Academic Honesty

Academic Honesty

NOTE - The Academic Honesty Policy is under review.  A new draft Academic Integrity Policy has been developed and is available for feedback through the Academic Integrity tab here


The Academic Honesty Policy establishes the principles that underpin a consistent, equitable and transparent approach to academic honesty amongst staff and students.


PurposeTo enable the University to take a consistent, equitable and transparent approach to academic honesty amongst staff and students.


The nature of scholarly endeavour, dependent as it is on the work of others, binds all members of the University community to abide by the principles of academic honesty. Academic honesty is an integral part of the core values and principles contained in the Macquarie University Ethics StatementIts fundamental principle is that all staff and students act with integrity in the creation, development, application and use of ideas and information.  This means that:
  • all academic work claimed as original is the work of the author making the claim
  • all academic collaborations are acknowledged
  • academic work is not falsified in any way
  • when the ideas of others are used, these ideas are acknowledged appropriately.

All academic and professional staff involved in learning, teaching and research are expected to display leadership in this area.

One of the University’s objectives is to produce ethically and socially aware graduates, capable of applying the skills and knowledge they have developed at University to all aspects of their lives, as well as to their academic work. Academic dishonesty undermines the integrity of the University’s academic awards and assessment processes, and damages the University’s reputation. It also reduces the effectiveness of a student’s time at the University.

Examples of some dishonest behaviours are deception, fabrication, obstruction, plagiarism and sabotage.

Deception: includes, but is not limited to, false indication of group contribution, false indication of assignment submission, collusion, submission of a work previously submitted, creating a new article out of an existing article by rewriting/reusing it (laundering), using the same data to form the same arguments and conclusion, presenting collaborative work as one’s own without acknowledging others’ contributions, cheating in an examination or using others to write material for examination.

Fabrication: includes, but is not limited to, creating fictitious clinical data, citation(s), or referee reports.

Obstruction: intentionally impeding or interfering with another student’s academic work

Plagiarism: Using the work or ideas of another person, whether intentionally or not, and presenting this as your own without clear acknowledgement of the source of the work or ideas. This includes, but is not limited to, any of the following acts:
  • copying out part(s) of any document or audio-visual material or computer code or website content without indicating their origins
  • using or extracting another person's concepts, experimental results, or conclusions
  • summarising another person's work
  • submitting substantially the same final version of any material as another student in an assignment where there was collaborative preparatory work
  • use of others (paid or otherwise) to conceive, research or write material submitted for assessment (eg ghost writing)
  • submitting the same or substantially the same piece of work for two different tasks (self-plagiarism).
Sabotage: includes, but is not limited to, theft of work, destruction of library materials.
ScopeThis Policy applies to all students and to staff of the University involved in learning, teaching and research.


The key principles of this policy are that the University will:
  • require all students and staff to undertake their academic work honestly
  • encourage all staff and students to complete appropriate training
  • use a range of approaches to educate students and staff to practise honesty in their academic work and raise awareness of the importance of ensuring ethical behaviour with respect to research
  • take consistent and equitable action to manage dishonest student behaviours by:
    • communicating to students that any piece of academic work can be checked at any time using an appropriate process
    • implementing a common remedial and penalty framework across the University
    • establishing and applying appropriate, consistent procedures for detecting and investigating alleged academic dishonesty, and
    • providing and communicating the appeal process
  • apply the appropriate processes of the Macquarie University Enterprise Agreement to manage alleged academic dishonesty by staff.
The University will engage staff and students by:
  • using appropriate mechanisms to advise staff and students of the Policy
  • developing educational strategies to promote academic honesty
  • developing strategies that reduce opportunities for academic dishonesty
  • designing strategies to increase student engagement with their study, and their ability to submit their own work, and
  • reviewing these strategies at appropriate intervals.
The University may commence applicable disciplinary procedures if a person to whom this policy applies breaches this policy (or any of its related procedures).

Policy Information

Contact OfficerChair, SLTC
Date Approved13 November 2012
Approval AuthorityAcademic Senate
Date of CommencementFor units with a teaching start date of 1 January 2013 or later
Amendment HistoryAugust 2016 - Following introduction of new Assessment Policy, replacement of link from the old to the new Assessment Policy in Key Related documents
February 2016 – removed Related documents reference to Student Misconduct and Discipline Rules, replaced with Student Discipline Rules, Procedure and Appendices. Amended Contact Officer to Chair SLTC.
Date for Next ReviewDecember 2013
Related Documents

Student Discipline Rules
Student Discipline Procedure
Student Discipline Procedure Appendix 1: Handling and resolving allegations of Academic misconduct (process map with links to supporting resources)
Student Discipline Procedure Appendix 2: Handling and resolving allegations of General misconduct (process map with links to supporting resources) 
Assessment Policy
Ethics Statement
Macquarie University Enterprise Agreement
Staff Code of Conduct

Policies / Rules Superseded by this PolicyAcademic Honesty approved 11 August 2009
KeywordsAcademic honesty, academic dishonesty, plagiarism, cheating, fabrication, sabotage, deception, academic integrity
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