Academic Integrity

Academic Integrity Policy

Policy Code: LT1943

Purpose

The University recognises that academic integrity is essential to excellence in learning, teaching, research and scholarly endeavour. This policy describes the University’s principles for promoting, supporting and upholding high standards of academic integrity. It outlines how the University will concentrate on deterring academic misconduct through educative approaches that clearly articulate the University’s expectations of academic/teaching staff and students.

This policy does not limit intellectual/academic freedom provided that academic/teaching staff and students comply with the University’s principles for promoting, supporting and upholding high standards of academic integrity.

Scope

This policy applies to all FedUni students and academic/teaching staff (HE and VET) including those at partner organisations as is consistent with our contractual arrangements. It mandates a framework to support our shared academic principles and behavioural expectations of all members of the University’s academic community which are in addition to any professional codes of conduct and employment or enterprise agreements.

Additional policies and procedures need to be adhered to regarding the conduct of research.  These cover ethics, data management, research integrity and misconduct.

Legislative Context

  • Federation University Australia Act 2010
  • Statute 5.3 – Assessment
  • Statute 6.1 – Student Discipline
  • Regulation 6.1 – Student Discipline
  • Regulation 6.1.1. - Plagiarism
  • The Higher Education Standards Framework (Threshold Standards) 2015

Definitions

Term Definition
Authorship The state or fact of being the writer or creator of a particular article, document, book, or piece of literary work
Academic exercise

An examination, ie a time limited assessment task conducted under invigilation including tests, practical assessments and final examinations; and

The submission and assessment of a thesis, dissertation, essay, practical work or other coursework and any other exercise (including in the case of graduate students transfer and confirmation of status exercises) which is not undertaken in formal examination conditions but counts towards or constitutes the work for an academic award and includes related research

Academic honesty The principle that academic work is original and authentic and completed only with the assistance allowed.
Academic integrity Academic integrity is the honest and respectful engagement with the scholarships of learning, teaching, research and community. It is an essential moral code to be upheld by the academic community inclusive of academic/teaching staff and students
Academic misconduct Includes but is not limited to conduct that involves academic fraud, plagiarism and any other dishonest conduct to gain academic or general advantage; or conduct that otherwise contravenes the provisions of the University’s academic rules, policies and procedures. It includes deceptive behaviour of a minor nature related to research, learning and teaching. Dishonesty in the preparation or presentation of any assessable work is regarded as student academic misconduct
Bias(ed) Inclination or prejudice for or against one person or group of people, especially in a way to be considered unfair
Breach An act or omission which is likely to have the effect of obtaining an advantage by unfair or unauthorised means
Cheat/Cheating

Cheating is any act through which a student attempts to gain an unfair advantage in admission to or the assessment process for a course. Cheating may include, but is not limited to:

  • Resubmitting or largely reusing previously assessed work as new work
  • Fabrication or falsification of data and/or results
  • Presenting work, which is the outcome of directly working with others, as their own (collusion), without knowledge
  • Allowing another person to complete an assessment or examination on behalf of a student
  • Accessing/obtaining an advance copy of an examination paper unless otherwise authorised, eg a ‘seen’ paper
  • Communicating with or copying from, another person/s during an examination
  • Bringing into, or receiving during an examination, unauthorised material/information
  • Presenting untrue medical/special consideration forms
  • Knowingly helping others to cheat; and/or
  • Taking actions which intrude on the ability of others to complete their assessment tasks
Collusion The unauthorised act of a student presenting work, which is the outcome of directly working with others, as their own
Conflict of interest A conflict of interest arises where there is a divergence between the individual interests of a person and their professional responsibilities such that an independent observer might reasonably conclude that the professional actions of that person may be unduly influenced by their own interests. This can include actual, perceived or potential conflicts of interest.
Copyright

Copyright in Australia is governed by the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (the Act). This legislation gives the owner of copyright in literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works, sound recordings, films and broadcasts exclusive rights to use those works.

The types of uses include the right to:

  • reproduce/copy a work
  • to publish
  • to perform in public
  • to communicate the work to the public via electronic means - including making it available online or sending via email

This means that permission needs to be obtained from the owner of copyright before anyone can do any of these acts.

Corrupt conduct Includes improper use of influence or position and/or improper use of information or other improper acts or omissions of a similar nature
Dishonest conduct Behaving in an untrustworthy, unfair, deceitful, fraudulent or insincere manner; unethical behaviour.
Fraud Includes theft and criminal deception by electronic or other means; making false representations to gain an unjust advantage; and abuse of University property or time.
Intellectual property (IP) IP covers the wide range of intangible property that is the result of creative and intellectual effort of individuals or organisations
Misrepresentation Occurs when a staff member/student presents an untrue statement about attendance or participation in practical, performance or professional learning activities, or includes citations to non-existent or incorrect sources or does not disclose any information or matter where there is a duty to disclose such information or matter.
Partner Providers (also referred to as third party) An approved educational institution that delivers University programs/courses as part of an agreement with Federation University Australia
Plagiarism The presentation of work/s by another person/s as one’s own work by failing to properly acknowledge those person/s. Proper acknowledgement means to clearly identify which parts of a work originate from which source.
Research Integrity Integrity in research includes a commitment to the search for knowledge and understanding, to the recognised principles of research conduct, to the honest and ethical conduct of research, and to the honest and open dissemination of results.
Solicitation Occurs when a student requests, offers, encourages, induces or advertises for another individual/student to contract, commission, pay, procure, or complete on their behalf, assessment tasks or other items that are likely to result in their use for the purpose of cheating, misrepresentation and/or plagiarism. A student who willingly assists another to circumvent the purpose of assessment through solicitation, cheating, misrepresentation or plagiarism (for example by willingly sharing their own work, giving them access to their own work or advertising the availability of their own work or someone else’s work) is also breaching academic integrity, and may be subject to disciplinary action
Staff member Any person who is an employee of the University at the time of the alleged incident(s). This includes full-time, part-time, sessional or casual staff.
Student

A person enrolled in a formal program of learning in an educational institution and/or a workplace setting.

 

Policy Statement

Please note: Research integrity and misconduct are governed by the Research Integrity Policy and the Research Integrity & Misconduct Procedure.

Principle Demonstrated by:
The University uses clear, educative approaches to communicate academic integrity requirements to students and academic/teaching staff and explains that failure to maintain academic integrity is considered academic misconduct

Educating students about the University’s expectations regarding academic integrity

Educating students adequately and consistently in how to correctly research, present and reference their work in an Australian in educational environment

Providing academic/teaching staff with information about academic integrity

Providing academic/teaching staff with information about: warning signs that may indicate academic misconduct and detection strategies

The University adopts preventative strategies that mitigate the risk of academic misconduct

Role modelling academic integrity to students

Designing assessment tasks that lessen the opportunity of cheating/plagiarism

Communicating assessment/examination requirements to students

Encouraging students to make every effort to avoid academic misconduct by taking responsibility for understanding what constitutes academic misconduct and assessment/ examination requirements

Ensuring security of student-submitted assessment/examination materials

The University is vigilant in detecting cases of academic misconduct Academic/teaching staff being aware of and using detection strategies
The University manages academic misconduct in a consistent and transparent manner that supports students and academic/teaching staff to avoid reoccurrences

Adopting an educative approach where appropriate, particularly for unintentional and first incidences

Utilising a clear and consistent reporting and management process

Responsibility

  • Academic/teaching staff and students are responsible for ensuring they comply with this Policy and uphold and promote high standards of academic integrity.
  • Deans, Heads of Schools and Executive Directors/Directors are responsible for monitoring the academic integrity of academic/teaching staff and students, and actioning complaints and/or allegations of breaches.
  • Academic Board is responsible for monitoring the implementation, outcomes and scheduled review of this policy and its accompanying procedure.
  • Chair, Academic Board is responsible for maintaining the content of this policy as delegated by Academic Board.
  • Academic Secretariat is responsible for the administration support for the maintenance of this policy as directed by the Chair, Academic Board.

Promulgation

The Academic Integrity Policy will be communicated throughout the University community in the form of:

  • An Announcement Notice via FedNews website and on the ‘Recently Approved Documents’ page on the ‘Policies, Procedures and Forms @ the University’ website to alert the University-wide community of the approved Procedure.

Implementation

The Academic Integrity Policy will be implemented throughout the University via:

  • Information Sessions; and/or
  • Training Sessions
  • Embedding in preparatory programs for students
  • Embedding materials in staff induction programs
  • Development and advertising of Moodle Shell resources