might also be using the Internet to check and see if you've plagiarized an online source. The Internet not only makes it easier to steal others' ideas but also makes it easier to find text or images that were stolen!

All words, images, media, and ideas that you use from other sources, electronic or print, must be documented, including those generated by AI.

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