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SSYF - Academic Integrity

Academic Integrity: Research & Writing


The Academic Integrity student module explores ethical decision making in research and writing. It provides information regarding general concepts of academic integrity and the College's own policy. Activities encourage students to create their own definitions of academic integrity as well as consider aspects of source usage, such as discriminating between information that is considered common knowledge and information that requires attribution.

Outcomes and Objectives

The Academic Integrity: Research and Writing student module meets the following NOVA goals and VCCS student learning outcomes:

  • NOVA General Education Goals:
    • Communication
      • Assimilate, organize, develop, and present an idea formally and informally
    • Information Literacy
      • Evaluate information and its sources critically and incorporate selected information into his or her knowledge base
      • Understand many of the economic, legal and social issues surrounding the use of information and access and use information ethically and legally
  • VCCS Developmental English Redesign Student Learning Outcomes:
    • Identify, evaluate, integrate and document sources properly

More Info About the Academic Integrity Student Module

This module was developed in June 2014 by Emily Miller, Reading and Writing Center Supervisor and Kevin Simons, Instruction and Reference Services Librarian of Annandale's LTR. Updated September 2015.

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Suggested Assignments and Assessments:

1. Summarize NOVA's academic dishonesty policy

  1. Instruct students to review NOVA's academic honesty policy, located in the corresponding student module. Ask students to closely read the sections on plagiarism and collusion.
  2. Instruct students to summarize these sections -- both defining plagiarism and collusion and presenting their consequences.
  3. As a group, examine the various submissions paying close attention to rewritings that are close to the original text in wording and sentence structure. This may be an opportunity to discuss how to summarize and paraphrase.

2. What is common knowledge?

  1. Have students in small groups or as a class brainstorm sets of common knowledge facts that fall within the discipline of science. Ex. A fact could be that water has the properties H2O.
  2. Introduce a scientific study or report that contains information not considered common knowledge.
  3. Discuss the differences between the brainstormed list and the published material the requires attribution.
  4. Finally, ask students to create their own working definitions of common knowledge.

Use Academic Integrity: Research & Writing Student Module With:

Get More Help Using the Academic Integrity: Research & Writing Student Module:

Students needing more help with academic integrity should contact the Annandale Reading and Writing Center.

  • Please visit the For Faculty tab for information on tutoring services, referring students and requesting instructional workshops.

Students needing help finding and evaluating sources should contact NOVA Libraries.

  • Faculty can schedule an instructional session with a librarian using the Schedule Instruction link in the For Faculty section of the NOVA Libraries home page.
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