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Academic Integrity

Academic Integrity and how to avoid plagiarism

Students are encouraged to continuously check their work and their Turnitin reports so as to ensure external content is acknowledged and referenced correctly. Some key things to consider as you develop your assignments are;

  1. Are you copying and pasting content directly from the web or a library resource?  Unless you directly cite where every word of that content has come from in double quotes “ “ with an author, year and page number, then this approach could lead to an academic misconduct investigation for plagiarism.
  2. Allow sufficient time to submit your assignment (2-3 days before the due date) through Turnitin, check the results and make required fixes (or seek input from your lecturer or learning advisor).  90% of students who end up in an academic misconduct investigation for plagiarism did not review their Turnitin report before submitting their assignment.  It is better to lose some marks to late penalties than end up with an academic misconduct finding on your record.
  3. When reading a Turnitin originality report, the overall percentage is less important than the individual percentage per item.  An assignment could have 80% of the written content come from external sources and not be construed as plagiarism if it is meticulously referenced (although it would be a poor-quality assignment in most cases).  Conversely, even a 1% match could lead to an academic misconduct investigation if as little as a full or partial sentence in not correctly cited (author, year, page numbers etc) and matches an external source word for word.
  4. It is assumed that all students have undertaken the Academic Integrity Module and appraised themselves of ECU’s referencing guide prior to any and all assignment submissions. When a student clicks the Submit button for an assignment in Blackboard it is assumed that they have checked it through Turnitin and made required improvements and thus take full responsibility for the final content.
  • For more information about Turnitin and ECU’s Referencing Guide, click here.
  • For further information about academic integrity and ECU’s policies, please visit the student academic integrity website here.
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