Academic Integrity Policy
Revision Date: 27/07/2018 by Charter Australia
Charter Australia is committed to ensuring a great learning experience for its students. It aims to provide a learning environment that fosters the qualities of independent learning and academic integrity.
This policy seeks to encourage ethical conduct and to inform staff and students about the Charter Australia standards of academic behaviour. Students have a responsibility to maintain the highest standards of academic integrity in their work. Students must not cheat in assessment and must ensure that they do not plagiarise.
What is plagiarism?
Plagiarism is the act of misrepresenting as one’s own original work the ideas, interpretations, words or creative works of another. These include published and unpublished documents, designs, music, sounds, images, photographs, computer codes and ideas gained through working in a group. These ideas, interpretations, words or works may be found in print and/or electronic media.
One of the core functions of Charter Australia is to develop student’s ability to apply critical reasoning to assessment activities through independent thought and to make decisions that reflect the student’s considerations of the task or workplace requirement.
Charter Australia acknowledges that to develop this ability, the student will study the work of others via issued textbooks, learning material or through their own research. However, it is important that students in their learning acknowledge, through appropriate referencing, earlier work from which they have drawn information.
Referencing demonstrates that the student has read the issued material or has undertaken their own research in other sources. Failure to reference appropriately is considered unethical academic behaviour and will result in a students work not being accepted.
Students should understand that assignment and project work submitted for assessment must consist of original effort. It is insufficient to simply copy work from other sources and submit it, even if those sources are appropriately acknowledged. Work submitted by a student must have an original component.
The following are examples of plagiarism where a student intentionally does not acknowledgement or reference an author or source:
- Direct copying of paragraphs, sentences, a single sentence or significant parts of a sentence;
- Direct copying of paragraphs, sentences, a single sentence or significant parts of a sentence with an end reference but without quotation marks around the copied text;
- Copying ideas, concepts, research results, computer codes, statistical tables, designs, images, sounds or text or any combination of these;
- Paraphrasing, summarising or simply rearranging another person’s words, ideas, etc., without reference or explanation.
- Offering an idea or interpretation that is not one’s own without identifying whose idea or interpretation it is;
- A ‘cut and paste’ of statements from multiple sources;
- Presenting as independent, work done in collaboration with others;
- Copying or adapting another student’s original work into a submitted assessment item.
- Copying or adapting a student’s own work submitted in a previous essay or assessment.
- Alternatively, there will be instances when a student unintentionally fails to cite sources or to do so adequately.
Careless or inadequate referencing or failure to reference will be considered poor practice. Where careless referencing is identified, the student will be required to correct the error and resubmit an assignment.
How to reference
At Charter Australia, students are to be encouraged to apply the Harvard Referencing System in-text citation. This approach requires three pieces of information about a source within the text of the students work. This information is:
- the name of the author or authors
- the year of publication
- the page number
Citations may be placed at the end of a sentence (before the concluding punctuation) in brackets, eg:
- To succeed, the team will rely on both task process and group process (Dwyer, Hopwood 2010, p. 239)
A reference may be placed in the text to integrate the author’s surname into the sentence, followed by the year of publication and page number, in brackets, eg:
- Dwyer and Hopwood (2010, p. 239) identify that to succeed, the team will rely on both task process and group process.
At the end of the students work, a List of References must be included. This should include all the books, journal articles and other sources of information you have used to research your assignment. The reference list should be laid out alphabetically and the title of the source should be italicised. Each reference must include:
- the name of the author or authors
- the year of publication
- the title of the publication
- the edition of publication
- the publisher
- place of publication
- Dwyer, J and Hopwood, N, 2010, Management Strategies and Skills, Sydney, McGraw Hill Australia
In every field, there is a body of knowledge and material that has become part of the public domain and which can be drawn on without specific acknowledgment. Common knowledge includes facts that are generally known, such as common facts of history, common-sense information, accepted folklore and aphorisms that have been adopted as part of common English language.
As examples, it would not be necessary to reference the following:
- That John Howard was the Prime Minister of Australia (common fact of history)
- That humans need food and water for survival (common-sense observation)
- That the “Bunyip” is a man-eating Australian animals that live in water-holes, swamps and creeks (accepted folklore)
Cheating is defined as “a form of deceit with a view to gaining an advantage for the cheat.” At Charter Australia, cheating is usually related to taking unauthorised material into assessments. Charter Australia Trainers have a responsibility to explain clearly expectations related to any assessment, what constitutes cheating, and to promote a climate of honesty in students.
What happens if plagiarism has been identified
The following steps will be taken once plagiarism has been identified by the assessor.
- The Assessor will determine the level of severity of the plagiarism, for example, which questions where plagiarised, or what percentage of the assignment was plagiarised.
- The Assessor will try and identify the reasons for the plagiarism. For example, whether it was accidental, due to a lack of knowledge of academic practices, or a deliberate attempt to cheat. Serious cases such as cheating should be reported to the Director of Studies.
- The Assessor will have an informal or formal meeting with the student (depending on the level of severity of the plagiarism). Informal cases may be communicated via email or telephone. The Assessor will point out where the plagiarism has taken place and the student may have a chance to explain the reasons for the plagiarism.
- The student will be given a chance to re-submit all or part of their work. The parts of the assignment to be re-done and the timeframes for this are to be decided by the Assessor. If necessary, the student will be given academic support on how to avoid plagiarism.
- If the student does not re-submit their work, they will not receive marks for the parts of the assignment that were deemed to be plagiarised.
- Repeated instances of plagiarism from the same student will result in disciplinary action from the Director of Studies, which may include receiving a fail grade for the unit or course, and in severe cases, exclusion from the college.
- If a student disagrees with any of the decisions made by Charter Australia regarding the matter, they may access Charter Australia’s Complaints and Appeals procedures.
- All instances of plagiarism and all communications with the student are to be recorded in the student’s file by Charter Australia staff.
 Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary