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Academic Integrity

Use the following guide to learn more about academic integrity

Code of Behaviour on Academic Matters

Below, you will find The Code of Behaviour on Academic Matters, which discusses in detail what we all must do and who deals with violations and how that all works if someone violates a rule.  

  • It is a a rather long and formal document that is not much fun to read.  Now, ideally, you would read it in detail and understand all of it. The rules and sanctions discussed in the document will apply to you if something goes wrong.  However, you don't have to, nor do you need to memorize all the rules.  
  • Read at least sections A and B which are just 3 easy pages.    View this as a resource for the future, but don’t worry about the details of the “process” that will follow after a violation… learning about academic integrity now will hopefully ensure you will never need that.

Violations and Consequences

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Types of Academic Misconduct

Below you will find a quick summary of the 9 forms of academic misconduct. These are explained in greater detail in the Code of Behavior on Academic Matters.  Each type of misconduct can lead to different consequences, from a reduction in your grade on the assignment, to a reduction in your course grade, to a failed course, to a notation on your transcript, or even a termination of your degree program.

Behaviour Examples


Altering or falsifying any documentation required by the University, including medical notes.

  • Changing a date on a medical note because you are too sick to get a new one. This is a form of fraud!
  • Altering a graded assignment and submitting it for re-grading.
  • Altering or falsifying an academic record/transcript (from UTSC or a different institution).

Possession of an unauthorized aid

Having an unauthorized aid on you in any test or exam—even if you do not use it or it is turned off.

  • Cell phone, smart watch, ipod, headphones, or any other electronic device.
  • Calculator that is not allowed by the exam
  • “Study” notes (unless explicitly allowed by the exam)
  • Dictionary (unless explicitly allowed by the exam)
  • Notes: Your exam will clearly state what you are allowed to bring and your proctor will give instructions. Ask if you are uncertain.
Unauthorized aid or assistance
  • Working with another student on an individual assignment unless explicitly allowed by the instructor.
  • Having another person make changes to your assignment. You may seek advice or feedback on your writing, but you need to evaluate what you receive, learn from it, and implement it yourself.
  • Copying someone else's answers on a test, exam, lab report or other assignment, even if you change them substantially and rewrite them.


Pretending to be someone else or using their credentials, or the reverse.

  • Taking a test for your friend.
  • Asking a friend to take a test for you.
  • Using someone else’s iClicker.
  • Signing an attendance sheet for a friend who is not there. This is not a joking matter to the University.
  • Having someone else sign an attendance sheet for you. BOTH of you are violating the rules.


Presenting the work, ideas, or words of another as your own, even if by accident.

  • Using an idea without including a reference to the source.
  • Copying material without enclosing it within quotation marks.
  • Copying material with a few words changed, or used in different order without acknowledgement. This is not paraphrasing (learn how to properly paraphrase HERE).
  • Submitting a purchased paper or an assignment written by someone else.
  • On a test/exam, reproducing material memorized from a source (e.g. book, website, lecture slides) without quotation marks and/or acknowledgement. (Note: Some material, like mathematical formulas and definitions, are memorized. Ask your TA or instructor if you have any questions or concerns.)

Unauthorized resubmission

Submitting work you have submitted before without obtaining permission from your instructor.

  • Submitting the same paper or even parts of the paper for two courses.


Including false or misleading references in your work or making up “facts”.

  • Copying material from an online source like Wikipedia but citing a scholarly journal instead of your real source.
  • Inventing a reference because you forgot or lost track of the true source.
  • Using imaginary data rather than observed data in a lab report.
  • Copying material from a source that is unreliable, but which claims to cite original work – and you use those citations without checking them.
Falsifying an academic record
  • Altering a ROSI/ACORN/RWorld record or transcript in any way.
  • Omitting information from an academic record.
Assisting another student to commit an offence
  • Letting your friend see your completed assignment so that he/she can “compare answers” with yours.
  • Leaving your test paper visible so your friend can copy answers.
  • Posting the content of a test, examination, assignment, or lab report on a chat group, social networking site, or by any other means.

Other forms of cheating or misconduct

Doing anything to gain unearned academic advantage.

  • Smuggling in a pre-written answer booklet into a test/exam.
  • Continuing to work on a test/exam after being told to stop.
  • Lying about having submitted an essay electronically that never reaches your professor.
  • Misrepresenting the reasons for missing a test or examination, or for submitting work late.
  • Attempting to commit an offence.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.