Guiding students from cheating and plagiarism to honesty and integrity: Strategies for change

In all academic institutions and related fields, it is required that all undertakings take place with one upholding academic integrity. Academic integrity is defined as the ethical policy or moral code of academia. The values include the aspects of avoiding plagiarism, avoiding cheating, being honest and rigorous in academic publishing and research as well as maintaining academic standards. These are the main aspects though the same will be presented in different formats by different institutions in their fight against any form of academic dishonesty (Bertram et al., 2008).

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Plagiarism is an integral part of academic integrity. It is demanded that all forms of plagiarism be avoided. Though still lacking clear definitions and clear rules, plagiarism is defined as the wrong appropriation as well as stealing and publicizing another writer’s ideas, thoughts, language or expression with the representation of the same as one’s own unique work. In the industry and academia, plagiarism is a major ethical offense that constitutes copyright infringement (Lancaster & Waryold, 2008).

Plagiarism involves many aspects. The various components include the major one which is copying ideas or words from another without giving credit. Another plagiarism component is handing in someone else work as one’s own. Plagiarism also involves provision of incorrect information on a given source of quotation. Another aspect is failing to insert quotations on quotation marks. Plagiarism also involves the copying of many ideas or words from a given source making up majority of one’s work whether giving credit or not. Another component of plagiarism is the changing of words in a sentence but copying the sentence structure of the source without giving credit. Apart from academia, other components of plagiarism exist in art and journalism. It involves the use of video, image or pieces of music in some produced work without providing the appropriate citation or having received proper permission. Other aspects involve the scanning of a copyrighted image. The recreation of visual work in a different medium is also considered as plagiarism. One is also said to plagiarize if they recreate some visual work in same medium. One is also not supposed to record video or audio with copyrighted video or music playing in the background or else it will be taken as plagiarism. The performance of another person’s copyrighted music in art is also labeled as plagiarism. Another component of plagiarism in art is composing pieces in music which borrow heavily from another person’s composition. With the rise of the internet, plagiarism on this platform has taken the form of content scraping which is the copying and pasting from blogs and websites (Lathrop & Foss, 2005).

The most effective strategy to avoid plagiarism is to properly cite the sources. One needs to acknowledge that a part of their material is borrowed. One should then proceed to provide the appropriate audience with the necessary information to find the source. For art and journalism, the strategy to prevent the plagiarism of copyrighted items involves citing them in the proper way and confirming works usage permission. For the internet, to prevent copy-pasting, one of the strategy is to disable the right clicking option. The other is the placement of warning banners on copyrights on the web pages (Lathrop & Foss, 2005).

To ensure academic integrity, there are various sources of assistance for students. One of the avenues is to ask for help from the course instructors. Students can also use graduate advisors or academic advisors in respective academic departments for assistance with any academic work. Faculty members can also provide assistance by approving any research assistance that will be accorded to the students. Some academic institutions also have academic resource centers to help students with research work (Lancaster & Waryold, 2008).


Bertram, G. T., In Ward, K., In Wolf-Wendel, L. E., & Association for the Study of Higher Education. (2008). Academic integrity in the 21st century: A teaching and learning imperative. San Francisco, Calif: Jossey-Bass.

Lancaster, J. M., & Waryold, D. M. (2008). Student conduct practice: The complete guide for student affairs professionals. Sterling, Va: Stylus Pub.

Lathrop, A., & Foss, K. (2005). Guiding students from cheating and plagiarism to honesty and integrity: Strategies for change. Westport, Conn: Libraries Unlimited

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