University Library at St. Cloud State University

Academic Research - Academic Integrity

What is Academic Integrity?
Academic integrity means "adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty" ( "The core principles of integrity create a foundation for success in all of life's endeavors. Integrity in academic settings is a fundamental component of success and growth in the classroom. It prepares students for personal and professional challenges as well as providing a blueprint for future fulfillment and success" (International Center for Academic Integrity -- Academic integrity is devoid of cheating, plagiarism, and academic dishonesty in higher education.

Useful definitions:

Plagiarize: To use the words or ideas of another person as if they were your own words or ideas; to steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one's own or  use (another's production) without crediting the source ( Plagiarism is considered academic dishonesty and is prohibited conduct at St. Cloud State University (see side panel).

Paraphrase: A restatement of a text, passage, or work giving the meaning in another form ( When paraphrasing, you must cite the source of the original text, passage, or work -- both within you paper and on your Works Cited page.

Quotation: Something that a person says or writes that is repeated or used by someone else in another piece of writing or a speech ( Quotations are placed in quotation marks and "must reproduce the original sources exactly" (MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, 7th ed.).
Learn More...

Video - Plagiarism: How not to do it - Library - Bainbridge State College
Real Life Examples of Plagiarism
Plagiarism has real and serious consequences, even when done unintentionally.  Below are some examples of real-life cases.
  • Ohio University
    A student from Ohio University was expelled from her study abroad program after copying three phrases from Wikipedia into an essay.

  • Kaavya Viswanathan
    In 2006, Kaavya Viswanathan published a young adult book. It was later discovered that Viswanathan plagiarized heavily from books by Megan McCafferty, among others. Viswanathan claims that the plagiarism was unintentional. However, her book was recalled from stores and taken out of print and Viswanathan lost her contract for a second book.

  • Jonah Lehrer
    Jonah Lehrer recently resigned as a writer for the New Yorker after he was caught self-plagiarizing on a number of occasions and fabricating quotes for a book.

  • Doris Kearns Goodwin
    Doris Kearns Goodwin is a historian who won the Pulitzer Prize in 1995. It was later discovered that Goodwin plagiarized in her 1987 book, The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys. Once her plagiarism was discovered, Goodwin had to leave her position as a guest pundit on the PBS NewsHour program and resigned from the Pulitzer Board.
-- Examples from Noreen Reale Falcone Library
Student Code of Conduct Policy

Prohibited Student Conduct

From the St. Cloud State University Student Handbook -- Student Code of Conduct -- Prohibited Student Conduct

Any student who attempts or assists others to commit prohibited conduct as defined below may be held accountable as committing the prohibited act.

  1. Academic dishonesty, including but not limited to: cheating, plagiarism, falsification, and collusion. This includes any violation of the Academic Integrity Policy.

For a list of possible disciplinary measures, see the Student Code of Conduct -- Academic Integrity Procedure.
Additional Tutorials

Understanding Plagiarism - Library - Eastern Michigan Library

How to Avoid Plagiarism - Paul Robeson Library - Rutgers University

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