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Academic Dishonesty Essay Topics

In my understanding academic honesty is trust in a relationship between professors, teachers, students etc. It means to be honest with your fellow classmates, teacher, and pupils in the process of education. To be academically honest means not to cheat, fabricate, or copy someone else’s thoughts and ideas as if they were your own. Today academic honesty is a very important issue as it is the base of many universities’ educational programs.

As the regents of the University of California mentioned academic dishonesty “stunts the development of important skills such as reading, writing, research, analysis, synthesis, and comprehension” (The Regents of the University of California, 2006). In other words, being dishonest in education won’t help people develop their knowledge, but to the contrary, it’ll make them less capable of using and handling these important skills. Cheating, plagiarisms, fabrication, providing false information are some of the many examples of academic dishonesty that the UC Davis names on their web page about Integrity.

A common mistake often made by many students is plagiarism. Plagiarism is often observed in students’ works, which is considered to be very academically dishonest. But this is usually a matter of students’ unawareness. Nowadays, fewer people are familiar with the terms and conditions of academic honesty which is very disappointing.

It is important to understand that academic honesty is essential in education. It helps people progress in their path of knowledge as honesty is the main key to success. Every single person has his own point of view, his own unique perspective. It is almost impossible for people to have exactly the same thoughts and ideas. So using someone else’s ideas without giving credit to the original author is first of all very disrespectful and second of all unfair towards the author.

It is also disrespectful towards the educational facility that the person is studying in. The school or university relies on their students to raise their status in the education sphere. Being academically dishonest would mean letting down your educational center, your teachers and most importantly yourself. In conclusion, I find that academic honesty is not merely a rule that must be followed during the process of education, but a principle that people should follow throughout their life. I think that having your own position in life will take you further than trying to live somebody else’s way. References:

1. The Regents of the University of California. “Why Academic Integrity Matters”. UC Davis, Mar.10.2006. Web.Mar.5.2013. URL:< http://sja.ucdavis.edu/files/Whyinteg.pdf>
2. UC Davis, Division of Student Affairs, Office of Student Judicial Affairs. “INTEGRITY an essential piece of the puzzle”. UC Davis, Sep.2006. Web. Mar.5.2013. URL:< http://sja.ucdavis.edu/files/integritypuz.pdf>

3. UC Davis, Division of Student Affairs, Office of Student Judicial Affairs. “Collaboration: When You Can and When You Can’t Work with Others”. UC Davis, Sep.2006. Web. Mar.5.2013. URL: < http://sja.ucdavis.edu/files/collab.pdf>

4. UC Davis, Div. of Student Affairs, Office of Student Judicial Affair. “Avoiding PLAGIARISM. Mastering the Art of Scholarship”. UC Davis, Sep.2006. Web. Mar.5.2013. URL: < http://sja.ucdavis.edu/files/plagiarism.pdf>

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Academic Honesty

Quiz #2


  1. You are working on a computer lab at a public work station. You finish your work, save it to your thumb drive and leave, forgetting to delete your work from the work station. Another student in your class comes along, finds your file and turns it in as her own. Are you responsible for academic dishonesty?
  1. You are taking a mid-term in a large lecture room and some notes that you brought with you slide out from under the seat where you had stowed them. Can you be charged with academic dishonesty?
  1. You ask your instructor whether she would be willing to read a draft of an essay that is due in a week. Your essay contains paraphrases of secondary sources that you used in your essay but haven’t marked yet as the ideas of other people. You figure this is okay, since this is a draft of the essay and not the final copy you plan to turn in. Is this considered academic dishonesty?
  1. Your instructor writes you an email stating that he believes you may have committed an act of academic dishonesty in his class. You panic and withdraw from the course. You are later called before the Board on Academic Honesty. At the hearing, you are shocked to learn that you have been reinstated in the class. Are you still responsible for finishing the class?
  1. You enroll in a two-credit dance class. Besides learning different kinds of movement, you also have to write a five-page essay on a topic assigned by the instructor. You use a lot of material from the internet in your essay and don’t have time to cite it properly. You figure this is okay since most of the grade is based on your dance performance. Besides, it is only a two-credit dance class and not a real academic course and the instructor didn’t say anything about citation. Are you guilty of plagiarism?
  1. You ask a friend, who is a good writer, to look over your paper. She is happy to help and finds many awkward phrases and ambiguous assertions, which she re-writes for you. She even develops a few new arguments to help support your thesis. You are happy because she was able to express clearly and persuasively what you had been trying to say all along. Is this academic dishonesty?
  1. You need a permission code to get into a lab section. Your instructor gives you the code, which you share with a friend who wants to be in the same section. Can you be charged with academic dishonesty?
  1. You notice that a paper assignment in your class is just like one you wrote for another class. You change the cover sheet and a few sentences in the introduction and turn it in. This is okay because it is your own work, right?
  1. Your instructor allows collaboration on homework assignments and encourages study groups but still expects you to do your own work. You and two friends discuss the problem and work through it together. Portions of your final work are identical, but that should be okay, since most of the work is your own. Can you be charged with academic dishonesty?
  1. You are shocked to see that you received a failing grade in your literature class. You thought you were doing quite well and had a “B” average for the class. When you contact your instructor to find out why you failed, he confronts you with evidence that you plagiarized portions of your last essay. “Any student who plagiarizes in my class, fails,” he tells you. “No exceptions.” Is that the end of the matter?
  1. A good friend of yours is desperate. He is in danger of failing the biology class you are both in. If he fails, he will be placed on academic probation. He knows you are an excellent student and asks you to sit at the next exam in such a way that he can see your answers. It’s the only way he’ll pass the class. His request makes you uncomfortable, but, since you’re not the one copying answers, you figure you will not be charged with academic dishonesty. Are you right?
  1.  You are in an advanced language class and are stumped trying to write a composition so you write some sentences in English and use an automatic translation program on the internet to help you out. This is okay, since it’s like using a dictionary, and the instructor said dictionaries were allowed. Is that academically honest?

Answer Key

  1. Possibly. Students have the responsibility of protecting their work from being used dishonestly. If another student makes use of your work even without your knowledge, you may still bear some responsibility for inadvertently helping another student to cheat. Your guilt or innocence would depend on how negligent you were about protecting your work. Certainly, if a student goes to great lengths to steal your work despite all reasonable precautions taken by you, you would not be found guilty of aiding a dishonest act. However, you should always keep your work to yourself as much as possible. Lending a friend a paper so that he can use it as a guide to writing his own, for instance, may implicate you in academic dishonesty if your friend uses your ideas, phrases or passages in his paper, even if you never encouraged him to do so. It is never wise to share your work with others when collaboration is not allowed, and it is a violation of the Policy to share completed assignments in a form that can be copied.
  1. Yes. Improper storage of prohibited notes, course materials and study aids during an exam such that they are accessible or possible to view is a violation of the Academic Honesty Policy. Always make sure that any notes or study aids that you bring to an exam are safely stowed away in closed bags kept well out of view.
  1. Yes. You are responsible for correctly citing all ideas, phrases and passages taken from other authors wherever they occur in your work, even in drafts of your papers. Failure to do so is plagiarism, a violation of the Academic Honesty Policy.
  1. Yes, in almost all instances. Once a charge of academic dishonesty has been brought, you must remain enrolled in the class unless the case is resolved in one of the following two ways.  1) If you have signed an Instructor Resolution Warning Letter offered by your instructor, you may drop or withdraw from the course once the Warning Letter has been approved by the Board on Academic Honesty.  2) If you are exonerated by the Board after a hearing, then you may drop or withdraw from the course.  If you withdraw before your case is resolved or after you are found responsible under either the Instructor Resolution with Penalty process or Board Resolution process, you will be reinstated in the class. No matter how difficult it is to stay in a course in which the professor has accused you of dishonesty, you must continue to attend class and fulfill all class obligations.
  1. Yes. You are responsible for correctly citing all ideas, phrases and passages taken from other authors wherever they occur in your work, even in drafts of your papers. Failure to do so is plagiarism, a violation of the Academic Honesty Policy.
  1. Yes. It is a good idea to have others proofread your work for mistakes in spelling, punctuation, syntax and style, unless such proofreading is expressly prohibited. But you are being dishonest for claiming authorship of any content added by your friend. Your instructor would have every right to turn you over to the board if she suspects that you received unauthorized aid in fulfilling the assignment.
  1. Yes. Sharing permission codes with other students is the same as forging signatures or falsifying information on official academic documents such as drop/add forms, petitions, letters of permission, or any other official University document and is a violation of the honesty policy.
  1. No. This is called “duplicate submission.” Students are expected to produce original work for all of their classes. Turning in an essay written for a different class is dishonest not only because you are misrepresenting it as work done for this class, but also because you have received a grade and critical input from your former instructor, thus giving you an unfair advantage over your classmates. Many times, however, you can use a former assignment as the basis for a new one. Confer with your instructor, show her the paper and discuss how you might develop the work in a way that can satisfy class requirements. It is ultimately your instructor’s decision whether it is appropriate to use work done in a different class for her course.
  1. Yes. In classes where collaboration on graded assignments is allowed, you must still do your own work. Always make sure you understand the extent of collaboration your instructor allows. If you are not sure, ask your instructor for clarification. Most instructors do not allow students to turn in identical work or assignments that contain identical work.
  1. No. No faculty member can punish you for alleged dishonesty without following the procedures outlined in the Academic Honesty Policy. The instructor can attempt an Instructor Resolution With Penalty by presenting you with the evidence of dishonesty, suggesting a penalty, referring you to the Academic Honesty Policy and allowing you up to 48 hours to accept the penalty. Or he can turn the case over to the board for a hearing in a Board Resolution. He cannot punish you on his own. In a similar vein, no faculty member can “give you a break” and overlook an instance of academic dishonesty, as all university faculty and staff are obligated to report cases of suspected dishonesty to the board.
  1. No. This is called “facilitating academic dishonesty” and includes aiding another person in an act that violates the standards of academic honesty; allowing other students to look at one's own work during an exam or in an assignment where collaboration is not allowed; providing information, material, or assistance to another person knowing that it may be used in violation of course, departmental, or college academic honesty policies; and providing false information in connection with any academic honesty inquiry.
  1. No. Using automatic translation programs is the same as getting a friend to do your work for you and is dishonest.

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