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Academic Integrity & Avoiding Plagiarism

In summary:

  • Academic work is a process based on community. Researchers read each others' works and ideas to create their own, and the owner of the original work must always be given credit for their ideas. Building good research and writing habits and practicing academic integrity is an essential part of your university studies.
  • Plagiarism is stealing someone else's ideas, words, and/or work and presenting it as your own. Such offenses are taken very seriously in academia and can result in unpleasant consequences, including a mark of 0 on the assignment, having to redo the assignment, or even being expelled from the university. Plagiarism can be intentional or unintentional, so it's important to understand how to cite your sources properly!
  • Contract Cheating, which is when you have someone else do all or part of your work, is also an academic offense. Understanding when and how to work together with others (collaboration vs collusion) is an important part of your university education!
  • Citation is how you identify and give credit to the person whose idea you are using. There are many different styles of citation, so it's important to check with your professor to ensure you are using the correct style for their class. The library has a page with brief summaries of different citation styles to help you.
  • MSVU has an International Education Centre to assist international students who may be adjusting to the expectations and conventions of the Canadian education system. It's important that you seek out help early in the process so you do not get behind or become overwhelmed.
  • You don't have to do this alone! There are many places on campus to reach out for help if you are struggling with research or citation. Check out our 'Where Can I Get Help' link in the menu to the left to get more information about resources available to you, or visit the Mount Library page for more information on research and citation!


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