The importance of academic integrity and your guide for success

Set yourself up for success
Studying is a key part of preparing for your assessments and exams, but it's not the only factor you need to consider. Know your responsibilities when it comes to academic integrity and find out why it's key to academic success.

As you progress through your studies, you'll grow and change both a student and individual. While your approach to studying, such as implementing a new study technique, may change, your approach to academic integrity should remain the same. 

It's your responsibility as a student of the University to take an honest approach to your studies. But, academic integrity is not just something the University requires of you. It is a key factor you can implement and influence – just like studying – to help you succeed in your studies. 

To help you succeed this exam season, we've pulled together some tips and advice for integrating academic integrity in everything you do at University. 

What is academic integrity?

Academic integrity refers to an ethical and honest approach to learning and education. It isn’t just about following the rules; it’s about developing your skills, critical thinking, and problem-solving abilities.

By actively engaging with material to complete assesments on your own and giving credit to others when you use their ideas, you’re enhancing your understanding of the topic while simultaneously building trust between you, your teachers and your peers.

Beyond your studies, the professional world values individuals who demonstrate integrity. Employers seek individuals who can be trusted with responsibilities, are honest in their actions and have a strong work ethic.

A student studying in the Quadrangle courtyard

Refining your references

References show the breadth of your work and the effort you've put in to forming your own analysis, so it should never be seen as an afterthought. Here are our top tips to ensure you get referencing right. 

Referencing styles

Familarise yourself with the assessment criteria to ensure you've completed your references in the correct referencing style. Remember, different disciplines have different ways of referencing sources. Read through the Library's recommended referencing style mannuals to check you've formatted your sources correctly. 

Quoting, summarising and paraphrasing

If you have large chunks of text dedicated to quotes, this might be an indication that you’re relying too much on your source material, and are not demonstrating your understanding of concepts. Instead, see if you can paraphrase the quote into your own words, while still attributing the idea to the author by including a reference. If you are using direct quotes, make sure you’ve included quotation marks and the appropriate pinpoint citation. To develop your skills in quoting, summarising and paraphrasing, visit the Write Site or attend a Learning Hub (Academic Language and Learning) workshop.

Getting your bibliography right 

As important as it is to reference correctly, ensure you've included all sources used in your bibliography or reference list if one is required. An accurate reference list with appropriate formatting clearly identifies your sources, upholds academic integrity, and also affords easy marks in your assessments.

Using Artificial Intelligence (AI) with academic integrity

We're excited about the transformative potential of emerging digital tools, such as generative Artificial Intelligence (AI), in our research and education. But, we must ensure these tools are used in a responsible and ethical manner. 

Your use of generative AI and other digital tools, such as grammar checkers, translators and paraphrasing software, needs to be carefully considered as it can be construed as plagiarism or cheating. The permitted use of these tools is something that is determined by your unit coordinator. 

If any of these digital writing tools are expressly allowed, remember to clearly acknowledge how they were used to complete your assessment. Unapproved use of these tools or failing to acknowledge them appropriately can be considered a breach of the University’s Academic Integrity Policy (pdf, 350KB).

If you're unsure if digital tools are permitted in your subjects, refer to the assessment instructions, Unit of Study outline or contact your Unit Coordinator to confirm. Learn how to use digital tools effectively and responsibly by visiting the AI in Education site, an educational resource designed by students.

Students studying in the Learning Hub

Seeking support

Academic and wellbeing support from the University are always available to you, if you need it. However, it's important to know which support resources and services are legitimate and which are not. 

Beware of contact cheating

Third party companies with no affiliation to the University try to target students by offering to help them with their assessments. This is known as ‘contract cheating’. The advertisements by these companies are not legitimate support services and can put you at risk of falling prey to blackmail or scams.

Do not engage with these individuals or businesses as the associated risks are immense. Not only do you risk being implicated in an academic integrity investigation and the penalties that may follow (which include failure, suspension and exclusion), but you may be vulnerable to the possibility of financial blackmail in the future. Learn more about how to protect yourself from scams

Legitimate academic support services and resources

There are several University resources students can utilise for their studies:

Visit the University’s student support page for more information on the support services available to you.

Updated: 30 October 2023

1 September 2023

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